The metatarsal bar is sometimes referred to as met bar and it is a component that is added to ones shoes in order to relieve various cases of foot pain, which can be of particular use for anyone suffering from sesamoiditis. This device has a special cushion design that ensures that the whole metatarsal area of the foot is supported fully.
The metatarsal area in this case includes the width measured along the area of the ball joint. Sufficient support for this area ensures that walking is made easier and comfortable, and pressure is taken off of the metatarsals, and coupled with low heeled shoes can make walking considerably less painful on the sesamoid bones. When choosing metatarsal bars to treat sesamoiditis, one of the best designs is one which supports the lesser toes, and not the first metatarsal where the pain is felt. By raising the lesser metatarsals less force is exerted on the sesamoid bones. If wearing a thick insole, simply cutting out a section under the first metatarsal can have a similar effect.
Metatarsal bars are also ideal for the treatment of metatarsalgia; a foot disorder that is quite prevalent and affects many people. The ailment causes considerable pain in the ball of the foot and is usually caused by excessive pressure applied over extended period of time, and as with sesamoiditis is compounded by the use of poorly fitting shoes.
Metatarsal bars are useful for treating a condition known as ‘burning feet’. This ball of foot problem is characterized by swelling, redness and a burning effect that is felt in the balls of the feet. Diabetics are prone to this condition due to impaired nerve function, although the condition can affect anyone. The use of met bars has been known to have a relieving effect on those with burning feet, by easing the pressure exerted on the metatarsal heads at the toe off.
Metatarsal bars can be installed in most shoes as long as there is sufficient width, and are especially useful in sports shoes to offer additional support during high impact activities. The bars make sports or hiking shoes more comfortable to wear, and are beneficial when spending a long time on the feet and are highly effective at easing ball of foot pain, and they can also be useful in improving the fit of shoes with a wide toe box. Many users of metatarsal bars have reported feeling like they are walking on the air, due to the additional comfort that they provide.
Summary of the Benefits of Metatarsal Bars
- Provide instant pain relief for sufferers of sesamoiditis and metatarsalgia by easing the force exerted on the sesamoid bones and metatarsals
- Improve comfort when walking
- Easy to fit in most shoe types and feature an adhesive backing to stay correctly positioned
- Manufactured with materials that have anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, to help reduce foot odor
- Metatarsal bars are comfortable to wear, and can be made from a wide range of materials, such as felt, neoprene, wool and Coolmax fabrics
- Some orthotic insoles feature metatarsal bars as part of the design, such as Aetrex, and Lynco for added comfort for the whole foot
- Work boots and shoes sometimes feature a metatarsal bar to aid comfort