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Can You Join The Military If You Have Flat Feet


Flat Feet In Children

Can People With Flat Foot Join The Army?

Flat feet in newborns and toddlers is normal because the arches havent yet developed. While most children will develop arches by the age of 3, some may experience delays or have structural deformities that interfere with the normal alignment of the foot bones.

Flat feet are commonly associated with genetic disorders that first develop in childhood, including:

  • Calcaneovalgus
  • Metatarsus adductus
  • Tarsal coalitions

Flat feet may come and go as a child develops. During growth spurts, changes in the tightness of the calf muscles may cause temporary flat-footedness. A similar example is genu valgum, also known as knock-knees, which usually occurs between the ages of 2 and 5, and typically corrects itself during adolescence.

In some children, flat-footedness will not right itself. While there may be no outward explanation for this, obesity can often contribute by placing additional stress on a still-developing foot.

Flat feet in children may only become apparent between adolescence and the early teen years when abnormalities in gait and pronation become more apparent. If left untreated, the disorder can progress and worsen in later life.

Frequently Asked Questions We Receive

Below are a few of the most popular questions we receive regarding potential military disqualifiers:

What sorts of medical conditions could disqualify you from joining the military?

There is a very long list of medical conditions that can affect potential future military service. It completely depends on several factors, including which branch you want to join, what medical condition you have, and more.

Can you join the military with a felony?

Like everything else in the military, it depends on a wide array of factors. They include the type of felony, when it was committed, which branch you want to join, and much more.

What can disqualify you from MEPS?

As mentioned previously, there are dozens of conditions that can disqualify you at MEPS. They include dental issues, eye / ear issues, hearing problems, and heart problems.

Are waivers available?

Certain medical conditions do allow you to receive a waiver under the right conditions. Those include waivers for eyesight, height / weight, and previous surgerys.

Flat Feet In The Army

Flat feet within military service go way back throughout history, did you know that back during the first 2 world wars, having flat feet could disqualify recruits from being able to enlist in the army! Having a flatfoot was seen in general as something linked to poor health as well as a sign of a low class individual.

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Why Do Flat Feet Disqualify You From The Military

There a lot of reasons that make the military consider flat feet as hard DQ. Recruits go through rigorous physical training such as walking, climbing, marching and running, and they also travel long distances on foot.

This might become a problem for someone who has flat feet that are accompanied by pain.

The ligaments and tendons of the feet tend to weaken in flat feet over time. This weakness sometimes leads to the collapse of the arch and pains in the feet, ankle, knee, hip and lower back.

This pain usually caused by the inability of the feet to successfully distribute the body weight and absorb shock.

This pain and weak tendons can affect ones ability to serve in the military efficiently.

Even though orthotic insoles might be used to manage this condition, it is a liability to the military and incurs extra expenses for disability claims.

Standing on flat feet for too long might cause pains and discomfort and this might make the person unfit to carry out discipline training that involves standing.

Are Students Exempt From The Draft

Can you join the Military with Flat Feet?

Before Congress reformed the draft in 1971, a man could qualify for a student deferment if he could show he was a full-time student making satisfactory progress in virtually any field of study. Under the current draft law, a college student can have his induction postponed only until the end of the current semester.

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Can You Join The Airforce With Flat Feet

The first step is for the doctors to check the appearance to screen the candidate. All candidates wear shorts so that the doctor can measure the height and length of the legs and see if the overall balance is right. Unsatisfactory details are flat chest, flat feet, bow legs, hunchback, disproportionate body, and gray hair.

How Flat Foot Is Being Rated

If you are born with a flat foot but you are able to function well without pain, it cant be rated and you still can join the military service. According to US militarys regulations, there are two instances which, indicate that a flat-footed person is not able to meet their physical requirements.

  • First is the Symptomatic flat foot, which refers to the condition wherein the person experiences persistent and severe pain. It can be the result of physical activities which causes deformities and pain in the foot thus, a person cannot serve the army. He or she can still join the military if the pain stops afterward.
  • Second called asymptomatic flat foot which is not painful but that person is required to wear inserts or arch support to manage their flat feet or to relieve the pain.

Basic inserts are allowed but if you have orthopaedic or prescriptive inserts and footwear, you will be out of the military. This is rated 0% and considered mild.

A person has moderate flat foot if he or she experiences persisting pain and cannot be relieved by inserts. This is rated by 10%.

The condition is considered severe if the deformity of the foot is obvious there is swelling and extreme pain and calluses are forming in unusual areas. People with worst flat foot condition experiences Achilles tendon spasms. Orthotic devices, inserts, and arch supports cannot relieve this type of condition and is rated at 50%.

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Secondary Conditions Linked To Flat Feet

If left unchecked, flat feet could lead to additional orthopedic issues which could then be claimed as secondary conditions if your flat feet are awarded service connection. This is because flat feet can make walking such an uncomfortable and painful experience, it typically leads to an abnormal or nontypical gait which can lead to undue stress and strain on the rest of your body. Common conditions related to flat feet include:

  • and much, much more
  • Solutions For Dealing With Flat Feet

    How I Got Disqualified From Military

    Casey Gallagher, MD, is board-certified in dermatology. He is a clinical professor at the University of Colorado in Denver, and co-founder and practicing dermatologist at the Boulder Valley Center for Dermatology in Colorado.

    Many people with flat feet think that they just have flat feet and that nothing can be done about it. This is wrong in most cases. Flat feet can be a major medical issue resulting in pain, difficulty fitting shoes and/or limit the ability to be active.

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    Can You Join The Military With Flat Feet Everything You Need To Know

    Can you join the military with flat feet? If youre interested in serving your country but arent sure if you meet the requirements, this article can help. The quick answer is yes: you CAN join the military with flat feet. In this article, well look at the different branches of the military view flat feet and how you can still join the army even if you have flat feet. Lets get started.

    Can You Get Va Disability For Flat Feet

    If you are a veteran with flatfoot, fallen arches, or flat feet, you may be wondering if its possible to obtain VA disability compensation for your flat feet. The answer is yes, especially if you can connect your medical condition to service or even basic training. Today we will discuss what flat feet is and how the VA rates flat feet.

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    Surprising Medical Conditions That Will Disqualify You From Military Service

    A medical waiver may be in the cards.

    BySarah Sicard | Updated Jul 19, 2021 3:31 PM

    In order to join the military, you need to qualify medically. And while there are some obvious stipulations, like the fact that you cant be carrying diseases that will endanger your platoon, there are other disqualifying conditions that might surprise you.

    All the disqualifying diseases, disorders, and conditions adopted by the U.S. military are listed within the International Classification of Disease code, under the United Nations World Health Organization.

    Task & Purpose reached out to Lt. Michele Stein, a Navy recruiter, who shared some lesser-known medical conditions, and in some cases, ways you can get around them. In addition, Stein also asked around her station in Tucson, Arizona, for crazy, surprising medical disqualification stories. We compiled our favorites, and here are six unusual conditions that can keep you from joining the military.

    Symptoms And Side Effects Of Flat Feet

    Can You Join the Military With Flat Feet?

    The severity of flat feet can vary from case to case and can also contribute to other conditions including but not limited to:

    • Leg pain
    • & More

    The above-listed conditions can often lead to the necessary use of inserts, insoles, or in severe cases, surgery. Contacting a knowledgeable medical professional and then working with an experienced law firm before your conditions become too severe can save veterans a lot of pain and discomfort.

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    What Options Do Flat

    Now you know the reason the military might disqualify a person with a flat foot. The army and the marines might not be the best options for flat-footed people. Most of their activities involve the feet thus, painful feet or orthotics cause you not to be fit for service.

    Although you might be asymptomatic while joining them, the amount of groundwork and training causes pain and discomfort down the lane.

    The air force has plenty of jobs that do not require you to stand for an extended time. For instance, you may have to sit at a desk for hours if you join cyberspace operations, paralegal, or intelligence. It might be one of the best branches to join if you have wide feet.

    Is Having Wide Feet a Disqualification From Joining the Military? The short answer to this question is no. It is not an automatic disqualification. However, there are times when wide feet may be considered a factor in deciding whether or not to allow someone to enlist.

    What Gets You Exempt From The Draft

    You are exempt from Selective Service registration if you can prove you were continuously institutionalized or confined from 30 days before you turned 18 through age 25. If you were released for any period longer than 30 days during this window, you were required to register with the Selective Service System.

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    Can You Be Disqualified From Rotc

    A majority of young Americans do not have the necessary qualifications to serve their country. A medical condition is one of the reasons why 70% of those are disqualified. That doesnt mean that 70% of ROTC scholarship applicants are unqualified to serve, but it does give you an idea of how important a medical clearance is before you can be considered for consideration.

    Why Was Flat Feet A Disqualifying Condition

    5 Myths About Joining The Military

    During World War 1 and 2, flat feet was seen as a disqualifying condition for 2 reasons:

  • It was seen as a sign of low class and poor health, and
  • High arches were seen as high class and full of vigor
  • This myth was perpetuated by the fact that many doctors believed it would cause disadvantages for the individual while hiking on long marches.

    While this is true to a certain extent, its only really applicable to those with symptoms.

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    Is Flat Foot A Disqualification In Army All Over The World

    No. Although Indian Army and other Indian armed forces disqualify people with flat feet or over-arched feet, it is not so everywhere in the world.

    A study by Royal Australian Air Force in 2005 proved that the personnel with flat feet are equally effective as their normal feet counterparts. A later study of 449 U.S. Navy special warfare trainees found no significant difference in the incidence of stress fractures among sailors and Marines with different arch heights.

    However, Indian armed forces still follow the practice of not hiring flat feet people. In India, flat feet is not considered a disability.

    If you have more information to share on this topic, please use the comments section. Sharing information is one of the best way to help each other. Thank you for connecting with WeCapable!

    Can You Get Rejected From The Air Force

    You will not be considered for military service if you are under the age of 21 or older. The minimum age for enlisting in any branch of the military is 17, and your parents must consent to you joining. Air Force, Army, and Navy ages vary by one point: 27 for the Air Force, 34 for the Army, and 29 for the Marines.

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    What Are Wide Feet And How Do You Know You Have Them

    Wide feet are not a showstopper when joining the military, contrary to what some might think. Also known as flat feet, postural deformity characterizes the condition. The arches of the feet are flat, leaving your sole almost or entirely touching the floor.

    Some people are born with the condition, which is known as congenital pes planus. Others may develop flat feet in life because of high blood pressure, weak arches, past surgeries on the tibial tendon, diabetes, or obesity, known as acquired pes planus.

    You can do the footprint test at home to discover the type of arch you have.


    • Add some water into a bowl.
    • Insert your feet into the water.
    • Place your foot on a dry surface like the floor or a piece of paper and step off of it.

    If your foot is completely connected, it means you have wide feet.

    Also, you can remove your shoes and stand firm on the floor with your hands against the wall. Then slowly use the tip of your toes to stand. If you do not observe any noticeable arch, then you have flat or wide feet.

    As a medical condition, the podiatrist will help diagnose your flat feet. The medical examination includes procedures such as visual examination, MRI, or X-ray.

    What are wide feet symptoms?

    Most of the people suffering from flat foot syndrome do not show signs of adverse symptoms. Those who suffer from the condition have symptoms like:

    • Back and leg pain
    • Weight loss

    Who cant join the military with wide feet?

    Only people who wear basic inserts can benefit.

    What Will Disqualify You From The Air Force

    Can You Join the Army With Flat Feet? â Footwear Dynamics

    It is possible that you will not be able to join the U.S. due to a variety of medical conditions. Military. Depression, bipolar disorder, epilepsy, heart issues, Aspergers, and PTSD are some of these conditions. The U.S. is generally a good place to live. People from all backgrounds are supported by the Armed Forces.

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    You Need To Take Care Of Your Teeth

    Your dental health is very important when joining the military you cant have too many cavities. According to the International Classification of Disease code, any dental issue that interferes with a normal diet, or includes complex dental implant systems with complications will disqualify you from service. Having braces can also temporarily disqualify you, also.

    Treatments For Flat Feet

    Within your podiatry appointment your podiatrist will watch you walk and run to fully assess your gait style and they will take you through a series of related exercises to assess muscle, tendon and ligament strength such as calf raises and single leg balance. All the exercises will directly relate to foot function to see if there is an area of concern that needs to be directly addressed within a strength and conditioning program. They will also directly assess and test all of your intrinsic foot muscles which are responsible for supporting your medial longitudinal arch. There are exercises that can be prescribed to improve your intrinsic strength such as toe yoga. Your podiatrist will be able to make a program specifically for you. Depending on your gait style, they could look into some form of orthotic intervention. Through the use of an insole, we can improve the position of the foot in order to allow the structures to perform their designed roles and the overall function of the foot. Speak to your podiatrist to see if any of these treatment methods can be applicable to you.

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    Condition #7 Mental Illness

    The military takes mental health pretty seriously. Though it is difficult to cover every single mental illness in detail, for the most part, if there has been an official diagnosis and treatment for a mental illness, joining the U.S. Military may be a challenge.

    It can also present a challenge for current members that are diagnosed with certain mood disorders or behavioral problems after getting enlisted.

    Along with depression, bipolar disorder, and anxiety disorders suicidal thoughts and self-harm are critical factors that are gauged.

    Naturally, the U.S. Military is pretty reluctant to accept anyone with a history of self-harm or suicidal thoughts, regardless of how long ago they occurred.

    Physicians are allowed to exercise some discretion during an examination if they believe previous circumstances, especially one time situations, may be truly in the past and would not impede on their performance in the military moving forward.

    Other mental health concerns that may affect military service include:

    • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
    • Personality disorders: These include things like Paranoid Schizophrenia, Borderline personality disorder, Antisocial personality disorder, and Dependent personality disorder.
    • Eating disorders: Including Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge eating, Pica, and Rumination disorder.
    • Dementia

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