An overpronator is a person who overpronates, meaning that when walking or running their feet tend to roll inwards to an excessive degree. Overpronation involves excessive flattening of the arches of the feet, with the roll seeing the push off take place from the inside edge of the foot and the big toe. When this happens, the muscles and ligaments in the feet are placed under excessive strain, which can lead to pain and premature fatigue of the foot. Overpronation is most commonly experienced in people who have flat feet or fallen arches. Overpronation can be controlled with a pair of shoes for overpronation; usually called motion control shoes. These are reinforced along the outside edge and have improved arch support to prevent over-flattening. They guide the foot through a more healthy roll.

Common Conditions Associated with Overpronation

If ignored, overpronation can lead to complications such as hammer toes, corns and calluses, shin splints, hallux rigidus and many more foot and lower leg problems. Hammer toes appear when the toes are placed under too much pressure and the ligaments and muscles in the toes begin to reduce in size, leading to the curvature of the toes and making them look like little hammers. Overpronators can develop hammertoes if they don’t wear an appropriate pair of shoes. Corns and calluses also appear as a result of overpronation. They form in response to excess pressure, and overpronators may find that they have excessive hard skin on the balls of the feet and inside edge of the big toe. It is the body’s way of protecting against excessive forces and friction. They can be painful.

Another condition whose appearance is facilitated in overpronators is shin splints. This is also called medial tibia stress syndrome and develops due to excessive inward rolling of the feet which places the muscles and tendons in the shin under an increased strain. Shin splints are responsible for about 10-15% of running injuries and the common cause for MTSS is overpronation. Hallux rigidus (literally stiff big toe) is actually a degenerative arthritic condition of the big toe. How is this connected to overpronation? Usually in the case of flat feet or overpronation a lot of pressure is put on the inside of the foot. Other conditions that are usually a result of overpronation are plantar fasciitis, bunions, metatarsalgia, and Achilles tendonitis.

Overpronation represents a dysfunction in the biomechanics of the body, and it is not a disease. Occasionally it may make your feet ache, but it need not be that much of a problem. If you wear comfortable shoes for overpronation such as stability shoes or motion control shoes for running, that is all that is needed in most cases to prevent foot problems from developing. If you overpronate to a high degree, you may need orthopaedic devices for your shoes which will ensure the maximum amount of correction. A visit to a sports therapist or podiatrist will allow you to find out if you are an overpronator, and the degree to which it affects you. If you are at risk of sustaining an injury as a result, you will be recommended a treatment option such as a change of shoes or foot orthotics.

Author's Bio: 

Steve Roberts writes on personal wellness and believes that overpronation is a problem which many people could benefit from addressing. It can lead to many overuse injuries although this biomechanical foot defect is often easy to correct with a change of footwear or a pair of orthotic insoles.