pin Our Location 2481 Bloor St. W, Toronto 416.769.3338(FEET)

clock Open Saturdays Mon-Fri 10am-7pm Sat 10am-4pm calendar Book Appointment

See A Licensed Chiropodist

416-769-FEET(3338)

At home Sprained Ankle & Foot Exercises

With the New Year many flock to the gyms or get their resolutions ready. Why not take 10 minutes out of your day to start taking care of your feet as well.

It has been proven that foot exercises help increase mobility, prevent injury, increase circulation and resolve many foot issues.

Here are some exercises you can do at home:

Heel raise and toe curls

Toe raises and curls

Start in a seated position barefoot, raise your legs on your toes and hold for 10 seconds. With your toes weight bearing, curl your toes as if you are gripping the floor and repeat 5-10 times, holding for 10 seconds.

Toe splay and crunch

Toe splay

In a seated position barefoot, balance your feet on your heels and spay your toes for 10 seconds and then grip, like creating a fist with your toes. Repeat 5-10 times on each foot.

Scrunching towel on floor with toes

Towel pick up

Barefoot again, throw a towel on the ground and start gripping and releasing the towel with your toes until it is bunched up underneath your feet. Next, use your toes to straighten the towel. Repeat 5-10 times.

sand-walking

Sand walking

Find a carpeted area in your house and walk around barefoot trying to grip the floor with every step and feel the surface throughout your whole foot. Be mindful of gripping the ground and pushing off with force at your big toe. If you don’t have any carpet around your house, then walk around barefoot but try to make as little sound as possible when walking. Silent walking allows your foot to grip the ground with full force and transfers energy through every step (same as sand walking).

Ankle rolling

Ankle rolling

This can be done at a desk, while watching tv or before bed. Raise your legs so your feet are not touching the ground and roll your ankles 10 times clockwise and 10 times counterclockwise. This exercise helps promote circulation and prevent limitation at the ankle ligaments and muscles of the foot.

Ankle spellingAnkle spelling

With your leg raised and your foot pointed, spell out your full name with one leg and then the next. The movement should be centred around your ankle. Again, this helps improve flexibility and circulation at the ankle.

Calf stretch by dropping and lifting heel on the edge of stairsCalf stretches

Stretching out your calves is a very important exercise as it helps loosen up your posterior compartment of your leg which is also attached to the bottom of your foot. These exercises include using a rubber band around the bottom of your foot and keeping your leg straight while pulling on the band. Another exercise is standing at the edge of stairs and dropping your heels.

Heel raisesHeel raises

While barefoot, stand flat on the ground and raise your heels so you are standing on the tips of your toes. Drop your heels and repeat this exercise 5-10 times and hold the last one for 10 seconds. You can work your way up to doing single heel raises – standing on one leg and raising your heels.

Alternate toe raisesToe raises

This is the ultimate toe-yoga move, often times called the Sun-salutation for your toes. With your bare feet firmly planted on the ground, raise just your big toe up (giving thumbs up) and keep your lesser toes firmly planted on the ground. Hold for 10 seconds. Then reverse, keeping your big toe firmly planted on the ground, and raise your lesser toes. Don’t worry if you can’t get this right away, sometimes it takes a little practice or even using your hands to help.

Things to do Before New Year

With only a few days before the New Year, here are some helpful tips to start off the New Year right. 

Declutter

Untitled-1

The key to decluttering is to start off small and simple!

Label 4 boxes:

  • Donations
  • Keep
  • Re-locate or
  • Garbage

Take 5 minutes a day and pick one room in the house to gather items for each box. By the end of the week, you should have enough items to donate, reorganize or throw out.

Donating clothing and shoes is always a first step for decluttering. If you are unsure how often you wear certain clothing, then start off by hanging all of your clothes in one direction and when you wear them and put them back, hang them in the opposite direction. By the end of the week, keep all of your clothes that you wear often in one part of your closet and sort through the ones that are facing the “unworn” direction. If you give away an item each day then by the end of the year you have given away 365 items.

Donate Shoes

Untitled-2

Organizations such as Soles4Souls are helping underprivileged people with proper footwear. Without shoes, people are exposed to the elements and can be infected with infectious diseases, parasites and are more likely to experience trauma to their lower limb. Also, children are also expected to wear uniforms and have proper footwear for schools.

Finally, wearing footwear restores a lot of dignity for many underprivileged people living in harsh conditions. Soles4Souls accepts new and gently-worn shoes to help individuals start and sustain small businesses so they may feed and support their families.

Feet First Clinic has partnered with Soles4Souls for many years so you can drop off any new or gently used shoes to our clinic.

Two-Ten Foundation is a Non-Profit foundation is dedicated to assisting members of the Canadian footwear industry with shoe drives, fundraisers and special events. This organization assists Canadians in need by helping to fit them with proper footwear for their jobs, lifestyles or education.

Exercise

Untitled-3

Exercise is important for not only overall physical health but also for mental health. After all of those Holiday calories, it is important to get back into your workout routine or start the new year right by exercising right.

Cardiovascular health is important for maintaining your heart strength and circulation. Common cardio exercises are brisk walking, running, cycling, swimming, rowing and cross-country skiing. If you add 30 minutes of brisk walking a day, you can burn about 150 calories a day. The calorie count is amplified with more rigorous exercise. Maintaining a healthy weight and diet will help prevent or limit foot issues such as

Enjoy the holidays but be sure to get back into a healthy and active lifestyle with the New Year!

Check your old running shoes for any excessive wear pattern or better yet start off the New Year with a new pair of ASICS or Saucony from Feet First Clinic.

Also, if you are experiencing any foot issues which are preventing you from walking or running properly, visit Feet First Clinic and see one of our Chiropodists to get you feeling your best.

Different Stages of a Bunion

A bunion, medically known as hallux valgus, is characteristic of an angular bony protrusion that forms at the site of the large joint that connects your big toe to your foot.

This joint, called the first metatarsophalangeal joint (or MTP joint for short)is a critical junction of bones, tendons, and ligaments that bear much of our weight when we’re on our feet. With this deformity, the big toe slowly and gradually turns towards the lesser toes as the joint deviates from proper alignment.

This foot deformity occurs in about 10-30% of the population, affecting twice as many females than males. Bunions are caused by wearing poor-fitting shoes, faulty foot mechanics, muscle imbalances, lax ligaments, inflammatory arthritic conditions, and genetics.

Bunions can be asymptomatic, although some people may experience pain, redness, and swelling at the joint, especially with tight footwear and extended periods of standing or walking. Symptoms tend to subside with rest.

Unfortunately, a bunion is a progressive deformity and is irreversible without surgical intervention. This means they will slowly get worse over time. They are categorized in stages to determine the severity of the deformity.

Without treatment, there is a greater risk a bunion will progress from one stage to the next.

Stages of Bunions

4 stages of bunion deformities

Stage 1

Visually, a bunion at this stage is considered mild. There may be a small “bump” at the side of the 1st MTP joint and the big toe will be slightly turned towards the second toe, although not touching it.

Stage 2

Big toe further deviates from the MTP joint. At this stage, the 1st toe may be touching the 2nd toe beside it.

Stage 3

The bony protrusion at the base of the big toe is significant because at this stage, the base of the 1st toe has developed a bone spur. The 1st toe also starts to rotate on its axis away from the mid-line of the body.

Stage 4

The 1st MTP joint has dislocated and the 1st toe will under ride or override the 2nd toe. At this stage, the 2nd toe will also present with a hammer toe deformity.

Although the only way to reverse a bunion is by surgery, it is recommended if symptoms are not manageable by conservative measures and if function is severely compromised.

Conservative bunion management includes custom foot orthotics, splints, bunions guards, toe separators, and foot exercises.

Conservative treatments help to slow down the progression of a bunion as well as manage pain.

Talk to your Chiropodist about the stage of your bunions and which conservative treatment options would be best for you!

How to Reduce Physical Pain This Holiday Season

Even though the holiday season is filled with cheer, there is no denying that these celebrations can put a strain on your body. All of the standing, driving and running around can cause you to feel aches and pains, especially in your feet and lower back. Continue reading to learn more about how you can stay a step ahead of your aches and pains during this busy time of year.

Visit Feet First Clinic

At Feet First Clinic, we can provide you with incomparable care. We offer comprehensive foot care services and high-quality products, many of which can be customized to meet your unique needs. Drop by the store or book an appointment with one of our chiropodists today.

Don’t Spend Too Much Time on Your Feet

Due to all of the cooking, entertaining and travelling that comes with the holidays, many people spend a lot of time on their feet. Although this may not seem like a huge issue to some people, standing for a long period of time can take a physical toll.

Recent studies have shown that standing for 2 or more hours at a time can cause physical discomfort and impacts your mental productivity. Additionally, walking for a long period can be quite painful, especially if you suffer from foot conditions like plantar fasciitis or bunions.

If you know that you’re going to be spending a lot of time on your feet, be sure to get a pair of orthopedic shoes before the holidays arrive. These will give your feet plenty of cushioning and support. There are lots of stylish options available, so you can look fashionable and feel comfortable at the same time.

If you don’t want to change your shoes, you should purchase a pair of custom orthotic inserts. Here are just some of the benefits of custom orthotics that you will appreciate:

  • Reducing bodily pain
  • Alleviating strain
  • Minimizing fatigue
  • Increasing shock absorption in high-pressure areas

Look for Opportunities to Carpool

If you’ve been invited to any holiday parties, then you will most likely end up doing some driving. Although it is harmless when done for a short amount of time, driving for extended periods can have a negative impact on your body.

If you’re exposed to a large amount of whole-body vibrations (like the ones that are produced from a vehicle) you have an increased chance of suffering from lower back pain or sciatica. Additionally, if you lean too far forward while you drive, you can end up straining the muscles in your back.

Whether you’re already dealing with soreness in your lower back or want to prevent it from happening in the first place, you should try to carpool and split up the driving. This will minimize the amount of time that you’ll be sitting behind the wheel.

The holidays only come once a year, so don’t let your physical aches and pains get the best of you. If you want to enjoy the entire holiday season, be sure to use these tried-and-true tips. We guarantee that your feet and lower back will thank you.

Daily Feet Exercises

Did you know each foot is made up of 26 bones and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments? These structures help with support, balance, and mobility during all your daily activities, so it is important to keep them healthy.

Follow these simple foot and ankle exercises to stretch, strengthen, and even prevent pain and injuries to your feet:

Calf stretches

To perform calf stretches, position yourself with two hands against a wall and start with the left foot forward towards the wall while the right is a few steps behind. The important thing to remember is to keep the right heel firmly planted on the ground. Keep the right leg straight and while bending the left knee, push your body towards the wall. You should feel a stretch at the back of your right calf. To isolate another calf muscle, follow the same instructions described above while bending the right knee slightly. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds and repeat on the other leg.

Toe spreads

Sit on a chair and have both feet planted on the ground. Then spread your toes apart and hold that position for 30 seconds. Repeat 10 times.

Marble pick up

Sit on a chair and place two bowls in front of your feet; one should contain at least 10 marbles while the other is empty. Using your toes, pick up a marble one by one and place it in the empty bowl. Repeat on the other foot. If you don’t have marbles, place your foot on top of a towel on the ground and scrunch the towel towards you using your toes. Repeat this 10 times on each foot.

Towel stretches

For this exercise, you will need a towel or a resistance band. Sit on the ground and have both legs extended in front of you, feet together. Place the towel under your toes or the balls of both feet and pull slightly until you feel a stretch at your calves and at bottoms of your feet. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds and repeat 5 times.

Four-way ankle resistance band exercises

For these exercises, you will need a resistance band. Sit on the ground with the left leg laid flat and knee extended in front of you while the right knee is bent. Then create a loop at the end of the resistance band and place your left foot in that loop making sure the band wraps around the ball of your foot. Hold the non-looped end of the resistance band and pull towards your body creating some tension in the band. Then push your foot forward as far as you can as if you are pushing down on a gas pedal (toes facing away from the body) and then bring the foot back to starting position. When you bring the foot back, do this slowly and in a controlled motion.

Next, hold the non-looped end of the resistance band with your right hand and pull to create tension. Then move your left foot out so that the sole of your foot faces away from the right foot. Again, bring the foot back to starting position in a slow and controlled manner.

Repeat the same process above; hold the non-looped end of the resistance band with your left hand and pull to create tension. Now move your left foot in the opposite direction so that the sole of the foot is facing your right foot. Again, bring the foot back to starting position in a slow and controlled manner.

Finally, to do the next exercise, find a heavy chair, sofa, or table that you can tie the non-looped end of the resistance band to create tension. Instead of pushing down on a gas pedal, bring the foot back towards the body as far as you can and then bring the foot slowly back to starting position.

Repeat each step 10 times. Repeat this entire exercise on the right foot.

5 Simple Exercises for Bunions

A bunion (also known as hallux valgus) is a deformity of the big toe where the 1st metatarsal phalangeal joint is misaligned. With this deformity, the muscles surrounding the big toe are at an imbalance. In particular, the muscle that pulls the big toe towards the lesser toes is at a mechanical advantage, pulling the big toe closer to the one beside it. This is muscle is called the Adductor Hallucis. To counteract this muscle, we have to strengthen the opposing muscle: the Abductor Hallucis.

The following exercises and stretches focus on the smaller muscles of the foot, which is essential in managing bunions and the pain associated with them.

Toe curls and spreads

Curling toes down and spreading toes upwards

Do this exercise sitting with your foot several inches off the floor. Curl the toes down as if you want to grab something with the toes. Hold that position for 10 seconds and release. Then bring your heel to the ground, lift your foot slightly and spread your toes as far apart as possible. Hold that position for 30 seconds. Do this 5 times on each foot.

Towel grip and pull

Curled toes pulling towel towards foot

Place a towel on the ground and put your foot on top of the towel. Then use your toes to scrunch the towel towards you. Do this for 1-2 minutes on each foot.

Toe stretches

Hand gently pushing toes downward

Use your fingers to press your big toe down and hold that stretch for 30 seconds. Then position your toe in the opposite direction and use your fingers to help reach the end range of motion. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds. Do this 5 times on each foot.

Toe resistance exercises

Use your fingers or your other big toe to create resistance so that the small muscles within the foot are isolated and activated. Place your finger on top of the big toe and while applying a small amount of pressure downwards, move your toe in the opposite direction. Hold this for 10 seconds. Then bring your finger under the toe and apply a bit of pressure pushing the toe upwards. While doing this, push your toe downwards and hold for 10 seconds. Finally, bring your finger to the side of your big toe pushing it towards the second toe. While applying this pressure, move your big toe away from the lesser toes. Hold this for 10 seconds. Do this entire exercise 5 times on each foot.

Toe circles

Do this sitting on a chair. Bring your foot on the knee and use your hand to grip your big toe and run it through circular motions. This keeps the joint mobile.

At first, these exercises may seem unnatural and difficult to do, but with time and consistency, you will get the hang of it!

For more information on bunions, click here!

For more inquiries and hopes to speak to a Licensed Chiropodist, book an appointment at Feet First Clinic.

We are open six days a week!

Foam Rolling 101: Why And How To Do It

Foam rolling is one of the easiest ways to keep your legs at their best.

Foam rolling is a self-therapy method used to eliminate general fascia restrictions. Think of foam rolling as your own personal massage therapist.

What is foam rolling?

Foam rolling involves using a foam roller as a method of release. By using your own body weight, the method is simple, effective and low-cost. Foam rolling is a great injury prevention method and can leave your muscles feeling refreshed afterwards.

Some people who foam roll do it as a warm-up to exercise, as it gets the muscles firing and activated. For example, some runners foam roll before activity to ensure their muscles aren’t cold when heading out the door.

Alternatively, foam rolling can be done after exercise, to break up the fascia, and knots that develop in the muscles.

What type of foam roller to buy

There are a number of different types of foam rollers on the market, from simple to premium.

Foam Rolling

Basic foam rollers can be found at most sporting goods stores for approximately $30.

Depending on your needs, a basic foam roller may do just fine. On the other end of the spectrum are more premium options, including Hyperice and Trigger point. These products are meant more for deep tissue massages and have additional features like vibration. Typically, the foundation of these rollers are made of stiff plastic with a foam outer layer, so they will last longer than a purely foam product. As their cores are also plastic, they also have a lot less ‘give.’

Foam rollers also come in various sizes. You can find travel sizes so they fit in your luggage if you’re a frequent traveller, Or, there are standard versions which cover a greater surface area of your leg and are often less painful because weight is dispersed more evenly across where you’re rolling. Fortunately, because they’re largely inexpensive, owning more than one won’t break the bank.

It should be noted that there are alternative ways to roll, including using tennis or lacrosse balls. The smaller the object, the more precise you can be with targeting trouble spots, or ‘trigger points.’

Foam Rolling

According to the American Council on Exercise, foam rolling  “focuses on reducing pain or the discomfort that comes from the myofascial tissue—the tough, but thin membranes that cover and surround your muscles.”

How to do it

Foam rolling can be tricky at first, but you can get the hang of it pretty quickly. Using your body weight, position the foam roller about two-thirds to the bottom of your body, or to wherever on your legs you want to target. Then, roll slowly and gently back and forth and pause on particularly tight spots.

You can reduce the pressure by bearing more weight on your upper body, or when you’re on your side, by having your torso on the ground. There should be some discomfort, but don’t go as far as feeling intense pain.

You’ll want to avoid bones, and focus on the muscles, specifically trigger points. These refer to specific knots that form in the muscles, that will benefit from being rolled out, which increases blood flow to the area.

Typically, anywhere from 30 seconds to two minutes is appropriate for an area before moving on. In total, spend 10-15 minutes rolling various parts of your legs, even if they’re not particularly sore. Remember, sore muscles in one spot may mean the problem is actually somewhere else, so distribute the rolling appropriately.

Foam Rolling

Foam rolling doesn’t just have to be on your legs either. You can do your back, hips, arms, shoulders, and whatever else is sore.

Benefits

There are a number of benefits to foam rolling, both as an injury treatment, as well as for injury prevention. Best of all, it’s one of the most affordable methods of self-treatment needing little more than a $30-40 product, that lasts quite a few years too.

According to the American Council on Exercise, foam rolling has been shown to help the following conditions: 

  • IT band syndrome
  • Patellofemoral pain syndrome (runner’s knee)
  • Shin splints
  • Lower-back pain
  • Infrapatellar tendinitis (jumper’s knee)
  • Blood flow, overall soreness
  • Joint range of motion

If pain continues to persist, and foam rolling doesn’t seem to be helping, your injury may be more serious.

For all of your foot treatment needs, schedule an appointment, or contact Feet First Clinic at 416-769-FEET(3338).

Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon is fast approaching on October 20th, 2019. You have been training hard for the marathon so here are a few tips to get you feeling your best:

Have the right footwear

Photo of a man tying his shoe lace - A closeup of a man tying his shoe lace resting his foot on a steal fence, after a run work out. He is wearing a red sweater, black shorts and sports shoes. In the distance the sun is setting giving a nice warm light.

Most marathon runners have their favourite trusted brands that they spend months training in. Months before the marathon, you should check the wear pattern on your soles to make sure they will be in good shape for the big day. If you find you are tilting too much on the inside/outside of your heel or there is excessive wear under the balls of your feet then they are too worn out for a marathon. New shoes can take a few weeks to break in so make sure you run a few weeks/months in new shoes to get used to them.

Wear the right socks

sports-more-cut-off-2048×1024

Socks are just as important as good shoes during the day of the marathon. The right socks can help reduce blisters, calluses and corns and they can help keep your feet dry. Seamless socks can reduce friction and aid in redistributing pressure points. Sock material is another important consideration. Consider buying Bamboo socks or socks with moisture wicking technology as opposed to 100% cotton which can hold in too much moisture. If your feet or legs get swollen during a run, try Sigvaris Running Compression Socks. Compression stockings can help reduce swelling and aid in keeping blood flow to your muscles to keep them energized for longer.

Moisturize your heels

If you have cracks in your heels or feet, you should take care of them before the marathon to avoid problems with your performance. Two weeks before the marathon start moisturizing your heels and feet every evening. Products with excellent ingredients to help heel cracks and dry skin are Gehwol Soft Feet Cream, Gehwol Salve for Cracked skin, Dermal Therapy and Camillen 60 Intense Fissure Cream. Avoid walking around barefoot, especially around hard surfaces, to prevent further complications with dry cracked heels.

 

image

Wear your orthotics

Orthotics are excellent devices for helping with shock absorption and increasing stability. You need to make sure you have run with your orthotics weeks and even months before the marathon. It is very important to not wear new orthotics the day of your marathon as they can cause blistering, rubbing, instability and soreness if they are not broken in.

Don’t change anything the day of the marathon

You have spent weeks or months preparing for this marathon, perfecting your technique, wearing the right shoes and socks so don’t change anything the day of the marathon. It’s important to remember, there are no last minute changes that can drastically improve your technique. It is the weeks of preparation that will help you succeed.

Get a medical pedicure 

Runners feet are prone to developing bruised and damaged nails, calluses, corns and blisters more so than the average person. At least two weeks before your marathon, get your feet ready by getting a medical pedicure at Feet First Clinic. Our highly trained Chiropodists will safely trim your nails, help fix cracked or bruised nails, and take care of any calluses and corns.

Relax after the race
After spending all day running, you need to take care to relax your muscles and feet. You can relax at home with Gehwol foot bath and afterwards for added relief moisturize your feet with Gehwol Warming Balm.

Shoelace techniques that can reduce foot pain

You wear your shoes for hours on end, if not for the entire day. We all know how shoes are traditionally tied, but have you ever considered tying them in a different way?

Picture this scenario: you’ve chosen the right shoe, done the strengthening and rehab exercises, and still experience pain. Rather than overhauling your shoes, or being frustrated with your strength exercises not working, there may be a simple solution. The culprit may be pressure on various parts of your foot, which can cause foot pain.

For a greater explanation, read this excerpt from Harvard Health Publishing at Harvard University. “If you’re one of them [who experiences foot pain], you might want to try a simple solution that may bring relief — adjusting your shoelaces, especially on your athletic shoes. Today’s mass-produced shoes often don’t accommodate the quirks of individual feet, which may be wide or narrow or have arches that are high or low. Retying your shoes can make adjustments for those differences, and in some cases, ease your pain.”

Simply tying your shoelaces in a specific way could be the solution. Below, we break down various methods beyond the basic shoelace techniques.

For a heel lock

This shoelace technique reduces slippage and blisters around the heel. Through the locking mechanism around the top of the foot, this trick ensures a snug fit around the circumference of the shoe. However, it can also put additional stress on the Achilles tendon so beware of how tight you keep your shoelaces.

The key here is to use the extra eyelet at the top of the shoe. Once you’ve weaved your shoelaces through the second to last eyelet, insert the shoelace into the final eyelet on the same side. Then, extend that same lace across and through the loop you’ve made on the opposite side. This method locks your heel into place and keeps your shoe snug all around the top of the shoe.

For a heel lock, option two

Rather than using all eyelets possible, this technique is similar to the above. The one exception is that you skip the second to last eyelet and go straight to the heel lock as outlined above.

For toe pain

Shoelace techniques 2
The diagonal lacing lifts the toe box and follows the natural curvature of your foot.

This shoelace technique reduces pressure on your toes, and can lessen the likelihood of pesky black toenails. The diagonal set up ensures a snug fit across the top of your feet. Plus, it alleviates tightness within the toebox. Start off by taking one end of the shoelace and feeding it through the bottom eyelet, and then work your way back up the shoe. Once you get to the top, you then tie the laces as you normally would, using the extra lace from the top of the diagonal, and the end you just weaved through.

For a high arch

Shoelace techniques
Notice the gap in the middle of the tongue to reduce pressure above a high arch.

This cross-over lacing trick opens up some area on the top side of the foot above the arch. By using the bottom and top eyelets while skipping the middle, the foot stays snug in place while offering relief above your arch. Weave your laces as you normally would, but skip a row of eyelets to leave a gap. This gap is the area of relief.

For wide feet

If you’re someone with wider feet who can never seem to find a shoe that’s just the right fit, this technique might be just for you. To use this trick, start from the beginning, and weave your laces through the first eyelet as you usually would. Then, skip an eyelet each row, and tie normally at the top.

This method loosens the entire shoe and offers relief alongside the outer edges of your feet.

For other shoelace techniques and methods, as well as video tutorials, visit RunRepeat.com. For additional shoelace techniques, tricks and tips, check out this article on Self and this piece at On Running.

Shoe lacing techniques should only be used for experimental purposes and may not provide a long-term solution to your foot problems. If pain persists, identify the cause of your foot pain or discomfort and get immediate care by visiting our Toronto foot clinic. Book your appointment today.

Why Runners Need to Take Good Care of Their Feet

As rewarding as a daily jog can be for your fitness, the exercise can be punishing when you’re not careful. Running at full-tilt without taking any precautions puts you at risk of pain and injury, which can do much more than make you skip a workout.

Common Running Injuries

Pounding the pavement is hard on your feet. When you don’t wear the right pair of shoes, you could deal with a heel covered in blisters or runner’s toe — this is a casual way of saying a black toenail. When you push yourself too hard, you can get injuries like plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis. If you want to prevent running related injuries that could have long-term consequences, take the initiative to take better care of your feet.

What Should Runners Do to Take Better Care of Their Feet?

Replace Worn-Down Shoes

Dedicated runners will have shoes that deal with a lot of wear and tear. You should replace your running shoes after reaching 500 to 750km with them so that you’re guaranteed to have effective arch support and shock absorption every time you lace up.

You should also have more than one pair of running shoes to cycle through. Using one pair every single day doesn’t let them dry out. Moist, bacteria-filled shoes lead to problems like blisters, foot fungus and a terrible odour. Cycling through shoes keeps moisture at bay and extends their lifespan.

Make Sure the Shoe Fits

You need to double-check the fit of shoes before you buy them because your shoes take a toll on your body when they’re the wrong size. When they’re too small, you run the risk of getting blisters, bruised toenails, hot foot, tingling, numbness and pain. And shoes that are too big don’t offer the same support. You could injure yourself in the middle of your workout.

Make Sure the Shoe Supports

A pair of flat sneakers won’t be enough when you’re a devoted runner. You’re going to want heavy-duty shoes that can handle hitting the pavement and protecting your feet. Check out our brand name orthopaedic footwear to see what running shoes will be the best picks for your morning runs.

Modify Your Run

If you’re experiencing discomfort during your morning jog, you should make some adjustments to your routine to see if they make a difference. Choose a more forgiving terrain than the pavement, like a grassy lawn. Pick a shorter run-time, slow your stride or trim down the number of runs you do per week. One of the most common plantar fasciitis causes is overuse — the same goes for injuries like shin splints and runner’s knee. Dialling it back could be crucial for your well-being.

Give Yourself Recovery Time

Visit a licensed chiropodist or your family doctor if you suspect you’re dealing with an injury. They can help diagnose the cause of your discomfort and give you advice on how to treat the symptoms. Don’t return to your running routine until you’ve received their seal of approval.

The best piece of advice that runners can follow is to pay attention to your feet. Whenever you pull off your socks, take a look to see if anything seems strange. Whenever you’re running, check-in for any jarring pains or nagging aches. Follow your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, take a break from your routine and address it.