Measure your feet: 5 tips for getting it right

Feet in the snow


Having a day dedicated to feet might seem like an odd idea. Think however, about the hammering our feet take on our behalf. By the time you are 50 your feet are likely to have walked 75,000 miles!

When was the last time you had your feet measured?

One piece of research we found [external link] suggested that 3 out of 4 people have not had their feet measured since they were at school!

Our feet actually change as we grow older

Not only do they get wider, they also get longer! So the size you were when you were in your early twenties is unlikely to be your size forever. Our feet also get flatter and lose their fatty padding as we get older.

Ill-fitting shoes can cause your feet all sorts of pain from a simple blister to corns, callouses to bunions and even more serious structural damage.

What’s more, not having comfortable shoes can put you off getting the exercise you need, you are more likely to walk that extra mile rather than taking the car if you have a good pair of walking shoes are you not?

In honour of the humble foot we have put together 5 tips for 'Measure Your Feet' Day:

  • Tip 1: Get your feet measured! It is not just children’s feet that grow. You don't even need to go out to do it, we have found you can buy a foot gauge like this one from Clarks [external link] to measure your family's feet at home.

  • Tip 2: Try to get your feet measured towards the end of the day rather than in the morning. You guessed it; your feet are actually bigger at the end of the day than they are at the beginning.

  • Tip 3: Make sure that you stand to have your feet measured.

  • Tip 4: Choose shoes that are suited to the activity you are going to do in them. Thin soled plimsolls, ballet pumps or stilettos are not the best choice if you plan on getting more exercise by walking to work, college or to town. Shoes with a shock absorbing heel with some flex at the ball of the foot would be a better choice. the Society for Chiropodists and Podiatrists has a downloadable guide to choosing the correct shoes [external link] for different types of exercise and surface.

  • Tip 5: The size written inside the shoes is just a starting point. If they don’t fit in the shop they won’t fit when you leave. We’ve all done it! You fall in love with those shoes and tell yourself: ‘they’ll stretch’ or ‘my feet will get used to them’. If they slide off, pinch or rub in the shop they will continue to do so. There should be one finger width between your longest toe (not always the big toe) and the end of the shoe.

And there you have it! Happy walking, scooting, cycling, skipping (or whatever else you choose to do in your new shoes).

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