We get it: everyone’s looking to save a few bucks. That’s why, for example, we reuse our same pair of casual, everyday tennis shoes for gym and court sports. Or why we outfit our children with footwear from the used sporting goods store (or just give them the cleats and gear that big sister or big brother used three years ago).
On the other hand, some things are worth paying a little more—or at the very least, selecting with a little more care. Sports gear, and in particular footwear, falls into this category. It really is a protection issue for feet and ankles. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize how improper, worn out, or hand-me-down equipment can cause pain and increase the risk of injury significantly. If they did, we’d guess they’d be more than happy to spend a few extra dollars!
You don’t have to break the bank and buy the most expensive gear you can find, of course. But by investing a little more time and care in taking care of your feet, your feet can do a much better job of protecting you!
We’ll start with hand-me-down or used shoes, cleats, etc. The truth is that, even with light wear, shoes should always be retired rather than passed down or resold. When bearing weight, shoes quickly mold and adapt in small (but significant and permanent) ways to fit the feet of the original wearer. Put another set of feet inside, and blister-forming pressure points (among other problems) may be created.
Even if your shoes are brand new, though, they aren’t going to do much good if they’re the wrong ones! Different sports subject feet and ankles to different kinds of stresses and risks. Some require you to move side to side or rapidly change directions; others not so much. Don’t try to get away with wearing the same pair of generic tennis shoes every day for everything! If you’re going to be playing one sport in particular regularly, you should buy shoes specific to that sport.
At Dallas Podiatry Works, our team of foot specialists can help you find the proper gear for your athletic activities, not to mention provide comprehensive, effective treatment for those times when prevention fails. To schedule an appointment with us, please call 972.566.7474 today.