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Why Do My Hockey Skates Hurt the Bottom of My Feet?

Why do my hockey skates hurt the bottom of my feet? If you’re here asking this question, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve put together this comprehensive guide to help answer your question and provide amicable solutions. So, let’s get to it!

Why do my hockey skates hurt the bottom of my feet? Honestly, feet and ankle pains are common in skating, whether professional or beginner.

Sadly, the pain is often unbearable, especially if it’s chronic. In some cases, you may have to put a break from playing hockey.

Your hockey skates can hurt the bottom of your feet for several reasons. Below is a quick rundown of possible reasons your feet hurt when wearing hockey skates.

  • Ill-fitting ice hockey skates
  • Foot orientation (High-ached or flat foot)
  • Too tight laces and lace bite
  • Overuse injury
  • Existing feet injury or medical condition
  • Wearing too thin or too thick socks
  • Worn-out insoles
  • Weak feet muscles

But this is only the tip of the iceberg. In the rest of this guide, I cover why hockey skates can hurt your feet and possible solutions to deal with the pain.

Why Do My Hockey Skates Hurt the Bottom of My Feet?

According to an Active and Safe Central study, lower extremity injuries, including feet and ankles, account for 21-27% of all injuries at the youth level, 25-34% at the junior/collegiate level, and 45% among professionals.

Below are the possible reasons your feet hurt when you wear hockey skates.

1. Ill-fitting ice hockey skates

Ill-fitting hockey skates are probably the main reason your hockey skates hurt the bottom of your feet.

As a rule of thumb, your hockey skates should be a snug fit—neither too tight nor too loose. If they’re currently too tight, it could be the reason they hurt the bottom of your feet.

How does this work, you ask? Too tight hockey skates exert a lot of pressure on the feet.

As a result, the bottom of the feet is mostly affected by the impact between your feet and the surface.

MORE READING>>What Size Ice Skates do I Need?

2. Foot orientation (High-arched or flat foot)

Why Do My Hockey Skates Hurt the Bottom of My Feet?
Source: Skaters Landing

There are three types of foot alignment—normal foot, high arch foot, and flat foot.

Usually, normal foot alignment is in perfect condition, while the other two have a defect. That said, high-arched feet aren’t as common as flat feet.

According to a Cleveland Clinic article, at least 20% o the population has high arch feet. The rest have flat feet and normal feet.

High arched feet usually incline outwards, also known as supination. If you have this kind of foot orientation, your feet are likely to hurt around the ankle support area.

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On the other hand, flat feet usually incline inwards, also known as pronation. If you have this kind of foot orientation, they’re also likely to hurt around the ankle support.

So overall, there’s a high correlation between foot pain and your foot orientation.

3. Too tight laces and lace bite

Too tight laces can hurt the bottom of your feet when you wear hockey skates. Tightly fitting laces exert pressure on your foot walls, causing pain under the feet and the ankles due to lace bites.

The best way to avoid this is by tying your laces loosely around the toe ball and moderately tight around the ankles.

This gives your feet breathing space for easy movement as you play hockey.

4. Overuse injury

Overuse injuries are associated with overstating. Playing hockey is fun. I get it! However, some people abuse this by overplaying when it’s time to stop.

The problem is, trying to skate longer than your foot muscles can take can be disastrous.

So, if you’re always over skating, it could be the reason your hockey skates hurt the bottom of your feet.

5. Existing feet injury or medical condition

According to an Everyday Health article, there are at least 10-foot medical conditions.

They include; Athlete’s Foot, Hammertoes, Blisters, Bunions, Corns and Calluses, Plantar Fasciitis, Claw Toes, Mallet Toes, Gout, Ingrown Toenails, and Toenail Fungus.

All these foot medical conditions can affect the bottom of your feet directly or indirectly. When it happens, you’ll feel like your feet are on fire.

So, whenever you feel your hockey skates are hurting the bottom of your feet, it’s probably because you have any of these 10-foot injuries and medical conditions.

6. Wearing too thin or too thick socks

Socks play a crucial role when playing hockey. Therefore, the best ones should be neither too tight nor too loose.

7. Worn-out insoles

Insoles are meant to provide comfort to the inner foot. The best one for the job should be neither too thick nor too thin.

Thus, worn-out or too-thin insoles may not provide your inner feet the needed support when playing hockey.

This leads to massive pain under the feet due to excessive friction. It gets worse if you already have underlying foot medical conditions.

8. Weak feet muscles

Feet muscles hold the feet together and help facilitate movement. They also need to be strong and healthy to work effectively.

However, this isn’t the case for some people who have weak foot muscles. Sometimes, it’s because of a medical condition, or they’re yet to break in their skates.

There’s a high likelihood your skates hurt the bottom of your feet because you have weak muscles.

But, most likely, it’s because you’re yet to break in your new hockey skates.

How Do I Stop My Feet from Hurting in Hockey Skates?

There are plenty of things you can do to stop your feet from hurting when you wear your hockey skates.

The good news is I’ve broken them down into the six most effective solutions to try out.

Below is a quick rundown of what to do to stop your feet from hurting in hockey skates;

  • Buy Ice Hockey Skates for High Arches and flat foot
  • Do proper Hockey Skates Sizing for your type of feet
  • Wear Orthotic Products like lace-up braces
  • Use the recommended Socks for Ice Hockey
  • Heat Mold your Hockey Skates to Fit well
  • Practice moderately to Break in them

That being said, let’s dive into the details!

Buy Ice Hockey Skates for High Arches and Flat Foot

As we’ve already seen, high arches and flat feet could be possible reasons why your feet hurt.

The best way to deal with the situation is to find new ice hockey skates. Most importantly, you only want to switch to ice hockey skates for high arches or flat feet.

This way, you’ll solve the problem once and for all. Some possible ice hockey skates for high arches and flat feet to try out include;

Do proper Hockey Skates Sizing for your type of feet

Proper hockey skates sizing goes a long way. However, depending on the circumstances under which you bought your skates, you may not have had the chance to try them out first.

As a rule of thumb, properly fitting ice hockey skates should be a snug fit.

Also, the best hockey skates should be 1-1.5 size smaller than your street shoes for the length. On the flip side, the right width size will depend on your type of foot.

Skate manufacturers use special codes to represent skate width. So that’s what you want to look for when shopping for new skates.

Letter CodeRight Fit
EEWidest
EWide
DStandard
RWider than D
CNarrow

Wear Orthotic Products like lace-up braces

Wearing orthotic products like lace braces, elastic ankle support, and athlete taping go a long way in alleviating bottom foot pain.

You may also want to try out inserts and footbeds specific to your type of foot—normal, flat, or high arched. Superfeet Hockey Comfort is an incredible insole to try out.

Overall, orthotic products provide comfort and relaxation to the feet, thus helping manage all types of foot pains when playing hockey.

The recommended skates for ice hockey are moderately thick to provide padding to the feet.

Unfortunately, this implies too thin socks encourage friction between your inner feet and the skates.

This is exactly what you want to avoid because it’s most likely to cause bottom foot pain.

Heat Mold your Hockey Skates to Fit well

You also want to heat mold new hockey skates to fit well. This is especially important before actively using the skates.

Heat molding is done using special ovens. So, you only want to have a professional heat mold your new hockey skates.

Otherwise, you may have to buy new ones if something goes wrong.

Practice moderately to Break in them

Lastly, practice moderately to break in your new skates. This is crucial as it helps strengthen your weak feet muscles.

After a few sessions (2-3 a week), your feet should be used to the new hockey skates. Eventually, the pain should also go away.

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Why Do My Hockey Skates Hurt the Bottom of My Feet? | FAQ’s

1. Are hockey skates supposed to hurt your feet?

Hockey skates aren’t supposed to hurt your feet when you have the right size according to your foot type.

In addition, hockey skates have enough padding to keep the feet comfortable and relaxed and absorb all shock.

Lastly, some hockey skates have built-in ankle support to protect the ankles from injuries and pain.

2. How tight should my hockey skates be?

Your hockey skates should be a snug fit—neither too tight nor too loose. This gives the feet breathing space and room for movement in hockey without being too rigid.

3. How do you break in hockey skates?

The quickest way to break in hockey skates is to skate more. Having more hockey sessions warms your feet’ muscles and gets them used to skating.

However, you want to avoid overskating because it can lead to overuse injuries.

Why Do My Hockey Skates Hurt the Bottom of My Feet? Wrapping Up

Your hockey skates can hurt the bottom of your feet for plenty of reasons. Below is a quick summary of why your hockey skates may hurt the bottom of your feet.

  • Ill-fitting ice hockey skates
  • Foot orientation (High-ached or flat foot)
  • Too tight laces and lace bite
  • Overuse injury
  • Existing feet injury or medical condition
  • Wearing too thin or too thick socks
  • Worn-out insoles
  • Weak feet muscles

That’s it! If you stick to the solutions recommended in this guide, you shouldn’t have difficulty playing hockey again. I hope you found this guide helpful!

Navick Ogutu
Navick Ogutu

Navick is a full-time freelance writer, blogger, and internet marketer. By day, he creates content for multiple sites including inlineskaterstars.com. Over the weekend, he goes out skating with friends.

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