On hot summer days, many of us slip into a pair of flip-flops or open-toed sandals to let our feet breathe a little. Others take advantage of the warm weather to wear more fashion-forward shoes — like high heels or ballet flats. But summer footwear doesn’t always provide good arch support for your feet, particularly when you’re spending hours outside enjoying the sunshine.
An afternoon at a music festival or a playground visit with the kids can be interrupted by foot pain when your footwear is inadequate. In some cases, your choice of shoes can even affect other parts of your body, like your back or neck.
Avoid foot pain this summer with these tips:
Match Your Footwear to Your Activity
It probably goes without saying that shoes are designed for different purposes. If you’re running or hiking, you need shoes made specifically for those sports. If you’re heading to a music festival in the park, walking the dog, or doing other activities that involve walking, pick comfortable walking shoes.
Purchase Shoes with Proper Arch Support
All shoes should support the instep of your foot (known as the longitudinal arch) and the arch along the ball of your foot (the metatarsal arch). If you’ll be standing for long periods of time, make sure your footwear has a lot of cushioning. It may be tricky to find sandals with good arch support, but it’s possible. Unfortunately, flip-flops and other open-toed sandals are unlikely to have the support your feet need.
Special Shoes for Special Occasions
There’s no need to throw out the four-inch stilettos if you’re not in pain right now. But to avoid pain, keep them for special occasions and avoid walking or standing in them for long periods of time. Perhaps this means wearing them to the restaurant and window shopping later on in the walking shoes you’ve left in the car.
Don’t Ignore the Pain
If you’re in pain or discomfort, a physiotherapist can provide relief through a variety of techniques, including: myofascial release, intramuscular stimulation, exercises, stretches and more. At Summit Physiotherapy, you may also receive acupuncture treatments.
Most of the time, foot pain will go away with a change of shoes and some rest. But if you’re still suffering, contact us. No physician’s referral is needed and services may be covered by your health insurance.