The Right Style
Choosing the right style
We wear shoes for many different reasons - for working, for walking, for exercise, for fun, for style & fashion. But whenever you buy a pair of shoes, one factor should matter above all others: comfort.
Whatever you’re doing, if your shoes are uncomfortable, then it’s wrong. It might be that you have a problem with your foot, in which case you should seek advice from a healthcare professional. But it might be that you’re simply wearing the wrong type of shoes for the activity your undertaking. So, your first consideration before buying any pair of shoes is: what are you going to be doing in them?
If they’re for work
Many people are on their feet all the working day. In this case practicality is paramount. Your shoes should be comfortable and well-fitting (See Making sure your shoes are a perfect fit). Thick, flexible, man-made soles are more comfortable than thin or leather soles as they help cushion the impact of your feet with the ground when walking, particularly on hard surfaces. Also think of your working conditions. Indoors or outdoors, wet or dry, hot or cold – always invest in shoes that fits the bill.
If you’re walking
Imagine a pleasant walk in the country. What do your feet need? They need room so that they don’t rub – on top, the sides, at the heel - but not so much that they move too much. A gap of approximately 1cm from the end of your longest toe (which isn’t always your big toe) to the front of your shoe is ideal. As for material, hard-wearing leather uppers are best as they not only mould to the shape of your foot over time, but they also help keep your feet cool and reduce perspiration. To help stop your feet moving about, lace fastenings are best as they can be adjusted to your needs.
If you’re exercising
Whether it’s in a gym, on the road or around the house, comfort is vital to avoid unnecessary injuries and painful problems such as corns, bunions and calluses. There is a wide variety of shoes to choose from depending on your type of exercise or sport, so always make sure you choose appropriate footwear.
If you’re wearing high heels
The main reason that high heels have such enduring appeal is the way they change the appearance, giving extra height, making people look slimmer and the calf more shapely. Legs look longer, feet look smaller and the arch curves more gracefully making women feel more sensual and sexy. Unfortunately, they can have their drawbacks, pain being the most obvious one.
This is because the foot is designed for walking flat. High heels change the foot’s function and performance. Perhaps the most significant change is the increase in weight and pressure on the forefoot, which can lead to a burning sensation. To help avoid this problem, you should treat the purchase of high heels as you would any other shoe.
Try to choose styles with straps around the ankle, rather than slip-on styles, as the straps reduce instability. When choosing and wearing high heels, there are a few simple ways to reduce the chance of health problems. (See Making sure your shoes are a perfect fit)
A safe, affordable and effective solution to the burning pain that can occur is to wear padding under the balls of the feet, such as Scholl Party Feet.
However, burning sensations in the ball of the foot can be a symptom of more serious conditions. If the discomfort does not disappear a short time after removing high-heel shoes, or if it is present when wearing low heels or flat shoes, or when walking barefoot, you should seek advice from a healthcare professional.