Sports & Fitness: Common Injuries Caused by High Arches

High foot arches, also known as cavus foot, are among the most common foot conditions, and unfortunately, they cannot be prevented as in most cases high arches are hereditary. High foot arches can also result due to certain medical conditions and neurological disorders, such as cerebral palsy, polio, spina bifida and muscular dystrophy.

Besides being quite easily noticed visually, high arches can be identified from certain symptoms that they cause. Many people noticed that they had high arches when they began to lose balance or experience ankle instability. Other common symptoms include calluses on the heel, ball or a side of the foot, and considerable pain on the ball or the heel.

Identify Your Type of Foot Arch. Image credit: ePain Assist

High arch symptoms tend to appear from an early age. In some cases, one may not experience any complications, but in others, high foot arches require treatment and intervention due to the emergence of one or more injuries which are caused as a result of this condition.

One of the most common problems people with high arches face are ankle sprains. This results due to the fact that when one has high arches, one will tend to roll the ankle. As a result, the weight is not getting evenly distributed and the ball and the heel of the feet will end up shouldering a bigger load. Instability could in turn lead to a higher probability of accidents such as tripping.

Foot pain is also quite common when one has high arches, and as a result one may experience pain when running, or even when walking. Some people also experience considerable discomfort and pain when standing.

The main problem with people with high arches is they experience improper weight distribution, which in turn leads to poor shock absorption. Consequently arch pain is experienced.

At times arch pain could be a symptom of other foot problems such as excessive pronation and plantar fasciitis. This highlights the importance of seeking specialist advice so as to try to see what can be done in order to reduce the pain and discomfort one may be experiencing, and also to discuss any possible treatments.

The Asics Gel Nimbus 19 running shoe offers great arch support. Image credit: Asics

Arch pain is a progressive condition, and proper care is needed. Make sure to wear suitable and comfortable running shoes with supportive insoles. A good example being Asics running shoes. Arch supports vary according to one’s arch type. The shape and height of the arch supports will be according to the type and height of your arches. If you experience a lot of arch pain you may find it helpful to use massagers and wraps to alleviate the pain.

Pain and instability are the main problems arising from hig arches. Unfortunately there is no specific treatment for either of them, other than avoiding certain activities and exercises which might increase stress and pain on the foot. One should also avoid standing for prolonged periods, try to lose weight, and wear suitable shoes. Most foot care specialists will focus on taking off the weight from the stressed part of the foot, while keeping the feet as comfortable as possible. Over the counter pain relief medicine may help, and in very serious cases one may wish to discuss the possibility of shoe modification and bracing, or opt for surgery.