Advice for Hikers and Hunters

| Total Words: 585

As brightly colored leaves dazzle the fall landscape, hikers and hunters nationwide will migrate to mountains, woods and fields, but many, unfortunately, are ill prepared for the beating their feet will take, warns the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS).

“Hikers, hunters and others who love the outdoors often don’t realize how strenuous it can be to withstand constant, vigorous walking on uneven terrain,” said Marco Vargas, DPM, AACFAS, a foot and ankle surgeon based in Sugar Land, TX. An avid outdoorsman himself, Vargas said lax physical conditioning and inappropriate footwear bring scores of outdoor enthusiasts into his office each fall for treatment of foot and ankle problems such as chronic heel pain, ankle sprains, Achilles tendonitis, fungal infections and severe blisters.

“Walking up and down steep hillsides and tramping through wet, slippery fields and wooded areas puts stress on the muscles and tendons in the feet and ankles, especially if you haven’t conditioned properly before hitting the trail,” said Vargas. “Also, many don’t realize that cross-training athletic shoes aren’t the...

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