Why Do Shoes Matter?
You walk on your feet every day, forcing them to support the weight on your body. Repeated stress on your feet can cause damage over time. The right shoes can help protect your feet. The wrong shoes may cause more problems. Women are more prone to foot problems because fashions such as high heels and pointed toes put pressure on the foot.
But men’s shoe can also cause problems, such as, blisters, corns, and calluses. The right shoes are needed at every age. Children need shoes that fit well for healthy foot growth. Older people need good shoes to support their feet and prevent trips and falls. Read on to find out how you can choose a better shoe!
Choosing the right shoe
A good shoe has features that provide comfort and support. It must also be the right size and shape for your feet. Look for a shoe made of breathable fabric and lining, such as leather or canvas. Be sure that shoes have enough tread to prevent slipping. Go to a good shoe store for help finding the right shoe.
Good shoe Features
An ideal shoe has the following:
· Laces for support. If tying laces us a problem for you, try Velcro fasteners or buckles.
· A toe box with ½ inch space in front of your toes.
· An arch shape that supports your foot.
· No more than 1 ½ inches of heel.
· A stiff, snug heel counter to control motion.
· A smooth lining with no rough seams.
Knowing Your Foot Shape
Once you know what features to look for, you are well on your way to picking the right shoe. To get a good fit, you need to know how to shape your foot. Do this simple test: While standing, place your foot on a piece of paper and trace around it. See it the shape matches more closely straight (rectus) or curved (adductus) If you have a foot problem such as a bunion, your foot outline will show a bulge in that area.
Finding You Fit
Bring your foot outline to the store. Find a shoe with good features. Turn it over. Does the shoe shape match your outline? If so, place it on top of your outline. A proper shoe should cover the outline. (If you have a bunion, the shoe may not cover the bulge on the outline. Look for soft leather shoes to stretch over the bunion.) Once you’ve found the proper shoe, walk around. Be sure it does not rub or pinch. If the shoe feels good, you’ve found your fit!
Shoe shopping Tips
· Select the shoes that feel right. Wear them around the house. Then bring them to your foot doctor to check for fit. If they don’t fit well, return them.
· Go shoe shopping later in the day, when your feet will be slightly bigger.
· Each time you buy shoes, have both of your feet measured while you are standing. Shoe size changes in time.
· Pick shoes that suit their purpose. High heels are okay for an occasional night on the town. But for everyday wear, choose a more sensible shoe.
· Try on shoes while wearing your inserts or orthoses.
· Try on both the right and left shoes. If your feet are different sizes, pick a pair that fits the larger foot.
· Don’t go by shoe size. Always try on shoes, as sizes differ from brand to brand and within brands.
· Don’t expect shoes to “break in.” If they don’t fit at the store, don’t buy them.
· Don’t buy a shoe that doesn’t match your foot shape.
What About Socks?!
Always wear socks with shoes. Socks help absorb sweat and reduce friction and blistering. When shopping, choose soft, padded socks with seams that don’t irritate your feet.
If you have foot Problems
Some foot problems cause deformities. This can make it hard to find a good fit. Look for shoes made of soft leather to stretch over the deformity. If you have bunions, buy shoes with a wider toe box. To fit hammer toes, look for shapes with a tall toe box. If you have arch problems, you may need inserts. In some cases, you may need to have custom footwear or insert (orthotics) made for your feet.