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Merriefield Podiatry Ferndown Clinic

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t: 01202 855 872

Podiatry Clinic located in Ferndown.
Serving Ferndown, Wimborne, Poole and Bournemouth
from Monday to Thursday


From the Podiatry Clinic – Let’s talk about Footwear

FootwearUntil the Industrial Revolution, shoes were made by local shoemakers and were tailored to fit each customer.

Nowadays footwear is mass produced all over the world using different lasts and many shoe manufacturers omit half-sizes in order to reduce costs. There are however, three important things to look for when buying shoes:


The feet contain 250,000 sweat glands – more per square centimetre than any other part of the body.

Always buy shoes made of natural fibres such as leather or cotton as these materials allow your feet to breathe. Leather moulds to your feet. Stiff faux leather shoes can irritate your joints causing inflammation and other complications. Some materials such as Gortex have been treated with chemicals which allow your feet to breath.

A word about trainers – Trainers have a high percentage of synthetic materials. This increases moisture and can contribute to Athlete’s Foot and ingrown toe-nails, especially if the nails have not been cut correctly. Therefore, limit the time spent in trainers and ensure that they are completely dried out before wearing them again.


Does the shoe keep the foot positioned correctly whilst walking or running? The heel height should be low with a broad base. High heels if frequently worn can cause lower back pain and shortening of the calf muscles and Achilles Tendon.

The toe box should have sufficient height and be rounded rather than pointed to avoid the toes being squashed from the top or the sides. Ensure the shoes fit and are not ‘sloppy’. Ideally, shoes should have a fastening to ensure they stay correctly positioned around the foot. Wear the right shoes for the right occasion.

Shock Absorption

Does the shoe provide sufficient cushioning? Did you know that ground reaction forces during walking reaches 1.5 times body weight and when running, approximately three times body weight? To make matters worse most surfaces we walk on are hard such as concrete or tarmac.

Other tips when buying shoes

Always buy your shoes in the afternoon as often throughout the day the arch flattens and the foot increases in length. There should be a thumb’s width after the longest toe at the end of the shoe.


Buy cotton or wool socks. Check toe seams for casting-off knots which may rub and cause injuries to toes. Ensure that the socks are not too tight around the leg which can cause problems with circulation and swelling.

Merriefield Podiatry Clinic can provide advice for your footwear concerns. We now stock Strive sandals which incorporate an anatomical footbed which supports the foot for best function. We also stock a range of socks including soft tops suitable for Diabetics.

Merriefield Podiatry - Podiatrists Serving | Ferndown | Wimborne | Bournemouth | Poole | Verwood