Let’s take a look at 13 common shoe myths and reveal the truth behind them:
Myth #1: Shoes with a lot of cushion help with foot pain
Truth: While comfortable shoes may not hurt your feet, they don’t necessarily help with foot pain either. Proper shoe fit and support are more important for relieving foot pain than just comfort. Just because a shoe is soft does not mean it is good for pain.
Myth #2: Stiff shoes hurt your feet more
Truth: Depending on your feet, stiffer shoes can be better for foot pain because they provide the support that you wouldn’t normally get from a softer, more cushioned shoe.
Myth #3: High-top shoes/boots provide better ankle support
Truth: High tops do not significantly improve ankle stability or prevent injury. Stronger muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the lower leg and foot areas create better ankle support.
Myth #4: The most expensive shoes are the best
Truth: Price is generally not an indicator of shoe quality or comfort. Expensive shoes can still be poorly constructed and cause discomfort. A lot of the expensive shoes are higher in price because of the marketing and brand name that make them. That being said, cheap shoes tend to be… cheap, and not good quality.
Myth #5: Both feet are the same size
Truth: It’s common for one foot to be slightly bigger. One can be longer, wider, thicker, or all of those. Your shoe fit should be based on the larger foot for comfort.
Myth #6: Surgery is the only option for severe foot pain
Truth: Various non-surgical options like better-fitting shoes, orthotics, physical therapy, and medication can effectively treat many causes of foot pain without surgery.
Myth #7: Athletic shoes are only for athletes
Truth: Well-supporting athletic shoes provide comfort for anyone, not just hardcore exercisers. They can work for casual everyday use, from walking to wearing them at work.
Myth #8: Your shoe size doesn’t change
Truth: Shoe size often increases with age, either naturally or due to factors like weight gain, injury, or pregnancy. Feet are not static.
Myth #9: Popular brands are best
Truth: The brand name doesn’t guarantee quality. It just guarantees you’re buying that brand. Many times, it’s the smaller brands that are much better for you than the ones with massive marketing budgets. You want to look for proper fit and features instead of buying for the brand name alone.
Myth #10: Your big toe is the longest
Truth: The second toe is often longer and up to 22% of the population has this. It is also called a Morton’s Toe, and can sometimes be referred to as the aristocratic foot type.
Myth #11: Snug shoes are best
Truth: A too-snug shoe can restrict your toes and cause all sorts of ailments. Things like irritation, blisters, bunions, hammer toes, corns, and more. Plus, snug shoes leave very little wiggle room for comfort.
Myth #12: Minimalist shoes strengthen feet
Truth: They can help some people but can cause pain for others who are unaccustomed to minimal support. Switching to very minimalist shoes means you have to transition into them slowly so you don’t cause problems. Even then, they still may not be right for you.
Myth #13: Only old people need orthotics
Truth: Age is irrelevant when it comes to orthotics. We’ve provided orthotics for people of all ages. Anyone can benefit from orthotics if they have foot pain, poor alignment, or stability issues.
So there are the 13 common shoe myths (and foot myths) that pop up quite a bit. Hopefully, this clears things up a bit.
And if you need any help with your feet, shoes, or are in pain, just scroll down below to schedule an appointment, and you’ll get personalized attention to help with all your needs.