Flat feet are an ailment that becomes a death sentence for many runners. In the 70s and 80s, doctors considered flat feet and running to be incompatible. Any physical activity was discouraged. Today, medicine has made a step forward, and athletes have shown by their example that you can overcome yourself even with not such “sores”. However, flat feet are no joke. It does not hurt today – serious consequences maybe tomorrow. Look walking shoes for wide flat feet.

Dmitry Garkavi, Head of the Department of Outpatient Rehabilitation at Sechenov University, Candidate of Medical Sciences, orthopedic traumatologist, acted as an expert on running with flat feet.

Why do flat feet appear

It is known that flat feet are a modern disease. Our ancestors did not suffer from it. The doctor explains that it is all to blame for the fact that we have gradually moved away from ancient traditions.

“Nature has invented such an anatomical area as the foot so that we walk barefoot and preferably on soft ground. Asphalt, concrete, shoes were invented by man himself – not nature. Nature, on the other hand, originally conceived the adaptation of man to ordinary earth. The change in adaptation to flat surfaces and soles, with the help of which we walk orthopedists, is called flat feet. The foot gradually begins to resemble a completely flat shape.

Flat feet are most often two, sometimes three. Transverse, longitudinal and their combination – longitudinal-transverse.

The transverse arch is most often flattened due to the fact that we wear narrow shoes in the toe area and very often try to raise the heel as high as possible. This is, naturally, about women who love high heels. Thus, the arch that creates the transverse vault begins to flatten. The metatarsal bones begin to try to compensate for this and disperse, and the soft tissues are compressed. We begin to feel pain in the interdigital spaces because the nerves are pinched. Women have famous bumps. “

What flat feet are troublesome when running?

Most often, people do not even think that they have flat feet and begin to play sports, in particular jogging. Only after the first painful sensations do amateur runners have their first doubts. Dmitry notes that the main problem of athletes and just people involved in jogging is longitudinal flat feet.

“When running, people are more often concerned about not transverse, but longitudinal flat feet. During running, dynamic valgus of the entire lower limb can be created. You will not only have pain in your foot and ankle, but also in your knee joint, hip and even your lower back. “

It is logical to ask the question, is it possible to run with flat feet? Keep in mind that each case is different, but in general, flat feet are not a sentence for runners. The main thing is not to forget about other important workouts.

“Here is the question, you can run with longitudinal flat feet, but only on condition that you constantly train your tibialis posterior muscle constantly and try to maintain the arch in a normal state.

Of course, the degree of the disease affects, but these are statistical scales and assessments. Each person is different – you need to look at a specific example. Let’s say a person may have the first degree of longitudinal flat feet, but obesity is the fourth stage, then running will be very difficult. The load on the foot will be colossal, although it seems to be the first degree.

I myself have seen a professional athlete doing triathlon who runs with pronounced planovalgus deformity and it tends to have longitudinal flat feet. At the same time, nothing hurts him. Such adaptation also happens. “

The harm of running with flat feet

It’s logical to wonder if running will worsen my health problems? Of course, there is such a possibility, especially if you are only running and are not struggling with your flat feet.

“Can the problem be aggravated? Naturally. If you increase running volume, but do not do prevention, do not try to restore the normal arch of the foot, do not do exercises on stabilizing muscles, then by volume you will make the disease progress. “

How to choose sneakers for flat feet

An important point of running with flat feet is choosing the right shoes and insoles. Our expert believes that there is no single criterion for shoes, but it is important to pay attention, first of all, to your own feelings when running.

“You should definitely choose special sneakers, but the main criterion is your comfort. They must have a very good shock-absorbing surface that will absorb the dynamic impact on the flat surface on which you are running and neutralize the negative consequences.

I will say this about insoles. If the doctor has already diagnosed you with longitudinal flat feet, then using only insoles without exercise, you will never get rid of this problem. If your legs continue to hurt even a week after using orthopedic insoles, then you should know that they are not suitable for you. I advise my patients to choose the insoles individually ”. 

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