We’ve waited all year to spring our feet free from boots and give them the exhilarating feeling of light & airy sandals and flip flops! Along with going to the beach, checking out your favorite sporting event, or hanging out with family and friends at a backyard BBQ, it’s time to update your summer footwear. Buying sandals and flip flops just because they’re “hot” or “cute” is a big mistake. Sacrificing fashion for foot health can lead to chronic problems such as corns, callouses, and even foot and lower back pain, according to the American Podiatric Medical Association. Check out these 3 easy tips on how to buy summer sandals that are super comfortable AND healthy for your feet.
Buy the Right Size Shoe
You should have a little space at the end of the footbed so your heel isn’t hanging off the end of the shoe. This is particularly true for flip flops. On the other hand, if the shoe is too big, your foot will slosh around putting undue strain on the tiny bones and joints in your feet. Remember that in the heat, your feet will swell slightly, so be sure to leave a little bit of wiggle room. Comfort and fit reign supreme in buying footwear. It’s always a good idea to go to a store where you can try on shoes and get the expert advice from a shoe salesperson so you can be well informed about buying the perfect shoe for your feet. Following these 3 basic shopping tips will set you up for a fun, enjoyable summer and prevent you from suffering from unnecessary foot problems.
It’s All About Arch Support
Sandals are designed to look good and feel good, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re good for your feet. Because sandals and flip flops are designed to be lighter in weight, and more flexible, sometimes the arch support goes missing in action. Arch support is critical to maintain good foot health, relief, and comfort. Choose sandals or flip flops that have a more pronounced arch support. According to leading Podiatrist Dr. Steven Rosenberg, greater arch support shoes are “anatomically designed to support arch muscles while shifting weight away from the forefoot.” Your feet and your body will pay you back dividends for giving them the anatomical support they need.
The Well-Heeled Shoe
Flip flops and sandals are summer’s hottest hits, and a little heel or wedge will help take some of the pressure off your feet. Wearing shoes that are too flat put undue strain on your heels, achilles, and back. The American Podiatric Medical Association, (APMA), recommends a heel or wedge “no more than 3/4″ for women” and “adequate cushioning to ease pressure on feet.” The APMA’s website recommends sandals from companies like Vionic and Fit Flop. Also for your consideration are other cushioned, arch-supported sandals and flip flops such as Olukai and Oofos. In addition, check out great waterproof or water resistant choices from Jambu (for kids), Keen, and Merrell, (also available in kids and mens). Happy Summer and Happy Feet!