4 Reasons Why the Balls of the Feet Hurt | Triad Foot & Ankle Center

4 Reasons Why the Balls of the Feet Hurt

Beautiful well-groomed female a foot and a heel on a white backgroundBearing much of your weight every single day, the balls of your feet can and do take a beating. In fact, every step you take transfers weight from your heel to the ball of your foot, putting enormous amount of pressure on the bones and ligaments. While the ball of the foot is designed to bear the brunt of your weight, if your weight is not properly aligned over the ball of your foot, pain and swelling can occur.

In addition to your weight not being properly distributed, pain in the balls of the feet can be caused by these main contributors:




  • Biomechanics and Medical Conditions: Diabetes, arthritis, Morton’s Neuroma, foot abnormalities and obesity can all lead to pain in the balls of your feet.
  • Reduced fat padding in your foot: As mentioned earlier, the balls of the feet contain a fatty padding to cushion the feet when walking. As you age, the fat pad underneath the ball of foot can deteriorate. This causes increased pressure and shock to the area, resulting in pain.
  • Wearing high heels: High heels can cause a host of problems, including ball of foot pain. If you insist on wearing high heels, keep heels lower than two inches, make sure there is plenty of padding and wiggle room for your toes in the front of the shoe. If you can, always pick wedges over stilettos to provide more cushioned support and alleviate the pressure.
  • Activity: Running and other high-intensity activities can put additional strain on the balls of your feet.

In order to prevent ball of foot pain, the podiatrists at Triad Foot Center recommend:

  • Using custom orthotics to help lift and separate the long bones of the arch. This transfers the pressure from the ball of foot area.
  • Steer clear of high heels as they can cause your weight to shift heavily over the balls of your feet.
  • Make sure you are wearing proper shoes that evenly distribute your weight across your feet.
  • Keep a healthy weight.


If you are experiencing ball of foot pain, consult with a podiatrist who can pinpoint the direct cause of your pain. To schedule an appointment with one of the podiatrists at the Triad Foot Center, call one of our three office locations or click here to request an appointment.

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