Whether you’re a professional athlete or an amateur building experience, stress fractures can be quite painful and affect your performance.
Stress fractures are overuse injuries that can happen to bones that are constantly exposed to repetitive stress. Such as the repeated movement of the foot striking the ground during running can increase the risk of stress fractures over time.
While commonly found in runners and athletes engaged in high-impact sports such as basketball and football, stress fractures can also occur with poor nutrition and lifestyle habits such as smoking or drinking too much.
Risk Factors in Sports
In sports, stress fractures of the foot may develop due to a sudden increase in intense physical activity. For example, doubling your running distance in a 2-week time frame. This can cause the bone to take on excessive stress beyond its normal capacity, when coupled with insufficient time for recovery, causing micro-cracks.
One of the risk factors for developing stress fractures is “overtraining syndrome”. Competitive runners and triathletes are more vulnerable to stress fractures as a result of rigorous training schedules that increase strain on the bones faster than can be repaired on their own.
Nutritional deficiencies caused by reduced levels of vitamin D and calcium in the body can lead to weakening of the bones or osteoporosis which raises the risk of fractures; the Institute of Medicine suggests a dosage of 600 to 800 IU of vitamin D for adequate bone health in adults.
Among the other factors responsible for increasing the chances of stress fractures in sports, ill-fitting footwear, hard training surfaces and improper technique can also contribute to the development of fractures over time.
Foot Posture Impact
When you have a bad foot posture, your feet are unable to efficiently absorb the shock forces that are produced upon impact with the ground. This means, there’s more stress being transferred directly to the bones in the feet; the amount of force generated is usually higher during sports activities.
Since your feet move unhealthily, your muscles eventually tire out trying to control this unhealthy movement, causing muscle fatigue. There is also an uneven distribution of weight in the feet which risks more pressure being added on to the foot bones.
Moreover, with the feet acting as the foundation of the whole body, a bad foot posture sets off a ‘domino effect’ which causes improper movement of the lower body as well. This can increase your chances of having stress fractures in the legs and hip region.
A foot postural examination can help identify an unhealthy foot posture and reduce risk factors for stress fractures that could keep you away from the game for long.
If a foot postural problem is identified, MASS4D® foot insoles can be combined with stretching and strengthening exercises to build strength in the foot arches.
The supportive properties of the insoles make them ideal for preventing the arch from collapsing, helping stabilise it and regulating foot movement.
With MASS4D® providing the support needed by your foot, your whole posture improves which reduces stress in other areas of the body as well. So you’re able to maintain proper form throughout the game without having to worry about developing fractures or foot conditions.
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Reference: Astur, D. C., Zanatta, F., Arliani, G. G., Moraes, E. R., Pochini, A. C., Ejnisman, B. (2016) Stress Fractures: Definition, Diagnosis and Treatment. Revista Brasileira De Ortopedia: 2016, Vol. 51, No. 1, pp. 3-10. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.rboe.2015.12.008
Reference: Miller, T. L., Best, T. M. (2016) Taking a Holistic Approach to Managing Difficult Stress Fractures. Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Research: 2016, Vol. 11, No. 98. DOI: 10.1186/s13018-016-0431-9
Reference: Behrens, S. B., Deren, M. E., Matson, A., Fadale, P. D., Monchik, K. O. (2013) Stress Fractures of the Pelvis and Legs in Athletes. Sports Health: March 2013, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 165-174. DOI: 10.1177/1941738112467423
Reference: Patel, D. S., Roth, M., Kapil, N. (2011) Stress Fractures: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention. American Family Physician: January 2011, Vol. 83, No. 1, pp. 39-46
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