Supination and pronation are parts of a stride. Supination occurs when weight is placed on the outside of the foot while walking or running. When the opposite happens, and a person shifts their weight from the heel to the forefoot, it is termed pronation.
|Causes | Complications | Diagnosis | Prevention | Exercises | Takeaway|
Excessive supination (underpronation) and excessive pronation (overpronation) can cause problems with the body’s alignment and lead to pain in the feet, knees, hips, and back.
Read on to discover treatments and preventive techniques for people who supinate excessively.
|Fast facts on supination and pronation|
|Excessive supination and pronation|
|People who pronate excessively roll their foot inward, causing the outer part of the heel to make contact with the ground and the feet to flatten too much.|
Those who supinate do not roll their foot inward enough. This puts a strain on the ankle and can cause the ankle to roll outward, which leads to injury.
Excessive supination is less common than excessive pronation.
|Causes of supination|
|The structural problems of the feet causing supination are usually inherited. However, external factors can also play a role in the condition.|
Common causes of excessive supination include:
|Traits that affect the mechanics of the feet and legs are often inherited, such as:|
The shape of the foot’s arch may also increase the risk of supination, with runners with high arches being more prone to supination than other people.
|Good shoes support the arch and soft tissues of the foot, which help protect the foot from injury. This is especially true when walking on hard and flat surfaces.|
The wrong type of shoe — such as rigid or tight shoes — can lead to supination and other foot problems. Also, wearing shoes that are worn out or have no arch support causes supination.
|If the body is not correctly aligned, some parts must work harder to support posture and maintain balance. Similarly, poor form when exercising can cause some muscles and bones to overcompensate, leading to supination.|
|Old injuries can cause instability and weakness in the bones and soft tissues of the body. People with achilles tendonitis, for example, are especially at risk of supination|
|Some of the other factors that can result in supination include:|
|Complications of excess supination|
|People who supinate too much are at greater risk of developing certain conditions and symptoms, including:|
|Diagnosing supination of the foot|
|The following techniques can help indicate excessive supination of the foot:|
|Examine old shoes|
|In people with a neutral gait — where there is neither supination nor excessive pronation — the soles of the shoe will wear down from the outer edge of the heel toward the center.|
Supination can cause more obvious signs of wear on the outside edge only.
|Wetting bare feet and stepping onto a flat surface can help determine gait problems. To carry out this test:|
If half the arch is visible in the footprint, it suggests a normal gait. If only a fraction of the arch is visible — or none at all — it suggests supination.
|An orthotist, podiatrist, or physical therapist can carry out a gait analysis, which involves a person walking or running on a specialized platform.|
People who are experiencing any of the symptoms or complications of excessive supination, or who see signs of supination after examining their old shoes or wet footprints, should have a gait analysis test.
|Preventing supination of the foot|
|Supination of the foot can be prevented or corrected with the following:|
|lexible and lightweight running shoes are best for people who supinate. It can be helpful to consult am orthotist or podiatrist first who can recommend the best type of shoe for supination.|
When purchasing shoes:
People should replace their running shoes regularly. A good rule of thumb is to replace athletic shoes every 6 months, or more frequently if they show signs of wear and tear on the soles.
|Insoles designed for supination can support the arch and heel to control the motion of the foot. Orthotics for supination can be purchased in stores and online or can be custom-made by an orthotist or podiatrist.|
|It is important to correct poor posture and improper running techniques to address excess supination.|
When running or walking, try to land softly on the feet and aim to make contact with the ground close to the midfoot, rather than at the heel. It is best to land with a flat foot and to avoid curving the toes. A short stride often makes it easier to keep proper form when running and walking.
|A physical therapist can help to loosen tight muscles and tendons while strengthening these soft tissues. This assists in better weight distribution throughout the body, which corrects supination.|
|The following exercises can help to keep the muscles flexible and strong, resulting in a neutral gait:|
|Plantar fascia stretch|
For best results, the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommend that people carry out this exercise every morning.
|Although supination and pronation are a natural part of movement, too much of either motion can lead to an uneven gait and result in complications, such as pain, swelling, and misalignment.|
Proper footwear, using orthotic inserts, and engaging in regular stretching can all help.
If a person experiences pain or swelling in the foot or ankle that lasts for more than a few days, they should see a doctor who can perform a gait analysis to check for supination. The doctor may also carry out further tests to rule out other foot and leg conditions.
Source Medical News Today
Top 20 Best Shoes for Underpronation – a.k.a. Supination in BestWalkingShoes4Men.com