Flat feet, also known as fallen arches, are characterized by having little to no arch in the foot. It is a condition that is often inherited or the result of injury, age, or obesity pregnancy. And while flat feet may not always be a source of discomfort or major disruption to your life, they can sometimes be a challenge for optimal training.
That’s right – it’s not all in your head. And no, your endurance is not a capitulation. According to TJ Mentus, a certified personal trainer and member of the assessment team at Garage Gym Reviews, some HIIT exercises and workouts can be much more painful for those of us who have flat feet.
“Flat feet can be generally uncomfortable,” says Mentus. “Prolonged periods of standing, running, jumping, etc. tend to be more tedious for those who have flat feet “.
Part of the reason for this is probably due to something called hyperpronation. This is a common condition that occurs when your foot rolls inward as you walk or run. The ankle collapses and straightens too much when it has to get up. As a result, the The extra movement puts a lot of pressure on your leg and tendons — especially you Achilles tendonconnecting your heel to the calf.
And because your entire musculoskeletal system is connected, what affects one part of the body can affect another. So flat feet can also cause problems with your hips, back and knees. For example, excessive pronation causes your knees to rotate slightly inward, creating more tension and pressure on your joints over time.
But do not worry: Having a flat foot does not mean that you have to limit your training. You may just need to modify them a few times.
“While performing some exercises, especially intense ones, can be challenging, there are no exercises that a person with flat feet should avoid,” says Noom Lauren K Baker, coach and trainer. Instead of getting tired of a workout, it encourages people with flat feet to pay attention to how their body feels, to get as much rest as needed, to alternate sitting and standing exercises, and to be aware of their legs and surrounding muscles.
What to keep in mind when exercising with flat feet
1. Reduce heavy weight lifting
According to Matthew Morris, a certified personal trainer and programming director at Burn Boot Camp, it is best to stay away from strenuous workouts that put pressure or strain on your lower back, hips and knees if you experience any discomfort or pain. . For example, you want to avoid heavy squatting (also known as lifting heavy weights while squatting). Squats naturally put on the body and any extra weight you add puts more pressure on your joints. Heavy hip hinges, such as death lifts or shelf pulls, can also be too much to handle.
“It has less to do with foot pressure,” says Morris. “It’s more about how flat feet change the biomechanics of your hips and knees and lower back, and then it can increase the risk of pain and injury in these areas. And so, for example, while I would not say that a squat is dangerous if you have flat feet, the risk of irritating your hips, knees and lower back is higher.
Modification: Use lighter weights
If you have flat feet, it is best to build strength in your legs first and then increase the weight you lift. “I would get someone to start with lighter weights,” says Morris. “And then, as the condition of his legs improves, then they can work on heavier strength training.”
2. Try isolation moves
Morris suggests targeting one specific muscle group at a time instead of doing complex exercises that work many muscles at once. This can be an effective way to avoid straining your back, knees and hips. Examples of these exercises include hind thigh curls, buttock lifts, and leg extensions. These are essentially “less work for the body” and “waist friendly,” says Morris.
3. Focus on activities that do not carry weight
As a general rule for anyone experiencing pain, it is best to stick to non-weight-bearing and low-weight activities, such as swimming, cycling (outdoor or indoor) or rowing, Baker says. “As a person gains more confidence in his or her abilities by experiencing reduced pain and increased strength, he or she can incorporate a walking program into his or her exercise routine.” The main thing that emphasizes? Accumulate slowly — in intensity, duration, and frequency — to keep your body healthy from the feet up.
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