From the lightening quick, Usain Bolt to British cycling champion, Bradley Wiggins, athletes are very wary of bunions. Today, many of the athletes we see on our screens, have dedicated their lives preparing and competing for the Rio Olympics. Whether they are runners, gymnasts, cyclists or tennis stars, they have trained in many conditions every day leading up to the Rio Games. As an Olympic athlete, their training is vital, but if they have a bunion, then the quicker they have it removed the better.

Why do Athletes get Bunions?

A bunion is an abnormality at the joint or base of the big toe which causes the bone to stick out. The medical name for this is hallux valgus. Bunions are usually  hereditary, however, wearing unsuitable footwear that deteriorates over time may also cause bunions to appear.

Are Bunions Painful?

Yes. Many athletes with bunions can experience extreme pain, particularly if they are continually directing weight onto their feet when training every day. Unfortunately, Bunions typically deteriorate as time passes by. Athletes suffering from bunions may have no other option but to consider treatment if their pain becomes too much to even train.

Bunion Surgery

For many athletes, taking time out of their training schedules to recover is a scary thought. The more training they miss the less prepared they’ll be for the big day.  Minimal invasive bunion surgery provides quicker recovery times.

Minimally invasive surgery can be enormously effective for the improvement of many bunion deformities of the big toe and it’s a treatment many athletes choose to take.

Are There Other Treatment Options?

Yes. If minimally invasive surgery is not possible, then BOAT (Best Of All Techniques) is recommended. BOAT is a highly  successful method that combines the best of all osteotomies put forward by leading foot and ankle professionals.

The BOAT technique provides the patient with conservative options to help deal with their pain via a specially designed flat shoe. Unlike the dated Talus shoes, the specially designed flat shoe is better suited for bunions and will not cause numerous difficulties to the knees and hip.

Ideally, specially  designed footwear must stop the toe from grinding alongside the inner lining of the shoe. An athlete’s toes should have room to breathe and so the shoe needs to provide comfort and support.


Orthotics are another option. Orthotics are basically shoe inserts that help support and manage the mobility of the patient’s foot. Whether you’re an athlete or just an active person who enjoys sport, orthotics can be easily customised to suit each individual foot.