Foot Files: Investigating FBI Agent Injuries
Posted by Jenn F. on Monday, January 21st, 2013
Crime dramas starring FBI agents are a huge part of American television culture. Num3ers, The X Files, Criminal Minds, The Wire… they all glorify the G-man. As an avid crime show watcher I feel like I know how an FBI office works. You get cases, investigate, follow procedure, have shoot-‘em-ups with bad guys, and give hot pursuit when the bad guys flee. Obviously, there’s a lot more to it than that. Like any job, it’s the daily grind that makes or breaks most agents. The training is hard, the hours are long, and at the end of the day there are always more bad guys on the streets. But I think the agents’ feet are the real victims.
Let’s take a look at the shoes. “As representatives of the FBI around the world, agents are expected to dress and act professionally. This does not mean that all agents have to wear the stereotypical dark suit with a white, starched shirt. Agents perform many different roles that require different kinds of attire.” So, contrary to what the networks would have us believe, female FBI agents probably aren’t teetering on high heels. In real life, Agent Scully wouldn’t be chasing suspects down a long dark alley in a pencil skirt and stilettos. (There probably wouldn’t be a whole department dedicated to investigating the paranormal either, but that’s neither here nor there.) Instead, agents are encouraged to wear comfortable, professional shoes suited to the task at hand. This bodes well for their feet, at least when it comes to shoe-related injury. But FBI agents are athletes and fighting crime is an extreme sport.
And what about the suspect chase? No matter how great your shoes are, sprinting, vaulting over chain link fences, and navigating inner-city obstacle courses puts your feet in danger. Additionally, in 2010, 53,469 law enforcement officers were assaulted while performing their duties. Injuries are common and they’re dangerous. A foot injury can bring an abrupt end to a foot-based pursuit. And a distraction in the field can be mortally dangerous. Seeking immediate care is the best way to stay safe in the field. Fortunately, FBI agents have excellent government health insurance! Contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine for a consultation and treatment at the first sign of injury.
FBI agents are considered leaders in the law enforcement community. This means they are required to meet stringent standards. They have to be in excellent physical condition, and must endure extensive training and testing. Being in excellent physical shape is more good news for the feet, since good conditioning helps to prevent exercise-related injury (like stress fractures, ankle sprains, and plantar fasciitis). But for agents who aren’t in great shape before training, these overuse injuries may be of concern. Preparing for training by building up strength and stamina will help protect prospective agents from foot problems down the road.
If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine. Dr. Josef J. Geldwert, Dr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.