Supination vs Pronation | Your Formula for Happy Feet
Over pronation and supination of the foot are two different or even opposite types of movements. In this article, we will define these foot movements as well as talk about some of the signs for each. Supination vs Pronation is an important comparison. We will discuss an option that is designed to help the symptoms of both. By comparing supination vs pronation, you become capable of finding out what options for relief are available.
Know that both over pronation and supination are far from being rare. On the contrary, they a very, very common. In the general population, A NORMAL FOOT GAIT IS SEEN IN ONLY AROUND 30% OF PEOPLE.
The remaining either overpronate or supinate. 95% of abnormal feet are from overpronation and the remainder 5% is from supination.
Supination vs Pronation
Many are not familiar with the difference between pronation and supination. Below you will find an explanation of each.
Overpronation Foot Definition
According to WebMD, overpronation is an abnormal movement where the foot rolls too far inwards with each step. It predisposes one to injuries on the medial side of the foot. It also causes alignment issues of the body from the foot, ankle, knees, hips and back.
Pronation occurs as the weight bearing on your foot shifts from your heel to your toes. When overpronation happens, those areas receive less support than other areas on your foot, such as the mid-foot and forefoot. What this means is those joints will bear more weight than usual. That in turn leads to pain or discomfort when you are running or walking.
Did you know?
Overpronation is a very common factor in those who have flat feet. The lack of muscles and tendons providing an arch leads to the feet rolling inwards.
It can be compared to a flat tire on car. It will cause a car to pull to the side where the flat is. The body does the same.
Supination Foot Definition
Now supination is a movement where the foot rolls outward or moves outward. With each step, it’s rolling your bodies weight to the outer edges (pinky toe side) of your feet.
According to HealthLine “in a normal stride, your feet should roll inward a bit (pronate) so that weight is on the ball of your foot then pushing off the bog toe. However those who supinate do not have enough of this pronation leading to too much weight being put on the outer edges”.
Did you know?
Supination is not as common as overpronation due to the fact that millions of people have flat feet. High arches are a common factor for supination. This is because the over inflation of the arch pulls the foot and gait towards the outside of the foot.
How do I know if I have Supination vs Pronation?
The most common way to understand these movements is by how much pressure you feel on your foot. Where do you feel this pressure at?
- With over pronation, you will feel more pressure on the inside (medial) side of your foot (big toe side) than on your outside (lateral) side.
- With supination, you will feel more pressure on the outside (lateral) side of your foot (pinky toe side) than on the inside (medial) side of it.
Easy way to check:
- Examine the bottom of an old pair of shoes for signs of wear.
- By examining the wear pattern on a pair of well worn shoes, you may be able to define if you are over pronating or supinating. It will be based on the wear on the sole or bottom outside of the shoe.
- Do you see a large amount of wear on the insides of your shoe versus the outside? If yes, this is a clear sign that over pronation might be of concern for you.
- A strong wear pattern on the outsides of the shoe represents the opposite. Your concern is one of supination.
Symptoms of both overpronation and supination.
*Remember these symptoms can be the same with both types of gait issues. It will just be on the opposite sides of your feet. The same type of alignment issues can occur from either one.
- Plantar Fasciitis
- This is a medical condition where the plantar fascia tendons becomes damaged or inflamed due to excess use or repeated use on one side of the foot or heel causing the tendons to become over stretched or over used.
- Heel Pain
- Heel pain is a common type of injury that can affect any individual as they strike either side of their heel with each step, bruising the heel. The heel has a natural fat pad spread all the way around the heel bone so repeated pressure on one side diminishes the effect of this fatty tissue, leading to inflammation.
- Corns or calluses
- If you have corns or calluses, small bumps or lumps of thickened skin that develop on your heel or toes ( mostly on one side of your feet) this may be a cause of walking too much on the insides or outsides of your feet. They may appear as a result of irritation from shoes or tight socks rubbing repeatedly on one side and continually.
- Having these rough skin patches on one side forming or not going away may be a sign of over pronation or supination.
- Knee, Hip, or Back pain
- It is important to note that these types injuries can also be a sign of overpronation or supination. If you are weight bearing on just the insides or outsides of your feet, your ankle alignment is usually off. This is turn has a domino affect up you body resulting in ankle, knee, hips and back pain.
- Torn Achilles Tendon
- The ankle joint is composed of three bones. The tibia, the fibula, and the talus. All three bones are connected by ligaments which in turn are connected to the Achilles tendon. When a person suffers from an acute rupture of the Achilles tendon, the joint loses its stability which can cause supination in one or both feet.
- Bone Spurs
- Bone spurs on the forefoot can cause supination or over pronation to be increased because they block the normal movement of the metatarsal bones and lead to overuse. This causes inflammation and pain.
These are just a few areas of concerns that can occur due to overpronation or supination. A wide variety of other issues can occur.
According to various studies on The National Library of Medicine’s Biotechnological Information Center: Custom Orthotics CAN significantly help with pronation and supination issues.
Overpronation and supination along with other types of muscle imbalances or alignment issues can be remedied with a corrective shoe insert that provides more and proper support for the foot.
Custom orthotic shoe inserts are designed to build the arch area up on either side, giving your foot a base to sit upon.
This base reacts by not allowing your foot to roll inwards or outwards depending on your specific needs. This balance helps give your feet a more natural gait so that the designed muscles and tendons do the work they were intended to do.
Did you know?
In both over-pronation and supination custom orthotics are beneficial for people who experience pain and/or discomfort. These individuals experience high levels of stress on the ligaments though out the feet and body because the incorrect muscles and tendons are making an effort to OVER compensate for the abnormal motion of the foot.
Orthotics for Over Pronation:
Custom orthotics ARE RECOMMENDED for people who need to correct mild to moderate pronation as well as for people who need more pronounced correction of pronation.
As touched on, orthotics provide support directly to the arches which help to reduce stress on them so that they can stand up straight again. Placing a custom orthotic inside the shoe not only keeps the foot from rolling inwards but will also absorb shock so that it doesn’t cause damage to bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, etc.
As a result of the pain and discomfort from supination, most people experience difficulty walking with their feet turned outward. If left untreated for a long period of time, it can lead to more serious problems such as chronic pain or arthritis in the foot.
Good orthotic shoe inserts can help alleviate these problems by providing support for your feet. They are designed personally for your needs by building up the outer of the orthotic base, slightly rolling your foot inwards to a more natural gait.
Supination vs Pronation Conclusion
To end, if you suffer from either over pronation or supination know you are not alone. These affect millions of your neighbors. Both are issues that can be improved upon with custom orthotics. Millions of people have received relief going this route.
If you have any questions feel free to contact us at 1-888-506-7846.