The Truth About Your Shoes

By Vivi Sidorova and April West

It’s summer time! What better way to celebrate than to buy a pair of flippy floppies?

Flip flops might be your summer favorite, but believe it or not, your feet don’t share this common love. Flip flops seem harmless; but because they’re flat, they offer no protection, which makes our feet more prone to cuts, scratches, and bruising. The thin band of rubber across the top of the foot is the only thing that keeps our shoes on, so our toes have to work extra hard to prevent shoes from slipping. Continued pressure on our toes can cause “damage or tears to the tissues” according to, and expose us to the real danger of our beloved summer shoe, plantar fasciitis.

Because most flip flops offer no foot support, the prolonged flattening of the arch can inflame the bottom part of the foot. Plantar fasciitis is painful and in some cases it can be hard to treat, so it is important to provide the arch with constant support. By buying a pair of foot-conscious sandals like the ones with an orthaheel, you become a flippy-floppy-shoe flopper and your feet; well, your feet will support your decision.

Mark McCoy, DPT and owner of Performance Physical Therapy says “we help a lot of folks with plantar fasciitis and most respond really well to physical therapy.” He said treatment could consist of modalities like ultrasound phonophoresisiontophoresiselectrotherapy and some good old fashion ice.  “Soft tissue mobilization and stretching are also key to changing and healing the tissue” he added.

Mark’s at home exercises:

  1. While sitting, roll the bottom of your foot against a golf ball
  2. Use a cold water bottle using the same method
  3. Check out a few stretches from the Mayo Clinic

Duration: 5 minutes, a few times a day

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