Stay on Your Toes

Don’t be defeated by foot pain—these improvements can help

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Size Matters—The Right Size
Just because you wore a size 7 shoe when you were 16 doesn’t mean you’re still a size 7 decades later, Concilus says. “Like everything else, when we age, the foot falls and drops—and it has to go somewhere,” she says. Women often remain in shoes that are now too short while many men wear their shoes both too short and too wide, she says.
An accurate measurement is critical, she notes. A measuring machine can determine that you’re an 8 medium, but won’t tell you that your instep (that’s the bones on top of your foot) is high and you need to go up to a wider width to accommodate that, she says. A professional fitting can determine if you have a high or flat arch and other issues.

Weak Ankles Mean No Sling Back Shoes
If your ankles are weak, sling back shoes aren’t for you, Concilus says. You need a shoe with more support in the back. Also, if you’re wearing lace up shoes, make sure you lace them up tightly instead of leaving them loose and then slipping in and out, she says.

Footnote: Real Leather is Best
If you have problem feet, go for shoes made out of quality leather or a good stretch fabric, Concilus says. Why? The stretch factor. For example, if you have a hammertoe, a good shoe fitter can lift and stretch the toe box on the pumps you’re buying so it will accommodate that bad toe, she says.

The end result: happy feet.

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