Summer Footwear – will it cause you pain?


sandalsGreat to have a sunny spell at last.  With this lovely sunshine comes flip flops and sandals and so can follow foot pain! It is great to feel the breeze on your toes, but if worn too often, it can lead to severe foot pain.

Toe Pain

As flip flops are held to the foot by a thin strip between your toes, they compensate by working extra hard. The toes are gripping the flip flop to prevent them falling off.  As you can imagine the more frequently you wear flip flops the harder the toes are working and this repetitive muscle action can trigger tendonitis.  Tendonitis is inflammation of the tendons.  This can be very painful and can lead to tears in the tendon if untreated.

Frequently wearing flip flops can also lead to a condition known as Hammer Toes. The toes becomes stuck in an abnormal position due to the joints of the toes contracting.  Hammer Toes can progress to bunions or increase the pressure on existing bunions.

Ankle, Back and Hip Pain

Flip flops can also change the way that you walk, as they are not securely fastened to the foot.  You generally tend to take shorter steps, or drag your feet in an effort to keep the flip flops on your feet.  These factors throw your natural balance and can contribute to pain throughout the body.  Commonly affected are the ankles, knees, hips or back.

Plantar Fasciitis

Flips flops  are very flat and can be flimsy.  This lack of proper foot support really affects the foot.  The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, from the heel to the ball of your foot.  The plantar fascia is part of the arch of your foot.  This can become inflamed, leading to plantar fasciitis, due to the lack of support from your flip flops.

plantar fascia

What do I wear?

Here are a few tips for picking a good pair of Summer footwear.

Size Matters – make sure your toes and heels are fully supported by the sole of the flip flops.

Correct Support – test the flip flops to see that it bends at the ball of the foot.  Bending right down the middle is not supportive enough.

Arch Support – a thicker sole with a gradual raise where your foot arch sits will be more supportive than a thin, flat flip flop.

Straps – it is best to look for flip flops with a strap at the heel or straps across the foot to hold your foot nice and snug.

How is foot pain treated

Plantar fasciitis is among the most common injuries we treat at Motion Physio Clinic.  During each physio session, I will conduct a full assessment of the region and diagnose the underlying cause of your foot pain.  I will then work manually on the region to release pain and tightness.  For a rapid recovery I will give you exercises to help speed up the process and strengthen weak muscles.


If you are suffering from foot pain, pop into the Motion Physio Clinic, Prosperous,  Tel: 045 841010.  I can perform an assessment, give you a diagnosis and treat you as required.

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