Toe (too) often, the shoes we wear just don’t cut it. The new ones may not fit right, create blisters or calluses, push or squeeze the foot in just the wrong places. To ease these common problems follow these tips, and your day might just be that much better.
- The shoe has to fit. And by fit, we mean both in length and width. Otherwise, it’s like walking in clown shoes and will potentially cause a trip or a fall. Additionally, too much room in the shoe, allows the foot to slide in it, producing blisters, calluses, and toenail trauma. Proper length; There should never be more than a fingertip of space in the front of the shoe. Proper width; sides of the shoe should ‘touch’ but ‘not push’ on the sides of the foot.
- If you have an orthotic, remove the insert in the shoe. Always try on your shoes with your orthotic. If you don’t have an orthotic, don’t just buy one in the store. Read our blog about shoe inserts and orthotics, the right choice makes a big difference.
- Check the size. Don’t just go based on the size of the last shoe. The plus 1 or ½ is an assumption that you can’t afford. You already know that when you try on the 16-inch neck shirt, none are actually 16 inches, and the same is true for women’s clothing. A medium in one garment might be a small in the next. Timing is important – shop in the afternoon. Everyone’s feet swell as the day progresses, so if you bought the shoes in the morning, there’s a high chance they will be tight and uncomfortable when you actually use them.
- Get the shoe that’s made for the activity. There is a reason we have basketball shoes, tennis shoes, golf shoes, and baseball cleats, just to name a few. They all have very different properties, and rightfully so.
- Try shoes on with the type of sock they will be used with. If you have a dress sock, you can’t try on a sneaker, so bring the appropriate socks with you to the store. Pick the proper socks. Just because one pair says athletic socks on the label doesn’t mean it has any athletic properties. Stay away from the cottons – they lock in sweat and promote rash and fungus. Instead, you want wicking socks for athletic activities. Materials with wicking properties move the moisture away from the body, minimizing moisture and heat-related problems including blisters and fungal growth.
Of course, our choice of shoes is not the only cause of foot troubles. So if your feet and legs feel tired at the end of the day, or you have pain or other foot and ankle issues, then visit your podiatrist for proper care.
Ari Rubinstein DPM
Return to Activity That’s Our Goal; Stronger, Faster, Smarter Healing