Knowing When to Say When….and Why!

Like all doctors, we find ourselves on the receiving end of many questions but it is often the ones that aren’t asked that can be the most important.  For example, one day last week, my final patient of the morning asked me when he should replace his running sneakers.  Everyone has a favorite pair of sneakers that fit like a glove – soft, warm and well worn out.  But by keeping those old shabby sneakers around, you may be sacrificing health for comfort when you really should strive for both.

running shoesReplacing your running or other exercise shoes can help prevent injuries like tendonitis, stress fractures, and plantar fasciitis from developing.  Many athletes develop tendonitis along the outside of the foot and ankle from improper wear of their shoes, along their peroneal tendons.   These peroneal tendons are the primary tendons that allow the foot to “pronate” or turn outward.

Runners or people that perform repetitive motion with their feet while working out have a tendency to over-use the muscle groups that serve the feet and ankles.  This overuse causes an inflammation to the tendons and you develop “peroneal tendinitis.” If you are noticing an unfamiliar pain in the outside regions of your feet and ankles, take a quick look at the bottom of your sneakers. Are the outsides of the heel worn down to the point where your shoe is no longer flat?  That may be the very reason why you’ve developed peroneal tendonitis, and it’s time to replace your sneakers.

For runners, the golden rule is to replace your shoes every 500 miles but if you’re putting in heavy mileage, it may be sooner than 500 miles.  For the average athlete replacing your sneakers every 6-8 months is adequate, depending on how often and how hard you train.

We at Country Foot Care can evaluate your sneakers and other shoes for wear and suggest a shoe model that will support your active lifestyle.  Our Medical Shoe Store in our Mineola and Williston Park locations carry a wide array of athletic shoes which are not only supportive and stylish but also accommodate custom fabricated orthotics.

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Posted in: Sports Injuries Archives

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