Pronation describes the natural process of the inward rolling of your foot when the outer edge of your heel strikes the ground and your foot flattens out. Excess pronation, known as flat foot, can
result in flattened arches and overstretched foot muscles. Advanced conditions may affect your hips, knees, ankle, back and foot functioning. Use natural techniques to stretch and strengthen your
muscles in order to help pronation.
Over-pronation occurs when the foot collapses too far inward stressing the plantar fascia (the area underneath the arch of the foot.) Normally, one pronates every time he or she walks, but excessive
pronation is called over-pronation. When this occurs it can cause pain in the feet, knees, hips, low back and even the shoulder. Decreasing over-pronation, which is very prominent in runners, will
help add endurance, speed and efficiency to your run and ultimately place less stress on your body.
Due to the laxity of the soft tissue structures of the foot, and the fact that the joints are not held together properly, the bones of the feet shift. When this occurs, the muscles that attach to
these bones must also shift, or twist, in order to attach to these bones. The strongest and most important muscles that attach to our foot bones come from our lower leg. So, as these muscles course
down the leg and across the ankle, they must twist to maintain their proper attachments in the foot. This twisting of these muscles will cause shin splints, Achilles Tendonitis, generalized
tendonitis, fatigue, muscle aches and pains, cramps, ankle sprains, and loss of muscular efficiency (reducing walking and running speed and endurance). The problems we see in the feet, which are due
to over-pronation include bunions, heel spurs, plantar fasciitis, fallen and painful arches, hammertoes, metatarsalgia (ball of foot pain), and calluses.
Pronounced wear on the instep side of shoe heels can indicate overpronation, however it's best to get an accurate assessment. Footbalance retailers offer a free foot analysis to check for
overpronation and help you learn more about your feet.
Non Surgical Treatment
Adequate footwear can often help with conditions related to flat feet and high arches. Certified Pedorthists recommend selecting shoes featuring heel counters that make the heel of the shoe stronger
to help resist or reduce excessive rearfoot motions. The heel counter is the hard piece in the back of the shoe that controls the foot?s motion from side-to-side. You can quickly test the
effectiveness of a shoe?s heel counter by placing the shoe in the palm of your hand and putting your thumb in the mid-portion of the heel, trying to bend the back of the shoe. A heel counter that
does not bend very much will provide superior motion control. Appropriate midsole density, the firmer the density, the more it will resist motion (important for a foot that overpronates or is pes
planus), and the softer the density, the more it will shock absorb (important for a cavus foot with poor shock absorption) Wide base of support through the midfoot, to provide more support under a
foot that is overpronated or the middle of the foot is collapsed inward.
Calcaneal "Slide" (Sliding Calcaneal Osteotomy) A wedge is cut into the heel bone (calcaneus) and a fixation device (screws, plate) is used to hold the bone in its new position. This is an aggressive
option with a prolonged period of non-weightbearing, long recovery times and many potential complications. However, it can and has provided for successful patient outcomes.