We can all agree that exercise provides an array of health benefits, from helping control weight to improving cardiovascular function. Did you know exercise can even boost happiness levels? But exercising in ill-fitting or incorrect footwear can do more harm than good, especially because healthy feet are an integral part of overall well-being.

Foot or ankle fractures and sprains are common types of injuries related to exercise and footwear. The type of sport or exercise a person participates in can influence the type of injury they may sustain. For example, runners are more susceptible to stress fractures of the feet, fractures and ankle sprains are common in football players, while basketball players typically suffer more ankle sprains. Similarly, if incorrect footwear is worn your risk of injury may increase. Imagine what could happen if a basketball player wore soccer boots on the court!

Here at Riverside Podiatry we offer guidance on how to avoid foot and ankle injuries, including helping you select appropriate footwear.

Here are my top five tips on avoiding sports related foot and ankle injuries:

  1. Always warm up before exercising to increase blood flow to your working muscles. Just as you stretch your legs and arms, there are an abundance of muscles in your feet and ankles that also need to warm up.
  2. If any foot pain is experienced while engaging in physical activity, stop immediately. It is not normal to experience foot pain while exercising. If pain persists come and see our Podiatrists.
  3. No matter the exercise or sport of choice, your shoes should provide plenty of support in the front and back.
  4. Always wear supportive shoes that are appropriate for the activity you are engaging in. For example, netball shoes will provide better support in all directions for the stop-start motion and sudden changes in direction, whereas a short distance sprinter will have a lightweight spike with minimal cushioning but plenty of traction.
  5. When purchasing sports shoes go to a shop which specialises in athletic footwear to ensure you are professionally fitted with the correct shoes. Go shopping towards the end of the day while your feet are at their largest due to normal daily swelling.

Here at Riverside Podiatry our podiatrists offer detailed and thorough biomechanical and footwear assessments; that way we can provide you with educated advice on what footwear is most appropriate for you. Our podiatrists even write footwear prescriptions for you to take in store, to give you confidence in picking the most appropriate pair of shoes.

If you have any questions, would like footwear advice or a thorough biomechanical assessment, give us a call on 4323 9100 or email us at ccscc@reliancehealth.com.au, otherwise you can BOOK ONLINE.