“You Rotate Your Tires, Why Not Your Work Shoes?”
Experts and Doctors believe people should always own multiple pairs of shoes, so that you are able to rotate them.
Here are 7 great reasons to rotate your (work) shoes:
1. Let Them “Rest” – The most common reason for practicing shoe rotation is to allow your shoe a day to rest. With every foot step you are putting 1.5-3 times your body weight on your shoes. When give your work shoes a day to rest you are allowing the foam cells that make up the midsole of your shoe to decompress and bounce back to its original state which can prolong the life of the cushioning in your shoes.
2. Break them in Slow – The stress on your feet from breaking in new work boots or shoes can be reduced if you are alternating between an older pair and the new pair. Rather than wearing the stiff, new pair every day, treat your feet to that comfortable, familiar feeling every other day so the change is not so abrupt. This can also reduce the chances of developing blisters.
3. Mix it up – Changing or varying the posture of your foot and re-distributing your weight can give a stressed part of your feet or legs a chance to rest. By wearing different work shoes on different days, you can avoid overloading any one muscle, tendon, bone or ligament while simultaneously strengthening others.
4. Let Them Dry – On average, a worker can produce as much as 200 milliliters of moisture in a boot or shoe in a day. Such moisture can eat away at the boot, but can also cause discomfort, blisters, and even athlete’s foot. If you are alternating wear every other day you are reducing the growth of bacteria and chances for athletes foot by allowing your boot time to completely dry out.
5. Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow – The needs of your feet and legs can change from day to day, especially depending on the length of your shift. After an extremely long day your body might be less able to handle the forces generated during impact. Wearing a shoe or boot that provides more cushioning can reduce stress on your legs that might be still beat up from the previous day. On those longer days, shoes with added support and stability will help keep your feet and legs aligned properly which can help reduce fatigue.
6. The Right Shoe for the Job –If you “float” from one department to another, the demands on your feet and legs can change with your job description. Climbing on and off equipment, standing in one spot for hours, or lots of bending and squatting will all have different effects on your feet. Different work shoes can offer more cushioning or support based on the needs of your job function.
7. You do NOT need to buy 2 pair TODAY – For many people, it can be financially difficult to “shell out” the money for TWO pair of work shoes at the same time…I would even recommend AGAINST it. It is better to purchase a new pair every 6 months and rotate between the two newest pairs and disposing of the pair that you purchased a year ago. By following this method you won’t have to break in two new pairs at the same time, and won’t end up with two pairs that are worn out at the same time.
With all this being said do yourselves a favor and protect your investment and your precious feet. Rotate your shoes every other day and overall be more comfortable and prolong the life of your work boots or shoes. Be on the lookout for my upcoming blogs where I will talk about work boot safety features, and proper work boot fitting and size.