By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
May 03, 2017
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Did you know that nearly 53 million adults and 300,000 children in America have arthritis? In honor of National Arthritis Awareness Month we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want to offer some important information about something that can help reduce the pain and stiffness of arthritic joints and increase flexibility: walking.

Arthritis is a term that actually refers to over 100 types of joint inflammation diseases. Each of your feet has 33 joints—a good reason to learn how to protect them! When joints become inflamed, they hurt and can be stiff and difficult to move. Studies have proven that exercise is the most effective non-medicine treatment for arthritis.

What’s Good About Walking?

Walking is one of the easiest exercises to do. In addition to helping relieve arthritis symptoms walking is good for your heart and lungs and can help reduce stress and improve mood. It can be done almost anywhere, alone or with a group. And, it requires hardly any special gear, except a good pair of walking shoes.

Tips for Choosing Walking Shoes

This one piece of equipment—your shoes—should be carefully chosen. Improperly fitting shoes or designs that don’t accommodate your particular foot shape or conditions can harm your feet and negate the exercise benefits. A consultation with our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah can alert you to any particular concerns you need to be aware of when purchasing walking shoes. Some good tips to know are:

  • Have your feet measured professionally. In most people, one foot is slightly larger than the other—buy shoes to fit the bigger foot.
  • Shop for walking shoes at the end of the day. That’s when your feet are their most swollen and largest.
  • Try to wear the same type of socks you would wear when you are walking to ensure the best fit.
  • Be sure there is a half inch of wiggle room between your longest toe and the front of the shoe.
  • Make sure the heel fits well in the shoe and is not slipping out when you walk.
  • Take your time and walk around the store with both shoes on to be sure there are not areas that rub or pinch—shoes should feel good from the moment you leave the store.

If you have more questions about arthritis in your feet and ankles and whether walking is a good plan for you, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.