When I started increasing my mileage, from 30-40kms per week to average of 60kms per week, I entered a new level of pain. This led to adding new stretches to fix my tight peroneus longus. After fixing my peskyPRs, my arches started complaining.
Somehow tight PRs cause tight calves that cause tight arches. Tight arches can lead to plantar fasciitis.
I never had the sharp pain that would indicate injury. Just dull aches and tightness that lingers. My first line of defense was to buy new trainers. The Rider had 400kms++ already, I suspected that the cushioning was beginning to give. I replaced them with Precision9. I figured getting a shoe suited for my high arches would help. I also got tennis balls and would use them to massage my soles.
The tightness stayed. Very annoying. Threat level : Slightly Orange.
Then when I was browsing some Bataan102 photos, I saw that Des and Kevin taped their feet before running the Ultramarathon. This got me thinking, browsing and pestering people with questions.
Coolrunning had an article that says, “An arch support strapping helps provide a needed lift for your arch and can reverse the symptoms of plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, flat feet and sometimes shin splints. ”
I’ve seen some runners with taped knees, calves etc. The taping looked very intricate. I needed something simpler and cheaper.
Luckily, I was able to chat with GabbyTheCoach. I asked if his players tape their feet. He said that his basketball players use taping specially to prevent sprains. I asked if he knows how to tape arches so that mine won’t collapse when I run. He said that all I had to do was to put an anchor tape from just below my big toe wrap it around towards the back and finish just below the pinkie. Then working from just below the heel, lay tape crosswise on my sole. Taping starts from the outside of the foot to the arches. Work your way up until you reach the ball of the foot. Secure the tape by repeating the first step.
Ahh, there is hope for the flowers … and my arches.
A quick google search led me to several sites.
1. Plantar Fasciitis Taping – This is very similar to what I do but minus the crisscrossing tape coz it becomes too snug near my achilles tendon
2. Taping and Bracing Techniques – Mueller tape website with video demonstration
3. Kinesio Taping Method – Nice. I will try this style also.
5. and here is an article about a guy who used duct tape
I don’t use duct tape but taping works for me also. I use the LP support tape from Toby’s. One roll of LP is Php220sumthing. When I started taping my feet the tightness was gradually lessened. It works for me. But since I haven’t consulted a doctor yet, I only tape my feet when I do my long runs and during races. So far its working but I don’t want to be dependent on it. I really need to ask a doctor if this won’t weaken my muscles and lead to injury.
Taping can also help prevent blisters. Here are some friends and their mummified little piggies.