Photo: Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images
Whether you work all day standing on a hard surface, take your daily walk on pavement or just find yourself standing around at checkout counters or clubs for hours, the right kinds of shoes can make all the difference in how comfortable you are. You can develop some persistent foot issues if you don’t take proper care of those dogs as well. Leave them unprotected and your feet will howl in discontentment.
If you start feeling a throbbing pain in your hip that travels into your rear end and around the front, you may be developing bursitis, a common condition for people who spend long hours standing on hard surfaces. The bursa is a sac filled with fluid that cushions your hipbones and surrounding tendons and acts like a shock absorber. Shoes that have built-in absorbency like athletic running shoes can help to catch some of the pressure that's placed on your hips from standing.
If you can't wear good athletic running shoes on the job, get a pair of cushioned inserts to relieve some of the pressure. Inserts are available that fit into any kind of shoe, from loafers and flats to heels and pumps. Check with your doctor if the inserts don't help because you may just have one leg that's a little shorter than the other. The minor deformity can easily be relieved by getting custom shoes that have a little thicker sole on one side to even you out or by wearing a thicker insert in one shoe.
Foot fungus and athlete's foot are really common foot infections that appear on the feet of people who stand on hard surfaces for long periods of time. Standing causes cracked, dry heels, which provide an open invitation for the bacterial spores to move on in and party down under the top layer of skin on your feet. The bacteria particularly like to live in moist dark places that they find in closed shoes. Wear sandals or open weave shoes to let a little air in and spoil the party atmosphere for the spores. Breathable leather makes the environment a little less friendly for bacteria as well. Leave your tight shoes at home when you're going to be standing, because the bacteria like it when your toes get all sweaty and squeezed together.
You're more likely to develop heel and forefoot pain when your feet can move around inside your shoes. Calluses and corns develop quickly when you stand on hard surfaces like concrete in shoes that aren't really snug up on your feet. Wear short boots that tie snugly around your ankles to provide the support your feet are going to need. Low, ankle-high, lace-up boots keep your feet, muscles, bones and ligaments aligned so that they don’t rub against your shoes incorrectly. Ankle boots allow your ankles to bend a little better than higher boots so that your ankles are not restricted, preventing pain that comes from misusing your calf muscles for movement. Go for ankle boots with a little cushion inside and a padded tongue for ultimate comfort.