Training for marathon season can be strenuous and difficult, but it’s even more difficult if your feet are bothering you. Having a gait analysis done can help with a number of different foot conditions. It can tell you if you aren’t wearing the right shoes for your actual gait. You might not even know if you overpronate or underpronate.
Gait refers to the way you take a step, either when walking or running. Some people have normal gait, which means force is distributed evenly throughout your foot when you take a step. Others tend to overpronate, which means they roll more inwards when you take a step. This is commonly seen in people who have flat feet. Still others supinate, or their feet roll outward during the gait cycle.
Overpronation and supination aren’t actually foot conditions in and of themselves, but they may lead to problems down the road such as plantar fasciitis, tendinitis, and more. It’s a really good idea to get a gait analysis done so that you can accommodate your abnormal gait if necessary.
When you have a gait analysis done your feet are only part of the puzzle. Your doctor will be analyzing the way your entire body moves as a whole. They will be assessing for any compensations you may be making and they will want to figure out why. Even standing still can give them a clearer picture of what’s going on with your gait.
Once the doctor figures out the type of gait you have they will be able to make come up with a treatment plan to “correct” it. This may involve physical therapy, a change in footwear, or the use of custom-made orthotics to go inside your shoes. By figuring out the type of pronator you are you can save yourself a lot of problems down the road.
If you have more questions about what a gait analysis can do for you or what the different pronation types are call Dr. Mitchell Wachtel at (978)794-8406 to schedule an appointment with us in one of our three conveniently located Massachusetts offices: Lowell, North Andover, or Haverhill.