The Importance of a Proper Fit
Lucky Shoes customers are treated to a traditional but unique shopping experience each time they visit one of our stores: their shoes are fit before they are sold. When assisting a customer with the shoe selection process, the professional fitter measures both feet (since no two are the same) and then checks how certain aspects of selected shoes match up to those measurements. Toe fit, arch fit, heel fit, width, and depth are all take into consideration before recommendations are made as to how a shoe fits. Sometimes there is room for improvement.
Customers are occasionally advised on a different size than what they were expecting. While the scale for foot measurement has been roughly the same for over six hundred years, the shoe sizing system has never been standardized. For this reason, the experienced fitters at Lucky Shoes recommend that you have your feet measured every time you shop for a new pair. I may seem repetitive, but any shoe fitting professional knows it is the only way to get it right.
Lucky Shoes fitters use the proven techniques of properly measuring a customer’s feet on the Brannock Device, but also take steps toward helping provide a good fit by employing some new methods. The Harris-Mat and the Aetrex iStep are tools of modern technology that help a professional shoe fitter determine which types of shoes will best fill a person’s needs by assessing pressures that affect the feet. Not only do those devices exist in the Lucky Shoes stores, but each fitter is trained to use them in order to maximize a customer’s satisfaction, no matter what style they are seeking.
Okay, Buckeyes, enough about your feet. Let’s talk about your shoes.
Every fan of good shoes knows that modern footwear varies in many ways. Some people prefer the adjustability and security of a lace-up style while others prefer the ease of a slip-on. Pink, green, grey plaid, loafers, boots, sandals, sneakers, water-shoes, barefoot shoes (yes, I said barefoot shoes), light up shoes (sorry ladies and gentlemen, kid sizes only), and the list goes on… The style choices are immense and each shoe is built slightly different from the other. This means that walking into a shoe store and selecting a pair off the rack may not give you the fit you deserve. If your shoes don’t fit properly they will certainly not be comfortable and may wear out too quickly. The Lucky Shoes professional fitters understand how shoes are intended to fit and can advise on different brands, styles, and shoe purposes that may be better suited to their customer’s particular needs. A very simple suggestion on shoe fit can lead to added comfort and may even prevent a customer from experiencing common foot problems.
“There are several foot problems that can be linked to improperly fitted shoes,” says Randy Contento, DPM. He sees the effects of improperly fit shoes daily in his practice and adds, “Plantar fasciitis, bunions, hammer toes, corns, calluses and many other issues can be attributed in some cases to ill-fitting footwear. A change in size, style or function along with the possibility of a comfort insole can lead to an improvement in overall foot health.” Dr. Contento tells his patients that staying ahead of your ever changing feet by always being measured is a great way to prevent future foot issues. For assistance with special foot health needs, Lucky Shoes has New Balance NBRx Certified Fit Specialists on staff at all times. They are there to ensure proper fit and function of shoes for those who are in need of therapeutic footwear and orthotic devices.
Now take all of that knowledge: varying styles, shoe purposes, the variation in sizing, the potential for foot health problems, and the measuring process and add the factor of growth. If it is important for every adult to be measured each time they buy shoes, it is doubly important for children to have their feet measured even more frequently. We recommend that a child has their feet measured at least once every four months. Growth can be rapid or slow depending on a number of factors so it is not uncommon to see a child’s foot jump two sizes in a short period of time, or stay the same size for a longer period. Regardless, many foot health issues that are prominent in adults can be avoided during childhood by always staying ahead of the curve.
So, the next time you set out across Columbus on a great journey to find that “perfect pair of shoes,” consider all of the factors that go in to making your decision. Consider that most adults stop getting their feet measured regularly at some point, and ask yourself, “why?” If a proper shoe fit can make you feel more comfortable, help your shoes last longer and help avoid possible foot health issues, aren’t your feet worth it? Hopefully, as you formulate your list of priorities for your new purchase, the proper shoe fit will sit at the top. As they have for over ninety-two years, Lucky Shoes will be there with a staff of caring professionals to assist you.