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Old 04-22-2012, 10:03 AM   #1
lbb
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Feet!

Last Tuesday I got a pedicure for the first time in my life. It wasn't one of those insane and illegal pedicures where they slice away your calluses with a razor blade, but it did take about a decade off two decades' worth of martial arts calluses. Yesterday we had a seminar (three body art classes, one weapons). Today, my feet are trashed.

The biggest problem is from a couple of calluses that got reduced but not entirely eliminated by the pedicure, and that developed nasty cracks in them yesterday -- underside of both big toes. There are a few other incipient trouble spots, but they're mostly the same kind of thing: calluses gone bad. So, I'm searching for a Foot Management Strategy. My current plan is to deal with these cracks by cleaning them thoroughly and then sealing them up with New Skin/superglue (and won't that be a treat), but beyond that, I'm unsure how to keep more from developing. Get more pedicures? Get less pedicures? Wear shoes? Wear Tevas? Go barefoot? Spend twenty minutes with a pumice stone every night? Soak them? Keep them dry?

Help please...I want to be able to keep walking!
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Old 04-22-2012, 12:44 PM   #2
Malicat
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Re: Feet!

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Last Tuesday I got a pedicure for the first time in my life. It wasn't one of those insane and illegal pedicures where they slice away your calluses with a razor blade, but it did take about a decade off two decades' worth of martial arts calluses. Yesterday we had a seminar (three body art classes, one weapons). Today, my feet are trashed.

The biggest problem is from a couple of calluses that got reduced but not entirely eliminated by the pedicure, and that developed nasty cracks in them yesterday -- underside of both big toes. There are a few other incipient trouble spots, but they're mostly the same kind of thing: calluses gone bad. So, I'm searching for a Foot Management Strategy. My current plan is to deal with these cracks by cleaning them thoroughly and then sealing them up with New Skin/superglue (and won't that be a treat), but beyond that, I'm unsure how to keep more from developing. Get more pedicures? Get less pedicures? Wear shoes? Wear Tevas? Go barefoot? Spend twenty minutes with a pumice stone every night? Soak them? Keep them dry?

Help please...I want to be able to keep walking!
Mary,

First of all, you have my sympathy! You're good with sealing up the cracks with superglue, and if they were my feet, I'd never get a pedicure again. A callus forms from repetitive friction against a specific part of the skin. Because it's basically a layer of tough dead skin cells, it protects you from further pain in that area. Unfortunately, the only way to prevent the pain you're getting on the mat is to have callused feet, and the only way to get new calluses to form is to keep doing things that hurt right now.

I'd recommend wearing shoes that fit you well for now, since you're going to be a lot more sensitive to friction on your foot, and just go barefoot on the mat. That will help you build up calluses in the right places, and prevent any unnecessary pain. And while I would leave the pumice stone alone, you should keep an eye out on your feet after every class to make sure you don't have any open wounds, wash those thoroughly and apply some antibacterial ointment to keep out any possible infections.

Of course, this does mean you won't have sexy feet. Your alternative is to make sure you never let a callus form again, but any intensive martial arts seminars you attend is going to leave you in the same morning-after condition you were in today. So I guess that depends on how much pain you want to go through to be pretty.

--Ashley
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Old 04-22-2012, 02:45 PM   #3
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Feet!

Ouch. I have had the same thing happen. I don't let anyone come near the bottom of my feet anymore. I still have pedicures but no scrubbing with that horrible brush. When I have painful cracks I put neosporin, the kind with pain relieving ointment on my feet before I put my socks on. The cracks go away quickly.

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Old 04-22-2012, 02:56 PM   #4
Larry Feldman
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Re: Feet!

My old Ju Jitsu class used a canvas mat, and the Chief Instructor used to wear what I thought were matrial arts soft shoes. They had a viynal bottom and canvas top with an elastic band over the arch.
He avoided 'rug burn' by using them.

Turns out they were ballet slippers! Toughest guy I ever met.

I use folding mats, and one of my former students who had danced ballet a lot felt like it had weakened her toes. She had a tendency to injure her toes in the cracks in the mat - so I suggested ballet slippers and it helped suppot her toes and worked well.

We went to a seminar and the mats were a little dirty, and several women who regularly worked out there asked her where she got those martial arts shoes - because they wanted some.

Worth a try.
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:12 PM   #5
Janet Rosen
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Re: Feet!

I recommend use of bacitracin on currently open cracks as it is effective against MRSA. Your best bet is to let calluses re-develop, then do minor ongoing management with a little pumice and a lot of softening cream.
FWIW, I've been training in the Ininji socks that I bought for winter wear inside my Vibram 5 Fingers and find them very comfie on the mat and no worries about infection issues.

Janet Rosen
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:27 PM   #6
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Re: Feet!

Thanks for the tips, y'all. I don't think a pedicure is a totally bad idea -- I think that callus can get to be too thick, and that creates its own problems. It's finding the happy medium that's tricky!

Janet, what is softening cream? Is that a night-time thing?
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:07 PM   #7
Janet Rosen
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Re: Feet!

I'm using it as a general term for thick, in jar products as opposed to lighter, wetter lotions. Yeah, generally put on at night and put on light socks for sleeping in to spare sheets if you want. A wide variety are available from petrochemical vaselibe types to pharmacy ones with urea (used in physical med/acute rehab units on patients' feet) to various natural or herbal formulations based on cocia butter, beeswax or essential and vegie oils.

Janet Rosen
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:49 PM   #8
crbateman
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Re: Feet!

I'm thinking maybe Liquid Socks...

http://www.plastidip.com/home_solutions/Plasti_Dip



On a more serious note, back in my younger days when I bowled in tournaments a lot, my right thumb would crack open a LOT. In those days, no bowler would show up without a bottle of Nu-Skin. Brush it on, let it dry, and usually apply a couple more coats. Works pretty good for the injury, but the pain was another matter (either had to Zen out, medicate, or grin and bear it...).

Last edited by crbateman : 04-23-2012 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:04 AM   #9
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Re: Feet!

you can either let them get hard and crusty and keep them that way or work on keeping them soft and smooth. I prefer being barefoot, inside or out, but I like my feet to be soft so that I don't wear holes in the sheets when I sleep. I'll frequently just lotion up my feet with some sort of good foot cream or hand lotion and put on socks to wear around the house. Works like a charm.
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:25 AM   #10
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Re: Feet!

I figure calluses are like natural body armor. I'd take steel armor over gold armor any day. Unless of course it's for money... What I'm trying to say is, if you are more likely to train on a given day then appear on Feet magazine, I'd keep your hard earned calluses. (helps when you walk over glass splinters too)

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 04-23-2012, 01:30 PM   #11
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Re: Feet!

Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of calluses -- it's not about having pretty feet. But there can be too much of a good thing. When callus gets too thick, it's more likely to crack or tear, chafe inside shoes and blister -- that was the whole point of the pedicure. I don't think the problem was really caused by the pedicure; more likely it was that plus warm and humid weather (when I was practicing karate, the first few warm days of the year were when you were most likely to rip callus).
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Old 04-23-2012, 01:59 PM   #12
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Re: Feet!

FWIW, you can have tough feet with calluses that don't look and feel a 300 year old monkey's paw. They stay just as tough and are less likely to crack or get infected.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:40 PM   #13
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Re: Feet!

Jason, so what's the secret?

And, uh, don't talk about monkey's paws. That's bad luck, dude.
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Old 04-23-2012, 08:23 PM   #14
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Re: Feet!

Ahh... I'd suggest breathable socks if you're into shoes, and flip flops if you aren't to let your feet breath then. And to your growing shopping list, maybe nothing else. No personal experience in using softening lotions on my feet...

Sometimes when I think a part of the skin is too thick, I'd take a pair of scissors and nail clippers to whittle them down. That way I can discriminate on what I want left and what I don't.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 04-23-2012, 08:33 PM   #15
Don Nordin
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Re: Feet!

Eucerin, lube your feet up good with this stuff before you go to bed. and during the day, it should keep the skin from drying too much and prevent further cracking until you build those calluses back up. Do not apply it before you go to pratice as you will just wipe it off and your feet will not slide well. You should be fine in a week or so.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:08 PM   #16
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Re: Feet!

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Jason, so what's the secret?

And, uh, don't talk about monkey's paws. That's bad luck, dude.
lol, pretty much what Don suggested. Foot creams, lotions, etc. I like the shea butter stuff, nice and thick, coats well, throw some socks over them. You want to keep the calluses, but keep them from drying out too much. Maybe even soak in warm water first (not hot, might dry them out) and take a pumice stone to them, then the lotion/cream. I did it consistently in the evenings for a few days and now do it once every month or two or if i'm out running around a lot outside with no shoes on, which I do a lot in the summer. I've got some heavy calluses, but they never crack and I can brush up against someone without them getting grossed out or getting cursed for 100 lifetimes!
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:16 PM   #17
crbateman
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Re: Feet!

I should add that you can also shave calluses down with an ordinary safety razor. It just takes a little off each pass, so you can control the removal precisely. The result will be skin thick enough to protect, but no gross appearance, uncomfortable shoes, or any other objectionable conditions. I get calluses on the sides of my fingers working in the shop, and that's how I keep them in check.
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Old 04-26-2012, 07:25 AM   #18
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Re: Feet!

My feet don't look too bad and I was training regularly on zebra mats. I didn't have any problems after my pedicure for my brother’s wedding and they did the stone and very light razor on parts of mine. My feet are tough, but soft. Like mentioned above, the secret is pretty simple: moisturize! After I get out of the shower at night and hop into bed, I slather my feet with lotion, put on really soft socks and go to bed. When I wake up the next morning, my feet are nice and soft. I only do this every now and then, but if my feet are really dry, then I will do this for a few days at a time. Just make sure to really put a thick layer on your feet because a bit will be absorbed by your socks. I leave enough lotion on that I still see some on my foot. I don't rub it all in. I also periodically use the ped-egg or whatever it is called when I get out of the shower on parts of my feet to help. I guess it is a precious balance of tough.... yet soft....

Last edited by ninjaqutie : 04-26-2012 at 07:27 AM.

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Old 04-30-2012, 09:27 PM   #19
LinTal
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Re: Feet!

Apparently soaking your feet in really hot, really salty water helps build thart tough layer up again...

The world changes when you do.
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Old 05-01-2012, 02:54 AM   #20
Malicat
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Re: Feet!

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Jason Casteel wrote: View Post
FWIW, you can have tough feet with calluses that don't look and feel a 300 year old monkey's paw. They stay just as tough and are less likely to crack or get infected.
My feet aren't *that* bad Jason! They are definitely callused though, which is apparently not cute for a girl. Fortunately I fail in most other areas of being a girl as well, so it's nothing new.
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:25 AM   #21
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Re: Feet!

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Ashley Hemsath wrote: View Post
My feet aren't *that* bad Jason! They are definitely callused though, which is apparently not cute for a girl. Fortunately I fail in most other areas of being a girl as well, so it's nothing new.
we guys don't like to give sensual feet massage to women with callused feet, because we would have to break out the belt sander and other power tools. and of course once we pulled out the power tools, we won't be able to stop ourselves. we would run to home depot/hardware store and get more tools and other things, that we think we need, and other stuffs because we think it cool to have, like an air-compressor nail gun, which has nothing to do with your feet at all, but we kinda like going around and randomly nailing things, except for your feet, which we would need one of those cordless sander or possibly the Dremel 3000 multi-tools with various attachment bits, and some of those bits might include sanding and buffing stuffs which we might be able to use on your feet to our heart content, maybe not to your heart content, but it will be our heart content there about about.....about. so the point here is don't get callused feet.

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Old 05-01-2012, 07:50 AM   #22
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Re: Feet!

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
we guys don't like to give sensual feet massage to women with callused feet, because we would have to break out the belt sander and other power tools. and of course once we pulled out the power tools, we won't be able to stop ourselves. we would run to home depot/hardware store and get more tools and other things, that we think we need, and other stuffs because we think it cool to have, like an air-compressor nail gun, which has nothing to do with your feet at all, but we kinda like going around and randomly nailing things, except for your feet, which we would need one of those cordless sander or possibly the Dremel 3000 multi-tools with various attachment bits, and some of those bits might include sanding and buffing stuffs which we might be able to use on your feet to our heart content, maybe not to your heart content, but it will be our heart content there about about.....about. so the point here is don't get callused feet.
By the time you get back from Home Depot with all the fancy power tools Phi, the callous footed lady will have got bored and taken herself off down to the new foot therapy place, where they soak feet in a bowl inhabited by small fish. I'm told they only eat dead skin, so a win win situation. In the mean time, you can be putting some new shelves up

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Old 05-01-2012, 03:24 PM   #23
Malicat
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Re: Feet!

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
we guys don't like to give sensual feet massage to women with callused feet, because we would have to break out the belt sander and other power tools. and of course once we pulled out the power tools, we won't be able to stop ourselves. we would run to home depot/hardware store and get more tools and other things, that we think we need, and other stuffs because we think it cool to have, like an air-compressor nail gun, which has nothing to do with your feet at all, but we kinda like going around and randomly nailing things, except for your feet, which we would need one of those cordless sander or possibly the Dremel 3000 multi-tools with various attachment bits, and some of those bits might include sanding and buffing stuffs which we might be able to use on your feet to our heart content, maybe not to your heart content, but it will be our heart content there about about.....about. so the point here is don't get callused feet.
I have no problems with this Phi... men with power tools are sexy, and if my callused feet can contribute to this, I would be honored.. and enjoy the eye candy!
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:02 PM   #24
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Re: Feet!

this seems fitting
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Old 05-13-2012, 10:51 AM   #25
SteliosPapadakis
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Re: Feet!

Calluses...
If you do not eradicate the reason that creates them in the first place, the problem (no matter how you treat it now) will come back again and again.
If i were you, Mary, i would seek the assistance of a Rolfer (google it)
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