Relief for Exercising Feet
Don't let foot problems sideline your fitness goals.
1. Don't Skimp on Footwear continued...
"There definitely is a difference in sneakers, and if you are serious
enough about your health to start an exercise program, you have to be serious
enough to invest in good footwear, and doing so will help you avoid many
injuries," says Ken Plancher, MD, director of Plancher Orthopedics and
Sports Medicine in New York and Greenwich, Conn.
Here's what Plancher says you should look for:
- Check for solid construction with a flexible toe bed (your shoe bends when
your foot bends), a strong heel counter (the area that hugs the back of your
foot), and most important, padded insoles and arch support.
- Look for a "cross trainer" shoe, which works for all-around
- Shop in an athletic footwear store, where a clerk should not only measure
your feet, but also ask about any biomechanical problems such as flat feet, or
weak or pronating ankles, before suggesting styles.
Catanese adds that the sneakers should also feel good – wide enough
to accommodate your foot without pressure, and the right length.
"When shoes are either too short or so long they allow the foot to slide
forward, you get a slight tapping of the toes against the tip," says
Normally, our feet can take it. But once you start working out, adding
thousands more steps to your daily routine, all that tapping adds up.
"It causes a problem known as subungal hematoma, or bleeding under the
nail, one of the most common workout related foot problems we see," says
Often causing significant pain, this frequently requires medical care,
including drilling into the nail to release the fluids.
"It's a lot easier to get a good-fitting pair of shoes," he
While experts say it's smart to break in a pair of shoes around the house
before wearing them during your workout, Plancher says they should "feel
like heaven" from the moment you slip them on. If they don't, keep
2: Sock It to Me, Baby
While shoes are important, experts say the No. 2 cause of workout- related
foot problems is wearing the wrong socks. Because socks provide the cushion
between your skin and your shoe, they can either prevent or cause friction that
eventually leads to irritation, and sometimes injury.