Years ago, children were routinely fitted with special shoes and sometimes even braces for foot problems. Parents who used these devices in childhood often worry that their children will need them, too. It is important to remember that the approach to foot problems in young children has changed dramatically over the past few decades. Braces and special shoes generally are not prescribed these days because flat-footedness is often considered short-term and benign. Over pronation can lead to excessive stress on the feet, triggering back problems, tendonitis etc. Wearing normal shoes can aggravate the condition, hence special shoes for flat feet or custom orthotic inserts are recommended. mentioned? What exactly does it mean and at what point are a person’s feet considered to be flat? Allowing for a bit of individualism, that could be difficult to define. Pes Planus is a condition where the arch area of the foot has either not properly developed or collapsed to the point where the sole of the foot is nearly in complete contact with the surface the foot is on. Up to thirty-percent of people who have flat feet simply never developed arches in one or both feet. Children with conditions such as Down, Marfan, and Ehlers-Danlos syndromes are more likely to have flat feet. What is the treatment? Flat feet are also called pes planus. Below is a picture of a flat foot wherein the medial arch or inner border disappears during weight bearing. An 8 month old with flat foot but arch is starting to develop. A kid 10 years old with very low arch or the inner border of foot touching the floor when standing or when the foot is loaded. However, in kids who are delayed in walking, they could also have flat feet as the arches are still weak and have not fully developed. Think of your client’s highest good and join forces with other professionals so that the best results can be achieved. Pes planus , has a more familiar name, that is flat foot The malformation involves lowering of the longitudinal arch lowering and external flexion of the heel. The feet are flat on the ground along their entire surface. Flatfoot is generally an inherited state, but can also be acquired later in life. The latter condition typically occurs in people who once had a natural arch in the foot. In this case, usually an injury which causes a dislocation of the talus bone is the catalyst for the fallen arch. For details about firm and soft Orthotic Arch Support Insoles or other fine quality foot care products, visit Direct Insoles today! Do not resume training where you left off. Depending on how much time you missed, you may need to start at 25% – 50% of your usual program and increase 10% or so a week from there or as instructed by your physical therapist, doctor or coach. Replace worn shoes and consider a replacement insole in ALL of your shoes for optimal support and cushion. There are lots of reasons behind the absence of arch. Some causes diminish with time and some may be carried on for a lifetime, but they are not related to any serious complications. Following are some of the common causes. Many students have no symptoms associated with their flat feet. But others note some foot pain in the heel or arch area, difficulty standing on tiptoe or swelling along the inside of the ankle. Usually it is foot pain that will prompt a visit to your doctor, who will likely examine the foot, may order X-rays and could recommend meds for pain, and possiblly some sort of shoe insert. Rarely do you need to go further with treatment. There are fewer foot problems associated with individuals who have a rectus (average arch height) foot type vs. a cavus (higher arch height) or a planus (lower arch height) foot type. The various tendons in your foot and the ankle perform a variety of functions, the most notable being the job of connecting muscles to bones in the body. Tendons are by nature sinewy and fibrous tissues, and they are vital for the sustenance of the body, and for the facilitation of movement. The ankles and the feet are essential components as well, and they have to perform a multitude of movements to keep the body mobile. In order to carry out this movement, the tendons are perhaps the most crucial tissues in the foot. Cue the “So what if my gymnasts have a little duck foot thing going on”. I know you may be thinking that it really isn’t a big deal. However, I hope to point you in the other direction. The Physical Therapy and Medical Rehab/Biomechanics world has made a lot of strides (again no pun intended) to raising awareness about this issue. Based on evidence and some current literature, here are a few reasons flat feet and faulty lower body biomechanics are concerning. There is a small rotational component in the knee joint and some glide forward and backward between the Femoral Condyles and the platform made by the Tibia. Plantar Fasciitis is a very common condition caused by over-pronation. As the feet flatten, the Plantar Fascia (fibrous band of ligaments under the foot) is being overly stretched, leading to inflammation in the heel, where the fascia attach to the heel bone. Plantar Fasciitis causes chronic heel pain and sometimes a heel spur develops (bony growth at the heel bone). There is no real cure as such for over-pronation, however a lot can be done to prevent it. The most effective way to minimise over-pronation and its effects on the body is by wearing orthotics inside the shoes.