Finding the Right Shoes
Your typical shoe store has dozens of options and finding the right shoes can feel like an impossible task. But it doesn’t have to be overwhelming! This guide will explain the things you should consider when choosing shoes that are right for you.
Shoes and Your Pain
Pain is complex and each person has unique contributions to their pain. Shoes are just one part of the pain equation. You should consider your activity, your history, and the pattern of pain that arises when you are wearing shoes and on your feet. Some health conditions that impact footwear choices may require more advice from a medical practitioner (e.g. diabetes, rheumatic diseases).
Tried and True Tips
The evidence clearly does not support one type of shoe when it comes to pain. Personal preference is more important. While we cannot recommend certain shoes or brands, here are some general tips on how to pick shoes.
Focus on comfort. This seems obvious, but comfort is the most important feature for a shoe.
One shoe does not fit all. No one type of shoe covers all the different sizes and shapes of feet or the different activities that you participate in.
Get properly fitted. Many people are wearing shoes that are too big or too small for them.
Avoid extremes. Avoid extremes for your everyday shoes (e.g very tall high heels).
Match the shoe to the job. If you are on concrete floors all day you may need more cushion or if you are a manual worker you might need more support and protection (e.g. steel toed).
Focus On Taking an Active Role
While finding the right shoes can reduce your pain, it’s important to spend time building habits that tackle bigger contributions to your pain. The following examples are best steps for taking an active role in reducing your pain:
Gradually moving more
Maximizing sleep and balancing stress
Healthy eating and weight loss
Reach out to your coach for great resources to help you move more, reduce your stress, sleep better, and improve your diet.
Shoes are just one part of your pain equation. You should also consider your activity, history, and health conditions when selecting footwear.
There is no one ‘right’ shoe and comfort is the most important feature when selecting shoes. Choose shoes to fit your activity and get fitted for the proper size.
You can build habits that make a bigger contribution to reducing your pain, such as regular movement, better sleep, and stress and weight management.
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