In order to understand overpronation it is important to first know what pronation in the feet actually is. Pronation is a term used to describe the rolling mechanism of the feet when they make
contact with the ground. Pronation is a natural process and is important to help deal with the forces which are generated when walking and running.
There may be several possible causes of over pronation. The condition may begin as early as birth. However, there are several more common explanations for the condition. First, wear and tear on the
muscles throughout the foot, either from aging or repetitive strain, causes the muscles to weaken, thereby causing the foot to turn excessively inward. Also, standing or walking on high heels for an
extended period of time also places strain and pressure on the foot which can weaken the tissue. Lastly, shoes play a very common factor in the development of over pronation. Shoes that fail to
provide adequate support through the arch commonly lead to over pronation.
Due to the laxity of the soft tissue structures of the foot, and the fact that the joints are not held together properly, the bones of the feet shift. When this occurs, the muscles that attach to
these bones must also shift, or twist, in order to attach to these bones. The strongest and most important muscles that attach to our foot bones come from our lower leg. So, as these muscles course
down the leg and across the ankle, they must twist to maintain their proper attachments in the foot. This twisting of these muscles will cause shin splints, Achilles Tendonitis, generalized
tendonitis, fatigue, muscle aches and pains, cramps, ankle sprains, and loss of muscular efficiency (reducing walking and running speed and endurance). The problems we see in the feet, which are due
to over-pronation include bunions, heel spurs, plantar fasciitis, fallen and painful arches, hammertoes, metatarsalgia (ball of foot pain), and calluses.
One of the easiest ways to determine if you overpronate is to look at the bottom of your shoes. Overpronation causes disproportionate wear on the inner side of the shoe. Another way to tell if you
might overpronate is to have someone look at the back of your legs and feet, while you are standing. The Achilles tendon runs from the calf muscle to the heel bone, and is visible at the back of the
ankle. Normally it runs in a straight line down to the heel. An indication of overpronation is if the tendon is angled to the outside of the foot, and the bone on the inner ankle appears to be more
prominent than the outer anklebone. There might also be a bulge visible on the inside of the foot when standing normally. A third home diagnostic test is called the ?wet test?. Wet your foot and
stand on a surface that will show an imprint, such as construction paper, or a sidewalk. You overpronate if the imprint shows a complete impression of your foot (as opposed to there being a space
where your arch did not touch the ground).
Non Surgical Treatment
Personal orthotics can be prescribed via your healthcare professional. If finances or insurance are issues, similar and often better options can be purchased online for overpronation. The right
walking shoes are also essential. Most shoes cater to neutral foot gaits, unless they specifically state otherwise. That won?t help you if your foot rolls inward. In order to correct the issue, you
need shoes with stability or motion control abilities, low heels, deep heel cups, and good arch support.
Many of the prevention methods for overpronation orthotics, for example, can be used interchangeably with treatment methods. If the overpronation is severe, you should seek medical attention from a
podiatrist who can cast you for custom-made orthotics. Custom-made orthotics are more expensive, but they last longer and provide support, stability, and balance for the entire foot. You can also
talk with a shoe specialist about running shoes that offer extra medial support and firm heel counters. Proper shoes can improve symptoms quickly and prevent them from recurring. Surgery can
sometimes help cure and prevent this problem if you suffer from inherited or acquired pes planus deformity. Surgery typically involves stabilizing the bones to improve the foot?s support and