Sports Medicine
A Crucial Period
Good Pain, Bad Pain
On Your Knees
Secondary Injuries
Imaging Technology
What's Sciatica?
The Female Athlete
Putting Your Feet First
Itis Schmitis
Too Much, Too Soon
Under the Influence
What's Goin' On?
Think Inches, Not Pounds
Preventing Vaginitis
That Painful Pull
Athlete's Heart
Exercise & Arthritis
Chilled to the Bone
Measuring Body Fat
Exercise and Your Breasts
Choosing a Sports Doctor
Lean on Me (Shoulder)
Exercise & Anemia
Exercise Abuse
Pelvis Sighting
Hand Aid
It's All in the Wrist
Back in Action
Altitude Adjustment
Tennis Elbow, Anyone?
Exercising in the Heat
Agony of the Feet
Restless Legs
Night Time Cramps
Birth Control Concerns
No Periods, No Babies?
Post Partum Prescription
Weight Loss Mystery
Undesirable Cooldown
To Brew Or Not To Brew
Fitness After Baby
Biking and Back Pain
Swimmer's Shoulder
A Hidden Athlete
Avoiding Osteoporosis
Drug Testing
Maximum Heart Rate
Headway Against Headaches
Torn Rotator Cuff
Fat Figures
Bloody Urine
Sag Story
Lackluster Leg
Bothersome Bulge
Gaining in Years
Taking It On the Shin
Aching Ankles
Hoop Help
Tender Toes
Meals For Muscle
Growing Pains
Hot Tips
High Altitude PMS
Personal Bests
Air Pollution
Ankle Blues
Heartbreak Heel
Yeast Relief

Putting Your Feet First

Orthotics can help prevent injuries

With the price of a pair of athletic shoes approaching or exceeding $100, you might assume you're getting all the foot support you need. However, since every foot is different no matter how much air the manufacturers pump into their athletic shoes, they can't produce a shoe that will perfectly fit your foot and biomechanics.

Of course, many people find shoes that fit well and they never develop a problem. But others end up with blisters, bunions and foot, knee, hip or back pain and think that that's just the price they must pay for working out.

If this is the case with you, orthotics may be the answer. Orthotics are inserts in your shoes, similar to arch supports. They help create proper alignment when the foot strikes the ground.

Even a minor discrepancy in the biomechanics of your foot, something you don't notice when you are walking, can result in a significant problem when you begin to run longer distances or do more aerobics.

You can buy orthotics off the shelf in the pharmacy, or you can have them custom made. If you decide to use custom orthotics, see a physical therapist or a podiatrist and ask her which lab she uses. If the orthotics are made from a kit or in the office, they may not provide the quality you need. As you might guess, the ones at the pharmacy are much less expensive ($8 to $15) than custom-made orthotics ($200 to $500).

Who Needs Orthotics?

Some people are born with an inherited foot structure that develops bunions, corns and hammertoes. If you have a family history of these problems or are developing them, early recognition and use of orthotics may lessen their impact.

For the rest of us, if it ain't broke don't fix it. Flat feet or pronated feet do not require orthotics if they do not cause discomfort or injury.

Many foot, ankle, knee and hip problems that develop from overuse are compensations for structural deformities of the foot, says Robert Mohr, D.P.M., of University Podiatry Group in Los Angeles.

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Table of Contents

Foreword: Billie Jean King

Comments by Barb Harris
Editor in Chief,
Shape Magazine

General Health
Common Medical Problems
Dental Health
Infectious Disease
Sexual Health
Emotional Well-Being
Eating Disorders
Alcohol & Other Drugs
Environmental Health

The information in this web site is for educational purposes only and is not providing medical or professional advice. It should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. If you have or suspect you might have any health problems, you should consult a physician.

Copyright 2000 - Sports Doctor, Inc.