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Author Topic: Question on pain along inner side of foot  (Read 185 times)

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Offline DressmakingMomma

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Question on pain along inner side of foot
« on: December 06, 2017, 08:17:23 PM »
DD is 14 and has a pair of custom Harlicks that she has been wearing for about a year. They were tough to break in, but were feeling comfortable until recently. I traced and checked her foot measurements and they haven't changed since we ordered last December. She is experiencing pain all down the insides of both feet and sometimes particularly at the front of her arch, just behind the ball of her foot. She does pronate pretty significantly and uses cork wedges to help bring her foot into a neutral position.

I haven't done anything yet to try to rectify, we were going to maybe add some superfeet and see if those help. The only thing that has really changed is that she is skating less, down to only two days a week so maybe it has to do with loss of muscle in her foot? Not sure, thought I would ask here in case anybody has some ideas.

Thanks!

Offline Leif

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2017, 04:11:16 AM »
Firstly I should point out that I wear hockey skates, not figures. That said, SuperFeet raise the heel and reduce the volume of the skate so they will change the fit markedly. They will support the arches, but it's a one size fits all solution. I tried some but found them uncomfortable, they changed my balance, and they gave me lace bite due to reduce skate volume. So they might not be what you want. I use Bauer Speed Plates which are heat moldable insoles. They support my arches and increase the contact area between the soles of my feet and the skates. They are wonderful, at least in my hockey skates. I do not know if they will fit figure skates. I know someone who got custom insoles for his skates and the price was not much more than SuperFeet or Speed Plates.

My experience is that the more I skate, the more likely I am to have foot discomfort. That said, since getting Speed Plates I have had very little discomfort.

Offline Doubletoe

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2017, 01:46:06 PM »
Did you measure the width and circumfrence of her feet, or just the length?  Is it possible that her feet have grown a little wider than when she was first measured?

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2017, 08:20:45 PM »
Foot shape has not changed, I did a new tracing just to be sure. What I think might be happening is that the skates could be breaking down. She doesn't beat up the outsides too much, but I noticed a dent in the right boot at the ankle and the tongues feel really, really soft. The skates are way more bendable than her old Harlicks, so I'm wondering if that could be causing the pain? I'm going to check with her coaches on Saturday and see what they think.

Offline Query

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2017, 01:29:48 AM »
Fixing the bend in the boot itself would be hard. For example, if the boot is breaking down, and isn't too old, some boot makers will "rebuild" the skate - for a fee, possibly $50 - $100 (USD). You have to call the boot maker to check. And it isn't necessarily the problem. Plus, you may loose access to the boot for a few weeks.

There are six very quick, cheap and dirty temporary things you could try:

1. Add a little tape or adhesive foam on the side of the boot directly opposite the bend. My assumption is that the bend is pushing your foot over onto the the opposite side of the bottom of her feet more than before. The new tape will create a counter-pressure.

2. Examine the insole, and what is underneath. Is a nail or other bump coming through, that is hurting the foot?

3. Stick on a little tape or adhesive foam (e.g., molefoam) underneath the insole directly underneath the point that hurts. (My assumption is that the part of the foot that hurts isn't getting enough support.)

4. Stick a little tape or adhesive foam everywhere underneath the arch on the inside of the foot. (My assumption is that the entire arch isn't getting enough support.)

5. Remove the tape or foam from the place that hurts. (My assumption is that the part of the foot that hurts is getting too much support, relative to the rest of the arch.)

6. Stick a little tape or foam EVERYWHERE on the insole except the point that hurts. (My assumption is that the part of the foot that hurts is getting too much support, relative to the entire rest of the foot.)

If none of these removes the pain, I don't want to speculate on what would help. But you can hopefully get back to where you were, and do not harm, by removing the tape or foam.

BTW, if your coach doesn't know what to do, but there is a very good skate tech in your area, he/she might be able to fix the problem. But I love just taking the empirical approach, and trying things myself.

Anyway, good luck.

Oh, one more thing: If it feels like there is a lot of pressure on the top of the foot, in the toebox, maybe it could be stretched, upwards.

Let's hope it isn't caused by a foot injury!

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2017, 11:04:27 AM »
Thanks Query, your questions are helpful in that they have me thinking more deeply about the 'why' of how her foot hurts. With that in mind, what do you think about the following ideas?

It is the whole inside of her foot, more on the right foot than the left, but both feet hurt. The dent developing in the boot is on the outside by the ankle. She pronates significantly. Now I'm thinking that if the outside or ankles of the boots are no longer giving her the support they used to, then she is feeling the pressure of her foot wanting to push inwards from her pronation and causing the pressure/pain along the inside of her foot.

She uses cork heel wedges to correct her pronation under her insoles, but I have noticed something else. The marks on her insoles show really dark marks by her heels and her big toes, but have faint marking at her ball and no marking at her arches. I am thinking that means her arch is not making contact with the insole and she needs greater arch support. I also wonder if that means much of her skating is on her big toe and not on the ball of her foot. I don't know ANYTHING about proper technique (I leave that to the coaches) but I am thinking that you would have more marking under the ball of your foot rather than your big toe. I wonder if the cork wedges under her heels are lurching her too far forward onto her toes and she is countering that by applying all sorts of pressure to that big toe rather than the balls of her feet.

I also noticed that the tongue feels soft and bendable - so it probably isn't giving as much support as it used to either. Her boots are custom Harlicks, and they rebuild support and replace tongues for a reasonable amount of money.

Thanks for your guidance. I'm going to see if I can upload a picture or two.

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2017, 11:22:51 AM »
Okay, lets see if this works. I'm attempting to link to a picture of her insoles. These are just about a year old.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1pu81svdyNE85kJAdurOxxQoNwKCfZ779/view?usp=sharing

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2017, 11:25:51 AM »
And this is the right boot. Hard to capture in a picture, but the shadow where the first eyelet starts is the dent that has started forming.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lt7CjX4ckjEhYJKHZwBX7HF_kbeXXklR/view?usp=sharing

Offline Query

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2017, 12:28:00 PM »
I'm not an expert on anyone's feet but my own. :) And I don't tend to pronate.

However, I notice that both her insoles and her boots are well worn. If the cork wedges were made a while ago, they may have compressed and no longer be fully functional, as is likely true of her insoles. Replace them?

I know this is not what you would like to hear, because boots are expensive, but to me at least, those boots are more than just broken in - they are broken down. I don't see how they could be providing much support. Notice also the inwards curvature below the ankle, which shows the boot has been collapsing there, when she puts much weight on it.

But experimentation is always a good approach to take to solve problems, in my opinion. I like to think through possible solutions, and try them.

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2017, 01:10:27 PM »
Thanks for the input, Query!

I was thinking the boots were probably broken down, they feel soft. This is a first for her, she has always outgrown boots before breaking them down so I wasn't sure. At least I feel like we got our money's worth out of them this time.

She is skating between 3-5 hours a week now, but she does about 5 hours of training over the summer every day so they had a lot of wear and tear for those months. She is a strong, muscular girl too, but the outsides don't tend to get beat up because she pulls her pants down over her boots. They are a year old in January, so that would make sense. She has her singles, no axel, but she has a lot of power to her skating and her edges are very strong - those are her skating strengths.

Also, I looked up the insoles Leif mentioned and they look like something she should definitely try. I feel like the cork wedges are an okay solution, but they stop at a funky spot in her arch and even though we do lots of adjusting they are never quite right.

Offline icedancer

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2017, 02:09:20 PM »
What make of boot is that?  It doesn't look very stable.

Offline DressmakingMomma

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2017, 02:19:33 PM »
They are competitor level Harlicks, with two layer construction. I don't like to go too stiff because she has really sensitive feet, although we will probably go up one level next time. I'm going to call Harlick tomorrow and see if they can rebuild the support in these before we order new boots. We also order the lower cut BB backstay, otherwise they cut into her calves.

Offline icedancer

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2017, 06:22:36 PM »
I see!  Well I think that is a fairly stable boot so it must be something about the photograph - maybe with all of the laces undone or something -

It will be interesting to see what the solution is!

Offline tstop4me

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Re: Question on pain along inner side of foot
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2017, 09:29:40 PM »
And this is the right boot. Hard to capture in a picture, but the shadow where the first eyelet starts is the dent that has started forming.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lt7CjX4ckjEhYJKHZwBX7HF_kbeXXklR/view?usp=sharing
That dent is the start of a crease.  In most recent boot designs at the intermediate or advanced level, there typically is now a flex notch cut in that position to relieve the stress and prevent the formation of such a dent (while allowing for easier ankle bend).  I'm surprised your Harlicks don't have flex notches.  When you order new boots in the future, you should specify flex notches.  If you find out that your current pair is still otherwise serviceable, you should ask your skate tech whether he can cut and stitch flex notches (at a reasonable price, of course).