Don’t settle for work boots that don’t fit you properly – your feet will thank you!
There’s nothing worse in life than having a pair of safety shoes that don’t fit you properly. Now imagine being on your feet all day while at work, and you can feel your toes pinched or your socks rubbing you the wrong way. A blister is waiting to happen!
As if that’s not enough
Along with foot pain comes unwanted aches and pains throughout the rest of your body, such as your hips, legs, knees, and neck. And on top of that, you can get calluses, corns, and other foot health problems!¹
How Should Boots Fit?
Your work boots should feel comfortable, have sufficient space for your toes to wiggle around, and to accommodate swelling feet from standing or walking for long hours.¹
Think about it:
It can be a challenge when you must get a new pair of safety shoes, as you need to think about the right safety shoe size, the type of shoe, whether it will fit into your budget, etc.
Follow these useful tips when trying on a pair of new work boots:
1. Wear the Right Socks
Make sure you’re wearing socks with your work boots, as this will keep your feet comfortable all day. A bonus is that your feet won’t smell as bad, and the work boot socks will prevent your feet from getting wet from sweat.
When trying on a pair of new work boots, wear the same socks you would typically wear to work, which will help determine if the safety shoes fit correctly.
2. Try the Work Boots On
Before you decide on a pair of safety shoes, try them on first. Trying them on will allow you to determine if the boots fit how they should and are comfortable. By testing the shoes first, you will also prevent returning to the store to return ill-fitted shoes for a pair that fits.
3. Move Around in the Work Boots
When trying different work boots on, walk around in them, and make other moves. You can try to hop, lift your feet, crouch, stand still, etc. Try to imitate all the various movements you make throughout your day at work.
There should be no movement by your heels while walking around in a new pair of safety shoes. You are looking for stability and support with minimal movement as you walk.
As if that’s not enough
Moving around in your work boots will also assess the amount of ankle support there is. Another way to test ankle support is by standing on the sides of your feet. It won’t be easy to do this if there’s ample support on the ankles. You’ll need to try a different pair that if your foot rolls too effortlessly.²
By doing all these movements, you will get an idea of how the boots will feel while at work and let you know if they are the right fit.
4. Check the Tongue
Check the tongue and how it feels while you have the work boots on. The tongue needs to be lying flat alongside your foot, shin, and ankle. It mustn’t have anything that can rub or dig into your skin, such as rough tapestry.
5. Analyze Your Feet
Once you have completed all the other tests as mentioned, take off your socks and work boots and check your feet. If there are any visible red spots, this is a sign that the shoes were rubbing against your feet. The redness can worsen and become a blister if you have to wear work boots for 8 hours or more every day.
Things to Keep in Mind
Your everyday pair of shoes isn’t the same as work boots. The appearance shouldn’t be a concern to you. Measure your feet each time you purchase a new pair of work boots. By measuring your feet, you will ensure that the work boots are the correct size for you.
And that’s just one side of the story
You might need to get boots made, especially for you if your feet are wider than others. Wearing narrow safety shoes can be uncomfortable, and finding a pair of boots that are a size bigger won’t solve the problem. More oversized shoes will only cause your toes to slide to the front of the shoes, and your heels will slip. If you do wear a bigger boot size, you can expect to get blisters².
Your work boots shouldn’t be too loose or too tight. They should fit you like a glove. Use insoles or thicker socks if you need a tighter fit, especially if you have an in-between boot size.
A correctly fitted work boot will keep your feet firmly in their place without constriction.
Take note of your toes – are they feeling cramped, are they “swimming” in the toe cap? A high-quality pair of safety shoes will not fit you tightly.
Your work boots should feel comfortable and not tight. To hold your heel firmly in its place, use different lacing methods.
Using other lacing methods will ensure your heel is in its place firmly.
Your toes should move freely in the inside of your shoes. An excellent way to determine if you have enough room is by sliding your toes to the front of your unlaced boots.
It would be best if you had about ½ “, or a finger’s width, between your boot and your heel’s base.
Work boots can be a part of your required attire at work. How your work boots fit is especially important if you need to wear them all day. The safety shoes should be comfortable, protective, and right for the job you’re required to do.
Trying on various work boots and following the guidelines above will help you find boots with the right fit for you. You’ll be able to walk around freely, with no pain or discomfort, while protecting your feet from occupational hazards.