Metatarsalgia Tips for Athletes

By: Chris Robertson

While being athletic provides discipline and exercise to enhance the body's overall physical and mental health, athletic activity can also be tough on your feet. Athletes are prone to experience symptoms commonly referred to as pain in the sole of the foot, or metatarsalgia. Metatarsalgia occurs when too much stress is placed on the metatarsal bone heads of the foot.

If you enjoy jogging, tennis, volleyball, basketball, or baseball - or even if you play sports professionally or on a school team - you should take appropriate steps to minimize the possibility of foot pain or injury. Just one bout of metatarsalgia can very easily take you out of the game for a while or get you off track with your jogging routine.

What is Metatarsalgia?

Metatarsalgia is the appropriate term for pain in the balls of the feet. There can be a number of causes for this type of pain. One is the thinning or destruction of the fatty pad in the ball of the foot. This "padding" functions like a shock absorber, enabling impact on the ball of the foot without pain or damage. Without the fatty pads, the bones, soft tissues and joints are exposed to constant strain and pressure. Another cause can be a dropped metatarsal, meaning one or more of the foot's five metatarsal heads is situated lower than the others. This causes the misplaced metatarsal to absorb more pressure than it should. It eventually becomes worn and inflamed, causing metatarsalgia to occur. A third cause is high arches in the feet. High arches cause more pressure to be placed on the ball of the foot as we walk, run or jump.

Some predisposing factors are poor circulation, bunions, stiff ankles, toe deformities, arthritis, gout and weight gain.

Why does Metatarsalgia Affect Athletes?

Athletes involved in sports that require running or jumping are prone to develop metatarsalgia because there is continuous excessive weight placed on the balls of the feet. Stress is placed on the metatarsal bone heads from constant pounding and pressure, usually on hard surfaces such as concrete, blacktop, roads, hardwood floors, ball courts, etc.

Choose Proper Footwear

If you are the athletic type, always wear proper footwear while engaging in sports or fitness activities. Shop for shoes that are designed to cushion and support the balls of your feet. Make sure the shoes are wide enough to prevent the pinching of nerves, with proper arch support. Use custom orthotics for ultimate comfort and support. Be aware of the wrong type of shoes in everyday wear too. Opt for shoes with lower heels and that allow a flexible ankle joint. Don't settle for cheap, non-supportive shoes during work, play or even shopping. Your feet will scream for comfort and support after just a day or two of wearing these types of shoes.

Pamper Your Feet

Help your feet look and feel healthy by pampering them daily. Use foot scrubs and soak your feet in warm water with Epsom salt or foot therapy solution. Massage your feet before bedtime and apply foot therapy lotion to sooth your feet as you sleep. You'll be amazed at how much better you'll sleep after pampering your feet!

Keep in mind that other health conditions can also plague athletes, such as heel pain or heel spurs, bruised toes, back pain, knee pain, elbow pain, hand pain, toenail injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome, golfer's elbow, plantar fasciitis, and pain caused by over-pronation.

Take care of your body's needs while participating in sports and other fitness-related activities. Use online resources to find help for metatarsalgia and other sports-related health conditions. Preparation and knowledge can help you succeed without sacrificing your physical health!

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Chris Robertson is an author of Majon International, one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing companies. For tips/information, click here: metatarsalgia
Visit Majon's health-products-health-vitamins-dieting directory.

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