There is nothing worse than spending a long day at work on your feet, and getting home with terrible foot pain. Picking out the right shoes for work is not only as important as matching your outfit, but making sure your feet will be comfortable throughout the day. Wearing stilettos may be a good idea in the morning, but factor in your walk from the parking garage to your building, getting to your office, and all of your daily walking and by the end of the day you'll want to throw those stilettos down 18 flights of stairs.
"If you don't work with heavy equipment or aren't on your feet a lot, you may think the most important thing to consider when choosing work shoes is how professional they look. But even if you're just walking from meeting to meeting or from the train station to your office, ill-fitting or non-supportive shoes can cause discomfort, injury, and long-term health problems. It's important to make good footwear choices, whatever your profession," said president of the American Podiatric Medical Association Joseph Caporusso, D.P.M..
Here are some tips the APMA recommends when looking for dress shoes that are both professional and comfortable:
- Get your feet professionally fitted. Your shoe size will change over your lifetime, and the size you were when you were 20 may not necessarily be the same size you are when you're 40. Feet should be measured once a year. If you have one foot that is large than the other, go with the larger foot. And get fitted at night, when your feet are at their largest.
- Check to make sure the shoe is supportive. The padding in the sole should be thick under the ball of the foot and conform to your foot's shape. Shoes should only bend at the ball, and should not easily twist.
- Look for natural materials, as man-made materials cause the foot to sweat, rub, and chafe in the shoe.
- Look for the APMA's Seal of Acceptance on certain models of shoes, which means they have been evaluated by podiatrists and found beneficial for your foot's health.
"Women may be especially at risk of footwear-related discomfort. A recent APMA survey found that 53 percent of women experience foot pain. High heels are a must-wear for many female professionals, but can cause discomfort and injury if precautions aren't taken," says Caporusso.
Women who still want to wear heels but are looking to decrease their discomfort should follow these tips:
- Stick to wedges instead of stilettos. The wider heel has better support for the ankle.
- Limit heel height to no more than 2 inches.
- Avoid shoes with pointy toes. Look for shoes with rounded or square toe boxes that provide plenty of room for your toes. If you can't wiggle your toes in pointy shoes, then forgo them.
- Wear your heels for just a few hours during the day. Consider bringing flats or athletic sneakers with you to wear from the car to the office or during lunch time.
- If you're having pain in your back, legs, neck, or shoulders, take a look at your shoes. Extreme heel heights cause changes in pelvic alignment.
Remember, foot pain is not normal and you do not have to suffer! By making good, smart choices in footwear you can avoid many foot ailments your colleagues will face.
If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.
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