What are the different parts of the foot?

Christopher Chiodo, MD
Orthopedic Surgery
Your foot consists of three main components: the forefoot (the toes and ball of your foot), the midfoot (the arch), and the hindfoot (the heel region). The underlying bone structure is intricate and complex. For example, in each foot, your five toes contain 14 bones (two in your big toe and three each in the other four) called phalanges. Five longer bones, known collectively as the metatarsals, lead to the toes. Hidden under the base of the big toe are bones called sesamoids, which work like pulleys, enhancing the function of muscles and tendons and increasing the strength of the big toe.  

The midfoot consists of five bones (three cuneiforms, the cuboid, and the navicular), which are short and broad and fit tightly together. Your hindfoot contains the largest bones in the foot, including the heel bone, or calcaneus, and the talus, located between the heel bone and the two bones of the lower leg.

Continue Learning about Healthy Bones, Joints & Muscles

Healthy Bones, Joints & Muscles

Healthy Bones, Joints & Muscles

Good nutrition -- especially calcium and vitamin D -- is very important to healthy bones and muscles, as is regular exercise and keeping weight under control. This lifestyle is especially important in childhood and teen years, whe...

n bone strength is developing most rapidly -- and can help prevent osteoporosis (brittle bones), fractures, and painful osteoarthritis (degenerative joints) later in life.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.