Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Submitted by viravira on 23 September 2018 • Tips
Life is not the same anymore since I became aware that I have plantar fasciitis. It is an inflammation of a thick band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes. In my case, it was caused by flat feet and an accumulation of my activities that involved a lot of running and carrying heavy loads like bags and my own weight while wearing the wrong shoes.
The flat feet is a given condition since birth. With some knowledge and proper care it could have not gotten worse if not getting better. Unfortunately, neither my parents or I was aware of this even though since I was very young my feet always felt very tired and would hurt from standing too long; like five minutes long.
About five years ago when I jogged routinely I realized that the pain got worse and the pain points increased. It went up from the heels to ankles to my knees. I checked to the physio therapy clinic and found out that I have had flat feet all along. Although they’re not too flat, the therapist advised me to stop any activity that required high impact on my feet. No running, no aerobics, no backpacking, and temporarily no walking more than 15 minutes straight. She told me to do certain stretches a few times a day including walking in water and ride a (static) bike. And on some days I would wear Kinesio tape around my heels for muscle and joint support.
I did what I was told. I changed my exercise to walking and swimming only, and sometimes light yoga. Also I tried to minimize the load that I have to carry standing on my feet. In a few weeks I started to rarely felt pain on my heels the second I step on the floor for the first time in the morning. Yup, it used to hurt like hell and I would limp just walking from my bed to the bathroom like a 90-year-old.
There were also some changes in my apparels. I had to replace some of my shoes and sandals with the ones that support my flat feet. Those with a better arch support and good amount of cushioning. I also got some arch support pads to put in the shoes. Another first for me: buying a pair of flip flops that cost IDR1,500,000; how does that sound? (That’s about $110 in 2016 and is the most expensive pair of flip flops I have ever had). And not to mention the hiking shoes and formal women’s shoes, which I didn’t have much choice aesthetically. I don’t understand why most of healthy shoes should look so ugly. I even gave a serious thought to have a customized orthopedic shoes, but I gave it up cos it would cost a fortune.
So, for those of you who might have been feeling the same or similar symptoms, like pain in the heels and cannot stand standing for a long time, go check if you have flat feet. You can check with a physio therapist, an orthopedic, or perhaps find a YouTube video that tells you how to check it yourself at home – yes, it’s possible.
I hope that helps all you flat-feet fellas out there who still want to travel and experience a lot of things. There might be some things that we can’t force to do but there are a lot of ways that we can do to fix the flat feet condition a bit.
Please let me know if you have other tips, I might want to try them too.