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Running with Flat Feet
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An_257884 posted:
I was born with flat feet and have used orthopedics ever since my mother took me to a foot doctor as a kid. However, I've read a lot of convincing material that suggests orthopedics aren't that helpful - they're just a way for foot doctors to get you to spend money at their establishment.

For those of you with flat feet, do you run with orthopedics? If not, have you encountered any issues (rolling ankles, pain, etc.)?
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tcrbr responded:
I recently discovered that I have flat feet. I never thought about whether I had flat feet until I participated in the 2014 Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta. I do have plantar fasciitis, which of course is a painful condition. I did wear orthotics during the race which I think helped me. It gave my heel a softer cushion/more support. I think the orthotics helped in my opinion. I wear them almost everyday.
 
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An_258216 responded:

I also suffer with flat feet. I did not have pain or issues till I was in my mid 30's I am now in my 50's. I am not or ever was much of a runner, but being in the military I had no choice but to make the times and distances required of me and the daily requirements to hold my job. I wore the foam orthotics issued by the military they were OK but eventually I had to have my feet molded and wore hard plastic orthotics daily. Now that I am out of the military I suggest if you can find soft orthotics wear, use those to run or exercise. Those will cost up to $60 per pair and will last about 4 months. (Dr. Scholes) I ordered orthotics from my Doctor and found out the hard way that they were not covered in my insurance and paid $400 out of pocket, those lasted about 2 years. I could not run in the hard orthotics, those were for dress shoes, and other non-athletic type shoes. I suggest that when you go buy shoes take your orthotics with you. I have so many types of orthotics that I write the date I opened them on the bottom so that I can remember how old they are and see how long they lasted.

When I say "Last" I mean I can wear the orthotic that period of time before they become ineffective, get flat or the divot in the heel becomes so deep that it hurts to wear.

I cannot wear flat shoes ie. flip flops, Converse, Van's or Air Walks ect. I have an ample assortment of shoes the best pair I own are the Addidas soccer sandals (about $20), they have little plastic spikes that you step on they were very comfortable after the first few days. You mentioned knee pain, you'll get knee and hip pain from crossing and uncrossing your legs when you sit or sleep. Go to your local food court and see how many people sit with only their toes touching the ground, I guarantee that they have issues with their flat feet. I have a 2x4 under my desk so that I can sit place my feet on it and keep my heels off the ground.

I cannot run nor do I attempt to run any more than a pickup basketball game once a blue moon. I tried Nike Connect on X-Box and P90X but both involved too many jumping exercises and made me miserable during recovery and according to my wife not much fun to be around. This year I started riding a bicycle about 30 miles per week, mixed in with squats, push-ups and sit-ups. So if you can run and enjoy it good for you, keep it up! From a poster I once read, "The winner of the race is not the person that crosses the finish line first, but the one that keeps on running."


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