So you got flat feet and you wanna run but you’re wondering is it dangerous? Is it bad for me? Can it hurt me? Well, I’m Jesse Funk and on today’s episode of Runner’s High we’re gonna address the myths and problems surrounding flat feet in running
So let’s get the basic question answered, just having flat feet is not dangerous or a problem or bad at all. So, that’s all you need, like many videos here’s my quick answer. Hit that subscribe button then stick around with me for another video in the future about running.
But I can’t tell you the number of people I saw that came into the running store. Where I worked for several years and said “I have flat feet” and we put them on this foot scanner basically just a nice flat scanner you can stand on and can handle people’s weight. And almost every time, every once in a while you’d see somebody with actually flat feet.
But the number of people who didn’t have flat feet at all was just astounding. You know we shocked them as well. So, let’s see if I can move out of the way. So these 2 examples here, we have a flat foot and we have an arch. And even though when you look at your feet, you may think I have flat feet it may just be that your arches are low.
So it appears flat when you here and you looking down but it may not actually be the case, they’re low but it still go over. The good way to test this is to get your feet wet and then walk on some pavement and then it’ll show you the imprint of your foot.
You can also do it using a more fancy method using ink or paint through things like that but that gets really messy and problematic quickly. If you can find some place that has a the foot scanner since those are nice you sure your pressure points that kind of stuff too. But the water method is the easy way to do it at home.
Now, we have figured out that you do in fact have flat feet. The next part is figuring out, is it actually a problem? Generally speaking, if you’re not having pain, any kind of symptoms, anything like that, it’s probably not a problem. When you have flat feet, it can be a result of other things going on that really affects your whole system. When I say system, I mean feet, ankles, hips, knees, all that kind of stuff.
So there’s really a lot going on when we’re talking about biomechanics. But with flat feet, in particular, it can be the result of having very flexible and very weak muscles in your feet. It can be corrected through strength exercises which I will make a recommendation here at the end. But what happens with these flat feet is that we end up overpronating.
So, pronation is the natural role of your foot from the outside and the inside. I’ll use my hand as an example. This is your outside and this is your big toe it’s gonna roll like this. From this side all the way up here. That’s normal, you want that to happen. Some people have gotten the wrong idea and they think they wanna stop pronation entirely, that’s not true, that’s normal, natural biomechanic both when you’re walking and when you’re running.
It’s a little more complicated when you’re running but that’s the gist. So what happens with that flat feet is that, because you don’t have that arch here to support and kind of post up your foot and stop this motion in here. It will fall over which is overpronation.
When you overpronate, then you cause undue stress on your ankle which could result in undue stress on your knee and your hip and the whole connected systems or it can become a series of problems that have to be corrected by various strengthening exercises targeted at those specific areas.
If you’re experiencing problems, usually the first line of attack is simply checking, do you have the right kind of shoes on? There’s a particular kind of shoes often referred to as stability shoes, although those come in 2 varieties. If you don’t know what I mean, subscribe to the channel and got videos on shoes and what different kinds of shoes are, check those out here in a minute.
But with the stability shoe for overpronation, on the inside, so this is my foot on the inside here there’s usually a more rigid foam which helps push against that kind of overpronation. It doesn’t stop it but it helps you from destroying the shoe essentially from that extra pressure that you put on the inside. Sometimes, people will use a very light, small arch to help post that foot up and stop the overpronation. But that is not necessarily addressing the underlying issue of muscle weakness.
So, it may be helpful to you, it may not. Arches, in particular, have kind of have been debated and that’s something where I always suggested if it works for you, if it feels good, if it feels comfortable, use it. If you try it several runs and you’re not just digging it, get rid of it. Don’t worry about it. You know, it’s not gonna be the end of the world that you don’t use it. There are strength exercises that you can do.
Some of them include things like calf raises and kind of walking with your toes, you stand up, use your toes toes pull you forward,[and] there’s other things. I cannot give you a particular regimen for you because the issues can be so complicated because feet are complicated and then you add in all the extra biomechanical issues. I’m not a doctor, certified podiatrist or physical therapist.
If you’re experiencing issues that cannot be solved by that shoe or the arch and you continue to have pain, please see a professional. YouTube videos are great, I love to do them for you. But there are sometimes when you need somebody to look at you in particular and figure out what your issues are.
So try to find somebody whose specializing in sports or sees a lot of athletes or runners those are gonna be your best because they know that you are out there doing that and they’re gonna be more inclined to figure out how to solve the problem and help you continue to do your activity, in this case, running. Versus somebody who does not see those people. I often find those people will just say “do this” and then “don’t run”, you know, that kind of suggestion which obviously we don’t want as runners, if there’s a way to keep us running.
If you have pains,see a pro, other than that subscribe to the channel, stick around me for more episodes in the future. And I’ll see you next time on the next episode of Runner’s High.