Keeping Your Feet Happy This Summer With Richmond Rehab
Feet... those slabs of meat we stuff into shoes every day. They take us to and from work, they might take you around your local running track, and they give toes something to attach on to!
We don't give them too much thought really, until they become sore!!! Our physiotherapy team often have patients coming in with foot pain when the weather has come good. Is there a link between sun exposure and foot pain? Not likely. There is a link between increased loading and foot pain though.
Commonly patients will tell us that they've recently increased their running distance because the weather is good, maybe they've been walking around in thongs all weekend, or maybe they've had their feet in 'sky high heels' and danced the night away. Whatever the poison is, these changes in loading generally quite different from our usual winter habits. We usually have our feet in supportive shoes for most of the day, only taking them off to have a shower or go to bed. As a result the tissue running along the bottom of the foot (Plantar Fascia) can become deconditioned to significant loading and this is where things can become undone.
What Can Be Done To Keep Your Feet Happy?
It is pretty easy really... Don't do too much too quickly, instead progressively load your feet.
- Slowly introduce or increase those outdoor runs you've been avoiding
- Don't wear unsupportive shoes if you need to walk significant distances
- Make sure your supportive shoes have been correctly fitted
- Allow adequate recovery between training sessions
- If you have a history of foot pain, avoid stiletto heels or shoes with excessively high heels
- Book an appointment with your physio or podiatrist for a review of your feet
- Prescription of a heel lift or orthosis may be beneficial
- Keep your feet strong and give them some love
What Can You Do At Home?
- Using a spikey ball or tennis ball to massage the arches of your feet can help to keep the tissue loose and ease your pain
- Performing foot strengthening exercises to allow for the extra loading can be beneficial
- Icing your feet after prolonged activity