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Why do I feel pain while walking on hard surfaces?

Q: When I walk or jog on hard surfaces (metallic roads /cement-asphalt pathways, etc.), the area above the heel, where flexing of the foot occurs, becomes painful within 10 minutes. On ceasing the activity the pain goes away. On the treadmill there is no problem. Physically I am active and go to the gym regularly. However, I am diabetic without any peripheral nerve damage/kidney complications and the blood sugar is under control. I have no trouble standing for long durations or walking 45 mins slowly otherwise. Occasionally, painkillers do help but rarely there is any need. There are no overt/visual inflammation signs and I have suffered no physical/sport injury. What should I do?

A:The pain, which you feel when you walk on a cemented road is related to the biomechanics of ankle joint. It is observed that there are differences in the angle made when you flex your ankle (known as dorsiflexion). Joint movements are also found to be quite different when on the treadmill and while walking on cemented roads. When you run on the treadmill you do less flexion of ankle as compared to on cemented roads. That is the very reason for your pain. To avoid this kind of pain, avoid jogging or running on cemented roads. Also, see to it that the kind of footwear you wear should be such that it should be soft so that it acts as shock absorber when you are walking on cemented surface.


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