Pronation is a turning outward of the foot at the ankle, which allows the foot to flatten. The pronation helps to absorb some of the compressive shock forces, torque conversion, adjustment to uneven
ground contours, and maintenance of balance. It is necessary to have a certain amount of pronation to disseminate the energy of the foot-strike. If there is too little or too much pronation injuries
may occur. When a foot and ankle pronates to a great degree, we call it over-pronation. Normally you can see the Achilles Tendon run straight down the leg into the heel. If the foot is over-pronated,
the tendon will run straight down the leg, but when it lies on the heel it will twist outward. This makes the inner ankle bone much more prominent than the outer ankle bone.
Excess stress on the inner surface of the foot can cause injury and pain in the foot and ankle. Repeated rotational forces through the shin, knee, thigh and pelvis also place additional strain on the
muscles, tendons and ligaments of the lower leg.
Symptoms can manifest in many different ways. The associated conditions depend on the individual lifestyle of each patient. Here is a list of some of the conditions associated with over Pronation.
Hallux Abducto Valgus (bunions). Hallux Rigidus (stiff 1st toe). Arch Pain. Heel Pain (plantar Facsitus). Metatarsalgia (ball of the foot pain). Ankle Sprains. Shin Splints. Achilles Tendonitis.
Osteochondrosis. Knee Pain. Corns & Calluses. Flat Feet. Hammer Toes.
To easily get an idea of whether a person overpronates, look at the position and condition of certain structures in the feet and ankles when he/she stands still. When performing weight-bearing
activities like walking or running, muscles and other soft tissue structures work to control gravity's effect and ground reaction forces to the joints. If the muscles of the leg, pelvis, and feet are
working correctly, then the joints in these areas such as the knees, hips, and ankles will experience less stress. However, if the muscles and other soft tissues are not working efficiently, then
structural changes and clues in the feet are visible and indicate habitual overpronation.
Non Surgical Treatment
Over-Pronation can be treated conservatively (non-surgical treatments) with over-the-counter orthotics. These orthotics should be designed with appropriate arch support and medial rearfoot posting to
prevent the over-pronation. Footwear should also be examined to ensure there is a proper fit. Footwear with a firm heel counter is often recommended for extra support and stability. Improper fitting
footwear can lead to additional problems of the foot. If the problem persists, call your doctor to schedule an appointment.
Firstly, a thorough and correct warm up will help to prepare the muscles and tendons for any activity or sport. Without a proper warm up the muscles and tendons around your feet, ankles and lower
legs will be tight and stiff. There will be limited blood flow to the lower legs, which will result in a lack of oxygen and nutrients for those muscles. Click here for a detailed explanation of how,
why and when to perform your warm up. Secondly, flexible muscles are extremely important in the prevention of most ankle and lower leg injuries. When muscles and tendons are flexible and supple, they
are able to move and perform without being over stretched. If however, your muscles and tendons are tight and stiff, it is quite easy for those muscles and tendons to be pushed beyond their natural
range of motion. To keep your muscles and tendons flexible and supple, it is important to undertake a structured stretching routine.