Avoiding Summer Heel Pain

While the warm temperatures tempt us to expose our toes with cute flip flops or sandals, doing so has been known to cause the onset of heel pain. Making good footwear choices can keep you going all summer long without pain.

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Impact of foot type on heel pain:

As you can see in the picture below, not all feet are created the same. Some feet tend to over-pronate while other feet are more supinated. Either extreme from normal can cause strain on the soft tissue and joints. Imagining the arch as a triangle, the plantar fascia is like the bottom of the triangle.  Over-pronation causes the bottom of the triangle to stretch when walking. However, the plantar fascia doesn’t stretch well and instead tends to tear at its insertion in the heel. Support of the foot reduces this strain by reducing the over-pronation.  In contrast, the supinated foot does not absorb shock as well when walking. The resultant pounding of the foot causes more of an impact injury on the heel. Having shoes that help spread the weight and absorb the shock decreases this injury process.

Recognizing Pronation

It’s all about the shoes:

With advances in shoe technology, fashion does not have to be entirely sacrificed in exchange for comfort. Chacos, Keen, Teva, Dansko,  Wolky  and  Birkenstock  are all brands that have excellent support. Fairly new on the shoe market is the Vionic sandal. This line of shoes has built-in mild correction appropriate for those with a pronated foot type.

When the weather draws you to the outdoors for adventure, exploration, or perhaps on a less glamorous mission of completing yard chores, protect your feet with the proper shoe gear to make your time as enjoyable as possible. But if heel pain has already come calling, rest assured that help is available.  Call the office today to get back to comfort and activity.