What's the deal with flat feet / fallen arches?
July 14, 2014 9:45 AM Subscribe
My son, who turns twelve in a couple of months, seems to have flat feet. I can't quite figure out what to do next - if it is a serious problem, if it can be corrected with foot exercises, if we need orthotics, or what. Does anyone have any experience with flat feet?
posted by KokuRyu to Health & Fitness (28 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
My son is nearly twelve. He is very active: he walks or rides his bike to school, plays ball hockey and soccer, has a paper route. He is not clinically (or otherwise) obese, but he is growing quite fast and has big feet. He went from a size 7 (adult) to size 9 (adult) in just the past three months.
So it's more of a genetic problem than a problem with being sedentary and overweight, which seems to be what causes flat feet when you are an adult.
I did noticed when we bought his last pair of shoes (Nike high tops for ball hockey; in terms of intensity and seriousness, ball hockey is basically like ice hockey or box lacrosse, but with less screaming parents) he appeared to be walking on the inside of his shoes. I figured it was because the heels of the shoes were too roomy and he was sliding around.
We bought some soccer cleats for the fall season yesterday, and the knowledgeable salesman at the local sporting goods shop mentioned that he in fact has flat feet. He recommended some orthotic in-soles to help prop up the arches, and it looks like it worked.
Doing some internet research, however, it looks like orthotics are a bit of a scam, and don't really solve the problem of fallen arches.
We're going to go to see our family doctor, whom I trust a great deal, but I get the sense that feet, like teeth, are the domain of specialists. I'm not sure if I want to go to a podiatrist if the solution is getting expensive orthotics.
There is also the entire "barefoot" movement that says that shoes are the actual cause of the problem.
I just want to help correct the problem, so that I am not setting my son up for Plantar Fasciitis in later life.
Any insights would be appreciated!