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  1. #1
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    :banana Hiking with duck feet

    Hi all,

    I'm planning on starting my SoBo thruhike this summer, but I'm getting worried about my duck feet.

    When I stand, walk, or run, my knees point forward and my feet point outwards. Often when I walk like this it hurts my ankles.

    Has anyone here thruhiked with duck feet? What advice do you have?

  2. #2
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    My husband is somewhat duck-footed. We successfully completed the trail over a ten year period. This is not a topic he and I have ever discussed, and I don't know if any of his aches and pains are consequences of his feet. I have no medical training. The following links look like they might be helpful.

    http://sortyourpostureout.com/why-yo...ing-your-body/
    https://www.mensjournal.com/health-f...s-you-w201833/

  3. #3
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    For what it's worth, and it may not pertain to you, but, most people are asymmetrical and/or misaligned in one way or another. Many of us have persistent pain and injury issues associated with those same alignment issues, whether we realize the reason for our pain and injury or not.

    As a guy that has spent way too much time in physical therapy with positive results on occasion, but not consistently I suggest the following may be a reasonable strategy if you haven't already done this.

    Get assessed by a professional, a good physical therapist or other sports medicine professional. There are a lot of, dare I say a majority of, physical therapists that are great at following a textbook, but suck at figuring out how to solve the non-textbook problem in front of them. If possible, find one with a really solid reputation among people active hiking and backpacking.

    Next, take the suggestions from the professional, and keep them in mind and experiment with the exercises and changes in body alignment and strength development they suggest.

    THEN, the hardest and probably most important part of all is to go out and hike with the discipline to start now, and develop time and intensity more slowly than any reasonable human being can generally make themselves do it. When you feel good, you want to go further and faster carrying more weight. DON'T DO IT quite yet. I've had several unsolvable tendonitis, tracking, and other stress issues with my feet, knees, and back over the years. None of them have gone away completely. All of them have significantly inhibited my ability to go out and do what I want to, when I wanted to on many occasions. AND, all of them have succumbed to long-term (I mean years) of light to medium exercise punctuated by very slow build-ups to longer, higher intensity activities allowing me to eventually do pretty much whatever I want. IT JUST TAKE TIME, and way more time than I wish it would. In the end though, without taking the time it doesn't happen at all because the project has to be canceled when some body part breaks because the build-up was to fast.

    Good luck. Maybe have somebody break your legs and bring you feet into alignment?
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  4. #4

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    My feet pointed out until I started hiking enough for that to really hurt my knees. After that I started to focus on how I was walking more and over a few years adjusted my gait so my toes are pointing forward most of the time. I still catch myself sometimes, especially when tired, but it helped a lot to point them where I was going so it was surprisingly easy to remember.
    “The man who goes alone can start today; but he who travels with another must wait until that other is ready...”~Henry David Thoreau

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  5. #5
    Registered User JNI64's Avatar
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    I would think another concern would be to snag a root,rock,obstacles with your foot pointing out and twisting a knee,ankle and damaging a ligament.

  6. #6
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    At first I thought this thread was about something else. For years my wife was an avid USFSA ice dancer. Her group - mostly women - did a lot of socializing, and dragged us spouses to many a dinner. They had a tradition of gifting a pair of (raw) chicken feet to whoever was next scheduled to test a dance. Supposedly it brought luck and stamina. The chicken feet would then go into the recipient's freezer until time to pass them to the next person.

    Duck feet might help to climb icy trails, like a skier doin the herringbone, no?
    "It goes to show you never can tell." - Charles Edward Anderson Berry

  7. #7
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    My youngest son had this and would get a lot of ankle and knee joint pain when hiking with me. It made sense to me that a million years of evolution had built the hinges in our lower bodies to work best when aligned normally, so he worked hard on hiking with his feet straight. It caused him a little ligament and tendon pain in his feet at first, as he was stretching those from their "normal" position, but that went away over time, and his knee and ankle soreness disappeared completely.
    "Waning Gibbous" would be a great trail name.

  8. #8

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    I think a trip to a good podiatrist would be a start.The doctor will likely recommend some sort of inserts or braces and therapy.
    It helped my grandson but I would think that for adults who have let it go untreated the results would take longer.

  9. #9

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    I guess it depends on exactly how far out of alinement the feet are. I remember wearing corrective shoes as a youngster to correct this problem in my feet. I don't remember how bad it was to start, but I did have wedges in my shoes for a couple of years. I'm still slightly pigeon toed, but only by maybe 15 degrees.
    Follow slogoen on Instagram.

  10. #10

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    While we're on the subject,I think most anyone over 45 or so should be wearing an orthodic in their shoes.They have helped my back issues tremendously.I like the 3/4 length arch supports much more than some sort of full length liner as they seem to support my arches better.

  11. #11
    Registered User JNI64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwps123 View Post
    Hi all,

    I'm planning on starting my SoBo thruhike this summer, but I'm getting worried about my duck feet.

    When I stand, walk, or run, my knees point forward and my feet point outwards. Often when I walk like this it hurts my ankles.

    Has anyone here thruhiked with duck feet? What advice do you have?
    We love the here makes me !

    You say when you stand,walk,run, your feet point out and your ankles hurt , but we're talking hiking what kind of hikes have you been on and what has that experience been like?

  12. #12
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    And .......

  13. #13
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    Good luck. Maybe have somebody break your legs and bring you feet into alignment? [/QUOTE]

    I wouldn't have Kathy Bates do it she was a lil rough in misery.

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