Flat feet are not a disaster to your life. Most people have flat feet are still able to play and work with their daily activities without pain. However, it’s still unusual and sometimes, you will feel the pain and inconvenient. Because the arcs in our feet are acting like natural shock absorbers, they balance your body weight and make you moving more proper and easy.
In history, society used to depreciate people with their flat feet. The military rejected these applicants because they think people with this disability are unfit for their training and could be a burden in army. In sports, like ballet, a flat feet dancer also faced stigmatized because of unattractiveness or incompetence. Beyond all of these, flat-feet Margot Fonteyn is still recognized as one of the best ballet dancers in history.
So before we learn how to fix flat feet, there are some things we need to understand to completely heal this imperfection.
What are flat feet?
People with flat feet or fallen arches will have one or both feet flat on the ground. They might not wear shoes unevenly or the shoes wear out more quickly. For most of time, you cannot see any symptoms, but some still has pain in feet or back, depending on their moves and the cause.
Symptoms are vary and different to each condition of people. But the most common symptom is pain in feet or back because the arch is balance your weight are gone now. The irregular stresses on hip and the knee may cause in pain.
What causes flat feet?
Your foot is complex and complicated structure, which will determine how you move. The arches of your foot are one of the main key in your movement. They need to be both flexible and sturdy to adjust to numerous stress and surfaces.
There are several reasons to cause of flat feet:
- Genetic factors. This means it is in your families and you cannot avoid it.
- Foot or ankle injury or damage
- Pregnancy or diabetes can cause flat feet if your posture is not correct
- Ages cause you weak and also your body. The arches will be weaker and lead to flat feet
How to know you get flat feet?
There is an easy and common test to identify if you have flat feet. It is a wet surface test and it’s reliable and fast. You can easy to follow these steps at home:
- Find a container that you can fit your foot and pour enough water that can fully immersed your foot. Add some color to the water will make it easier for you to read the results
- Prepare a large enough paper to step your feet after that
- Dip your feet into the water and make sure the soles are fully wet
- Step on the paper to print your foot print then read the results
The curve of your inner foot will tell you if you have flat feet. If you can see the curves, then definitely you are having flat feet.
Are flat feet bad?
Actually, it’s depended on many things, especially your lifestyle. If you have flat feet but have no trouble with it in daily life, then you can ignore that. In the other hand, if it causes you pain and inconvenient in moving or playing sport, then you need to care about them.
The arches or your feet are helping you moving easier and more balancing. It helps you stabilizes and reduce the stress on your feet, ankles and back. So if you are suffering bad experience with these flat feet, then let’s find out how to fix flat feet.
How to fix flat feet?
Depend on how bad your feet are, you can follow these methods to find the best way to fix your flat feet.
Stretches and exercises
The best way to enhance your feet is training, especially specific exercises and stretches for feet. You can look for these exercises online or consult your doctor. Choose the one that make you comfortable to work with and don’t push it too hard. You are trying to fix them, not to make it worse.
Wearing the right shoes
Since you still have to move and your feet will be the most hard-working part, preparing a good pair of shoes is never superfluous. There are now many shoes that are specific for healing and rearrange the shape of your feet. Pay attention to the soles and make sure it flexible and offer you the best response to the ground. Avoid high heels and too tight shoes.
This method is depended on your feet as some patients find that it no help at all. Foot orthotics is considered to mechanically heal the imbalances in your musculoskeletal construction, much like you are wearing arch-supporting shoes. It has a thick sole under your feet to create an arch for flat feet, which let you shape into the right posture. This method is easy and affordable to use but only work in some case.
See more: best orthotics for flat feet
If you suffer too much pain, injection is a quick way to release that. But keep in mind that this method is temporary and cannot fix your flat feet. So only use it when you cannot stand the pain and you still have to train to completely cure the cause.
This method is the last step you want to apply and you must have advice of your doctor to do that. They will cut, shift and rearrange your bones and joint to get them in the right place. The pain is speechless and there is a long time after that to recovery. So let try all the step above before you decide to get this method.
There are also some new treatments to fix the flat feet, but in this article, I would like to show you some simple but effective exercises that you can do at home. And after patient training, you might show your friends how to fix flat feet.
Exercises to fix flat feet
Although suitable shoes and orthotics can help you fix and correct your feet, they are not long term solutions. Firming and generating natural arches in your feet is possible and a highly recommended long-term answer for people who having problems with flat feet
With these exercises, you can do growth the height of your feet arches. The most important thing to achieve is consistently exercise these daily. These exercises are simple and you can easy to add them into your daily schedule, like watching TV while doing this. If you follow these exercises, spend at least 10 minutes for each routine every day, the result will make you surprise. But please note that this process is slow and could take at least 8 weeks to see the different.
Wearing shoes with arch support everyday
At the beginning, it could be uncomfortable for you because your posture will be change a lot. But this exercise is the most effective one because you probably can exercise all day without notice and the result is huge. The most challenge thing for girls are staying away from high heels for a really long time
- Step 1: Sit or stand is fine. Put your feet on top of the towel and place them parallel to each other.
- Step 2: Grab the towel with your toes by curling them. Make sure you see the towel scrunch up toward you and you and your heel is steady.
- Step 3: Push the towel from you by release your toes. Do 2 sets of 10 recurrences.
Standing Calf Raises
- Step 1: Try to stand on the edge of something stable and heavy with only half of your feet (from the front of the balls of your foot). Low chair or hard books are the best as it should not be too high
- Step 2: If it’s hard for you to balance, then you can use your arm on the wall. But try to stand still and straight.
- Step 3: Slowly lift your body straight up to the sky by lifting your heels and put pressure in your toes. Hold that position for 1 second then come back to start. Do 2 or 3 times of 10 sets. If it’s still too hard for you, you can start by sitting first, then standing when you get more strength.
Hip Flexor Stretch or butterfly stretch
- Step 1: Sit on a yoga mat or carpet.
- Step 2: Bring both of your legs together, face both soles and attach them together.
- Step 3: Keep your back straight, your shoulder back, core tight and drive your knees down to the floor slowly. You can use your arms to push them even deeper. Hold for 20 to 25 seconds.
- Step 4: Release and repeat about 5 to 7 times
- Step 1: Stand straight on the floor
- Step 2: lift all ten toes up from the ground, keep for 1 second then lower them. Repeat 12 times.
- Step 3: Lift all ten toes up then spread them apart. Keep for 1 second before place back and repeat 12 times
- Step 4: take turn to lift your heel from the ground until you feel the ball of your foot. Roll them from side to side and repeat 12 times
Rock and roll
- Step 1: Stand straight on the floor. Keep your feet flat on the floor
- Step 2: Rock them outwards then roll inwards to stand on the insides of your foot. Hold for 5 seconds.
- Step 3: Repeat 12 times for each movement
- Step 1: Sit or stand on the floor.
- Step 2: Lift all ten toes off the floor
- Step 3: Tap your big toe on the floor while all the other stay unchanged. Hold for 2 seconds then lift.
- Step 4: do step 3 but with your little toe
- Step 5: tap both your big toe and little toe on the floor but try to keep the three middle toes lifted. Hold for 2 seconds then release.
- Step 6: repeat this exercise for 12 times
Since we were a baby, we were all born with flat feet so it’s not too different if you are not growing your arches. This is just one of many imperfections that God give to us so don’t be shy of it and find a way to live with it, any maybe take advantage of that imperfection. With exercises for how to fix flat feet, I hope that you can feel more confident and spend more time to care about what you love.