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Flat feet. 7 keys to understand what this pathology means

Flat foot is a foot that has a plantar vault with less height than normal. It is usually accompanied by a increase in the width of the midfoot area, due to the fall of the arch to the internal area.


We have to comment that although they cause pain, well treated they allow a normal life. Yes, it is necessary see a specialist to know what type of flat feet it is and what is the best treatment.


 Do you have flat feet or do you think you may have them?


Next, we review what they are, causes and consequences, symptoms, repercussions, treatments and other issues what you should know about this foot condition, from the hand of the podiatrist Xavier Alfaro, technical director of Podoactiva and podiatrist of the Absolute Soccer Team.



A flat foot is a descent of the plantar vault and it occurs when there is less arch than usual, that is, the foot shaft falls inwardtowards the big toe. These characteristics make it a foot 'diesel', as we sometimes call it, because they last more kilometers but are not excessively fast.



In addition to the appearance that a flat foot has, in which it can be seen that there is less arch than normal, there are other symptoms that may be indicating that we suffer from this condition:


-Pain in the muscles of the inner leg: when working very forced, due to the fact that the foot falls inwards, it produces tendinitis and the pain appears.


-Pain in the back when the foot sinks: The bones in the dorsal area above are pinched and osteoarthritic spikes occur.



As a curiosity, it should be mentioned that we are born with flat feet, but it is normal for it to be a flexible flat foot and that, with time and child Growth, be corrected.


However, it may also be the case that a adult, with a normal foot, develop a flat foot because of a posterior tibial dysfunction. This means that the muscle that supports the arch stops working, causing the foot to fall more and more inwards.



To diagnose this pathology correctly, there are systems of footprint analysis with pressure platform, in this way we see in the computer how is the footprint and with that we can determine the diagnosis.



But the most important thing in a flat foot is your last name. Can be flexible, semi-flexible or rigid. To find out what it is, different biomechanical tests:


1. Jack test: consists of raising the patient's big toe. The arc has to form and if it doesn't, it's positive.


2. Heel Rise Test: when standing on your toes, you have to form an arch and the heel to go out. If it does not form, it is positive.


In case that both tests are negative, Is a flexible flat foot, which means that he has a good prognosis and that, in principle, this child with flat feet in adulthood will not have it. There is a high probability that the problem will be solved.


Si both tests are positive is a stiff foot, a structural flat foot in which the bones are flat, being necessary to operate.


El rigid flat foot It can be due to two causes: the first one is that the talus, instead of being horizontal, is verticalized; and the second option is that we find a tarsal coalition, that is, "factory", two bones of the foot have come together and do not take the shape of the bridge.


Lastly, if you go out one positive and one negative test is that it is a semi-flexible foot that with a good treatment can be corrected no need to operate.


In the diagnosis, there are other tests such as maximum pronation or resistance to supination, although in principle with these it could be classified.




En children, the most important thing is to make a good diagnosis because it can be a foot that can be correct with strengthening exercises. But from the 4 years.maybe you have to do custom templates to change the foot alignment axes and that those muscles begin to work differently. In other cases, the operation will also have to be assessed.


En adultsthe most important thing is to do a nice custom template which will minimize the consequences of a flat foot.


The Treatments must always go associated with exercises both Stretching and empowerment. The possible operation would be another treatment, always starting from a good biomechanical study of the tread and considering all the possibilities.


The incorporation of the technology podiatry also helps. Thanks to 3D Scan Podoactiva, our personalized insoles allow the foot to be repositioned and be as functional as possible thanks to its elasticity and customization.



In children, that is, when it is 'from the factory', its appearance is quite equal in both sexes.


In adulthood, there are more of whose feet are flattened, especially after pregnancy or menopause, since the ligaments relax more and there is a greater probability that it will become a flat foot.



The feet are the foundation and the entire structure will be affected. A clear impact is fatigue, because it carries a load of energy wear much higher than a normal foot, costing a lot of effort to walk, and more so when one is already tired since the sensation is that one is walking dragging one's feet.


It can also occur heavy legs, both due to problems of return of circulation and muscle tension in the calf, calf, inner area of ​​the leg.


Another very important aspect is that, when the foot falls inwards, it takes the knee out of its axis of work. A foot has 26 bones and even if it is flat it has more or less capacity to adapt, a knee is a hinge, and if it does not go straight it will rub, and if it rubs it wears out. What happens is that the knee is turned inward and it is very easy to associate a flat foot with a genu (knee) valgus, the knees in x that go inwards.


Finally, in the back We can also notice the consequences of a flat foot, since the attitude is always much more kyphotic because it tends to go more forward.




 At Podoactiva we can help you. Consult your nearest Podoactiva clinic HERE or contact us at 974 231 280 or Traves de info@podoactiva.com.


Javier Alfaro Santafe

Technical director of Podoactiva

Podiatrist and head of biomechanics of the Spanish Soccer Team

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  • Sebastián
    Posted at 07:39 a.m., February 02 Reply

    Good. I have flat feet
    Good. I have had flat feet all my life and never had treatment. I was always curious to know if flat feet affect the ability to run a sprint, because in my whole life, since I was a child, I always lost all the races, even running against people with less physical preparation than mine.

    • partners
      Posted at 16:37 a.m., February 04 Reply

      Good morning Sebastian. Yes it is

      Good morning Sebastian. Yes, it is a factor that can determine the reactivity of the foot muscles. Although it is true that many people with flat feet can have good biomechanics and a good sprint because they have been enhanced by extensive training throughout growth and life. It depends on many factors, so it would be necessary to see him in consultation for a more precise diagnosis. All the best.

  • George
    Posted at 18:37 a.m., February 08 Reply

    Thank you, my wife suffers from
    Thank you, my wife suffers from foot pain every day and in the inner part of the leg as in the knees, we are seeing what is best for her, we live in the USA in South Carolina, what we find here is not much, what He recommends us to improve this uncomfortable situation, and perhaps the worst is that he works almost all the time on his feet,

    Atte. Jorge Pulecio

  • Ruby Hernandez
    Posted at 09: 35h, 15 December Reply

    A flat foot is larger in size, that is, shoe size, than a healthy foot?

    • partners
      Posted at 17:04 a.m., January 11 Reply

      Good afternoon Ruby. Thank you very much for your interest. A flat foot does not have a larger size, but due to its shape it tends to widen. If a patient has this pathology, we recommend carrying out a biomechanical study of the footprint to make an assessment and be able to apply the appropriate treatment, such as personalized insoles or certain exercises depending on age.
      If you want, you can contact us by calling us at +34 974 231 280 or through WhatsApp at the number +34 635 368 675.
      Thank you very much and best regards.

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