Overweight Children May Be More Susceptible to Foot Problems

Overweight Children May Be More Susceptible to Foot Problems

Meghan Juuti

Overweight children are often reluctant to exercise. Their extra pounds can mean they tire easily and they may be anxious about performing poorly in front of their peers.

However, there may be one more exercise inhibitor that you haven't thought about--their feet.

Overweight and obese children are also more likely to suffer from foot pain and this can be another factor that limits their participation.

Why the Feet?
The extra weight can flatten the foot, which strains the plantar fascia and can lead to pain in the heel, arch and balls of the feet. In addition, obesity makes children more prone to stress fractures in the heel bone.

Therefore, when attempting to convince reluctant, but obese, students to exercise, be sure to inquire about whether they are experiencing foot pain. If they are feeling other discomfort, they may not think to mention their feet.

Conversely, if they complain about sore feet, take it seriously.

Take a look at their exercise shoes and make sure they have good cushioning. The addition of an arch supports and/or shock-absorbing insoles can make the difference between enjoyable exercise sessions and painful ones.

Reference: "Obesity Hurts Kids' Feet." IDEA Fitness Journal, May 2007. http://www.ideafit.com/pub_source.asp


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