Posts for: June, 2018

You know that strange thing when your toes start twitching and involuntarily twisting around each other? Or when you wake up in the middle of the night with your foot flexed, immovable, and shooting with pain? What is with those cramps? Toe cramps frequently stem from unnecessary strain or restricted blood flow from tight-fitting shoes. If you can't wiggle your toes or your toes start to tingle after you've put on your shoes, they're too tight.
Dr. Phyllis Ragley
The path to fewer painful spasms begins with your shoes, says Phyllis Ragley, DPM, a podiatrist in Lawrence, Kansas. "It's crucial to find a pair that's right for your body's unique mechanics." Dr. Ragley advises choosing a shoe that fits your arch and is neither too stiff nor too flexible. 
Source: Jordan Davidson, Prevention [6/22/18]
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.


A podiatrist may not be the first doctor you think of when it comes to getting advice on what to eat and what to avoid in a healthy diet. But maybe it should be. Randall Thomas, DPM is a podiatrist at OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital. He may seem like an unlikely source for tips on healthy eating but he sees plenty of patients whose problems are the result of an unhealthy diet.
Dr. Randall Thomas
"I see, multiple times a day in my office, young kids with progressive foot problems we used to not see until people are in their 20s," Dr. Thomas said. "A lot of that has to do with childhood obesity. Lack of flexibility, lack of exercise, more sedentary lifestyles...Some of the anti-inflammatory-based diets have made a huge difference in my patient population," Dr. Thomas said. "Going into the more healthy, plant-based whole food diet... Kinda staying on the periphery of the grocery store, not buying anything in a box. I've seen it help a lot in some of my folks with chronic arthritis, gouty arthritis, and more systemic problems."
Source: Yolanda Harris, 10tv.com [6/25/18]
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.


In-line skating is becoming more and more popular because it’s fun and great exercise.

If you can ice skate or ski, you’ll have no problem. If you don’t, it may just take a little more practice, then you’ll really enjoy it!

Here are some tips for improved Safety, Comfort, and Control:

  • Protective gear is a must! Elbow and knee pads and wrist protectors will save those vulnerable parts from the pavement. Don’t forget to wear a helmet!

  • The most efficient and comfortable boots are those with ski boot-like adjustable clasps. They’re lightweight, too.

  • Always skate in control, and don’t go excessively fast unless you know you can stop or slow down quickly.

  • Use your turns to slow down. “Set” your inside edges of the wheels by bending your knees and exerting pressure on the inside of the wheels. Practice doing this in both right and left directions. By doing this you will be able to skate with better control and slow down more readily.

  • Don’t always count on the rubber bumper as a brake, especially if you are going fast downhill. It will slow you down, but perhaps not fast enough. Use a series of S-shaped turns with your knees well bent for control when going down hills. Just like a skier would do.

  • Hills can be fun, but dangerous if you can’t turn in control. Once you’re experienced in turning to a stop (by aiming uphill), a downhill skate can almost be as much fun as skiing. Do repetitive “S” turns to keep your speed in check. If you’re going too fast, really bend those knees for greater turn control or head uphill from a turn to stop.

  • Uphill skating is a great workout. For greater efficiency, try leaning forwards and fully extend the back leg and aim the foot out at 45 degrees for a better push off.

  • If you wear orthotics for fallen arches (pronation), place then in your skates as well for better balance and control. (Just as with skiing or ice skating, if your feet flatten in the boot or skate, you need greater knee motion to turn, and so the orthotics will help.)

  • Watch out for stones, twigs, or leaves which can result in slippage or injury.

  • Avoid skating on wet roads since with turns, the wheels can slide sideways. If you’re caught in the rain, skate slowly exerting less pressure on the wheels through turns.

  • Try some stretching exercises for your calf muscles before and after skating. Runners’ stretches work well.

Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.

Our heels are a bit like tomatoes. Put too much pressure on them and bam, they expand sideways and split. Heels are more likely to develop cracks if we spend a lot of time standing, wear backless shoes that don’t support the heel, or let the skin get very dry and callused. “If you have too much friction or sliding on skin that is thick, eventually the layers will split,” says Jacqueline Sutera, DPM, a New York City podiatrist. “The problem gets worse as we get older because there’s loss of the fat pad on the bottom of the foot, and the body replaces it with calluses.”
Dr. Jacqueline Sutera
Ultimately, the best way to avoid cracked heels is to prevent them, and that means weekly upkeep. “We have to tweeze our eyebrows and shave our legs, so pumicing and moisturizing is just one more thing to add to the routine,” Sutera says. If your cracks are very deep, bleeding, or seem infected—you’ll see redness and swelling; they might feel warm, and it will probably hurt. See a podiatrist or chiropodist. 
Source" Aviva Patz, Prevention
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.


If you suffer from sore calves, or unexplained pain in your feet, knees, or lower back, go grab a pair of your older shoes and flip them over. “Looking at the patient is definitive, but you can make a thumbnail sketch by looking at that,” said Richard Lind, DPM, a board-certified podiatric surgeon with Carmel Foot Specialists in Charlotte. Dr. Lind said when it comes to feet, everybody has a type. Looking at your shoe, if the outside edge is worn, you likely have a high arch and put all of the pressure on the outside of your foot.
Dr. Richard Lind
“That high-arch foot is a much more rigid foot so they are a very hard heel striker and forefoot planter, so they’re going to be almost bowlegged, and they’re going to have some lateral knee strain,” Dr. Lind said. If your shoe is worn down on the inside edge, doctors say that’s because your arch collapses during walking, forcing your ankle to roll inwards.
Source: Ashley Daley, WCNC [6/20/18]
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.




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