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5 Major Benefits of Supportive Flats

If you think you’re avoiding foot problems by giving up 4-inch stilettos for ballet flats, you may be trading one set of problems for another. 

While high-heeled shoes cause extra stress on your back, hips, and legs, flat shoes can cause just as much discomfort and damage by failing to provide adequate heel and arch support and proper foot alignment. 

Arch support is important because your arches absorb most of the pressure you exert when you walk or run. For every mile you walk, your arches absorb between 200,000 and 300,000 pounds of stress. 

Without proper arch support, your foot is likely to rotate too far inward or outward with each step, resulting in added pressure through your knees, shins, thighs, pelvis, and back. 

Most shoes have minimal support so they can accommodate the largest variety of arch heights. Supportive flats can provide the support you need to enjoy flats comfortably without the risk of injury.

Podiatrist Jeremy Moran, DPM, of ToeOp in Tomball, Texas, has extensive experience helping our patients find comfortable and practical supportive footwear that prevents foot problems and helps correct existing issues. 

Dr. Moran provides expert diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of foot conditions. He can help you determine how supportive flats or a customized orthotic device can alleviate your foot problems.

Here are five major benefits that supportive flats can offer:  

1. Comfort

You’re likely attracted to flat shoes because of their comfort and style. It’s easy to find a style that can take you from one activity to another without having to change your shoes, but many lack proper arch support.

Supportive flats correct this problem by providing a built-in arch for shock support to relieve the natural stress that your body exerts on your arch. If you’re set on a pair of flats or athletic shoes that don’t have built-in support, you can add this feature with a custom orthotic insole.

2. Plantar fasciitis prevention

Proper heel support can help prevent plantar fasciitis. This condition can cause immobilizing heel pain as a result of inflammation of the thick band of connective tissue (plantar fascia) that runs from your heel to your toes under your foot. 

Supportive flats have a footbed that hugs the arches of your feet to give you maximum comfort. Maximum arch support provides pain relief by transferring the stresses of your body weight from your foot to the shoe.

3. Injury prevention

Using the right type of shoes to prevent injury isn’t just a consideration for athletes. Supportive flats can position your foot appropriately to reduce impact force placed on your arch and keep the foot aligned in the proper position. 

Proper arch support can reduce the incidences of plantar fasciitis and stress fractures that affect your shin, thigh, and metatarsal (midfoot).

Plantar fasciitis, which we just mentioned, is the most common injury that occurs from wearing flats without arch support. Left untreated, plantar fasciitis can lead to torn tendons on the bottom of your feet, which can be a debilitating injury. 

4. Balance support

Supportive flats provide stability. By holding your foot in the proper position, they can correct problems with foot biomechanics and improve your posture and balance. 

Your foot has a natural cushion under your heel bone that works to decrease the impact of your steps. Supportive flats have a deep heel cup that keeps this protective pad centered under your heel where it absorbs the shock of each step. This adds to foot stability and improves balance. 

5. Range of options

You might think your choices are limited with supportive flats, but you have a range of options. The most common type of supportive flats are ballet flats, but you can find stylish options with loafers, boots, oxfords, and sneakers. 

Their thicker outsoles may provide more cushioning, which can be helpful if the shoe also provides appropriate support under your feet. Firm, well-fitting insoles or custom orthotics can offset designs that don’t incorporate this feature.

Find out more about the benefits of supportive flats and the type of footwear that can help you avoid injuries and walk comfortably all day. Schedule an appointment by calling us at ToeOp today.

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