Memorial Day boat rides and your feet

Keep your feet happy going for a boat ride

Memorial Day is almost here and in Kansas City that means families are packing up their cars and headed down to the lakes.  Lake of the Ozarks and Table Rock Lake are both vacation destinations for family and friends enjoying a long weekend getaway.  The weather is supposed to cooperate and that means there will be boats of all sizes on Missouri’s lakes.  From the small, two person fishing boat to the large, sleeps six cabin cruiser, all of these boats will be out with the same goal in mind: making the most out of the cool water on a hot summer day.

Your staff at Kansas City Foot and Ankle will be joining the summer fun down at the lake this holiday weekend.  Your podiatrist, Dr. Mark Green, reminds us that there are many ways to end up with your boat on shore if you don’t take certain measure to protect your feet and ankles  from injury.  Here are some things to consider for helping keep your feet safe.

Reduce the potential for falls when standing up on a moving boat by holding on to something stable.  Boats are unpredictable.  That’s why they are fun to ride on.  Just when you think everything is calm and steady is just when the boat can hit a wake from another boat and send everything and everyone flying.  Try to sit down while the boat is in motion.  If you must move, be sure to hold on to stable thing like a wall or a rail to help you balance.  Taking an unsteady step on a boat can lead to injuries like a twisted ankle or even a fracture if you are not careful.

Going from ground to water can be difficult.  This is another way to bring on a foot or ankle injury. Again, hold on to something to steady you.  Put one foot on the boat and wait a second until the boat is as steady as possible, then step up.  Look for others around who can assist you with getting on and off of boats, especially for young children and elderly.

Finally, walking on boat decks can be slippery.  Even during a nice calm ride on the lake can causes splashes on the boat deck.  Be prepared by wearing appropriate boating shoes.  Sperry Topsiders are the most well-known boating shoe.  They are waterproof and provide a specialized sole that gripes the surface either wet or dry.

Most major shoe brands carry waterproof boating shoes.  The more athletic brands have shoes that are ventilated, easy to slip on and off and are made of material that dries fast.  Walking around barefoot on the boat deck is not ideal because you are more prone to slips and falls and that might lead to a foot or ankle injury.

If you do not survive the weekend without a minor injury to your foot or ankle, don’t worry we are here.  Dr. Green can evaluate your injury, take x-rays in the office and decide on a treatment plan that will have you back down at the lake and back on your boat in no time.   Click here to request an appointment if you weren’t able to remain ship-shape.


  •  stay seated when the boat is in motion
  • safely get on and off the boat
  • keep your shoes on when walking around the boat
  • have a ton of summer fun!