The total amount of miles most Americans will walk by the time they turn fifty is 75,000. Therefore, it is no wonder that the American Podiatric Medical Association found that foot pain affects the daily activities, such as walking, exercising, or standing for long periods of time, of a majority of Americans.
The harsh weather conditions in winter can make these tasks even more painful. Whether you’re slogging through deep snow or sub-zero temperatures, it’s important to take care of your feet all winter long. These tips from APMA will keep your feet healthy in common winter scenarios:
- Be size smart. It may be tempting to buy pricey footwear for kids in slightly larger sizes, thinking they will be able to get two seasons wear out of them. Unlike coats that kids can grow into, footwear needs to fit correctly right away.
- Boots are must-have footwear in winter climates, especially when dealing with winter precipitation. The waterproof material of the boots and warm socks may make your feet sweat more than usual. Damp, sweaty feet can chill more easily and are more prone to bacterial infections. Keep feet clean and dry, consider using foot powder inside socks, and incorporate extra footbaths into your winter regimen.
- Nearly 10 million Americans, according to the National Ski Association, enjoy winter activities such as skiing and snowboarding. Never ski or snowboard in footwear other than ski boots specifically designed for that purpose. The boots must fit properly; allow room to wiggle your toes, but immobilize the heel and ball of your foot.
- Winters harsh conditions does not stop committed runners. Be sure to wear a variety of warm, light-weight, moisture-wicking active wear. It is imperative to make sure you stay warm and dry in bitter temperatures. However, instead of changing out foot strike pattern for icy weather, shorten your stride to help maintain stability. Cold weather makes it more important than ever to stretch before you run.
Most importantly, do not ever try to tiptoe through the winter snow and ice barefoot or in summer footwear. Exposing feet to extreme temperatures means risking frostbite and injury. Choose winter footwear that will keep your feet warm, dry, and well supported so you are ready for the action when spring arrives.
Courtesy of: American Podiatric Medical Association