Choosing Active Shoes for Busy Mums
In spending all your time reading up on your bub’s important foot development or scouting out the latest oh-so-cute supportive shoe for those endlessly growing feet (will they ever stop?) it can be easy to forget about your own needs.
But mums have needs too. Now more than ever! We know what it’s like; endlessly on your feet to chase after your ever-curious tot, holding their hands as they wobble over the playground equipment, and constantly doing the back-and-forth to the car and the front door to keep the household needs up through it all.
We know we bang on a bit about kids’ foot health (it’s what we know best!), but your adult feet are pretty important too. With the hectic life of a mum and an active women, you’ll want to make sure you’ve got comfy active footwear so you don’t always feel – excuse the pun – dead on your feet.
Why comfy active shoes matter for mums too
Our feet may have stopped growing, but that doesn’t mean we can now ignore their needs (OK, except for the occasional night out in the heels when you look too good to resist!).
Our feet have 26 bones. If that doesn’t sound like all that much, consider that it constitutes a quarter of all the bones in your body. There are also more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments that work together like clockwork to keep you on your feet. That sounds like something to protect if you ask me.
Your feet still require nurturing: poorly fitted running shoes can bruise your toes, constrict your muscles, add stress to tendons, cause cramping, and, of course, contribute to those pestering blisters that will truly knock you down. Who’s got time for that?
Every foot is different and if comfort is your priority, you’ll need to pick an active shoe tailored to your foot’s broad or narrow, padded or arched shape.
Consider your foot type
Though they may all look the same to us, there are three main types of feet, and it’s important you know which you have so you can buy shoes that suit your foot shape.
Flat feet get a bad rap. After all, flat-footed often denotes something awkward, uninspiring or unprepared. But we think the number of shoes out there catering to those flat feet among us show a great deal of preparation, consideration and innovation.
If you’re flat-footed, it means you don’t have a pronounced foot arch, which can lend to a natural inward rolling motion when you walk. You probably know if you have low arches, but if you’re unsure, you can do a simple wet feet test to find out. Just dip your bare feet in water and create a footprint on a flat surface. If your footprint lacks an indentation on the inner sole, it’s likely you’re flat-footed.
You can buy special active shoes with added support to absorb the impact shock you would otherwise naturally have with a more pronounced arch.
High arched feet are, unsurprisingly, the opposite of flat feet. In this case, your arches are obvious and you tend to walk on the outside edges of your feet. In these circumstances, you’ll want to look for a shoe with a midsole – the cushioning and foam in a running shoe – with lots of flexible padding.
A neutral foot type will allow you to choose virtually any shoe. You’ll want a shoe that cups your heel for stability. But just as with baby shoes (like the Bobux Xplorer range), flexibility is key. The more resistance there is when you squeeze the back of the heel, the greater support you’ll enjoy.
A quality shoe with denser foam in the midsole, such as those from podiatrist-supported Bared Footwear, will also better cushion your feet from the impact of being constantly on-the-go on hard surfaces.
Get the right fit
It can be all too tempting to grab those cheap-as-chips, off-the-rack department store running shoes, but give a little consideration to proper fit before you head to the counter. Here are a few tips to ensure you’ve got the right fit:
- Keep a thumb’s width of space between the end of the shoe and the tip of your toe
- Ensure the place where the shoe bends matches your foot’s natural bend
- Check the heel is snug and secure without slippage
- Try a half size up from your casual shoes so you have more wiggle room
- Try on your shoes after standing or walking for a time; your foot swells and lengthens after prolonged used
When our kids squirm in an uncomfy shoe, we sit up and pay attention. But we don’t seem to take nearly as much care of ourselves. Ladies, it’s time to develop a little bit of R.E.S.P.E.C.T for your own feet!A squishy shoe fit can mean damaged feet, bruised toes and heel blisters. Tired, beaten soles are not good for the soul! Nor is hobbling away to keep up with the kids. It’s true, our kids come first. But sometimes it’s nice to at least be able keep up with them.