Standing on concrete -- especially for any extended period of time -- can be painful if you are not wearing the right pair of shoes. In cases where standing on hard surfaces is part of a job (nursing, retail, factory work), proper footwear is essential for maintaining foot health and preventing back pain and heel pain associated with conditions such as Plantar Fasciitis Syndrome.
Shoes to Avoid
If you anticipate standing on a hard concrete surface for any extended period of time, avoid wearing shoes with high heels. Heels do not offer the proper support needed for extended standing and put considerable strain on the balls of the feet, the ankles, the knees and the spinal cord. Avoid wearing flat shoes with thin soles such as flip-flops, dress flats or deck shoes. Because these types of shoes do not offer any arch support, standing on a hard surface will become very painful and may also lead to injury.
Dansko brand shoes are known for their comfort and are frequently chosen by nurses and doctors for the support they provide when standing on hard surfaces for long periods of time. Because Danskos are designed with foot health in mind, many styles feature a wider toe box, heel cup, arch support and a polypropylene inner frame that reduces torque and provides lateral stability. Although the brand can often be on the expensive side, the high quality of the materials can be worth the higher price.
New Balance Shoes
Although this brand is known for its high-quality running and walking shoes, the comfortable design is also well-suited for standing on hard surfaces. A style such as New Balance WX608 offers exceptional heel support and a durable midsole. Unlike many lower-quality brands, the midsole is made of material that will not lose its cushioning over time. Although these shoes can also be more expensive, like the Danskos, they are worth the extra money.
Orthotic insoles are also a great method of making almost any shoe fit for standing on concrete. Many high-quality orthotics are developed by podiatrists and have features that will alleviate any strain to the heels, arches and balls of your feet. Orthotics such as Footminders biomechanical insoles can be slipped into almost any shoe, and will keep your feet comfortable during periods of prolonged standing, walking or running. Insoles made of high-quality materials will provide sufficient cushioning for your feet to stand on concrete.
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