Coronavirus Measures at Trevor Lane Podiatry

We hope that you and your family are staying well through the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The situation is changing so rapidly that we have created this webpage to keep you updated on the latest arrangements at our clinic to contain the spread of coronavirus.

At this stage, Trevor Lane Podiatry remains OPEN, however with some new measures in place.

The health and wellbeing of our patients and staff is of the utmost importance, so below we have outlined the changes we have implemented.

coronavirus measures

Disinfecting

Although we have always been vigilant when it comes to handwashing and hygiene, we have stepped up our activities to include:

  • wiping down of the waiting room chairs, treatment benches, reception counter and front door handle after each patient.
  • If you are member of a private health fund, we ask your permission to lodge the Hicaps claim on your behalf.
  • We encourage our patients to use tap to pay. If a PIN is required, we wipe the terminal after each use.

Social Distancing

To comply with social distancing regulations, we are aiming to have only one visitor in our clinic at any one time.

Only the patient is to enter the premises (minors may be accompanied by one parent/carer). We ask that other family members or carers please wait outside or in the car. If the patient needs assistance to leave the clinic, we will let you know when they are ready to leave.

Bookings and Appointments

When you phone for an appointment: You will be advised about our new social distancing rules, and asked a few questions such as:

  • have you recently travelled overseas;
  • are you displaying any cold or flu like symptoms.

If the information you provide indicates that your visit may place others at risk, please do not be offended if we cannot proceed with the booking.

When you book online: A staff member will call you to ask the same questions. Depending on your responses, your booking may be postponed for at least 14 days.

When You Arrive

Upon arriving at our practice, you will notice a few things immediately such as:

  • Posters and other public health information to raise awareness of the importance of hand washing etc to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
  • Most chairs removed from the waiting room, with a couple added out on the balcony to comply with social distancing regulations.
  • We have also removed the bell and pens from the front counter.

Please Respect our Schedule

We ask for your assistance and understanding particularly with regards to keeping to scheduled appointment times.

If you are late for your appointment, we will ask you to reschedule as there will not be sufficient time to treat you and ensure thorough cleaning takes place before the next patient arrives.

While many of our patients visit so frequently they feel like friends, we regret that we are unable to enjoy social chats at this time. If you do have any other concerns, we will help you to make another appointment.

Rules for Staff

Please be assured that:

  • All our staff practise social distancing in their time away from work as much as they can.
  • When a staff member feels unwell they are not allowed to come to work. This also applies if one of their family members at home has flu like symptoms – we ask that they not return to work until they have consulted their doctor to rule out COVID-19.

We do apologise for any inconvenience, but want you to know that we are taking this threat to our community’s health and safety extremely seriously. We will continue to monitor the situation and update our procedures and this webpage as required.

Trevor Lane, 26 March 2020.

What to Look for in Running Shoes

While our social and sporting activities are temporarily off the agenda due to the coronavirus pandemic, there’s never been a better time for solitary pursuits like running and walking in the great outdoors.

Keeping active will also help your physical and mental health during these trying times.

Make sure your shoes are up to the job, otherwise running and walking may actually have a negative impact on your entire body – not just your feet!

what to look for in running shoes

Common questions include: Do I need professional shoe fitting? How often should I replace my running shoes? And which brands are the best?

Do I Need New Running Shoes?

Before you lace up your old faithful running shoes, consider if they are actually up to the task.

The Upper: Is the stitching coming apart? Are there any holes, or are your toes sticking out? Does the shape of the shoe look normal, or does it lean to one side (whether in or out)?

The Outer Sole: This is the treadlike layer on the bottom of the shoe, primarily used for grip and durability. Again, check for holes and signs of uneven wear.

The Mid Sole: The most important area of your running shoe however, is the part you can’t really see – the mid sole, which is usually made of EVA foam. Brands tend to use different names for this important layer: ASICS call it gel; Nike call it air; Brooks call it hydroflow – but essentially they all do the same thing.

The primary function of the mid sole is to absorb the shock of the foot as it strikes the ground; it is also designed to control the inward roll of the foot (or pronation as your local podiatrist is likely to call it). Pronation has been linked to conditions such as shin splints, kneecap problems, hip and lower back pain.

running shoes to control pronation

Unfortunately, the mid sole foam breaks down over time – as you clock up mileage, it becomes thinner and stiffer, losing its ability to control shock and the mechanics of your foot.

On the outside of your running shoe, the mid sole may be a different colour or pattern. If you notice any creasing, it may be time for a replacement.

Another way to test the condition of your mid sole, is how your shoes feel when you wear them. If you are running on the road or on gravel, and can feel that surface under your feet, the mid sole is tiring or has collapsed.

As a general rule, your local podiatrist will recommend that if you exercise regularly, you should look at replacing your running shoes on an annual basis.

What to Look for in Running Shoes

Tried and Tested: As with many things in life, tried and tested is best. If you have a brand that you are comfortable in, that you have been walking and running in without problems, then stick to it. Don’t change your running shoe because somebody in a shoe store or a certain brand is promoting something different.

Find an Assistant Familiar with your Sport: When you walk into a shoe store, try to find an assistant with relative knowledge. If you’re a runner, try to find a sales assistant who also likes to run. If you are a tennis or netball player – do they play tennis or netball?

Professional Shoe Fitting: Of course you won’t always be able to find help from somebody experienced in the same sport. However, you should make sure that your assistant measures the length and width of your feet with a Brannock, to get a truly professional shoe fitting.

what to look for in running shoes

Try Different Brands: Different brands cater for different foot dimensions, so again don’t get caught up in trends or marketing hype. Try on two or three pairs of shoes that offer the same features, and see which ones you think feel best, and most comfortable, under your feet.

If you are having problems with finding the right running shoe, your local podiatrist can help by looking into your specific needs and issues.

In the Redlands, Trevor Lane Podiatry is your local podiatrist, offering professional shoe fitting and footwear. Call us today on 3207 4736 for personal assistance with what to look for in running shoes.

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Kids School Shoes: A Parent’s Guide

It’s almost back-to-school time and that means sorting out uniforms, book lists, labels and kids school shoes.

Perhaps you have never thought of talking to your local podiatrist about school shoes – yet we are the experts in all things foot care!

professional fitting for kids school shoes

As your local family podiatrist clinic, we can help answer your questions, such as:

  • Why are good school shoes so important?
  • Are leather school shoes better?
  • Should we choose velcro fastening or lace up school shoes?
  • What shoe will best suit a wide foot?
  • Does my child need orthotics?

In addition to providing valuable advice, at Trevor Lane Podiatry we offer a range of quality school shoes – for the littlest preppie, right through to the adult sizes needed by the end of high school – as well as a professional fitting service.

We recommend parents check their kids’ school shoes in early to mid January, as there can be a bit of a rush at the end of January and stocks can run low.

Why are good school shoes so important?

As a parent myself, I’m quite particular about the features I want in my kids school shoes! So you can be assured of quality, stability and support in the range we offer. Here are just some of the reasons why good school shoes are so important:

  • Your child’s feet can grow up to 17 sizes in the first 11 or 12 years – expertly fitted school shoes allow for correct bone and muscle development, preventing potential problems down the track.
  • Poorly fitting school shoes can actually cause damage, or increase the risk of injury such as a sprained ankle.
  • A quarter of the bones in your child’s body are located in their foot – they deserve to be looked after!
  • Your child will be wearing their school shoes for at least 30 hours a week.
  • School shoes aren’t just for studying! You want to be sure your child has a good quality, supportive shoe for playing and running around.

Kids school shoes by Ecco

Professional Fitting for Kids School Shoes

It is worth visiting our Redlands podiatry clinic to check your kids’ school shoes before the new school year begins. Here are just a few reasons why:

  • We are the foot doctors! Our podiatrists have trained for many years and are fully qualified foot care professionals. Unlike shop assistants, with only a brief training session under their belts – we are the experts.
  • A podiatrist can pick up any potential problems or foot conditions in your child, and ensure that they are fitted with the best school shoes for their individual needs.
  • Our professional shoe fitting service includes measuring the length, width, and arch length of your child’s foot, as well as gait scan analysis to check for any abnormal foot function.
  • Feet aren’t always the same size! If your child has feet of a different length or width – we can adjust the shoe precisely to each foot.

In short, not only do you get great, professional service, you can be confident we stock only the best school shoes, with full money back guarantees.

School Shoes Brands

We stock Clarks, Ecco, and also school sports shoes, and can recommend the best for your child:

  • Clarks: Clarks have a great reputation. Their shoes consist of a good quality rubber sole and leather upper, and are built to offer maximum stability to support your child’s knees and back. Clarks caters for children with wide feet, with school shoes made up to F, G and H widths.
  • Ecco: This European brand offers very high quality in kids school shoes. They are a little more expensive, but I find they are particularly suitable for the senior years, eg students in years 11 and 12 that have finished growing. Older students find that they will get at least 2 years out of these shoes. Ecco school shoes are available predominantly in one width, but it’s a very generous sizing, around a B or C.
  • School Sports Shoes: Our school sports shoes range includes Orthaheels in white and black, and Saucony, which also caters for medium and wide feet.

At our Redlands podiatry clinic, we offer foot care for the whole family – and would love to help with advice and professional fitting for kids school shoes. Call us today on 3207 4736.

Summer Foot Care Tips

The summer holidays are almost upon us, a time to go footloose and fancy free!

However, summer is also a time when our feet are more exposed – and that can lead to all sorts of problems.

Put your best foot forward, with these tips for summer holiday foot care …

summer holiday foot care tips

Pedicure Season

For the ladies, summer means pedicures – and a good excuse for a bit of pampering.

As a foot care professional, I recommend being selective about where you get your pedicure done and choose a salon where hygiene is a top priority. I’m not a fan of the popular foot spa chairs, mainly because I can’t help but wonder what sort of bacteria could be lurking in the jets – even if basins are disinfected after each use.

Summer Footwear

One of the delights of summer is ditching the constraints of everyday life, and that includes your footwear. It’s a time to slip on a pair of thongs, or even go barefoot!

Some people find they get sore feet and calf muscles after wearing thongs for a few days. This is usually because their feet are accustomed to a more supportive shoe (eg school shoes or fully enclosed footwear for work). The foot has to work a lot harder when wearing thongs, leading to muscle fatigue, aches and pains.

You may find it more comfortable to wear thongs by Orthaheel or Vionic, both of which you may find stocked at your local podiatrist clinic.

Happy Holiday Feet

Wearing open backed shoes such as thongs, slides and sandals, also allows the fat pad on your foot to spread, which can cause cracked dry heels. To avoid this painful as well as unsightly condition, apply a moisturising lotion such as sorbolene with Vitamin E cream before bedtime .

And while we’re talking about lotion, don’t forget your feet whenever you use sunscreen – there’s nothing fun about sunburnt feet!

Long Haul Travel

Maybe you’re lucky enough to be taking a summer holiday overseas!

To avoid puffy sore feet after a long haul flight, drink lots of water and make a point of doing a couple of simple exercises every hour or two to keep the circulation flowing. You can try ankle flexes and toe wiggles while seated – or go for a walk around the plane and stop for a couple of calf stretches.

We also recommend wearing compression socks to protect against DVT (deep vein thrombosis), especially if you are 40+. Not all compression socks are the same, so at Trevor Lane Podiatry we measure, fit and supply you with the ones that are most suited to your needs.

Let’s Get Wet

We all know it’s a good idea to avoid going barefoot when showering in the amenities block at the caravan park.

However I also encourage the use of footwear even around the pool at your luxury resort, to reduce the risk of picking up an unwanted souvenir like the plantar wart virus or tinea …

The humidity at this time of year means that tinea and other nasties can thrive, so it’s important to dry your feet thoroughly after showering or swimming. Make sure you dry in between each toe, and don’t share towels.

Beach Feet

There’s nothing like the feel of wet sand between your toes – but it pays to be careful even at the beach, to avoid injury. Cuts and scrapes from coral often become infected, and can take weeks or even months to heal.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to enjoy summer fun and avoid foot problems – because no matter how much you may like your local podiatrist, I’m pretty sure that you’d prefer not to have a reason to visit them during your holidays!

Foot Care for all the Family

Think only elderly people visit a podiatrist? Think again! We are proud to be a family podiatry centre, providing the very best in foot care for newborns right through to seniors.

family podiatry centre

Baby Foot Care

From birth up until two years of age, babies may benefit from podiatric treatment for:

  • Hip Dysplasia – as discussed in our previous blog post “Podiatry and Back Problems“, any condition which affects the hips, is also likely to impact on the knees and lower limbs.
  • Ingrown Toenails – surprisingly, babies often suffer from ingrown toenails, which parents are anxious about trimming or treating.
  • In Toeing or “pigeon toe” – this is quite common in infants and is a leftover from their time in the womb, where (in most cases) the left foot curls over the right. Although it usually resolves on its own, as a parent you can promote correct alignment by encouraging your child to sit cross legged, rather than kneeling with their lower legs kicked out in a “W” pattern.

Podiatrist for Kids

Parents often seek out a podiatrist for their kids if they notice knock knees, or bowing of the legs, however there is no need to be alarmed – this is a normal developmental stage in children before the age of 11.

Complaints about “growing pains” are often heard from kids in this age group. Again, it’s usually nothing to worry about – it’s simply a matter of the bones growing longer and faster than the child’s musculature system, and therefore causing irritation. Typically it seems to affect the more active youngsters, causing heel pain (referred to as “severs”), or up to the area just below the knee.

If you do have any concerns about your child’s lower limb development, please see your local podiatrist, as it is usually easy to pick up and treat any abnormalities before growth is completed.

Sports Podiatry

As a family podiatry centre, a lot of our work is in the assessment and treating of common sports injuries – including foot fractures, sprained ankles, netball injuries, etc – in both children and adults. You’ll find we have a special interest in sports podiatry.

Senior Foot Care

As we age, it becomes more difficult to care for our own feet and toenails, due to a combination of factors:

  • we are no longer easily able to bend to reach our feet;
  • our nails thicken and become harder to trim;
  • and our close up vision deteriorates.

Added to this, our risk of wounds and infection increases, as:

  • the skin becoming thinner and more susceptible to bruises and cuts;
  • auto immune disorders such as diabetes, rheumatoids, lupus and sclerodermas become more common;
  • we are more likely to be taking blood thinning medication.

For all of these reasons, seniors are much more likely to need the services of a podiatrist.

Young families, seniors, couples, singles – if you live in the Redlands, Trevor Lane Podiatry is your local family podiatry centre.

Fascinating Foot Facts

If there’s one thing we know here at our Redlands podiatry clinic, it’s feet – and we’ve picked up a lot of fascinating foot facts along the way!

foot facts

These Feet are Made for Walking

Just think – if a person walks the recommended 10 000 steps per day from their first birthday up to the age of 70 – that adds up to over 25 million steps in their lifetime!

According to one website, the average person will walk over 128,000 km over the course of their life, the equivalent of three laps around the earth’s circumference.

Our early years are a time of incredible growth and development for our feet. For example, our toes start to form in the third or fourth month of gestation; and our feet double in length between birth and when we reach our fourth birthday!

I’ve previously written about how feet develop and when they stop growing, so today I thought I’d share a selection of both weird and wonderful foot facts.

10 Fascinating Foot Facts

1 – Bony Feet: Considering how small your feet are in comparison to your total body, you may be surprised to learn that fully a quarter of all the bones in your body are in your feet.

2 – A Feat of Engineering: Each foot has 26 bones, 33 joints, 107 ligaments and 19 muscles. No wonder Leonardo da Vinci described the foot as ‘the greatest engineering device in the world’!

3 – Built for Strength: The Achilles tendon is the strongest tendon in the body.

4 – Through Thick and Thin: One of the reasons your feet can go the distance, is because the thickest skin is found on the soles of your feet (and the palms of your hands).

5 – Ticklish Tootsies? It could be because there are 8,000 nerves in your feet.

6 – Don’t Sweat It: With 250 000 sweat glands in each foot, not surprisingly we can sweat up to a cup per day through our feet alone!

7 – Famous Feet: Is your second toe longer than your big toe? Don’t panic, you’re not alone – the Statue of Liberty is the same! This is known as Morton’s syndrome or Morton’s toe, and is also called Greek toe, because it is commonly seen in the statues of ancient Greece.Statue of Liberty feet

8 – Feet ‘Grow’ in Adulthood: It’s estimated that most people over the age of 40, gain half a shoe size every 10 years or so.

9 – Slipping into Sleep: Wearing socks to bed to keep your feet warm, makes it easier for you to fall asleep (or so says America’s national sleep foundation).

10 – Going Up! And finally, you’ve probably heard that human beings are getting taller with each generation; well, it seems feet are getting bigger too. America’s National Shoe Retailers Association says both men and women have gone up a full shoe size in the last 30 years.

When you consider their intricate design, many moving parts, and just how much we rely on them, no wonder things can – and do – go wrong with our feet, with one in 5 Australians suffering from foot pain.

Why Visit a Podiatry Clinic

Unfortunately many people simply don’t realise that a podiatry clinic like ours, exists solely (excuse the pun!) to help with problems affecting the feet and lower limbs and have never visited a podiatrist.

The most common foot complaint? Arch or heel pain, which affects nearly half of all Australians at some point in their lifetime.

Runners also make up a fair proportion of the clientele at any podiatry clinic, probably due to the following statistics about running injuries:

  • 42% of running injuries are to the knee;
  • 17% to the foot/ankle;
  • and 13% to the lower leg.

So next time your tootsies are tender, remember: a podiatry clinic (like Trevor Lane Podiatry), is where you will find expert help for your foot care problems.

October is Foot Health Awareness Month

Because Foot Health Week falls in October each year – this year it’s from Monday the 15th to Friday the 21st of October –  at Trevor Lane Podiatry, we like to think of the whole month as “Foot Health Awareness Month”.

foot health awareness month

As part of our commitment to providing you with the very best foot care, we regularly share tips here on our podiatry blog, on everything from preventing and treating common sports injuries, to what to look for in kids’ school shoes.

Foot Health Fact Sheets

Another great source of information is the Australian Podiatry Association website, which has a number of foot health fact sheets designed to not only help you look after your feet, but also explain exactly how a podiatrist can help. According to the Association, only a fraction of people suffering from sore feet actually seek treatment, which means many Australians could be suffering needlessly.

At time of writing, there are nine Fact Sheets available:

  1. When to See a Podiatrist: Podiatrists are university-trained to be foot care experts and can help with symptoms and issues affecting the lower limbs and feet.
  2. Looking after Ageing Feet: After many years of use and often abuse (eg wearing ill fitting shoes and high heels), foot pain and problems may develop – discover tips to help keep you active and mobile.
  3. Corns and Calluses: Find out how they develop, how to prevent them, and how to treat them.
  4. Diabetes and Your Feet: Discover why having diabetes increases your risk of foot problems and infections, and the signs and symptoms to look for (you may also like to take a look at our blog post, How a Podiatrist can help a Diabetic).
  5. Footwear Health Check: A guide on what to look for when buying new shoes.
  6. Fungal & Nail Infections: Learn how to prevent and treat the nasties that can cause infections in your feet and toe nails.
  7. Gait Analysis: By assessing the way you walk, a podiatrist can diagnose any problems and prescribe treatment to prevent and minimise pain and risk of injury. You can also find out more in our article on Digital Gait Scan Analysis.
  8. Incorrectly Fitted Shoes: Ill fitting shoes can be the reason behind foot pain and problems – could your shoes be doing you damage?
  9. Pain: Pain is your body’s way of alerting you to the fact that something is not right. What is your foot and/or lower limb pain trying to tell you?

Each fact sheet also includes a handy checklist – if you tick one or more of the boxes on the checklist, the Australian Podiatry Association urges you to make an appointment with your local podiatrist as soon as possible.

To read and download the fact sheets, head to: https://www.podiatry.org.au/foot-health-resources/foot-health-fact-sheets.

Does My Child Need Orthotics?

When a parent brings their child to our podiatry clinic, it is often due to concerns about flat feet, and whether their child needs orthotics.

Flat feet are relatively normal from birth to about two years of age, as the arch doesn’t start to develop until the child is walking. Even after that, the soles of a child’s feet may look flat, but this does not necessarily indicate a problem.

does my child need orthotics

The term “flat foot” is a fairly broad term covering a number of foot alignment issues. True flat foot is a condition where the longitudinal arch of the foot has not yet developed normally. However excess pronation can also make your child’s foot look flat, and cause you to worry.

Flat Feet or Excess Pronation?

Pronation is the natural movement of the foot and ankle, where they roll inwards when you are in motion. It can affect one foot, or both.

However in many cases it can roll in excessively – ie excess pronation. As the child walks or runs, excess pronation causes:

  • the arch of the foot to flatten;
  • the fore foot to splay outwards;
  • and the ankle to pull upwards.

In a true case of flat foot there is no change in the arch contour (ie it remains flat), whether the child is standing or sitting.

A pronated foot on the other hand, will seem flat when the child is standing, but there is a fully developed arch profile when the child is seated.

Excess pronation is quite common in children from birth up to about age eight or nine, and is not usually painful (if your young child is complaining of aching legs, that they can’t sleep due to leg pain, or pleading for you to rub their legs to give them some relief, this merits further investigation for hidden pathologies).

The reason pronation is so common in children is because bone grows faster than soft tissue, creating a muscular imbalance. The child’s foot subsequently pronates to compensate; in some children, it might result in knock knees or bow legs for a time.

does my child need orthotics

There are other factors which may contribute to a change in the arch of the child’s foot – such as limb length discrepancies, or curvature of the lower back.

By the age of five or six, the foot bones have positioned themselves, and all they have to do is grow and get bigger. At this stage if the arch does not appear to be developing, it’s worth visiting your local podiatry clinic to find out if orthotics may be of benefit. Before making a diagnosis we will likely send your child for x-ray and/or ultrasound, to make sure there’s no congenital abnormalities (eg bony fusions, ligament or tendon damage, non-development of particular structures).

Orthotics for Excess Pronation

In a true case of flat foot, there is no arch – so there is no point in using an orthotic to support an arch that does not exist. In this case, it would simply hurt the client.

We find approximately 80% of children visiting our podiatry clinic are presenting with excess pronation. Treatment may include advice on footwear choices, exercises, or possibly orthotics.

What sort of Orthotics?

If your podiatrist recommends orthotics, there are two types to consider: off the shelf, or customised.

Off the shelf are cheaper, but provide only a certain degree of correction. If there is a marked deformity, we have no choice but to prescribe custom orthotics, because one foot is functioning quite differently to the other.

At our Redlands Podiatry Clinic we see clients of all ages, so if you have any concerns about your child’s feet, need school shoes, or want guidance on the best kids shoes for orthotics, you can book an appointment now using our secure online booking system.

Blisters or Bliss: Choosing the Best Hiking Boots

The winter months are prime time for mountain trekking and adventure – whether you prefer the rainforests of the Gold Coast Hinterland, or the snowfields of New South Wales, Victoria or New Zealand.

what to look for in hiking boots

As a trekking enthusiast from way back, as well as a local podiatrist, I know firsthand the difference that a good pair of hiking boots can make: blisters, or bliss!

The Best Hiking Boots

The best hiking boots for you, may be completely different to what your mate wears.

And there are so many different types to choose from – trail boots and mountaineering boots; high cut, low cut, mid cut; leather or synthetic.

So here are a few tips to help you determine the best hiking boots for your needs.

How Will You Be Using Your Hiking Boots?

If you prefer shorter walks on well-constructed paths, a low cut hiking shoe should meet your needs.

Heading out for an all day hike with a lightly loaded backpack? Then a mid-to-high cut day hiking boot should provide you with the perfect combination of support and flexibility.

If a 2 week trek through rugged terrain is more your speed, look for backpacking boots with stiffer midsoles, and a high cut, as they offer superior support and protection. These will also serve you well if you are hiking in snowy and icy conditions, as crampons work best with rigid soled boots. However they do take a while to break in – something that is best achieved gradually, before you set off on your next trip!

The 3 Main Components of Hiking Boots

1 – The sole: While it’s certainly not the only component to consider, start by examining the sole of the boot. The lug pattern will determine your traction and grip – the greater the spacing, the better the traction and mud dispersion. Also, look for a heel brake on the outside back corner of the boot. Good boots will have a heel zone separate to the rest of the boot, to provide grip particularly during steep descents.

2 – Midsole: The midsole, like the middle child, is often overlooked. The midsole provides cushioning and support; if you are hiking longer distances and over more difficult terrain, a firmer midsole made of polyurethane will give your ankle and foot more support, and less fatigue. For less strenuous hikes, a midsole made of EVA will be comfortable.

3 – The Uppers:  Again, your choice of upper material will depend on how you will be using your hiking boots. In rain and snow you will truly appreciate waterproof membranes like Gore-tex; leather may be the best option for challenging terrain; while synthetic might be a more affordable option for the casual hiker.

what to look for in hiking boots

Getting the Best Fit

If you are investing in a pair of good hiking boots, here are some tips to help you get the best fit possible:

  • A good boot should fit your foot snugly, without being tight. Make sure the boot is wide enough in the toe box area, that you can still wiggle all your toes.
  • It’s best to time your boot fitting for afternoon or evening, as our feet tend to swell over the course of the day.
  • If you wear orthotics, make sure you bring them to the fitting, as well as the socks you are planning to wear when hiking. From a podiatrist’s point of view, the style and fabric of Injinji toe socks not only optimises your foot’s biomechanics, it also creates a more comfortable – and less sweaty – environment within your boots when hiking.
  • Take your time – Walk in the boot around the store, and on different angles and gradients (if at all possible) to test how your foot is sitting in the shoe. Check if the seams, stitching, or any other areas are rubbing on your foot, and that there is sufficient width.
  • When it comes to length, your toes should not touch the end of the toe box: your longest toe should be a thumb width from the end of the toe box.
  • Your boot lacing technique can help or hinder the fit. If you have narrow heels for example, the heel lock technique will stop your toes sliding forward in the shoe when descending, preventing you from bruising and damaging your toe nails.

Breaking in your Boots

Finally, make sure you break in your boots before heading off the beaten track. Hiking shoes with their lower cut and softer midsole may be comfortable from the very first wear, but the more rugged models usually take time to soften and conform to your feet. Just remember that the breaking in process does not convert a poor fit into a good fit.

hiking boots for Overland Track in Tasmania

Looking for Hiking Boots?

At Trevor Lane Podiatry, our footwear range includes a European brand called Ecco, with styles including hiking shoes and back country leather high boots. I have worn a high cut Ecco hiking boot in Gore-tex, the Expedition, on hikes in the Snowy Mountains, Europe, and the Overland Track in Tasmania, and highly recommend them.

If you live in the Redlands, Trevor Lane Podiatry is your local podiatrist clinic. We’d love to assist you with choosing the best hiking boots for your needs, boot lacing techniques, and preparing for your next hike or overland adventure – so call us today on 3207 4736 or make an appointment 24/7 via our secure online booking system.

Are Thongs Bad for your Feet?

Depending on your age or where you live, you might know them as flip flops, jandals, BBs, pluggers, or thongs.

Whatever you call them, one of the most common questions we hear in our podiatry clinic is:  “Are thongs bad for your feet?”

Australians Love Their Thongs!

Here in Australia, our climate means that we appreciate convenience, coolness, breathability, and comfort, in our clothing and footwear choices.

Add to that our casual lifestyle and love of the beach, and you can see why thongs could almost be part of our national costume!

are thongs bad for your feet

But is our love of thongs actually doing us harm?

Common Problems with Thongs

Some people have trouble tolerating thongs over long distances or periods of time. This is usually because their calves are tight and shorter than normal, or they have less flexibility in their lower back. This is not the fault of the thongs, rather, it’s the individual’s unique anatomy.

We often see clients at our podiatry clinic, complaining of sore feet after taking a couple of weeks’ holiday. They may even blame it on their thongs, saying things like:

  • “The feeling between my toes makes me feel ill”;
  • “I had to claw with my toes to grip my thongs”;
  • “I think I alter my walking pattern in thongs, maybe that’s why my feet are sore?”.

In fact, the culprit is not so much wearing thongs, but rather, the sudden change in footwear.

In the working world, we tend to wear more supportive shoes such as steel cap boots and lace ups, t-bar or mary jane styles.

However when we are on holidays, we suddenly switch to thongs – and our muscles, ligaments and tendons are not conditioned to this completely different style of footwear. Our feet have to work harder when we walk in thongs, which can lead to muscle strain and pain.

Should I Wear Thongs?

Wearing thongs comes down to things such as your individual:

  • Fitness;
  • Lifestyle, and activities – wear enclosed shoes, with cushioned soles, and preferably lace ups that have been scientifically proven to give you the most support, if you are planning a big day of walking, for example;
  • Health – some diabetics have little to no feeling in their toes and feet, so we recommend closed in footwear to protect them from injury;
  • Mobility and flexibility;
  • Lower limb mechanics;
  • And of course, personal style choices.

Today’s Thongs

In days gone by, thongs were just flat pieces of rubber with straps – even now, if you can bend your thong in half in your hand, more than likely it is not doing much for your feet.

Are thongs bad for your feet? Like so many things in life, moderation is key. If you wear thongs a lot, make sure they are good quality ones. Look for a sturdier make, and for features such as molded arch contours, or a cup in the heel to stabilise and support.

At Trevor Lane Podiatry, we understand that wearing thongs is part and parcel of our great Aussie Aussie lifestyle, so we stock Orthaheel thongs for men, women and children, as well as Vionic Beach.

And here’s a little secret – you don’t have to be afraid to mention thongs at our podiatry clinic – because our podiatrists wear them sometimes too!