Precautions Athletes Need To Take To Care For Their Feet This Fall
Athletes may not immediately think of their feet as being important part their success on the field, golf course or court, but they are just as crucial as any other piece of equipment required to play the sport. Walking, jumping and running puts a strain on the bones, muscles, ligaments and tendons of the feet and ankles. Taking the right precautions to care for your feet this fall can help to prevent painful conditions, infections and injuries.
How Athletes Can Care for their Feet this Fall
• Prevent Corns, Calluses and Blisters
Sores on your feet can make it very difficult to continue participating in the sport you enjoy. Corns are thickened areas of skin on the feet that have a dry appearance. They often occur on the bottom of the foot, the outside of the fifth toe, or between the fourth and fifth toes. Calluses are a thick, flat area of dry skin on the foot. Blisters are pockets of fluid that form due to friction.
To avoid these types of sores on the feet, it’s important to keep your feet clean and dry. Wash them daily and dry carefully, paying special attention to the area between the toes.
Use lotion to keep the skin soft and prevent cracking.
Wear shoes that fit comfortably and do not rub or irritate the skin. If you have not worn the shoes since last season examine them carefully for signs of wear and replace them if necessary.
• Avoid Exposure to Fungal Infections
Change socks more than once a day if you find your feet are getting sweaty; it will help them to stay dry.
Wear shower shoes if you are using the shower in a locker room to avoid picking up an infection from exposure to the damp floor.
Choose cotton or another breathable fabric when buying socks.
• Lower your Risk of Injury
Here are some precautions to help prevent ligament, tendon and bone injuries.
1. Stretch before and after every workout, practice and game to help loosen muscles and relax tendons.
2. Use arch supports, insoles or heel pads for extra support and to cushion your feet. If you have high arches or flat feet, this is especially important.
3. If an injury occurs that doesn’t feel better within a couple of days or starts to feel worse, consult a podiatrist for a diagnosis and to get a treatment plan, as appropriate.
Don’t let foot issues get in the way of enjoying fall activities and sports. If you are experiencing discomfort due to an injury, a fungal infection or a foot condition, schedule an appointment with Sheldon H. Nadal D.P.M.for a consultation.