With the second half of the school year approaching, many student athletes are looking forward to spring sports. With all the excitement of a new season, foot health might be one of their last concerns.
Podiatrists, on the other hand, are thinking about potential issues and warn teens not to forget about their feet.
According to the Michigan Podiatric Medical Association, one out of every three teenagers will experience foot pain, but only one out of every five has visited a podiatrist.
Podiatrists say one of the leading causes of foot pain is sports. High school sports are a great opportunity for teens to learn, grow and achieve, but they do not come without risks.
The Teton Foot & Ankle Center, an Idaho Falls podiatrist, offers tips for student athletes preparing for the upcoming sports schedule, including a tip about the importance of proper equipment use.
“Sports are beginning,” according to the Teton Foot & Ankle Center website. “That means it is time to make sure your gear is safe, and you’re up to snuff on how to tape your feet and ankles properly. It isn’t worth the time to be uncomfortable due to sports injury, so make sure you do it right every time.”
In 2013-2014, the number of high school athletes increased for the 25th consecutive year, which brings the number of students playing sports to nearly 7.8 million, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations.
A University of Colorado at Denver study surveyed high school sports-related injuries across the nation. According to the study, in 2012-2013, it is estimated that over 1.3 million student athletes were injured nationally, which means one out of every six student athletes was injured.
Of those 1.3 million injuries, 18.7 percent of the injuries affect the ankles and feet of the student athlete, according to the study.
As the spring sports schedule gets closer, now is the time to learn about how to care for your feet. To learn what you can do to keep your feet healthy and strong this season, visit with your podiatrist. Always make sure you find the right fitting shoes.