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What is Over Pronation?
Pronation occurs as weight is transferred from the heel to the forefoot when walking or running and the foot naturally rolls inwards. A certain amount of this is natural but in many people the foot rolls in too much or over pronates.
When standing, pronation occurs as the foot rolls inwards and the arch of the foot flattens, hense the term often used to describe someone who over pronates as having ‘flat feet’. Pronation is a normal part of the gait cycle which helps to provide shock absorption at the foot. The opposite movement to pronation is supination.
Causes of Over Pronation
Over-pronation is very prominent in people who have flexible, flat feet. The framework of the foot begins to collapse, causing the foot to flatten and adding stress to other parts of the foot. As a result, over-pronation, often leads to Plantar Fasciitis, Heel Spurs, Metatarsalgia, Post-tib Tendonitis and/or Bunions. There are many causes of flat feet. Obesity, pregnancy or repetitive pounding on a hard surface can weaken the arch leading to over-pronation. Often people with flat feet do not experience discomfort immediately, and some never suffer from any discomfort at all. However, when symptoms develop and become painful, walking becomes awkward and causes increased strain on the feet and calves.
How do I tell if I over pronate?
Pronounced wear on the instep side of shoe heels can indicate over pronation, however it’s best to get an accurate assessment. Footbalance retailers offer a free foot analysis to check for over pronation and help you learn more about your feet.
Symptoms of Over pronation That May Develop
If you overpronate, your symptoms may include:
- Discomfort in the arch and sole of foot
- Your foot may appear to turn outward at the ankle
- Your shoes wear down faster on the medial (inner) side of your shoes
- Pain in ankle, shins, knees, or hips, especially when walking or running
Over pronation Prevention and Treatment
Pronation and supination are bio-mechanical problems, and are best treated and prevented with orthotic inserts. But before you run out to buy orthotics it makes sense to get the right advice on footwear, and the best advice I can give you, is to go and see a qualified podiatrist for a complete foot-strike and running gait analysis. They will be able to tell you if there are any concerns regarding the way your running gait is functioning.
After your running gait has been analysed, have your podiatrist, or competent sports footwear sales person recommend a number of shoes that suit your requirements. Good quality footwear will go a long way in helping to prevent pronation and supination. And, if needed, invest in a pair of orthotic inserts to further prevent excessive pronation or supination.
Over pronation can be Prevented?
Many of the prevention methods for over pronation orthotics, for example can be used interchangeably with treatment methods. If the over pronation is severe, you should seek medical attention from a podiatrist who can cast you for custom-made orthotics.
Custom-made orthotics are more expensive, but they last longer and provide support, stability, and balance for the entire foot. You can also talk with a shoe specialist about running shoes that offer extra medial support and firm heel counters.
Proper shoes can improve symptoms quickly and prevent them from recurring. Surgery can sometimes help cure and prevent this problem if you suffer from inherited or acquired pes planus deformity. Surgery typically involves stabilizing the bones to improve the foot’s support and function.
Over Pronation Look like (pictures)