Spring is in the air at Paul Klein, DPM FACFAS and that usually means an increase in foot, toe and ankle injuries as youth and adults rush into a new season of sports and activities. After months of being confined primarily to indoor fitness activities or sports that use skates or boots, the transition to fields and outdoor courts and tracks can be hard on the feet. Follow the tips below to ensure that you “spring” into warm weather sports without harming your feet.
- Do a shoe check. Be sure the shoes you will be wearing are specifically designed for the sport you plan to use them for. If you already own appropriate shoes look them over for signs of wear. Shoes that have stretched out or have wear spots can lead to injury. If you require a new pair of shoes, go to a professional sports footwear store. Get your foot measured and take your time trying on and choosing comfortable shoes.
- Take care of existing foot conditions. Did you slip on the ice and sprain your ankle or have another foot injury this past winter? It’s important to have to your foot examined by our podiatrist, Dr. Paul G. Klein, before hitting the field this spring. Playing with an injury that has not fully healed will lead to serious disability. Your foot doctor can also make specific shoe recommendations based on your individual foot structure and mechanical function.
- Start slowly. Whether you’ve been inactive over the winter or you’ve been participating in an indoor sport you’ll want to take it easy at first when you start spring training. Changes in activity level or exercising on a new surface can result in stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, shin splints and Achilles tendonitis if your initial work out is too intense.
- Don’t skip the warm up. Stretching both before and after exercise can help prevent many foot problems and injuries.