How to Walk Properly
Walking offers countless benefits. If you walk on a regular basis, you can strengthen bones, improve balance, reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, ease joint pain, increase energy, and so much more.
While walking is a healthy activity, it can lead to foot pain and various foot conditions if it's done incorrectly. So how can you walk in a way that keeps your feet healthy? Keep reading to find out.
Wear the Right Shoes
Not all shoes are created equal. Some are better for walking than others. When you shop for the perfect walking shoes, there are certain features you should look for. Your shoes must offer ample room for your feet and toes so if they're too small, get rid of them. Don't be afraid to go up a half size or more. In addition, it's important that your shoes come with outsoles that allow for optimal traction, cushioning midsoles, and good shock absorption.
Strengthen Your Feet
The stronger your feet are, the less likely you'll be to injure them through walking. Perform exercises like heel raises and toe curls to strengthen the muscles found on the bottom of your feet. Believe it or not, walking barefoot or in shoes on even surfaces like rocks or sand can also strengthen your feet and prepare them for long walks.
Opt for Thin Socks
You may want to wear your thickest pair of socks, especially in the fall and winter. However, thick socks retain moisture and increase the weight in your shoes. This can lead to blisters and a great deal of discomfort. So get into the habit of wearing thin socks every time you walk, even if it's chilly outside.
Don't Walk In Pain
If you notice any serious pain while you're walking, don't just push through it and keep going. This can increase your risk of injury. If possible, stop and take a little break. In the event the pain continues on future walks, it's time to see a doctor. The last thing you want to do is ignore the symptoms of what could be a serious foot or health condition.
Check Your Feet Regularly
Pay attention to your feet as much as possible so you don't miss a symptom or condition that can lead to pain and discomfort during your walks. Check them on a daily basis for any sores, swelling, cuts, inflammation, or infection. As soon as you notice anything that's not right, consult a doctor.
Walking is great for your physical and mental wellbeing. However, when it's done incorrectly, it can do more harm than good. To take full advantage of walking and avoid foot pain, be sure to follow these tips.