85% of people wear running shoes that don’t fit, according to an American College of Sports Medicine!
The average person walks more than 115,000 miles in a lifetime. Every walking step you take exerts pressure up to three times your body weight on your feet. Running exerts up to ten times your body weight. We cram our feet into tight fitting, stiff shoes, subject them to the unnatural angles of high heels, pound them on pavement and asphalt, smother them in airless socks and shoes, or simply stand on them for hours on end. It’s no wonder that the skin, 26 bones, and intricate webbing of muscles and ligaments in each of our feet sometimes can’t stand up to the pressure.
When you wear shoes that are too small your joints have to compensate over time to fit the shoe. This can cause:
Plantar Fasciitis which is an inflammation of the plantar fascia ligament that connects the heel bone (calcaneous) and the toes. This ligament is composed of fibrous bands of tissue, and runs along the entire bottom of the foot. It stretches and contracts with every step or movement, and may become inflamed when tiny tears occur in the tissue.
Bunions If you’ve noticed a lump on the side of your foot at the base of your big toe, it’s probably a bunion . Bunions are caused when the base of the toe is pushed out of its normal position. This causes a bulge on the side of the foot that can be painful and inflamed. Rather than pointing straight ahead, the big toe will also frequently press against the other toes.
Corns and Calluses The skin protects itself against repeated friction and pressure by building up hard layers of skin cells at the site of the irritation. The skin cells form round, kernel-like bumps, called corns. They are often found on top of or between the toes. Calluses usually form on the sole, but they can also occur elsewhere on the feet, and are thick, yellowish, and flat.
Hammer Toes When one of the smaller toes takes on a claw-like appearance, it’s called a hammer toe . Misalignment of the toe joints or muscle or nerve problems in the foot cause the toe to curl up instead of laying flat. People with diabetes are prone to developing hammertoes. Wearing shoes that are too short can also cause this problem.
Back Pain, Knee Pain, Hip Pain and more!
Don’t select shoes by the size inside the shoe. The size your foot measures is your foot size. Sizes vary among shoe brands and styles. Judge the shoe by how it fits on your foot. Don’t hesitate to try on a shoe in a size other than what measuring indicates. Don’t assume that you know your current shoe size. Have both feet measured, as you stand, each time you by your shoes (the size of your feet changes as your grow older). Most people have one foot larger than the other. Fit to the largest foot.
Try on shoes at the end of the day (or after a workout for athletic shoes) when your feet are the largest. Allow 3/8″ to 5/8″ room between the end of the longest toe (in some people it is the 2nd toe) and the end of the shoe (i.e. Toe box). Your foot continues to move forward inside the shoe even when the ground stops the shoe from moving.
Try shoes on with the same thickness of socks you intend to wear. Finally, if you use orthotics try the shoes on with them.
Your local Raleigh chiropractors can help you prevent running-related problems by assessing your gait, as well as the mobility of the joints in your feet, legs, pelvis and spine. Should you suffer stress and strain from running, a chiropractor in Raleigh can also provide treatment for your pain.