Foot Pain at the Top of Foot | Tips to Heal

Are you having issues with foot pain at the top of your foot? If so, you are not alone. There are many athletes around the world dealing with the same issues. I have had many injuries over the years and have also dealt with this too. I am glad you have made it here to RunDreamAchieve.

The home of running tips. The tree main issues people that are having foot pain at the top of their feet is the following. 1: Stress Fractures 2: Extensor tendonitis and 3) Bone spurs. All of which are not fun. That being said, there are most certainly some remedies that are available which help assist you.

What Does it Mean when the Top of Your Foot Hurts?

A lot of times when there is pain at the top of the foot it stems from overuse or perhaps the types of shoes you are wearing. In addition, it could be a biomechanical issue as well. Everyone is different and has different running cadences and style.

So, I wouldn’t advise trying to change the way you run in anyway. I would advise working on running on softer surfaces the best way that you can.

Of course, this is not always an easy feat especially if you are living in the united States of America. We have a lot of concrete and pavement here versus places like Kenya or Ethiopia which have far more dirt roads than we have.

Stress fractures are the top of the list as they can cause cracks or bruises within the bone. Stress fractures are usually causes from repetitive motion from running.

In addition, many other athletes succumb to stress fractures due to overuse. Endurance athletes of all sports such as rowers, football players, runners and soccer players deal with these types of issues.

How Do You Relieve Pain on the Top of Your Foot?

Remember, RICE. Rest. Ice. Compression and Elevation. I would also recommend wearing soles and inserts in your shoes as well to help provide additional cushioning as you walk.

The second injury runners and other endurance athletes deal with is bone spurs. Bone spurs occur when the cartilage between bones deteriorate. I had knee issues over the years which gave me similar problems that bone spurs do for others.

Bone spurs are usually caused by osteoarthritis. Foot pain at the top of the foot usually stems from this. Of course, there are other variables that factor into this such as biomechanics, running surfaces and poor choice of shoes.

Shoes that provide little to no protection when you are running certainly do not help the situation. Furthermore, being overweight, wearing shoes that do not fit properly as well as injuries to your foot all factor into causing this problem.

Lastly, bone spurs that are located on the mid-foot usually are the direct result of foot pain at the foot.

Can Arthritis Cause Pain on Top of Foot?

Runners usually have issues that are located at the midfoot or on the top (dorsum)stemming from bone spurs. In addition, foot pain at the top of the foot can be caused from arthritis as well.

Extensor tendonitis is inflammation. Are you having issues with pain at the top of your foot? If so, you are more than likely having pain between the ball of your feet or between your ankle.

The following are issues athletes dealing with pain at the top of the foot experience:

  1. Tight calf muscles
  2. Swelling, bruising around or redness at the top of the foot
  3. Pain centered around the center of your foot
  4. Swelling located at the top of the feet.

Are you always on your feet, work long hours or run regularly on surfaces that are uneven? Do you wear shoes that you know are too tight? If so, these could be specific reasons why you are having foot pain at the top of your foot.


Never forget this acronym. Rest. There is no better option for dealing with foot pain than complete rest. I know it isn’t easy to deal with injuries of any type. That being said, time away from the sport and allotting sufficient time for your recovery will do more for you than you realize.

One great option if you absolute must workout is pool running. There is no impact on the top of your foot when you are running in a pool. In addition, you can choose to run in the deep end of a pool with or without a flotation device.

Remember, running without a flotation device will make your workout much more difficult. That being said, there will still be no impact on the top of your foot running in the deep end of a pool.

I would still recommend taking complete rest for at least a couple weeks to ensure complete recovery and healing is taking place. Icing is always great to lower inflammation and lessen your pain.

Compression works to lessen pain you are dealing with from extensor tendonitis. Last, but not least is elevation. Elevation helps to run fresh oxygen-rich blood to the injured area. Also, make sure to stay away from tight-fitting shoes.

Does Extensor Tendonitis Go Away?

Yes, extensor tendonitis will eventually go away. That being said, we cannot rush the process. The body will heal itself on its own time. Of course, the remedies mentioned above are all methods to help ensure you heal up effectively.

The biggest issue is just the frustration of not being able to run or workout as you normally would. I know it is a pain in the ass but hang in there.

I recommend subscribing to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel and stay updated on new videos I create each week.

We will do our very best to help hold you accountable and stay motivated through this.

Of course, I realize dealing with any type of injury is frustrating but these remedies will help set you up for success.

Keep me updated on your progress and I look forward to hearing about your results in your upcoming races.

What Does Tendonitis on Top of Foot Feel Like?

The pain of extensor tendonitis usually is located right where your shoe laces are on your shoe. The best thing you can do for this type of injury is complete rest. Of course, following the RICE procedure mentioned above is vital. I would highly recommend to never try continuing to run through any constant pain.

Yes, I totally understand that running and trying to stay in good shape can become addicting. That being said, there is more to life than running. Your health is most important outside of belief in a Higher Power and your family.

So, allow time to heal and do not rush to get back into running too fast. It is a much wise move to take several weeks off than to risk having to have surgery and be out for several months.

The foot pain at the top of foot will be most certainly felt while running or even walking. In addition, you may see swelling or a bump where the the tendon is inflamed or injured.

You may feel this pain while you are running or walking. Sometimes, there is visible swelling or a bump on the extensor tendon that is injured or inflamed.

Closing Thoughts

So, if you have foot pain at the top of foot do not continue to try to run with it. It is a much wiser move to take a month off or more completely.

The alternative is try to continue to run and run the risk of having to have surgery on it. Remember, always listen to your body. You can also consider doing pool running if you have foot pain at the top of foot.

The reason for this is that there is no impact on your joints, ligaments or muscles. You can get into the deep end of the pool and run relaxed.

Of course, you can wear a floatation device which will make this much easier. Yes, it will be boring. That being said, it is the closest alternative to land running. In addition, no pressure is being placed on the top of your foot.

Be sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. I focus on creating new content there each week to help focused runners like you surpass fitness goals.

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