Proper Footwear

Proper footwear can improve your posture, eliminate discomfort and prevent injury.

Footwear must:

  • Fit comfortably and according to the shape of your foot
  • Provide adequate foot support, particularly in the arches
  • Promote normal distribution of weight throughout the foot
  • Protect the foot from injury (trauma, burns, chemicals)
  • Provide a clean, dry and ventilated environment for the feet

General guidelines for choosing proper footwear:

  • The shoe must have a low, wide-based heel and well fitting heel cup
  • The shoe must grip the heel firmly
  • The shape and body of the shoe must be maintained – you should not feel like you are “walking out
    of your shoes”
  • The sole should be non-slip and assist in shock absorption
  • Use shock-absorbing insoles if your job requires prolonged walking or standing on hard doors
  • The toe box must be wide enough to allow for freedom of toe movement
  • The mid-shoe should enclose around the foot comfortably
  • The shoe must have a fastening across the instep to prevent the foot from slipping when walking

Tips for buying shoes to wear at work:

  • Buy shoes late in the afternoon when feet are likely to be swollen to their maximum size (wear
    appropriate socks)
  • Have both feet measured and buy the shoes that fit the larger foot (feet normally differ in size)
  • Walk in the shoes, making sure your foot is comfortable and adequately supported, the midsole of the
    shoe allows your foot to bend, the heel is stable and there is no internal stress
  • Choose footwear based on usage, activity and for protection against environmental hazards
  • Caution should be taken with a steel toe cap – the edge of the cap must not cut into the top of the foot
  • Watch for wear and tear – replace shoes on a regular basis