Oxfam Walk Preparation
Firstly, a little bit about the Oxfam TRAILWALKER
THE people at Oxfam are not joking when they say this is 'the ultimate team challenge'.
Teams of four people must complete a 100km bush walking course within 48 hours, to raise money for Oxfam - A global charity that aims to help overcome world poverty.
The event originally started as a military training exercise for an elite Hong Kong based squad in 1981. Since then it has grown into a global event taking place in 13 countries.
The event has been running in Australia since 1999. With more than 40,000 people participating in the event so far. Raising over $42 million dollars in the process! Oxfam run the event each year as their major fundraising activity. Each team and their members commit to raising $1k in support of Oxfam. To read more about the Oxfam TrailWalker Event, click here to see their official website.
It might sound easy, but teams of four bush walking 100km's in under 48 hours is a massive achievement. It takes months of training and preparation. And a lot of physical and mental endurance to even finish the event.
Many competitors fail to finish each year. Falling victim to sever blistering from poor shoe and sock choice.
My Experience with the Walk
I have been a Podiatry Volunteer at the Oxfam TrailWalker event since 2006.
Podiatry volunteers are responsible for treating feet at checkpoints along the walking course. Each year I see hundreds of competitors come through the checkpoints with a myriad of foot concerns.
I have seen first hand the damage that poor foot preparation and sock/shoe choice can cause to your feet in such a long event.
It's not pretty when your pulling off layer after layer of skin off a competitors foot. Especially knowing that the situation was preventable. And that a little bit more preparation would have seen competitors avoid these sorts of problems in the first place!
A great way to support Oxfam, if you are unable to walk the 100km's is to Volunteer. If you would like to Volunteer at the Oxfam Trailwalker event, click here. You dont have to be a podiatrist to volunteer for the event. Oxfam have 2 categories of Volunteer: General and Medical. General Volunteers work at checkpoints, on the trail and handle logistics for the event. Medical volunteers can be either students or fully qualified Physiotherapists, Podiatrist or Massuers.
Why see a Podiatrist before the Oxfam TrailWalker?
Every competitor has different feet and therefore different foot concerns during training and the actual event.
What works for one person does not necessarily work for the next. Prior to the event you need to ensure that you have had an appropriate training and management plan for you to complete the event.
I have helped prepare many teams for the Oxfam Trailwalker event, ensuring a successful and enjoyable walk! Make sure you come and see me before you start training, to ensure you can do all the training injury free!
I can providing advice on:
- Training preparation
- Foot tapping/strapping techniques
- Footwear advice
- General foot comfort
Start you feet preparation today for the Melbourne Oxfam Walk!
1. Book an appointment for a comprehensive foot assessment and injury management plan
2. Book a team appointment (4 people) to get the right advice on training, tapping techniques, footwear, socks, and general foot comfort.
3. See a Podiatrist before your walk, to have you feet strapped professionally (see photos above)
Written by Leah Waters