When you go shoe buying there are many things to consider. The selection process for children, women, men and athletes all differ because each have different shoe requirements which vary due to their activity.
As a child develops their walking capabilities it is not necessary to place them into shoes immediately. This will allow the feet to grow normally and develop strength. Once children are placed in shoes, close monitoring is needed to ensure that there is room for the child’s foot to grow. Shoes that have rubber soles are better than thin soled shoes due to a better ability to cushion their walk.
This is literally a sore subject with women. Although you want to have beautiful fashionable shoe, function and comfort need to be taken into consideration. Most of women’s foot problems are from shoes with heels of greater than 2 inches. This is because these shoes bring then entire weight of the body on the ball of the foot instead of dispersing the weight evenly through out the foot. Also it promotes muscle imbalances and postural problems. The solution, like all other things, is moderation. Alternate comfortable flats or sneakers with your high heels, during the day. Another method would be to wear shorter heeled shoes one day and wear the higher heeled shoe the next day and continue alternating. If you know you will be walking excessively on a particular day consider wearing your flats with adequate support in them. The best shoe for a women, from a podiatric standpoint, is a walking shoe with laces, with a wider heel and a rigid and padded heel counter, no more than ½ to ¾ of an inch in height.
The best shoes for men are good quality oxfords. Slip ons, dressy loafers and sneakers are also great shoes.
Shoes for Work
Men and women who have office jobs should consider using 3-5 different pairs of shoes which are appropriate for the level of activity they are performing that day. These shoes should be alternated daily and chosen for increased comfort on days that you will be on your feet entirely. Industrial workers need special shoes or boots that have safety in mind. This protective foot gear should be waterproof and have an insulated steel toe cap. Also the sole of the shoe should be made of materials that do not conduct electricity.
Shoes for Athletes
There are very specific shoes made for various types of sports and activities. The athlete should choose wisely as this is an investment to allow continued safe athleticism. Improper shoes can lead to injury and can keep you from performing. One rule of thumb that applies to all athletes is not to continue wearing a shoe that is not in good repair. This can accelerate an injury to occur. Our recommendations are chose the shoe that is appropriate for the activity. Most shoe manufacturers have online catalogs now a specify the activity that the shoe is designed for. For example tennis shoes are made to be more supportive of the ankle to permit sudden stops and turns. Running shoes are made to accommodate the high impact of forefoot contact during running. Walking shoes should be lightweight and have a firm heel counter. The front of most athletic shoes should be flexible so there is plenty of room for toes to move around. There are some exceptions to this including shoes for soccer players and football players.
More shoe buying tips
- Have your feet measured to ensure proper fitting shoes. Most foot problems arise from shoes that are the incorrect size.
- Always try shoes on and walk around with them to ensure comfort.
- Most peoples left and right feet are not the same size. Therefore buy the shoe size of the larger sized foot.
- There is no break in period for shoes. They should be comfortable immediately
- Try to buy shoes later in the day. Feet tend to swell toward the end of the day and it is better to buy shoes when feet are at their largest size.
- Make sure all aspects of the shoe fit well.
- Make sure the shoes have enough room for your toes to wiggle while you are standing in them.
- Select a shoe that has good cushioning, a stiff heal counter, and flexibility only at the ball of the foot. It should be flexible there because this is the only part of the foot that bends. So if the shoe bends at the arch area, it is not a good shoe.
- Try on shoes with either socks or stockings.