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Choosing the Correct Spring and Summer Footwear

"I wear sandals quite often during the spring and summer months. Are these types of shoes hurting my feet?"

Frequently, foot pain and problems are a direct result of the shoes we choose. These tips can help keep your feet safe in the spring and summer months.

• Warm weather often encourages us to participate in new activities. While outdoor activities are a healthy pursuit, be careful when starting something new. You should make sure the shoes you wear are appropriate for the particular sport or activity. Overuse injuries are frequently seen in the foot and ankle when you try to do too much of one activity after a long winter. Start slowly and increase your activity as you become stronger, and your endurance increases.

• Flip-flops rule at the pool. Many patients ask whether flip-flops are safe to wear, and the answer is no. When protecting your feet from hot pavement at poolside, flip-flops are an excellent choice. Flip-flops can actually help strengthen feet, and are best worn on flat, reliable surfaces. When you head to the local amusement park for a day of walking or the closest skate park for an outdoor hike, opt for sturdier, more supportive footwear. Long periods of walking and extensive walking on uneven ground with flip-flops or any openback sandal can cause injury to the foot.

• Stylish sandals and shoes for men can offer minimal support, and risk injury to the foot and ankle when worn for inappropriate activities. While there is no harm to wearing these shoes to a casual barbeque or dinner party, you may cause injury to your foot if you decide to hop on a bike or participate in the unexpected softball game. Wearing your favorite summer dress shoes should be limited to activities that require a low level of activity.

Choose the shoe to match the activity. Keep a pair of supportive athletic shoes and socks in the car, so
you are ready for anything – and enjoy the weather.

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