It’s no surprise that so many injuries are foot-related. The arches of the feet are highly specialised and are primarily responsible for the transmission of load and absorption of shock every time we take a step. When walking, the stresses placed on your feet are greater than your resting body weight, and this increases further when we run. If you have flat feet or high arches, you may be more likely to suffer from trouble after impact than people with normal-arched feet.
Pronation is the inward movement of the foot as it rolls to distribute the force of impact on the ground as you walk or run. Those that overpronate will see their foot roll further inwards, causing the arch of the foot to flatten.
The opposite of pronation, ‘supination’ as it’s known – is when the foot rolls outwards when it comes into contact with the ground. When this happens, the force of the ground isn’t as evenly distributed, placing more stress on the other areas of foot. Supinators may have high arches which could become painful under pressure.
Both conditions can be associated with pain in the feet, ankles, lower legs, knees, hips or lower back.
Having flat feet and high arches are usually nothing to worry about, however some people can experience pain and associated problems. Pain can be caused by:
Flat feet usually occur in people who have arches never really develop or inherit structural abnormalities from their parents. However, they can sometimes be the result of:
You should consult your local healthcare professional if your feet are painful when wearing supportive, well-fitted shoes, your shoes wear out fast, your feet appear to be getting flatter or higher, or feel weak, numb or stiff. You should consult your doctor if you often get feet or ankle injuries, you have problems walking or balancing, it only affects 1 foot or if you didnt have unusual arches before.
You can help ease the discomfort of flat feet and high arches by:
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