Protect Your Feet From Killer Heels
Ask any woman how many pairs of shoes she owns and chances are she won’t say “oh, just a couple”. Now, ask every woman what they hate the most about their shoes and most will complain about aching feet.
Though many of us would love to go out bare-foot or in our most comfortable pair of sneakers, office dictates often mean heels and proper leather shoes. And even on days off, most women would never leave home without a pair of heels.
The thing is, we won’t caught dead wearing a sloppy pair of rubber flip flops. But the fact is, many of us suffer from foot aches and pains because of one simple mistakes – not choosing our shoes properly. With discounts and sales going on each month, it is easy to forgo comfort to save a dollar or two for more shoes. But what happens is we end up with shoes that do not fit and aches that can get worse if left untreated.
Neglect And Suffer
When it comes to choosing a pair of shoes, there is more to think about than size, color and design. You don’t have to suffer for fashion, especially when it comes to your foot, which comprises of 26 bones, 33 joints, 107 ligaments and 19 muscles.
We neglect the very thing that supports us every day by stuffing them into shoes that are too narrow, too tight and so uncomfortable. It is not surprising then that the American Podiatric Medical Association projects that three in four Americans will have foot health problems at some point in their lives.
Corns, bunions, hammer toes, in-grown toenails, cracked heels, dryness, calluses and more – these are some common problems associated with wearing the wrong shoes.
While many of these conditions can be treated easily by a visit to the doctor, if left untreated the situation can turn ugly. SOmetimes, even surgery is needed. All this can be prevented if you pay attention to what you are slipping your feet into.
The Ideal Pair Of Shoes
Podiatrists recommend 1 ½ to 2 inches heels with padded insoles and plenty of room to wriggle your toes. But there are many other things to look out for when shopping for shoes.
Find The Perfect Fit
For starters, shop in the afternoon to get your ideal fit. Because feet swell up during the day, you will get a better fit instead of one that is too loose or too tight.
Make sure the shoes are long enough so your toes are not squashed. If you are the type to press down on the big toe to see if there is space, stop doing this and press down on your second toe instead. The second toe is often the longest and so you need to make sure there is enough room for it. And don’t forget to check for width. Avoid shoes that are too narrow, as they will constrict blood circulation and cause too much pressure.
Remember that most of us have one foot that is larger than the other, so always check against the larger one to find your perfect fit. Also, don’t expect new shoes to stretch so that you will eventually fit. You should find the perfect pair at first try instead of hoping for the right fit after wearing them a few times.
Don’t pay attention to the sizes displayed on the box. Take them out to try as different cuts and designs may fit you differently. Also, because shoes are made all over the world, a size five here may be completely different from a size five in Europe.
Suss Out The Comfort Zone
Try out shoes in the shop to make sure they feel right and are comfortable. Ensure your heel sits properly in the shoe without it riding up or down each time you walk. Look for good cushioning, after all you don’t want something comfortable and soft to stand in rather than something hard? You can test this by pressing your finger into the ball area of the shoe – it should have a slightly padded feel to indicate sufficient support.
Pay Attention To The Details
Avoid buying shoes made of synthetic material. Instead, pick shoes with leather, suede or fabric uppers. This way, you will lessen your chances of blistering because these are breathable materials.
If you’re looking for heels, make sure they are no more than 2 ¼ inches high to ensure comfort. Keep stilettos for special occasions, because wearing them during work will guarantee aching calves and strained muscles at the end of the day. Wearing heels for a long period can shorten the Achilles tendon and cause you to lose a range of motions in your feet.
Special Shoes For Special Occasions
Make sure you wear the right shoes for the right occasion – if you are exercising or hitting teh courts, invest in a good pair of sports shoes to support the friction you will be experiencing. Also wear a thick pair of socks for additional support.
Don’t Be Cheap
Finally, no matter how cheap the shoes are going for, don’t be thrifty when it comes to comfort. Good shoes can come at a high price, but it is the quality you are paying for. A good pair of shoes will serve you well by ensuring comfort, ease and best of all, ache-free feet.