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Walking shoes for Plantar Fasciitis

Hi,
Heading to Denmark, Czech Republic, Germany, Austria and Poland in May. I need cute walking/evening shoes to help with my aching plantar fasciitis feet. Any suggestions?

Posted by
630 posts

I went to a podiatrist and had custom orthodics made. I can then transfer them to any shoe, boot or sneaker. Worth every penny!

Posted by
1133 posts

I also wear custom orthotics most of the time. I buy shoes with a removable footbed and transfer them from shoe to shoe. And within 2 weeks of wearing them for the first time my plantar fascitis was essentially gone.
I won't leave home without them!

Posted by
93 posts

I went to my chiropractor and she wrapped my foot with tape...very tight..left it on several days went back and she took off the tape and re-wrapped. Second wrapping stayed on for few more days and then went back she took it off and never had a problem since... My foot was so bad before it hurt to walk on it in the morning getting out of bed... Just a thought..

Sore feet are just the worst....hope you have a wonderful trip...

Posted by
9542 posts

I swear by M.E.L.T. method balls for rolling my feet ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ueBR035tTh8 ) and Correct Toes toe spacers. I've also changed over to zero-drop footwear for pain relief. The Altra brand that I use is not, however, cute, nor are they evening shoes. I would go with whatever gives you the best results for your walking regardless of what they look like.

Rolling your feet with the MELT balls morning and night will help with the immediate pain but you don't want your feet to break down in the middle of your wonderful trip! If your trip is in May it's too close to start using the Correct Toes which need some break in time plus appropriate footwear.

Whatever you get you need to get them immediately and put some miles in on them.

(PS No connection to any of these products, just use them for my own PF issues!)

Posted by
19 posts

I dealt with plantar fasciitis for a couple years. I am going to give you general recommendation for your condition and then I will recommend shoes. First, do see a good podiatrist or your general doctor and specifically ask for a referral for physical therapy to a therapist who deals with plantar fasciitis. If you have to seek out recommendations, call physical therapists and ask, or even ask someone from the running community if they recommend anyone. Ideally a sports medicine physical therapist - one that deals with athletes. They will set you up with exercise to assist in overcoming the condition and will make recommendations to aid recovery. Next, do request good custom orthotics - a podiatrist might have them made or a good sports medicine physical therapy clinic will have them made. Mine were made by the later and are called RunFlex by Ortho Group. You do not need to be an athlete to seek physical therapy from a clinic that deals with athletes but I find that they will keep you moving and if you travel, you are inherently doing athletic activity just by lots of walking. Do not allow any practitioner to simply "pat you on the shoulder" and proverbially hand you a cane. OK, shoes - you need really good arch support and it helps to change your shoes, so for travel - two pairs of good walking shoes. I was not comfortable until I got my orthotics but until then I was wearing Keens, Danskos, Asics running shoes and I also got some Ortho-heels - Vionics from the Footsmart catalog shoe store. Web address ---- www.footsmart.com . They have many products for plantar fasciitis. I am a swimming official and spend hours on concrete pool decks and Vionic flip flops are what I wear whenever allowed - they are magic for plantar f. OK hope that helps. Looks like you got some great feedback!!! Happy travels!

Posted by
630 posts

I'm going to second Stark's suggestion about changing your shoes when traveling. It helps me to alternate my shoes every day. Each shoe has different pressure points on the feet. Compression socks help me as well.

Posted by
715 posts

I would add that you don't need a "special" ball to roll your feet with. A lacrosse ball, or a baseball, or a golf ball all work. It is painful, but it does wonders.

Posted by
9542 posts

Actually the balls I refer to area a set and you do it in a specific pattern. The creator says it rehydrates the fascia which I am not sure I believe but wow does it work. They are different sizes and different levels of soft and hard and are used in a pattern on what I assume are pressure points in your feet. It works for me.

I have never gotten any relief from using a tennis ball, a golf ball or any other ball but this set. Again, just a satisfied customer, not connected with the company at all. I also have never gotten relief from regular stretching either.

Posted by
1253 posts

I Feel your pain! I had PF right before my BIG Europe trip and this is how I got rid of it in about 4 months, but I was diligent with every single step. Support the arch!! I cant stress that enough.

1) Stretch your calves about 5 times a day by hanging the back of your foot off of a step, this helps immensely but must be done for months. Also stretch everyday on your trip multiple times, find a curb and just hang that heel off.
2) NEVER go bare foot ever! Invest in Vionic Orthaheel flip flops to wear around the house and everywhere. I call them my constant physical therapy. They align your heel and have a wonderful high arch support that is needed for PF to heal. I even wore them to work explaining to my boss my condition and the need for them.
3) I purchased Aetrix shoes for walking around Europe just after my last flare up. Look at Zappos, they have the cutest shoes and read all the testimonials of people with PF who swear by them (the same with the Orthoheel brand)
http://www.zappos.com/aetrex-lori-adjustable-quarter-strap-stone
4) I purchased a pair of Orthaheel ankle boots and lived in them in Paris when it was raining. They have the arch support and good grip on all surfaces:
5) My Podiatrist suggested I wear an insert called Power Pinnacle (purchased on Amazon). I used these inside my sketchers for Europe and they are wonderful.

You can beat this but you need to be diligence with every step. Not going barefoot was the hardest for me, even now I do not have PF but I still wear my flip flops all over the house because I fear getting it again and if I feel just a twinge coming on I start stretching that calve.

Posted by
1253 posts

One more thing! If you cant get the MELT balls (Wonderful!) just use a tennis ball all day long. Just roll that ball on the most painful part of the heel, break that scar tissue down, stretch that fascia! I had one under my desk that is used all day.

Posted by
487 posts

In followup to Stark's comment about seeing a physical therapist with a focus on sports injuries, I highly recommend seeing an Airrosti if they are available in your area. They are chiropractors that focus on soft tissue injuries and the appointments are half spent on therapeutic massage and half on exercises (such as rolling with a lacrosse ball) and stretches. They have done wonders for several issues I had dealt with for several years, including plantar fasciitis. The visits were covered under my insurance with a copay. The only bad thing is they are located in only a few states right now: Texas, Washington, Virginia, Ohio and Illinois.

I also like the Vionic shoes and there are some dressier versions available. Another brand I like is Naot, most of their shoes have removable insoles so you can use theirs or your own. For a walking shoe though I love the Pure Flow shoes from Brooks, these are running shoes so not "cute" but they keep my feet very happy whenever I do a lot of walking. They have more cushion than some others and that seems to really help me just as much as arch support.

Posted by
201 posts

I agree wtih Letizia.

Rolling my feet on the ball helped a lot as did using a towel with my foot pressed in the "U" of the towel while holding it with both hands. Pull on the towel as it stretches your foot. Google this exercise if that description is confusing. And, I agree...never, ever walk on a bare floor or cement without slippers. My doc suggested sports slides like soccer players wear for house slippers and I've found that Haflingler clogs work really well too. I alternate them with warm/cold seasons.
An injection of cortizone may be necessary before your trip?
I went to a walking/running shoe store and they had Off the Shelf brand inserts and watched how I walked and added a gel pad where needed. I have had numerous inserts from podiatrists and chiropractors and this $30-35 brand of orthotics work the best and I put them in my tennies! I also have found that Chaco sandals are the best fit for me with lots of support.
Good luck! It can get better so don't lose hope!

Posted by
630 posts

I just bought these Compression Socks and LOVE THEM! The socks have gradual compression to support the arch. They are a thin nylon so I can still wear socks over them if needed to cover my toes.

My plantar fasciitis was so bad that my heal and arch would suddenly be in pain even sitting on the couch watching TV. To alleviate the pain I would have to sit up and massage the foot or start rolling it on a rolling pin. This is the first time I can remember in months where I could watch an entire TV show without thinking about my feet.

I also wasn't able to walk around the house barefoot, and I always needed to wear shoes with my orthodics. Now I can wear these socks without shoes. And best yet, I can now wear my flip flops around the house in the summer! I haven't been able to wear flip flops in quite some time because I always needed to wear shoes with the orthodics.

I realize they are expensive, and I hesitated for a few months to buy them. I got to a point where I would pay anything to relieve the pain. And these socks are worth every penny. I'll probably buy another pair so I can have a spare while the other pair is in the wash.

They come in different sizes, so you have to figure out what size works for you. It was easy for me - I have tiny feet (size 4 US, 34 Eu) - so I went with a small, and they fit perfectly.

P.S. It's also the first time I can remember in a long time that my first steps out of bed were "normal" and I didn't have to hobble and limp until my feet loosened up. :D