Your podiatrist may classify you as either an over pronator (feet roll inward) or under pronator, sometimes called a supinator, (feet roll outward). If your feet fall into either of these classifications, you may need to take extra care in selecting shoes. Slight pronation is normal (pronation of the foot absorbs the impact of the foot hitting the ground), with the foot rolling inward approximately during the step.
Over pronation, however, results in a much more extreme inward rolling of the foot, often with associated instability due to the ankle rolling inward as well. Often, over pronators have lower arches and require shoes with extra support and less flexibility. Without proper stability and support, over pronators are particularly likely to suffer from ankle sprains and even fractures.
Under pronation is less common than overpronation. Under pronators often have high arches and need shoes that provide shock absorption and flexibility. Under pronators tend to have less motion in the ankles, which may result in injuries due to lack of flexibility during the normal stride.
For those with chronic foot pain, shoes alone may not be enough to offer support and relief. Orthotics, either custom or over-the-counter, or other inserts may be needed in conjunction with carefully selected shoes. Orthotics have an advantage over other inserts, as they are custom-made by your podiatrist for your specific foot biomechanics.
While over-the-counter shoe inserts may provide support for several problems, they often do not provide lasting relief for chronic foot pain, and do not adequately correct biomechanical foot problems.
Are you suffering from chronic foot pain? Call Kansas City Foot Specialists to schedule an evaluation at (913) 338-4440, or request an appointment online so we can determine the true cause of your injury and get you back on your feet.