At Foot Solutions, we love the internet as much as the next person.
Virtually any product you want, or information you need is usually instantly available at the click of a mouse or an on-screen button.
However, there is one product we strongly recommend that you don’t buy online – footwear.
As the Society of Shoe Fitters rightly point out, footwear is the only item of clothing that can seriously damage your health. Ill-fitting or inappropriate footwear can directly lead to painful, long-term foot issues that include; arthritis, plantar fasciitis, bunions, hammer toes and more.
It’s not just foot health that is at risk. Because footwear influences the way we walk, it affects our entire physiology and can cause unnatural wear on the important joints in the body.
It is therefore important that before you make a shoe purchase the following checks are made.
Ensure that both feet are accurately measured for length and width by a trained consultant or specialist. There are several different internationally-recognised shoe size standards and within each standard, sizes are often interpreted very differently by shoe manufacturers.
Also, fitting gauges vary in calibration so that no two gauges will measure the same. This is why it is important to use a qualified shoe fitter who can interpret the correct shoe for the shape of the foot. What it says on the fitting gauge may not be the size or fitting you actually require, it is only a starting point.
During the foot measurement and assessment stage, a trained shoe fitter will be able to advise regarding the need for additional support in terms of custom arch supports.
A qualified shoe fitter will also check that shoes are:
- Properly constructed to support your feet and body weight
- Appropriate to your gait and lifestyle
This doesn’t mean that quality footwear has to look old-fashioned and frumpy. Far from it. There are many good brands which can be relied upon to provide shoe that are well-made, comfortable and stylish. An experienced shoe fitter can advise which brands are most relevant to your needs and circumstances.
Try Before You Buy
It is essential that you try footwear on before purchasing in order to achieve a good and comfortable fit. Remember, shoes are not supposed to hurt and you don’t have to endure months of agony to wear them in. A good quality well-fitted shoe will be comfortable from the outset.
None of the above checks are possible online.
If you would like any further advice or information, please contact the store and speak to one of our highly-trained consultants