Foot Therapy: Preventing Foot Pain When Walking
There really is not much worse than heading out in a new pair of shoes and then being hit with foot pain. Here at Rieker, we’ve already spoken about after walking recovery tips, but how about prevention? After all, prevention is always better than cure, right?
Whether you’re heading out on a hardcore hike or simply exploring the local area on a weekend, join us as we run through how to prevent foot pain when walking.
Make sure your shoes or boots are a good fit
The most common cause of foot pain is actually quite simple – ill-fitting shoes! Shoes that are too big or too small are just asking for foot pain, so take your time and make sure you’re investing in shoes that fit you properly.
Well-fitted shoes should leave enough wiggle room for your toes; shoes that are too small will force your feet into an uncomfortable position, leading to pain in toes or cramp when walking. However, shoes should not be so big that the heel lifts and moves as you walk, as this can not only lead to blisters, but to potential trips or falls should your feet slip out.
Make sure your feet have been properly measured, and always try out your new footwear first at home before heading out on a long walk, to ensure it fits comfortably.
Choose footwear with a removable footbed for your own orthotics
If you find yourself with regular foot pain, particularly pain in the ball of the foot while walking, it is worth visiting your doctor or physical therapist to be fitted for custom orthotics such as heel inserts and foot pads. You can also purchase inserts from your local pharmacy.
You can then opt for shoes with removable footbeds which can be replaced with your own custom orthotics for the ultimate in comfort.
Wear socks to cushion your feet
During any walking, but particularly on longer hikes, it is vital that you’re kitted out with not only comfortable shoes but with comfortable socks too. Your socks should be breathable, yet thick enough to provide a good level of cushioning. This will not only help minimise the direct impact on your feet when walking but will also act as a barrier against potential blisters.
Avoid high heels
Anyone who has ever worn high heels understands the pain often associated with them. Wearing a high pair of heels – particularly with a thinner, stiletto heel – forces the front of your foot to hold the full weight of your body. Additionally, heels hold your feet in an unnatural position, which will quickly cause pain in the arches of your feet.
When it comes to comfort, a pair of flat shoes or sandals are always the best choice. However, if you do want to opt for heels;
- Try not to wear heels on days when you will be on your feet for long periods of time. Also try not to wear heels every day, and be sure to give your feet a good period of rest between wears.
- Opt for a shorter heel of around 2 inches.
- Look for shoes with a chunkier, block heel or a wedge, rather than a stiletto. Wider heels are not only much easier to walk in but will balance the weight of your body, taking the pressure off the front of your feet.
Of course, with foot pain, it all comes mostly down to the footwear you wear. For men’s shoes and women’s shoes that prioritise comfort while remaining stylish, look no further than the Rieker collection. From comfortable walking shoes and men’s slip-on shoes through to fashion-forward sandals and womens trainers, you’re sure to discover your new footwear go-to.