2010 Winter Olympics and the Athletes’ Foot Health

With the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics quickly approaching, I start to think about all the amazing athletes that will be competing at these games. It is amazing the speed, agility and climate that these athletes perform under. I am not only amazed at the talent that the athletes at the winter Olympics possess but also how well they perform considering the impact they are putting on their feet.

When it comes to the winter Olympics the first thing that you have to remember is that these athletes are performing in cold conditions. Whenever it is cold outside your body attempts to keep itself warm by constricting the superficial blood vessels in the extremities to push more of that warm blood to your vital internal organs. This is why when it is cold outside you are more likely to get frostbite on your toes, fingers, ears and nose then any other area of your body.

Since winter sports are played in cold conditions athletes are forced to make sure they have thick socks on their feet to make sure that they stay as warm as possible. The problem is that many winter sports require athletes to wear shoes that are tight and awkward and do not always go well with thick bulky socks. For example, if you are a skier, then you know that you want to keep your feet warm in your ski boots but need to make sure that the socks will stay in place. All skiers know that if your socks develop a small wrinkle in them while you are skiing then you are in for some terrible blisters and even bruises on your feet and shins.

The last thing that amazes me about the winter Olympics is the way many of these sports put amazing amounts of pressure on athlete’s feet. Think about figure skating, downhill skiing or ski jumping. All of these winter sports take you from standing still to extremely high and dangerous speeds in just seconds. They also can thrust you into the air and require you to land on your feet in uncomfortable and unstable shoes. For this reason the winter games only allows the best of the best to compete because these games can be down right dangerous, leading to twisted ankles, broken feet, concussions and even death!

When you watch the winter Olympics this February keep in mind how much pressure and torque these athletes are putting on their feet while you are cheering them on and you will be even more amazed then ever before at how talented these athletes really are.

Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist in private practice in Houston, TX. He is dedicated to maintaining the health and safety of the feet of his patients and educating the public on foot health. For more information about foot health and solving foot pain, including informative videos, and to order Dr. Schneider’s FREE book, visit http://tanglewoodfootspecialists.com and his blog http://tanglewoodfootspecialists.com/blog1

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