Monthly Archives: May 2008

Sandals With Adjustable Straps

With summer almost here, many of us will be switching to sandals. For those of us who have developed the bad habit of slipping our sandals on and off without tightening…Stop It.

Not to sound like your mother, but shoes which adjust (tie, buckle, Velcro) need to be snugly secured each and every time you put them on. If you don’t do this, then you’ll experience excessive heel slippage and toe gripping, which can cause hammertoes and blisters to name just a few.

Here is a wedge sandal which was typically slipped on and off. The image on the left shoes proper fit and the image on the right shows sloppy fit. Which version would you rather wear?

Men’s vs. Women’s Shoe Sizes (Brannock Device)

In the 1920’s, Charles Brannock invented a measuring device, which bears his name and is still used today in most retail shoe stores.

According to the Brannock Device, men’s shoe sizes are one size larger than women’s. For example a men’s size 9 shoe would fit a woman’s size 10 foot. The size increments for both are 1/3″ difference between each size. So if you need to go up or down a half size, you’re only changing the size by 1/6″. Not nearly as much as most of us think.

There is also a nifty conversion chart on the Brannock Device’s website which differentiates different sizing systems, including children and European sizes as well.

Here’s the link

Shoe Cleats – Beware of Wear

If you play a sport which requires wearing cleats (soccer, baseball, football, golf) then you want check your cleat wear regularly.

Here’s a pair of turf soccer cleats, which are about a year old. As this image shows, the heel cleat on the right shoe is still flat, causing a pivot point and a protrusion force upward as compared to the heel cleat on the left shoe, which is evenly worn with the other cleats.

In this case, the cleat on the right shoe actually caused plantar fasciitis – heel pain, which could have been avoided if the shoes had been replaced before the cleats started to wear asymmetrically.

High Heels Having Same Heel Height – Boots vs. Non-Boots

Given a choice between two pair of high heels with the same heel height, one boot and one non-boot, the boot will always win (given the same width).

A boot keeps the foot better aligned with the ankle, which increases stability, reduces wobble and allows for more comfortable walking.

If you’ve got a night out on the town of club hopping and dancing – then a boot will always be a better choice.

Shoe Review – La Sportiva Trango Trek GTX

Thanks to Bill for bringing in this pair of hiking boot today. This is a great boot if you have a narrow, deep foot. Vasque is for a narrow shallow foot, whereas LaSportiva is for those feet having slightly more volume with a narrow width.

This is a sturdy hiking boot good for variable terrain including lots of hills. It also cinches up tight for narrower ankles.This boot can be found at REI and several other retailers for around $180.

Heel Slippage – Improper Shoe Lacing

When heel slippage happens, most people intuitively tighten their shoe laces at the ankle, which won’t help with slippage. The laces which need to be laced the tightest are the furthest away from the ankle.

It’s a bit of a pain, but each and every time you lace your shoes, you’ll want to start at the toes and progressively cinch up until you reach the ankle.

When lacing shoes with heel slippage, 9 times out of 10, lacing correctly will ensure a snug fit. You will also want to relace your shoes, when wearing an orthotic for the first time.

Shoe Sizes Beyond 12 (men) or 11 (womens)

If you wear a men’s shoe greater than size 12 or a women’s shoe greater than size 11, you will have difficulty shoe shopping. Why? Because a bigger size means more inconsistency in width, length and depth.

Bigger sizes also usually don’t have half sizes, which makes finding the right fit even more dififcult.

Here are two pair of the same Keen shoes. A size 13 on the left and a size 12 on the right.

Notice how the size 13 is longer and more curved? This is clearly not one size larger, since a full size should only be 1/3″.

Bottom line, if your size falls into this category, you’ve got to pay particular attention to sizing and fit.