At Texas Foot Specialists, we know that summer is often the time that our patients have a little more leisure time and decide to up their game with sports and fitness activities. Regular exercise has several benefits for your feet:
Maintains flexibility and range of motion
Helps lose weight or maintain an appropriate weight, which in turn reduces pressure on your feet
Suddenly increasing your level of physical activity, however, can lead to foot and ankle problems. Ankle sprains, Achilles tendonitis, shin splints and plantar fasciitis are just a few of the injuries we commonly see in patients when they start or boost their exercise program. Below are some tips to ensure that your summer sports have maximum benefits with minimum risk of injury.
Start with a Checkup—if you have had a stress fracture, ankle sprain or previous sports injury, schedule an appointment with our podiatrists Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Gregory Mangum. The foot doctor will re-evaluate an old injury and make sure your feet and ankles are fit for an increased workload. If you have a custom orthotic device that is more than a year or two old, the podiatrist will want to check it as well and make sure it still fits your foot properly.
Get the Right Shoes—starting a new sport? Purchase shoes that are particularly designed for the sport you have chosen. If this is not a new activity, examine your current shoes for signs of wear. All sports and exercise shoes have a lifespan. Look for worn soles, stretched out heel counters and any loose stitching, and discard if you see any of these signs.
Stretch it Out—once your muscles are warm, you should stretch and then again at the end of a game or workout. If you are unsure of the best stretches to do, ask the podiatrist for recommendations.
Set the Pace—your best bet for avoiding sports injuries to your feet and ankles is to gradually increase the intensity and duration of your play. If you experience any foot or ankle pain, stop at once and make an appointment at our Sugar Land (281-242-4448), Pasadena (281-991-0600) or Houston (713-664-6677) office to get it checked out.