Retail Focus: The Toe Box

(3 photos today, hover over the pic to see the slidebar cursor)

Shoes that are too tight in the fore foot inhibit motion. Just like anything else; “if you don’t use it…you lose it”. That goes for forefoot mechanics as well. Shoes probably do not cause bunions, but they can contribute to bad mechanics, which CAN cause bunions. Today’s retail focus will be on toe boxes.

The toes are designed to work as a team, and that team seems to work best with plenty of room to “stretch out”. We haven’t found a study to say that footwear causes foot problems, but there is at least one that says it can aggravate them. High heels don’t count; we have covered that in other posts,

From our forthcoming shoe fit certification program, we can note the following points:

  • The toe box should have ample room to prevent crowding and pressure on the metatarsal heads.
  • When measuring feet, remember “splay happens”’ the foot is wider and longer when weight bearing (standing) and more so at the end of the day (yes, your feet are larger in the evening).
  • use  the larger of either sole or ball length (when using a Brannocks Device). When in doubt, size up!
  • Make sure the toe break of the shoe (where the shoe bends in the forefoot when pressure is applied to it) is at the joint of the big toe (hallux)
  • Make sure any siping or creases in the sole of the shoe near the forfoot line up with the junction of the metatarsal heads and phalanges (at the base of the toes)

Think about shoes with generous toe boxes: Altra, Keen, some Merrels, or brands that offer width sizing.

The Gait Guys….Yes, we do shoe fit too. Soon to be released; the most comprehensive shoe fit certification program ANYWHERE. Watch the blog, our Facebook page and the  website for the launch announcement….

Pictures compliments of Altra Running and Dr Mark Cucuzzella