Coming from a retail and service background I understand the pain associated with working long hours on your feet. At a job where I’m expected to stand, lift, bend, twist and more for over 8 hours a day. Standing on the job is great for your feet, if you treat them right. Problems can arise from foot neglect during a long day at work. Lots of jobs require employees to be on their feet for long hours of their shifts like; factory workers, food service employees, sales clerks, airline servers, and our doctors and nurses. Surviving long hours can be tough but I’m here to let you in on ways you can help your feet pain free for those long hours at work.
Shoes, socks, and compression!
Let’s start with the basics, the shoes. I know I push it a lot, but the right shoe for the right job is SUPER important. Comfort is key, and the best place to start is the shoes. Soft cushioned insoles and arch support are a couple of things to look for in a work a shoe. Extra cushion is always a plus, the shock absorption helps with fatigue and sore feet. Arch support keeps your foot supported through all your work movements. If you can’t find a shoe with these features that is comfortable and meets your work criteria, you can always buy an insole to put into a shoe that works for you. Here we offer a variety of shoes for lots of work types, from a business pump to a safety toe work shoe (with built in anti-fatigue). We also stock Lynco Orthotics and one of their styles is a memory foamed orthotic foot bed that has the arch support you need! Now that we’ve discussed about shoes let’s talk socks. Socks aren’t usually something you think about when you are preparing for a long day at work. Just throwing a matching pair on is good enough for a lot of people. But the type of sock you wear can affect how your feet feel at the end of the day. Some socks are better at preventing blisters and sores. Other socks are better at absorbing moisture, for those sweaty feet. Do some research and make sure your buying work socks that best fit your specific needs. Getting into socks, let’s talk compression. Compression is important in promoting good blood flow to the legs and feet. Our feet are so far from the heart, so blood flow isn’t the greatest, that’s where compression socks come in. These socks are designed to help circulate the blood down your legs, to your feet, and back up again. This is great to have if you stand all day, or sit all day. Our blood tends to pool up and our feet can begin to swell, compression stocks keep that swelling down. Compression socks make your legs feel energized, and they help reduce the buildup of varicose veins! It’s the little things that make all the difference in surviving a long day at work, and these three things can make all the difference in the world.
Take a break/ Keep Moving.
For someone who is always on the move at their job you should be taking breaks. Yes standing and walking are great for us, but your feet need a break to. Find a couple minutes to sit and rest, let your feet take the break they deserve. If you work in a job where you are standing in one place for the majority of you day, such as a cashier, it is important to keep your feet moving. There are a lot of ways to keep moving even in a small space. Shifting your weight every so often from one foot to the other is an essential movement if you are standing in place all day. This helps prevent stress fractures and other stress related foot problems. Stretching is another great way to keep you sore legs much better. A static calf stretch feels great for those crampy legs. Another thing you can do is to move your hips in a figure eight motion, this helps the blood flow and keeps you moving!
Some other tips to help you and your feet survive include:
-Get a cushioned anti-fatigue mat for your work station.
-Stay hydrated, without enough water your muscles can become tight and achy.
-Stay busy, as your energy levels begin to drop, the day feels longer and longer. Stay busy and the time will fly.
-Eat good food. This is important for keeping your energy levels up, and keeping your body happy!
–Treat yourself with a foot bath every once and a while giving your feet some love and care!
Long hours are not fun, but someone has to do them. If you remember these tips you will be I good shape. I can’t stress the importance of your feet enough. They are our foundation of our whole body, if they aren’t happy, you aren’t happy!