Footwear Advice

Wearing the right shoes for your feet is important; it reduces the risk of injury, prevents sore feet and can make walking, running and standing all day easier. Having sore feet and legs is not normal, so if the shoe doesn’t fit you properly, don’t wear it!

Helpful hints when buying shoes:

  • Sizing varies with different brands and styles of shoes and so the size marked on the shoes should be used as a guide only. Try the shoes on when standing as feet elongate and spread. Insufficient toe room can result in nail problems and affect stability. Ensure the shoe fits the longest of your two feet and approximately 1-2cm of room beyond the longest toe is available.
  • Laces are preferred because they help to keep the foot back in the heel counter of the shoe, providing support at the rear-foot and reducing forward pressure on the forefoot.
  • A broad toe box helps to prevent lateral compression (i.e. squeezing of the toes). If the shoe is too shallow, this causes pressure on the toes which can lead to blisters and the formation of corns, calluses and ingrown toe nails.
  • Forefoot bend occurs at the ball of the feet and allows the foot to toe-off at the end of a step. Footwear should bend only at the ball of the foot where the toes bend and not through the arch or the middle of the foot.
  • A shoe with a low heel is preferable (i.e. 10mm to 25mm). Increased heel height ultimately affects the entire body as shifts the body’s centre of gravity, causing strain on the posterior (back) compartments of your legs and lower back.
  • To obtain the best fit, try shopping for shoes later in the afternoon as feet may tend to swell slightly during the day.
  • Try shoes on with the thickness of socks or stockings you would normally wear them with. If you have been provided with orthotics or innersoles by your podiatrist make sure you try them inside the shoe.
  • If you are still unsure about stability of footwear, ask your podiatrist to check them for you before wearing your new shoes.footwear1

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