Flat feet are commonly found in all populations, throughout the world, in the shoe and non-shoe wearing populations. Many people whose feet appear to be flat never present with symptoms associated. However, some people may go on to develop pain and discomfort in the feet, knees, hips and lower back.
A flat foot or pes planus are terms that are used to describe a foot that has no arch or a reduced arch profile.
They can be hereditary or acquired which may be related to injury or health issues including those that affect the nervous system and increased body mass index.
The arch of the foot is maintained by the tendons, muscles, and ligaments. During walking the foot is designed to roll in to act as a shock absorber and help walk over uneven terrain, and also roll out to aid propulsion forward. Problems may occur when there is a lack of or altered timing during walking.
Symptoms may include pain and discomfort during or after activity, located with the foot and ankle and often higher up the body.
If you find you are experiencing symptoms one foot or both feet collapsing, we suggest you seek a further assessment.
It is very common to find calf muscle tightness in combination with flat feet so stretching can reduce pressure through the foot and arch. Specific muscle strengthening it beneficial
Orthotics (Insoles): Orthotics or insoles are often used to aid foot function and reduce load going through specific structures.
Supportive footwear: shoes play a major role in foot function, it is always essential to assess to see if current shoes are up to the job that is required of them.