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May 28, 2010

Comfortable Sandals

I hate shoe shopping. I'm in the market for some sandals. Unfortunately, I have lots of criteria that I attach to my search which makes finding what I want difficult. First of all, I want something comfortable. Second, I want something to support my high arches. Third, I need a back strap because I cannot keep strapless sandals on without them flying off my feet. And finally, I don't want anything god-awful ugly. Price is also a factor, and as I layer on more requirements, the price goes up, up, up. What's an unemployed college student to do?

So I found a link to AskMetafilter, which is a forum for asking all sort of questions. People weigh in with a variety of opinions, recommendations, experiences, etc. You can get a good idea which way popular opinion leans on a topic and sometimes the group includes an expert in your field of interest.

So, according to AskMetafilter, they recommend:
Chacos: 49.95-95.00
Keens: 35.00-99.00 (these fall into "god-awful ugly" category)
Reefs: 9.99-74.05 (looks like flip flops to me)
Merrells: 48.00-85.00 (Merrells tend to be too wide for my feet)

To complicate matters, I have what is called a Morton's foot, where the second toe is longer than the great toe. This can lead to complications, especially as we age and the fat pads on the bottom of the foot get thinner. More pressure is put on the ball of the foot, especially on the head of the second metatarsal. This can lead to pain and callus formation in this area, which can be dangerous if people with this type foot have diabetes.

Luckily, I do not have diabetes. And I want to go on the record to say that I would never recommend sandals for someone who does have diabetes. I just wanted to make that clear, because diabetics need special shoes to prevent injury, regular visits to a physician to monitor their diabetes, and diabetic foot care by a podiatrist who can manage things such as nail care and proper shoe fitting, which is covered by most insurance.

Our feet are our base of support. With every step we exert hundreds of pounds of pressure per square inch. I gave up high heel shoes long ago, but not before I developed the beginnings of a bunion. I do my homework before I shop for shoes because I know how messed up feet can affect the biomechanics of the rest of the body. In short, it pays to take care of your feet and buy the best shoes you can afford.

Posted by linda at May 28, 2010 8:23 AM

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