Foot blisters are a very common lower limb injury, caused by repeated friction or trauma to the skin. They and are still the number one reason why participants do not finish the Oxfam Trail Walk.
Blisters are the body’s attempt to cushion an area that if under repeated friction and can cause severe pain.
There are many different ideas on how to treat and prevent foot blisters but here are my top podiatry tips.
Wear in your footwear to prevent foot blisters!
- Make sure your footwear is comfortable and fits well.
- Ensure your footwear has an adjustable fastening (lace ups are best), to keep your foot in place, reducing friction within the shoe.
- Train and wear in your footwear leading up to the event, do not wear new shoes on the day. This is a rookie error that can cause serious trauma to your feet.
- It is always a good idea to train in two pairs of shoes, leading up to the event. This will ensure you have a spare pair to change into if your footwear gets wet.
Appropriate socks to prevent foot blisters!
- Wear a blend of nylon and natural fibre socks (cotton or wool fibres), that help absorb sweat and moisture away from the feet.
- Take a few pairs so they can be changed regularly, keeping your feet dry and preventing slipping within the shoe.
Minimise moisture and sweat to prevent foot blisters!
- It may sound strange but the sweat glands on our feet are the same as those under our arm pits, so why not use antiperspirant deodorant on your feet.
- Changing socks regularly and wiping in between your toes with your socks.
Tape and strap, to prevent foot blister!
- Foot blister prevention strapping can be applied using soft, breathable, hypoallergenic tape, such as hypafix, to pressure areas.
- Do not use rigid tape, such as sports tape as this can rub in the shoe.
- Strapping can be professionally done by a podiatrist within our clinic before your event or demonstrated so that it can be repeated.
Have your feet checked by a professional!
- Have any pre-existing foot pathology such as callus, corns, ingrown toenails treated by a podiatrist.
- Please note it is important to keep a small amount of callus to protect the skin. However too much can cause blistering underneath the callus, which can be very painful.
- The worst presenting blisters are often those that form under excessively hard skin, so avoid this.
Know your feet!
- Recognise problem areas, pay attention to your feet when training for any “hot spots” that are an indication of pressure areas.
- Hot spots should be a focus point when strapping and preventing foot blisters, as prevention is always better than a cure once the foot blister has formed.
- If the foot blisters are severe and recurrent you may need orthotic therapy or footwear modifications.
- To prevent increased pressure and friction in the affected area, it is important to have your feet assessed by a podiatrist.
We can assess and properly fit you in the appropriate footwear for your foot shape and show you invaluable strapping techniques. Well Heeled Podiatry can routine foot care such as nail cutting, callus and corn removal to make sure your feet are TRAIL READY!!