At the Chelsea clinic we can quite confidently say that if you wear well fitted and supportive footwear foot problems would half by 50%.
- A good mattress
- a good pair of shoes
- a good work chair
will remedy many musculoskeletal aches and pains!
It is recommended we have our feet measured by a professional foot fitter:
We like a simple sizing guide as provided by Ascent Footwear:
Measurements should take place whilst standing to accommodate the natural spread of bony and soft tissues with our body weight evenly distributed across the length and breadth of both our feet. It is quite normal to have one foot slightly larger and measurements should be made to the larger foot.
We always recommend that socks are worn to provide a cleaner environment and provide another layer of support. If seams or sock stictching feels uncomfortable sometimes just turning socks inside out can remedy this. Seamless and / or sensitive socks made specially for the diabetic or rheumatoid patient can also be very helpful:
Here are some of criteria as set out by the Society of shoe fitters to look out for when buying your next pair of shoes:
From the longest toe to the end of your shoe there should be another half inch to accommodate and this should be reflected in the SIZE of your shoes you select. The WIDTH and DEPTH should be broad enough from measuring the outside of your first toe to the outside of your fifth toe with a toe box deep enough to allow your toes ‘wiggle’ room. As podiatrists we like either lace ups, or velcro secured at the instep level to support the foot firmly within the shoe.
Well-made shoes are designed with REMOVABLE INSOLES, especially helpful for those who require prescriptive customised orthoses. The back part of the shoe supporting the heel bone also known as the HEEL COUNTER should be firm. A maximum of a one and a quarter inch heel is recommended with a thick heel to provide more dissipation of force as oppose a narrow heel base. The SOLE should provide good grip and shock absorption, if it is too flexible whereby we can easily bend the shoe in the middle? Then this is not the shoe for us.
The clue is in the name ‘Slip ons’ and ‘flip flops’ hence slip and flop are not well-designed footwear leading to excessive use of our intrinsic foot muscles and overworking of the lesser toes, which, over time can contribute to lesser toe deformities.
If we can incorporate as many of the above features into our daily footwear we at the Chelsea clinic are certain you will have much happier feet able to bring back that spring in your step.
For more information we recommend:
- Ascent (2021). Ascent footwear technology. Available at: https://www.ascentfootwear.com.au/page/technology [Accessed 27/10/2021].
- The British footwear association (2021). Our mission. Available at: https://britishfootwearassociation.co.uk [Accessed 25/10/2021]
- Children’s Foot Health Register (2021). The children’s foot health register. Available at: http://www.fitkidsshoes.org/ [Accessed 27/10/2021].
- Diabetes Uk (2021). Moving more to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. Available at: https://www.diabetes.org.uk/preventing-type-2-diabetes/move-more [Accessed 21/10/2021].
- Farndon, L., Robinson, V., Nicholls, E. et al. If the shoe fits: development of an on-line tool to aid practitioner/patient discussions about ‘healthy footwear’. J Foot Ankle Res 9, 17 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13047-016-0149-2
- Healthy footwear guide (2021). Healthy footwear guide. Available at: https://www.healthy-footwear-guide.com/ [Accessed 22/10/2021].
- The Royal college of podiatry (2021). Foot problems. Available at: https://rcpod.org.uk/patient-information/walking/blisters [Accessed 27/10/2021].
- The Society of Shoe fitters (2021). About us. Available at: http://www.shoefitters-uk.org/ [Accessed 25/10/2021].
- Vernon, W, Borthwick, A.M, Walker et al. Expert Group Criteria for the recognition of healthy footwear. British Journal of Podiatry 10, 4: 127–133 (2007).