Is it detrimental to my health if I often walk on the balls of my feet?
(Rockledge, FL. U.S.)
I often find myself walking on the balls of my feet, I've done this for many years. I haven't had any pain or anomalies from this.. All I wish to learn is if this could lead to any kind of health problems in the future, what do ya' think?RESPONSE
The question becomes, do you walk on the balls of your feet because that is normal for you or do you do it on purpose?
Most people who walk on the balls of their feet do so because they have a tight achilles tendon and because of this tightness when they stride forward, their heel does not come down to the ground, but rather they end up walking on the ball of their foot.
So, the argument here would be that your gait is generally not considered normal, but it is normal for you.
I do not know how old you are, nor do I know if you are carrying excessive weight. The older you are and perhaps heavier you are would both play a role in whether or not your type of gait is going to give you much problems.
In theory, I would think that it would, at some point in time, become an issue because the human skeleton was designed to walk in a heel to toe gait.
For starters I would not be surprised if you developed some kind of pain on the balls of your feet as that is the part of the foot that is bearing the brunt of your foot coming down in your forward stride. The heel was designed to absorb that type of shock, not the ball of the foot.
Secondly, because of the "unfluid" motion of your gait, it also would not surprise me if you were to develop problems with your knees, hips and perhaps even your lower back.
Of course, it is impossible for me to predict the degree of problems that might develop and whether or not they would even be debilitating to you.
Probably, a smarter move would be to consult with a foot specialist in your area. Let he or she perform a gait analysis, as well as a biomechanical exam to determine why you tend to walk on the balls of your feet.
Depending on the severity of whatever is causing you to walk on the balls of your feet, there are things that can be done.
Get an opinion and then decide if the recommendations given to you are worth following through with.
Marc Mitnick DPMDISCLAIMER