The way in which the feet function or works may have a an important effect on the rest of the body. The feet are widely considered as the foundation of the body and just like the tall building analogy, if that platform is not right, then something could go wrong above. There are many different types of biomechanical conditions that can affect that platform and how the foot interacts with the surface. That interaction will have numerous affects further up the body.
Among the issues that can go wrong is something that is widely given the name “overpronation”. This word is often used and abused, so probably should not be used. The phrase refers to the feet rolling inwards at the rearfoot and the arch of the foot flattening. This really is quite a normal motion and is only a concern if there to too much of it. The reason why the word is such a problem is that there is no understanding about what is too much and what is actually normal. This can lead to lots of indecision in research as well as in clinical practice, particularly when choices have to be made if the overpronation ought to be treated or not.
The impact that this issue may have on the body are claimed to vary from hallux valgus and plantar fasciitis in the feet to lower leg and knee problems in runners. There are several ways to treat it, again with a lot of difference of opinion between health care professionals regarding the best way to treat it. Rationally dealing with the overpronation should be geared towards the cause and there is no such thing as a one size fits all. When the condition is caused by tight calf muscles, then stretches of those tight muscles would be the reasonable method. When the problem is the control of muscles at the hip, then the therapy really should be geared towards that. If the condition is caused by weak foot muscles, then that is the best place to start the rehab with exercises. When the problem is due to a bony alignment trouble in the foot, then foot supports will often be prescribed.