Between the holiday parties, and the New Year’s celebrations, our feet may begin to feel like they are working overtime in our fancy party shoes. For those of us who run around all day and are stiletto-ready by the evening, that extra bit of dancing or mingling may take quite a toll on our little toes. Here are some tips and suggestions to get keep those feet swaying through the holidays and into the New Year.
Find a shoe that fits!: As obvious as this may sound, how many of us buy the wrong size shoe for the sake of fashion? Improper fitting shoes (too wide or large) can cause feet to slide, increasing friction. This can lead to corns and callouses. Shoes that are too tight may cause blisters, and in the long term contribute to bunions and hammertoes. There is nothing cute about a woman who is limping in her heels! Get a proper foot measurement and buy shoes more toward day’s end to accommodate for swelling.
Pad and cushion: As we age, we lose fat; unfortunately I’m referring to the fat in our feet. Our natural padding starts to wear away, and we have less natural protection from ground forces. If you are wearing heels, invest in a pair of silicone metatarsal pads. This can be placed in the ball of the foot and can help to simulate your natural cushioning.
Switch shoes: Another obvious tip is to switch shoes throughout the day. For daily commutes, wear sneakers or a supportive cushioned shoe. For evening wear, choose a shoe that has built in padding or add a thin insole. Keep the high heel wearing to a minimum, carry an extra pair of flats, and switch, switch!
Choose the right heel: The heels are getting higher and higher. The higher the pitch, the more strain we are putting on our feet, ankles and other joints. Many high heels have raised platforms in the front of the shoe. This platform actually decreases the pitch angle. If high heels are the only option, try choosing one that has one of these front platforms. In general, platform shoes provide more stability than a regular high heel.
Boots over stilettos: I prefer wearing a fashionable boot over a stiletto. They can be just as sexy, if not more, and fashionable. Boots provide more ankle stability than a typical stiletto and it may be easier to accommodate for an orthotic or insole. Look for those that have a rubber soled bottom. That little extra stability may be the extra boost you need to carry you from a busy day into wee hours of the night.