Foot Health Tips for Athletes

marathon-runner

Athletes are busy people. Whether they’re students balancing homework and extracurricular activities, or 9-5 workers trying to stay in shape in the evenings, athletes only have limited time for everything else. Focus on diet, exercise, and responsibilities, foot health is one of the last things on an athlete’s list of concerns. If you or someone in your family leads an active lifestyle, make sure they’re taking the time to take heed of the following foot care tips.

Shoes

If you’re devoted to a particular sport, you probably have a great pair of sport-specific shoes already. If for some reason you don’t, or you’re planning to start playing a new sport regularly, make sure that you get a specialized pair, soon. Basketball shoes, for example, have a very particular type of cushioning designed for rapid changes in direction and hard landings. If your shoes don’t fit well or aren’t designed for the activity, you could be risking injury.
When looking for shoes, shop in the afternoon or later, when your feet swell to their largest size. And one more thing: shoes tend to lose shock absorption between 250-500 miles. Runners who go for 25 miles every week will need new shoes, every 2.5-5 months.

Socks

Any old pair of socks might seem to do the trick, but believe it or not, those fancy Nike or Underarmor logo socks really do have a purpose. If your socks aren’t made with moisture-wicking fabric, the fabric will retain moisture for too long and may cause blisters.
College students, stay on top of your laundry: if you don’t change your socks often, you could develop foot odor.

Blisters, and Calluses

Speaking of blisters, don’t ever pop them. If they happen to pop, wash the area, apply antiseptic, then apply a bandage.
As for calluses, talk to your doctor before making a decision. Don’t try to remove them on your own, even if you have an over-the-counter product.

Toenails

Make sure toenails are trimmed to avoid in-grown nails. Cut the nails straight across, but leave them slightly longer at the end of each toe. Watch out if they turn black or blue; it could be a sign of blood underneath the nail, or possibly a condition like melanoma or an infection.

That should cover most (if not all) potential foot problems. If you take nothing else from this article, remember to practice proper hygiene, and use proper sports shoes and socks.

Feel free to contact us you have any further questions and concerns about your foot health. For a consultation, call Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center, at 562-420-9800, to set up an appointment today.