Pronation is a condition that occurs when the arch of the foot collapses, which forces the foot to turn outwards at the ankle causing walking to be done on the inner side of the foot. Also referred to as flat feet, this condition may develop as a result of plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, and other injuries associated with the bottom of the foot. Some pronation is normal in walking as the foot settles on the ground. However, excessive pronation can also cause people to shift their weight to other areas of the foot while walking, causing intense pain.
Causes of pronation can vary. It may develop early on in a person's development. Often, pronation occurs as a result of strain on the foot. Excessive weight on the arch of the foot may weaken the tissue, resulting in pronation. Also, elderly people may also suffer from weakened muscles and tissues in the foot causing the arch to collapse. Women may be prone to developing this condition if they wear high heels for extended periods of time. Also, shoes that lack proper arch support are also a factor that leads to pronation.
If pronation is left untreated, serious problems can arise. A fallen arch will cause misalignment and can throw the alignment of the foot, ankle, and knee off and lead to strain in overall posture. This strain may cause not only discomfort, but also pain throughout the foot, ankle, knee, hip, and lower back. If left untreated, ligaments of tendons may deform to become accustomed to the misalignment.
Treatment of pronation may be by simple means. Orthotic insert placed in shoes are a simple and effective way to ease discomfort and correct the condition. Inserts such as HTP add support and stabilize the arch and heel of the foot, neutralizing the effects of pronation.