Choosing shoes – Tips from a Podiatrist!

Footwear directly impact the way you walk, run, and function. The right shoes can reduce pain and improve foot function, however the wrong pair can also be the cause of pain. Everyone’s feet are different and they change drastically over the course of a lifetime. A friends footwear recommendation or favourite pair might not be the best choice for you!

Some key points to remember when trying shoes:

  1. Consider the need / activity: Do you need extra protection in the workplace, cushioning for running or stability for unstable terrain?
  2. Compare shape: Is the shoe shaped like your foot? You may be able to squeeze into a pointy toed shoe but at what cost to your long term foot health…
  3. Check flex: typically we want a shoe that bends at the ‘ball of foot’ allowing your foot to propel you efficiently with each step.
  4. Check length & width: If you can pull out the innersole and stand on it, check that you can just see edge of innersole at widest part of foot and that you have at a thumb’s width in front of longest toe.
  5. Try them on and test them out: Take a few steps in the shoes to make sure they feel comfortable and don’t pinch or rub against your skin. You should also make sure the shoes don’t slip off or feel unstable.

It is important to wear shoes that are not only appropriate and comfortable, but look good as well. If you’re struggling to find a pair fit for purpose your local Podiatrist can assess your feet and provide in depth footwear advice.

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