"God created your body, Jesus died for it, the Holy Spirit lives in it, your body is connected to Christ, and it's going to be resurrected one day."


Spiritual Wellness

Highlighting the importance of taking care of your body, Rick Warren said, "God created your body, Jesus died for it, the Holy Spirit lives in it, your body is connected to Christ, and it's going to be resurrected one day." In other words, your body is a gift from God entrusted to you, and you are expected to take good care of it, from your head to your feet.

 

Typically, when the subject of taking care of your body comes up, people are referring to weight and the foods you eat. While that is certainly an important area to consider, others are also important. For instance, how does the footwear you choose affect your body? Does it help or hinder? Does it empower you to enjoy God's gift or does it leave you in constant pain?

 

An important factor in selecting footwear is your pronation. Pronation--the way your foot rolls inwardly while walking, jogging, or running--helps your body absorb the shock by spreading the impact throughout the foot, knees, and legs. Depending on the degree of pronation, it can affect the kind of ankle support you need, how your footwear become worn down, and the type of injury you are prone to experience.

 

Neutral Pronation

 

A certain amount of pronation is expected and even healthy. When the foot rolls in such a way that the impact of pushing off is dispersed fairly evenly across all your toes--perhaps with slightly more pressure being placed on the larger toes--the potential for injury is decreased. Referred to as neutral pronation, this degree of rolling is considered normal and desirable.

 

Underpronation

 

Also known as supination, underpronation describes a foot roll that keeps the majority of the weight and pressure on the outside of the foot. The smaller toes, which are not designed to absorb the increased weight, are more susceptible to experiencing fatigue and injury. The lower leg also experiences more pressure due to underpronation.

 

Are you an underpronator? The quickest way to find out is to examine the bottom of your footwear. If the wear and tear is concentrated along the outside edge of your shoes, it could be an indication of underpronation. In such a case, the best strategy to provide protection while correcting the pronation is to include addional cushioning in their footwear. Added support, however, will not provide much if any benefit.

 

Overpronation

 

As you might expect, overpronation is the opposite of underpronation. With an overpronator, the inward roll goes beyond what is considered healthy, putting excessive pressure on the inside of the foot. The weight and shock are primarily absorbed by the bigger toes. As the smaller toes do not absorb much (if any) of the pressure, stability is lost and the ankle can have trouble compensating. Shin splints and complications involving the ankle or knee are frequent injuries associated with overpronation.

 

Overpronation is a common problem, particularly experienced by runners. An examination of the bottom of the shoes of an overpronator will typically show extra wear and tear along the inside of the tread. Footwear that provides additional support and motion control, taping, and certain methods of lacing can be effective for reducing the pronation to a healthier amount, thus reducing the chance of injury. Using more eyelets and tying the laces tighter can also help with overpronation.

 

Are you in the market for a new pair of shoes?  While looking for your next pair, be sure to consider your pronation and the type of shoe that would be most appropriate. With the selection available, you will be able to find footwear that addresses your pronation while still remaining fashionable and comfortable.