Battalion Chiropody

Foot care is vital for everyone, and no more so than our Armed Forces.

In the first World War, it was called Battalion Chiropody.

Ernest Runting, who happens to be the founder of our professional body, The Royal College of Podiatry, instigated measures to ensure basic foot care was available to troops at home and on the front.

Records, held in The Royal College of Podiatry archives, show a ward round book detailing chiropody treatments provided for wounded British and Belgium soldiers between 1914 and 1918.

The details in the book show that the Battalion Chiropodists dealt with foot concerns such as corns, severe callus (hard skin), Ingrowing toenails, hyperhydrosis (wet/sweaty feet), problems relating to "tight army boots", frostbite, chilblains, and trench foot.

Battalion Chiropodists were formally trained and often went on the practice the profession after the war had ended.

Helen & Fran x

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