Wow, what a weekend it was to get out in the yard and catch up. Are your shoes ready for your feet? We all have the tendency to cycle the oldest shoes to do the dirtiest job. Somehow we just don’t want to let go of a good old pair of shoes. Happy feet can be the upshot of using the following principles when purchasing and wearing shoes.

  • The average life of an athletic shoe is 400-600 miles. While the shoe may not look worn, the midsole of the shoe that provides the shock absorption will no longer give you the protection you need. After this point, it is time to replace your shoes.
  • The older the shoe the more likely you’ll have worn out the heels and sole beneath the ball of your foot. Plus, the upper portion of the shoe may become distorted. Once this happens, you may develop pain in the ball of the foot or pain in the middle to rearfoot or ankle.
  • A shoe should bend in the ball and not in the middle, and have a very stable heel counter where the back of the shoe covers the heel. As the shoe ages, it will flex too much in the ball and further toward the arch.  The heel counter may also become floppy.  You may develop inflammation at the base of your toes or pain in the arch or below the ankle.
  • Have your feet measured before you purchase new shoes. It’s not uncommon for people to buy the same size shoes they have always worn. As we age, our feet do get longer and may get wider. Keep in mind, there should be at least an index finger of width between your longest toe and the end of the shoe.
  • You probably know that removable inserts usually come with your shoes. Often they have little arch support and inadequate shock absorption. Adding inserts like Powerstep, Spenco, or Superfeet can remedy this problem and prevent injuries to the arch and the ball of the foot.

So, enjoy the beautiful days upon us in Seattle. Follow these easy steps and you may avoid landing in my Seattle podiatry office on a Monday morning with a new foot complaint!

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