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Tropic Terrors Derby Health & Safety Blog
Voodoo Nurse wants you to be Healthy, Safe and Ready.
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Voodoo Nurse says:
When I volunteer to start a blog base on health for my derby team, it had the main purpose of help out the ladies to take care of their bodies and eventually be more productive at the rink.
What better way to start this blog than talking about our feet, which are the main recipient of stress and body weight specially when acquiring new skates. From Rookies to Veterans breaking up the leather or boot material on a new pair of skates could cause pain, blisters, and swollen feet between other situations.
First thing you need to do when acquiring a new pair of skates is to get accustom to them. Try the basic moves like skating forward, stopping and turn in a smooth surface. It is also important to be relax, do not lock the knees even if feeling nervous. Locking the knees specially when falling could cause knee swelling, bruises and other serious injuries.
Another factor that could influence our feet health is our weight. The more weight you carry, the more impact you are putting on your feet, which can result in foot pain. That’s why you should consider cardio training along with your derby practice.
Other simple thing that could contribute to foot pain is the lace bites or skate bite which is the improper way to tie our boots. This is common among skaters and is the result from too-tight lacing of skate boots, which irritates the soft tissue on the top of the foot, and can afflict skaters. If this is the case re-evaluate lacing patterns to make sure that pressure is distributed evenly over the top of your foot. You may need to change the lacing pattern, add midline lace hooks, or pad the top of your foot to alleviate the condition (examples below). Supplementing the tongue of the skate with porous rubber, felt or lamb’s wool may also be necessary.
Lacing technique #1: Relieves pressure to a large portion on the top of the foot:
Place the bootlaces through the first two holes normally and then skip the next two holes, by lacing on the same side. Do not cross the lacing at the third and forth hole. At the fifth hole, the bootlaces cross again. This will vary based on how many shoelace holes are in the boot. The laces are looped back under the lace between the 6th and 7th eyelet to increase the tightness and provide a better fit. This is helpful for those with high arch feet and large bone spurs on the top of the foot.
Lacing technique #2 (help to relieve pressure to the central portion of the top of the foot):
Place the shoelaces through the first two holes as you would normally and after going through the third hole, cross over and skip the forth holes and finishing lacing as you would normally. This will also vary based on how many shoelace holes are in the boot and where the area of pain or pressure is on the foot. The laces are looped back under the lace between the 6th and 7th eyelet to increase the tightness and provide a better fit. The crossing pattern creates more stability and prevents sliding of the foot within the shoe. The drawback of this technique is that it may not relieve enough pressure from the top of the foot to eliminate numbness or pain.
Lacing technique #3 (help to relieve pressure on the top of the foot closer to the ankle):
Place the shoelaces through the first four holes as you would normally. After the fourth hole, cross over and skip one hole. This will finish at or near the last lace hole in the shoe. Again, this will vary based on how many shoelace holes are in the shoe. Nerve entrapments can occur in the area. The drawback of this technique is not tying the laces tight enough to prevent heel slippage.
Lacing technique #4 (To minimize heel slippage):
Place the shoelaces through the first 4 holes (may vary with different types of shoes) and at the 4th hole cross over to the 5th. Place the shoelace through the same side and make a loop. Cross the laces and bring the shoelace through the loop on the opposite side. This helps with heel slippage, but the drawback is more difficult to untie the shoes.
Pressure on the top of your foot from too-tight skates can contribute to pinched nerve. Symptoms include pain on the top of your foot, with numbness and tingling in the first and second toe. As with a lace bite, pressure must be removed from the front of the ankle. Most pinched nerves can be treated with rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medications.
Pain in the top of your foot can also result from a metatarsal stress fracture. These injuries take the form of a collection of tiny cracks in the bone; often caused by the force of takeoff and landings from repetitive jumps. Symptoms include gradually worsening pain on the top of the foot, along with swelling and bruising. Because a skate boot can act as a cast, your symptoms may improve while you are wearing your skates, but the condition will worsen if not treated. Your doctor may advise a non-weight bearing cast for three or four weeks until the injury has healed, and advise ice and anti-inflammatory medications. Most stress fractures heal completely with rest.
You can help to prevent lace bite, nerve problems and stress fractures by ensuring that your skates fit correctly and are properly padded. Podiatry today recommends heat molding of the boot to obtain a perfect fit (let me know if you got any question on how to do this). Proper stretching and warm-ups before skating are essential. Your coach or instructor may also evaluate your technique, and recommend strengthening and stretching exercises to correct any imbalances in muscle strength and flexibility. As with any repetitive stress injury, over-training must be avoided. You should take at least one day a week off from strenuous physical activity.
If your feet are already hurting, apply the RICE principle, which is:
R = Rest: Rest the injured body part immediately. This doesn’t mean total immobilization or the use of crutches. However after applying RICE it is important to modify your activity specially the first 24 to 48 hours following injury.
I = ICE: Using a towel or cloth, apply ice to the affected area for 20 minutes, rest and repeat. Never Ice a body part for more than 30 minutes at a time or tissue damage may occur. Also repeat after 4 or six hours for a period of 48 hrs.
C = COMPRESSION: Use a pressure bandage or wrap over the ice pack to help reduce swelling. Never tighten the bandage or wrap to the point of cutting off blood flow. You should not feel pain or tingly sensation while using compression.
E = Elevation: Rise or prop up the injured area so that it rests above the level of your heart When your leg is elevated, gravity works to reduce the swelling and relieve pressure from the injury.
NOTE: Heat treatments are appropriate for some injuries, but should only be considered after inflammation has receded, approximately 72 hours after an injury. After a minor injury, swelling should be reduced within the first couple days and a gradual return to activity is recommended. First, work on gaining full range of motion by lightly moving the injured body part and stretching to a comfortable range. Next, begin to strengthen the area with normal daily activities and then progress to sport activities. If after a week you continue in pain you may need medical assistance.
In my next blog I’m going to talk more in deep on how to prevent and treat blisters and ankle injuries. Also if you will like me to go more in deep on any health particular subject please feel free to email @ email@example.com or leave your comment after this blog.
Thanks and hope this is the first of many other subjects to come. ;)
C ya!!! Voodoo Nurse – STAT + 911
Este Domingo invitamos a todo Roller Derby Puerto Rico a visitarnos y celebrar con nosotros este PRIMER aniversario!!!
Hemos llegado hasta aquí con la ayuda de todas las chicas que han estado interesadas en Roller Derby durante todo el año.
BRING YOUR SKATES AND YOUR UNIFORM!!!
BRING YOUR OWN SNACKS AND DRINKS. WE HAVE THE CAKE COVERED!