Tips & Footcare

The basic rule of foot care is to wash them daily, keep them dry and change socks frequently. And, of course, cut toenails properly so they don't become ingrown. It is also advisable to use a moisturising cream specifically for feet to keep the skin sufficiently supple and avoid future problems.


In cross-country and ascents, it is indispensible to wear socks in good condition that fit well, are not too tight and have no large seams. It is contradictory to invest in good footwear and then wear socks on the verge of falling apart or which have lost their stretch and sag (forming bags). The sock is fundamental to our comfort and unless it fits the foot perfectly, we are more susceptible to blisters and chaffing.


After exercise it is a good idea to relax the feet by bathing them first in cold water, then hot and finally cold again. Dry them well and apply soothing cream and moisturiser. These baths serve to stimulate the circulation: the cold makes arteries and veins contract, while heat makes them dilate. By stretching and dilating the veins, we get a great vascular work-out.


How to prevent

 

  • • Corns are produced by excess growth of the stratum corneum layer (outer layer of the skin) due to friction or continuous pressure. Corns can be prevented by eliminating the cause of the pressure or chaffing. It is imperative to wear suitable, comfortable footwear and socks. Keeping feet well-hydrated with a cream especially for feet also helps to lessen the hardening and avoids the appearance of corns.

  • • Blisters are formed by friction and chaffing against other surfaces, causing the tissues to heat up. To prevent blisters both the footwear and the sock must fit properly, so that the foot doesn't "dance around" inside them.

  • • Calluses are fragments of hard, thickened skin which cause pain and a burning sensation because of pressure on the nerve fibres. They can be prevented by taking regular care of the feet: exfoliating to eliminate dead skin at least twice a week and keeping the skin hydrated every day.

  • • Foot odour is a consequence of high temperatures and lack of ventilation, causing the feet to sweat and be excessively humid. If this moisture is not wicked away or fought off, the sweat comes into contact with the skin's natural bacteria which decompose and cause the bad smell.

 

How to massage the feet


Feet really benefit from massage. They are sensitive, delicate and at the same time tough. The soles of the feet have hundreds of nerve endings. Just stroking them gently produces a general feeling of well-being and relaxation throughout the body.

 

  • • Hold the right foot with the left hand, the thumb over the head of the metatarsals and the four fingers over the instep. With the right hand massage the toes upwards, accentuating the massage on the tips of the toes. With both hands work the sides of the foot from toe to ankle.

  • • Grip the Achilles tendon between the thumb and the forefinger and massage upwards over the tendon, supporting the leg.

  • • Work the instep from toes to heel with the open hand.

  • • Bend the leg up to the thigh. Using the left hand to firmly hold the knee, bend the leg gently towards the thigh as far as possible without causing pain.

  • • Keeping the left hand on the knee, gently extend the leg with the right hand on the heel until fully extended.

  • • Once the sequence of movements has been completed with the right foot, go on to the left foot and work in the same way.

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