What are the different parts of a shoe?

As simple as a shoe may seem, it is actually a complex piece of your daily attire. When designing a shoe, many different factors determine what the shoe is intended to do. It is for this reason that when choosing a shoe, you should choose a shoe specific to what you want to do in them.

To better understand what you should be looking for in your shoe, it will help to understand the following parts of a shoe:

Toe Box – The toe box is the front part of the shoe that is responsible for containing your toes. When this area is too tight, you are susceptible to bunions, metatarsalgia, neuromas and much more. When choosing a shoe you want this area to be spacious. High heels typically have small toe box area and will often cause problems in the foot when worn regularly.

Insole – The sole of the shoe is the area inside the shoe where your foot rests. This is an important part of the shoe because it is responsible for absorbing the shock from moving. It is also important for maintaining proper foot mechanics. If you have flat feet, heel pain or other structural foot deformities, replacing the sole with a custom orthotic can help you avoid daily pain.

Outsole – The outsole is located on the bottom of the outer part of the shoe. This area is designed to accommodate the use of the shoe. Since this area comes in direct contact with the ground, a hiker will look for an outsole that will have several ridges. This provides grip so that they can avoid falling. A ballet dancer will look for an outsole with fewer grips to allow a smooth glide.

Ankle/Back of the Shoe Height – This area of the shoe provides important ankle support. Basketball players and hikers should choose a shoe with tall ankle/back of the shoe height. This will provide increased ankle stability so that they can avoid ankle sprains. On the contrary, a long distance runner should choose a shoe with a short back of the shoe area, because the additional support is not needed in all cases.

Much like a car there are different components of the shoe that will allow it to perform differently than others. For an example let us consider a sports car. A sports car will have the components that make it move faster than the average car. A shoe resembles this in the way that if you are looking for a running shoe (a sportier version of a shoe), you want to purchase a shoe that is light weight, flexible and will allow you to run with ease.

How can we help you?

We are dedicated to your foot and ankle health. If you are thinking about starting a new workout routine or are trying to decide what shoe will be most beneficial to your foot shape, give one of our Florida offices a call.

It is important that you get the right shoe for your specific activity, so that you can avoid injury and pain.