The human foot is a complex and amazing part of our bodies. It has to carry our weight throughout life and when it is not functioning adequately can cause a great degree of discomfort.
Over-pronation is when the foot rolls too far to the inside. Normally the foot moves through a pattern of pronation and supination but when the pronation is uncontrolled it may cause problems. It can mean that the forces that the muscles and the ground put on the bones are mal-aligned and this mal-alignment causes a lack of power or endurance, and sometimes pain and inflammation.
When is over-pronation a problem?
Over-pronation is very common in young children and only needs to be treated in certain circumstances. It is normal for young over-pronated feet to slowly improve posture as walking, climbing and running develop.
As children grow, over-pronation may persist and cause symptoms. Many of these symptoms can be alleviated by foot orthoses.
Symptoms may include:
Pain, sore arches, heels, instep of the feet, sore shins, pain behind the knee cap or at the outside of the knee
Problems with balance
Problems with endurance of walking
Shoe-wrecking, where the sides of the shoes or the outsoles are quickly and abnormally worn out
A flat foot is an extremely pronated foot where the large medial arch of the foot has collapsed. A flat foot is medically considered a normal variant of the human foot but sometimes flat feet can cause pain or discomfort which can in many cases be helped by foot orthoses if the foot is flexible.
If the foot is stiff due to either tarsal coalition (bony fusions in the midfoot) or muscle shortening/spasm, the use of orthoses may not be indicated. Our Orthotists will be able to decide if orthoses are suitable for your child in each case.