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Washington, PA 15301
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By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
November 27, 2015
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Walking  

Walking can help your body in several important ways. At a brisk pace, you can burn about 300 calories an hour. It increases your heart rate and decreases your cholesterol and blood sugar. Walking can also reduce stress and anxiety. It’s your feet and ankles however that make this advantageous activity possible. Philip S. Pinsker wants you to maximize the health benefits of walking and minimize the risk to your feet.

Preventing Injuries

Remember that pain is your body’s way of saying that something is wrong, so don’t ignore it. When it comes to walking, pain can result from any of the following:

  • Improperly fitting footwear—shoes that are either not designed for walking or that don’t fit properly can cause everything from minor annoyances, such as blisters to major disabling medical problems like bunions, hammertoe, ankle sprains, or Achilles tendonitis.
  • Lack of conditioning—going too far, too fast, too soon, is one of the major causes of injuries associated with walking and running. Start slow and be sure to stretch before and after your walk.
  • Mechanical foot problems or abnormal gait—there may be a structural problem with your feet or ankles that will become aggravated by walking. It’s best before beginning a new walking regimen, to schedule an appointment with Philip S. Pinsker, D.P.M. for a complete physical exam to check for any foot deformities or other conditions that could be negatively impacted by an exercise program.

Choosing the Right Walking Shoes

The single biggest way to prevent foot problems from walking is to buy good walking shoes. Each person’s foot is different. You should be professionally fitted for your walking shoes. The foot doctor will also have recommendations based on the structure of your foot and how you walk. Here are some other tips for getting the best fit:

  • Shop for shoes late in the day when your feet are at their most swollen
  • Wear the same kind of socks to try on the shoes as you will be wearing when you are walking
  • Shoes should feel comfortable in the store—there’s no such thing as a “breaking in” period
  • Choose shoes designed specifically for walking and made of lightweight and breathable materials

If you have any questions about walking and your feet, contact our Washington office. We’ll help you step out in confidence.

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