One thing we love to do as podiatrists is to look at the wear pattern on the base of your shoes.
A common problem we see is wearing down of the outside of the heel. Contrary to what people may think, this is not a sign that your feet are rolling in or out, but it is actually more to do with your hip position as your foot swings through from one step to the next.
Another common problem is a circular wear pattern on one or both of your shoes under the forefoot. This is telling us that as you push off from one step to the next you may be twisting your foot slightly in order to clear the ground.
Take a look at the shoes you are wearing right now and see what areas are wearing down.
By looking at your shoes, podiatrists can detect problems with hamstrings, Achilles tendons, big toes, knees, hips, back pain and even headaches.
Your shoes don’t lie!
The wear pattern on the base of your shoes can give podiatrists valuable clues as to how your posture is affecting your walking, and where there may be a loss of efficiency.
Try this out
A good thing to do at home is to line up three pairs of shoes, turn them over and study the wear pattern of the base of your shoes to see if there are any inconsistencies.
Do you notice that the wear pattern is the same from one shoe to the next, or does it change?
And of the shoes you have chosen, is the wear pattern different on the ones that are least comfortable?
Do you notice that one shoe looks different to the other shoe? Even minor differences can be an indication of asymmetry, which could be contributing to pain or injury.
If you do notice any of these, it may be worth investigating further. You may have just discovered the map that could lead you to the source of your pain.
The podiatrists at Posture Podiatry are trained to interpret the wear pattern on your shoes to find the best outcome for you.
My mother is a physiotherapist, and she has always told me, “Invest in what you sit in and sleep on”.
We spend a lot of our time sleeping; we also spend a lot of our time sitting. However I am going to take it one step further (no pun intended)…
We also spend a lot of time walking.
That’s right. Did you know that in your lifetime you will walk on average the distance equivalent to 4 times around Earth?
While my mother’s sage advice still rings true, when I now pass on the same advice I add, “Invest in what you sit in, sleep on, and walk in.”
There is no avoiding it. You actually do get what you pay for in a shoe. And with the amount of force that goes through your feet, it is good to wear shoes that help your body move efficiently.
How do I know what shoe is right for me?
Not all feet are equal. There are some shoes that are suitable for some people, and not suitable for others.
However, with an entire shoe industry dedicated to providing us with unlimited choice, how can we choose a shoe that is appropriate for us?
Remember the “4 S’s” when it comes to choosing the right shoe for you:
- Size – Ensure there is a thumb-width space at the end of your shoe so your toes don’t get cramped. Try them on at the end of the day when your feet are more swollen.
- Support – Check your shoes to make sure they are rigid in the middle, flexible at the toes, and have a firm heel counter for support.
- Secure – Loosely fitting shoes cause aching and tiredness. Choose shoes that are secure on your feet with laces or a buckle so you will be able enjoy your day for longer.
- Soft – With the force of 4 times your body weight going through your feet with walking, it is good to have some cushioning in your shoes.
At Posture Podiatry, we realise that fashionable footwear is also important, so we have worked out ways to help you cope with those shoes that would otherwise need to be peeled off your feet at the end of a long night.
If you would like us to help you find the right shoe for you, recommend good shoe stores, or even assess your shoe collection (we have had people bring suitcases full of shoes to their appointments!), come on in and have a talk with one the podiatrists at Posture Podiatry.
We can help you find the right shoes for you.
And remember to think carefully about what you sit in, sleep on and walk in!
Running styles vary according to distance, terrain and body type. Here are some helpful tips on how to maximise your ability to run strong and efficiently.
- Stand upright with a gentle lean forward
- Look straight ahead (unless you are on uneven terrain)
- Avoid twisting your body
- Run Quietly
- Visualise yourself as a ninja sneaking up on someone
- Your feet should touch the ground directly beneath you, not out in front of you
- You should avoid slapping ground with your feet, or pounding with your heels
- Kick the Dust Behind You
- It is much better to kick behind you than reach out in front of you to lengthen your stride
- Don’t over-stride – this can cause Shin Splints, Achilles problems, ITB pain and hip flexor pain
- Speed up those steps (Cadence)
- Think 3 steps per second (180 beats per minute)
- Run in time with fast tempo music
- Keep the same tempo whether you are running slow or fast
Make sure you have the correct shoes for your running style
The Podiatrists at Posture Podiatry can help you by assessing your running style, recommending the correct footwear and giving you helpful running drills to get the most out of your run.
The running began the day I received an extravagant package in the mail… We had been nominated for the Telstra Business Awards.
Having spoken to a couple of previous winners of the award, I knew what I was in for. It would force me to be vulnerable, to reveal the inner workings of our business, and it would take me around 45 hours to complete the application. I had to reveal personal struggles, successes and failures, plans for the future and a lot of numbers.
Very few allied-health businesses have won the Telstra Business Award in the past, which made me question whether to start the process at all…
…But it was worth it
Being able to take an honest look at who we were as a business allowed me to document our past, and organise our future.
Being shortlisted for the Telstra Business Award confirmed for me that we were on the right track, and industry analysts liked what they saw.
I admit I did check out the competition, and yes, I wrote a speech in case we did win.
And, although another business was chosen as the winner, the process revealed for me so many areas where we can fine-tune our service to really stand out (Those who know me will know that pun was intended!).
Now we are running again…
It gave me such a drive to achieve the vision I have for Posture Podiatry to be providing the best service, the best treatment and the best results for our clients.
As a result of this award we are more intent on being the best provider of podiatry services, but a little more relaxed about letting the award catch us if it does.
I really want to thank the team at Posture Podiatry for being the most amazing group of people to work with. They embody our culture and values, and they have aligned themselves with a common mission to be the best.
And thank you – our clients – for being so wonderful and supportive. It is because of you we love coming to work each day!
Do you think we should try again?
We all experience it at some point… walking into a shoe store only to be overwhelmed by choice! Scott Leslie from Posture Podiatry has tried out many shoes, and shares his thoughts on one of his favourites.
New Balance 870 V3
“The first thing I noticed with this shoe was the weight – or more importantly the lack of weight. This is a very light shoe for all the padding and posting it offers.” – Scott Leslie, Posture Podiatry
How does a cushioning shoe feel so light? The answer is a fusion of the REVLITE midsole, which feels very soft underfoot; and the light, soft upper material.
There is ample cushioning in the NB 870 for most medium distances. I have had no complaints on 10km runs so far.
The fit for me is excellent and felt comfortable as soon as I put them on. They don’t look too bad either.
The forefoot flexes very easily due to the design of the sole, and the shoe provides good support with a medial dual density post.
My thoughts are that the medial posting is softer (and therefore lighter) than most other shoes, and it looks like they have been able to reduce weight further with a cut-out in the middle of it.
… This might have an effect on the amount of support this shoe offers… so I wouldn’t really recommend it for anyone with highly pronated feet.
I have run over 80km’s in these shoes now, and they are not showing any signs of wear (although I do not usually wear through shoes quickly).
In summary, this shoe is a great transition to the light-weight market which is really popular with runners looking for a little bit of support in their shoe.”
For more information on choosing a good shoe, talk with Scott Leslie at Posture Podiatry by calling on 8362 5900, or contacting us here
Knee pain has the potential to stop you in your tracks.
But what has Mexico got to do with it?
Someone once told me they thought of the knee as Mexico… below the knee is the foot and lower leg – or South America, and above the knee there is the hip and pelvis – North America!
Often we blame the knee for the problem, but it’s likely to be something from either below the knee or above the knee that could be the cause.
So, when you think of your knee pain, consider the following 3 things:
- Are my feet in good alignment below the knee?
This is a good way to tell if your knees are having abnormal stress on them because of the position of your feet. Feet that roll in (pronate) will cause your knee to rotate inwards, feet that roll out (supinate) will make your knee rotate outwards causing stress.
- Does my knee tend to track in or out?
You can test this the next time you sit in a chair. Watch your knees as you sit down, and again as you rise, do they move in or out? Or do they stay in good alignment as they bend?
- Do I also have problems with hip pain and back pain? Or pain along the outside of my thigh?
Hip and back pain coupled with knee pain can be a warning sign that your knee pain is not just a problem with the knee. You may need to look higher to find the true cause of your knee pain.
The podiatrists at Posture Podiatry care about your knees, and can help you find the true cause of your knee pain, and treat it for you.
Contact us today if you have knee pain!