We all wear these items. BUT… what are our shoes doing to our feet? Are the shoes you’re wearing good or bad for you? At least 75,000 miles can be accomplished by feet by the time a person reaches the age of 50 . However, to accomplish this, our feet would need to be in good condition and this, in turn, is directly related to the SHOES we wear. Well, let’s dig a little deeper, shall we? Yes, we know that shoes can be an important part of our lives, and sometimes the reason we wear shoes is to protect our feet from the myriad of stuff that could harm us including pointy edges, fungus, bacteria, viruses, and MUCH more. BUT, who is protecting us from our shoes?
That’s the question we should be asking. Yes, BE AWARE that the shoes on your feet could be quite DETRIMENTAL to your foot health if you are wearing the WRONG type of shoes.
Particularly for certain people with ailments or health issues, the shoes you wear could help or worsen the condition. Think about people with conditions like plantar fasciitis, poor circulatory issues or diabetes. In these situations (and MANY others too), wearing the wrong shoes can spell DOOM! So, without any delay, let’s discuss just what the 7 worst shoes for your feet are and why you’d want this information before making shoe choices that can ruin your foot health!!
#1 – High, Stiletto-Type Heels
Have you admired those high stiletto shoes… possibly from a distance OR you HAVE some in your closet at this moment?
Yes, the seemingly cool beauty of these high-heeled shoes can be very deceptive as well. DO NOT be fooled! Feet were not meant to be placed at such an angle. If the position of the feet deviates too much from the normal angles, especially for PROLONGED time periods, GUESS WHAT? You SUFFER!! Maybe not immediately, but over time this action of stretching the feet beyond their natural limits can be very bad for your feet. Do you hear people who wear high heels complain? Yes, indeed!! With these high-heeled shoes, the Achilles tendon can get stretched, and NO, this is not good. Stiletto heels can also cause calluses and unevenly distributed weight .
#2 – Ballet Flats
No, these are not ballet shoes that ballet dancers wear to dance ballet. However, these are shoes that do have similar structures to the actual ballet shoes. Ballet flats are… well, FLAT, and offer minimal support for the feet. Within these shoes, the feet are able to move and sway as you tread on surfaces. When such surfaces are uneven and potentially treacherous, ballet flats are LESS likely to give the feet the support needed. Especially around the foot arch area, support in these types of shoes is REALLY minimal. Due to the flatness of this shoe, there is typically insufficient padding on the insoles as well. Some people may try to add more insole padding after purchasing the shoes to help provide additional support.
#3 – Flip Flops
Yes, I know… I can almost hear you groan when you see that flip-flops made the list of worst shoes for your feet.
Honestly, flip-flops could probably win the award for worst shoe!!
While ballet flats may not typically affect a wide range of people, flip flops on the other hand could cast a wide net and come back with lots of victims! Research studies have shown that flip flops increase peak plantar fascia pressures and these types of shoes can place the feet at a greater risk for pathologic abnormalities . Flip flops can be BAD NEWS for your feet because these types of shoes simply DO NOT have adequate support for the feet and as a result, can lead to foot pain.
#4 – Sandals
Sandals were quite popular in historic times and were a type of footwear that both males and females wore constantly.
Think back to the Roman Empire and the type of footwear you would associate with that era. Yep!! Sandals, right! Just like flip flops, sandals also fall into the category of providing poor support for the feet. Why do our feet need so much support? As we move our hands, this can be less impactful than moving our feet. When we move our feet, we are also moving the full weight of our body! Thus, there can be an increased chance for INJURY if we do not position the feet properly. Uneven surfaces and improper shoe support can be the worst combination EVER! So, let’s stick to shoes that have PROPER SUPPORT!! New technologies are beginning to provide better support for some brands of these types of shoes, though.
#5 – Pointed Shoes
Pointy shoes are just not natural. Take a LOOK at your feet right now … Do your feet POINT or are your toes in a relaxed spread? Most likely, your feet are relaxed, sitting pretty at the end of your foot, and are not bunched up in pain, trying to point LIKE an arrow. This is the effect we get from pointy shoes. We cannot magically transform our feet and toes to pointy little soldiers whenever we want to. The feet and toes were just NOT meant to be so pointy. When people wear pointy shoes, they give room to the occurrence of inflammation and subsequent pain.
#6 – Platform Shoes
Platform shoes may look cushiony, but this can be far from the truth.
Unfortunately, the bottom part of platform shoes can be quite rigid and this presents unnatural support for the feet. Rather than let the foot flex naturally while working, platform shoes respond with rigidity and this HURTS the feet! In addition to providing unnecessary rigidity for the feet, platform shoes may also provide high heels and the same stretching and pressure that high-heeled shoes provide. Another PROBLEM with platform shoes is the potential for ankle instability. REALLY, just take a LOOK at these shoes! By merely LOOKING at these shoes, you can see how UNSTABLE the shoes are! With such high thresholds for instability, these shoes are a BIG HAZARD!!
#7 – Worn-Out Shoes
If shoes are worn-out… and I mean TIRED, BROKEN DOWN, NO GOOD FOR ANYONE shoes, you should THROW the shoes OUT.
Don’t be tempted to keep the shoes because if it’s worn, it has most likely lost its support and as a result, it’s NO GOOD for you too. If you continue to wear such shoes, you may actually create problems for your feet. For instance, imagine shoes designed to support feet in a certain way but over time these shoes lose their functionality. This absence of design functionality provides gaps in the function of the shoes through which serious injury could occur. BESIDES creating injury, worn shoes could make existing injuries worse.
So, just how important are your shoes? Shoes that do not fit properly can be detrimental to foot health and the forefoot is the main area of complaint about foot problems . Wearing the wrong shoes can also exacerbate conditions like plantar fasciitis. While trying to stamp out heel and foot pain through treatment methods that include exercise routines, wearing the wrong shoes while doing so can create more harm than good. So, what can you do? You need to know about these worst shoes for your feet if you want to get on the RIGHT track!
If you want to learn more about shoes and how they affect your foot pain, then check out Plantar Fasciitis Relief In 7 Days.
Rick Kaselj, MS
 Foot Health: American Podiatric Medical Association
 The Dangers of Stilettos: Are They Worth the Risk for Bone Health?
 Computerized Analysis of Plantar Pressure Variation in Flip Flops, Athletic Shoes and Bare Feet
 The Effect of Shoe Toe Box Shape and Volume on Forefoot Interdigital and Plantar Pressures in Healthy Females