Strengthening your quads will help. We recommend going to the gym 1-2 times per week and taking on a strengthening program. This is especially important for those individuals who run more than 20km per week. The Leg Press is particularly useful in building up quads strength. We suggest you avoid the Knee Extension machine (also called Quads Rack), as it places a lot of strain on the kneecap. Also training each leg separately is a good idea, so you can gauge the strength difference between your left and right leg. For children, treatment using corrective shoes or inserts is rarely needed, as the arch usually develops normally by age 5. When a child is born, their feet are definitely flat – well, more like chubby. That’s because the foot needs to be very flexible while the baby is in the womb. Until a child is about three years old, her foot is made mostly of cartilage and you’ll notice very little change in it’s appearance until her feet are bearing weight – standing, walking, running. If your child is halfway through their second year and their arch is still not developing, then it’s time to visit East Penn Foot and Ankle Associates for a complete diagnosis of your child’s foot. Experts agree that any measure that will help the foot become stronger can only be beneficial and helps to prevent foot pain. Walking barefoot, especially in sand, helps the feet to become used to an ever-changing environment, and it encourages the various ligaments and muscles in the feet to become stronger. Another exercise that is said to be beneficial is to run on one's toes for as long as possible and to spend time spreading the toes as wide as possible, all in aid of strengthening the muscles and tendons in the feet. The way our arches form depends on several factors. Our feet are complex structures that comprise twenty-six bones, thirty-three joints, and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments each. Each foot forms two arches. The arch that runs from the heel to the toe is known as the longitudinal arch, while the one that runs the width is known as the transverse arch. Ligaments (fibrous tissues) give our arches their shape and hold our bones together. The plantar fascia (the long, strong band of connective tissue that runs along the sole of your foot) and muscles add secondary support. Alternate Names. In running, a flat foot obviously reduces training and racing performance. The healstriking technique brings particularly negative consequences because of the necessity to roll the body over the foot during the support time. This brings excessive loading of the foot over longer time of support and leveraging the foot. The use of the foot in this manner develops constant overloading of already not well-functioning foot, which consequently leads to the plantar pain and injury. Running shoes – You must understand that flat feet are more sensitive and prone to tendon damage and stretching. Thus, it is absolutely essential to wear shoes according to the ruggedness and smoothness of the terrain.