By Dustin Reinbold, PT

•Licensed Physical Therapist

•Certified Athletic Trainer

•Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist

•APTA Certified Clinical Instructor


We all know that standing and walking on hard surfaces can cause fatigue and pain.  That’s why picking the right shoe is important.  Here are a few tips when picking out new shoes:

  1. Everyone thinks soft-soled shoes will feel good on their feet, but actually it will lead to more pain and problems.  Your feet actually need a balance between support and cushion.  I recommend a stiff-soled shoe with a soft or semi-soft insert.  This way you get the support you need from the sole and cushion/shock absorption from the insert.  To find a stiff-soled shoe, pick up the shoe and try bending it.  It should bend just behind the toes, but not at the arch.  Also, twist the shoe.  It should feel stiff and not twist much.
  2. Now that you have a good sole, look at the arch of the shoe.  The shoe’s arch should come up to meet your arch.  If you are flat-footed, you still need good arch support to help support your foot and relieve arch pain. 
  3. Next, you need a solid area around your heel to lock your foot in and prevent your foot from sliding around.
  4. Make sure the toe box is wide enough and have the sales person measure your feet to make sure you get the correct size.
  5. Look for shoes that have good tread or anti-slip material.
  6. Try the shoes on and make sure they feel stiff and supportive, but not uncomfortable.  To make sure the shoe is holding your foot in a neutral position, look down at the front of your ankle and make sure it is in the middle of the shoe and not allowing your foot to roll in or out.
  7. If you like the shoe, but it doesn’t have enough arch support, try putting in a different insert or arch support.
  8. Finally, you can get more life out of your shoes by rotating your shoes daily or even at your lunch break.  You can also buy new inserts to replace your old inserts until it is time to buy new shoes.

Madonna Fit For Work's injury prevention services aim to reduce workplace injuries by identifying risks and educating employees to stay safe and healthy. For more information, call 402.420.0002 or click here.