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Flip flop season

It's flip flop season. In many countries flip flops are the most common form of footwear and there are no issues. However, for many these shoes are only worn in the summer and may be detrimental to the wearer. The research indicates that they can be healthy for some and also detrimental to other wearers.

1. If your toes have to grip by acting like a claw when you wear them to stop them coming off then this puts stress on the feet. If you wear them for extended periods they may cause pain in the body. It can cause hammertoes and also this grip involves the musculoskeletal system having to engage all the way up the body to the pelvis, head and neck and this can cause pain in all these areas. If you really enjoy wearing them then work on not gripping hard with your toes - notice how you do wear them and check that the ones you have fit in a snug way so they grip on enough without your toes having to grab on.

2. As they have soft foam and no arch support nor shock absorption they do not protect the foot well. They do not protect the ankles from being able to roll which may result in sprains and tendonitis. They also does not give the right feedback for your body to perform the correct gait when walking. However, if you work on exercising the muscles involved in walking then your natural gait may be enough. Ensure you exercise your feet and give yourself some footcare with reflexology or massage therapy.

3. If you wear them then do so for only short periods of time so just at the beach unless you know you do not grip on and that you never feel achey. If you are walking for any length of time then use shoes that you can slip on and off that grip your feet rather than your feet having to grip the shoe.

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