Foot Pain -
Runner's Enemy No. 1
Three Not So Common Foot
Foot pain is quite common for runners.
Think about. Your feet really take a pounding.
Your feet touch the ground about 800 times / mile.
And every time they touch the ground, the impact is equal to 2-3 x your
Your feet really take the majority of the punishment while running.
could have a small imbalance in your stride or some small structural
flaw and the result will be aches and pains from time to time.
So, it's not surprising that you can get some foot pain once in a while.
Some of the most common injuries or ailments to plaque runners are
plantar fasciitis / heel spur, heel pain and black toenails. Strangely
enough I am not discussing those here...!
No, they are so important, they have their own page.
So check out the following links if you wish to learn more about them:
spur / plantar fasciitis
On this page I discuss some other foot injuries that are also quite
common and a little less known in runner's circles:
pain under three little toes
metatarsal stress fracture
Foot Injury #1: Hammer Toes
So, what are
hammer toes? When you have a hammertoe your toe can't
remain in a straightened position. Even when you try to straighten it,
it just does not work.
also discover that corns have formed on the tops of
the toes. These corns can cause pain when you run. Any of the toes can
be inflicted with hammertoe, with the exception of your big toe.
Hammer toes are usually a result of wearing
shoes that are simply not fit for purpose. They can be not big
enough or have a small toe-box.
A small toe-box can cause more toe problems than hammertoes alone. Black toenails / runner's toe
are a common problem with small toe-boxes as well.
With the hammertoe, when you run in shoes that are basically too small
for too much time, the tendons
along the bottom side of your toes shorten. This causes you to be
unable to straighten them.
How to Prevent Hammertoes?
Hammertoes are generally caused because of ill-fitting footwear. So
make sure you start wearing shoes that fit more loosely, particularly
in the toe-box. This is
important for your everyday shoes and for your
Foot Injury #2: Pain Under
Three Little Toes
the three little toes is another common foot pain
experienced by runners.
When you have this condition, when you press your fingers at the area
the ball of your foot and your toes, you will feel some pain.
condition is usually caused by coming down way too hard on your foot
while running. Pounding your foot too hard will cause bursitis
Your foot has a cushion, known as a bursa,
to protect your foot. When you pound your feet too hard for too long,
the bursa becomes irritated/inflamed, which they call bursitis.
How to Treat Pain under Three Little Toes?
To relieve the pain under the three little toes, use footpads to take
some pressure from the area. You can use metatarsal pads.
You will want
to place the padding behind the ball of your foot to cushion the
To find the area that is painful press the toes backwards,
pressing until you locate the painful spot.
Use tape to secure the pad
directly behind this area.
How to Prevent Pain Under Three Little Toes
Although metatarsal pads are likely to relieve the painful symptoms,
the underlying cause of your pain should also be adressed!
This type of
foot pain is usually caused by an imbalance in the foot which is not
corrected by your current shoes. Again, this can be caused by wearing
the wrong running shoes.
Or maybe your running shoes have too
many miles on them, which has made them lose their
Can't find the right shoes easily? Then
visit a podiatrist
to get some professional help.
Foot Injury #3: Metatarsal
Experiencing a metatarsal stress fracture?
Then you will need to visit an orthopedist or podiatrist.
This is a foot pain that is not remedied on your own.
stress fracture causes pain that will run over the top side of your
It runs along those long thin bones leading to the toes.
These long bones
are the metatarsals.
You are likely to experience swelling
and redness as well as extreme pain.
Pressing along the bone shaft, first on one side and then the
other causes a stabbing pain.
Experience this sort of foot pain? Then you may have bruised or even
broken the metatarsals during a stressful run. You should stop running
and visit an orthopedist or podiatrist right away.
your doctor will alter his advice depending on which bone is
fractured, where the fracture is in the bone and how serious the
Also see my stress
fractures page for some more info on stress fractures.
As you see, it is not unusual to experience some foot pain as a
Learn to identify the different types of foot pain.
This will help you etermine if you
can fix it yourself or if you need to seek the help of a physician.
Keep in mind that your running technique is an important way to
decrease your chances of injury.
Check out the following links for more information about running
Note that on this page I am just talking about some of the foot
injuries you can get when not wearing the proper runners.
But there are also
plenty of lower leg and knee problems that can be caused
by your running shoes.
So, make sure
you have got the right shoes for your feet. The link above
will provide you with ample detail on how to choose the right running
shoes. Using those tips, you should be able to eliminate the foot pain
issues described above.
Wish to get more running tips?
Subscribe to the Best
Running Tips Newsletter or to my
from Foot Pain Page to Running Injuries Page
from Foot Pain Page to Best Running Tips Homepage
Running Injury Prevention
Foot Pain |
Black Toenail |
Stress Fractures |
Posterior Tibial Tendonitis |
Heel Pain |
Achilles Tendinitis |
Heel Spur / Plantar Fasciitis |
Knee Pain |
Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITB) |
Leg / Calf Cramps |
Shin Splints |
Hamstring Injury |
Upper Body Injuries:
Nipple Chafing |
Side Stitch |
Back Pain |
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