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shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Posted by anna k on 2/07/03 at 18:54 (108394)

I was diagnosed last summer with PF and given hard orthotics. I cook for a living and am on my feet on concrete all day. I tried Dansko clogs and am now in some older Nikes I had in my closet...and still have heel pain and now pain in the ball of my feet.

I'm going to find a second podiatrist as mine keeps wanting to inject my feet to solve the pain issue...this is not a long term treatment I'd likd to pursue.

But in the meantime, I need some kitchen shoes for work that I can put my orthotics in. Am thinking Rockport...any body here using orthotics and on their feet on concrete all day? What kind of shoe are you having good results from?

Thanks...

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Ed Davis, DPM on 2/07/03 at 19:59 (108403)

Anna:

One option may be the Brooks Addiction WT. It is an all leather version of the Brooks Addiction V running shoe.
Ed

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Richard, C.Ped on 2/08/03 at 08:44 (108446)

hi Anna...
I have found that in cases such as yours, when you basically stand in one spot all day, it can be harder to adjust to the orthosis...especially a hard one. With my athletes and their constant movement, they do not feel the new support as much, until they either take a break such as a football huddle, or a time out.

If it were me, I would have added an extra layer of cushion such as 1/8' 30 durometer EVA.

Richard

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/08/03 at 08:53 (108448)

Thanks for the responses. I am thinking maybe the orthotics arent' the right ones for me....mostly because when I got them I was only having problems with my left foot and now am getting bad pain in both feet after standing. My feet only bother me on days I work...general day to day life and exercise don't seem to bother them, only the prolonged standing. I took a month off from work in January and my feet didn't bother me at all...now back at work for a week..and ouch! :-(

Anyway, thansk for the advice on the Brooks shoes, I'll see if I can find a pair to try on somewhere....and will talk with a podiatrist about possible different orthotics.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Carole C in NOLA on 2/08/03 at 09:29 (108451)

Anna,

I'm so glad that some of the best foot professionals that visit this site answered your question! I am glad that you plan to try everything that Dr. Ed and Richard C.Ped have suggested. They both really 'know their stuff', and if anything will work for you they'd know about it.

I'm just someone who has been through PF myself and I didn't know what to say in answer to your post. So far, I don't think I've seen anyone post on this site who has managed to recover from PF while standing all day on concrete, no matter what they wore. Maybe there is someone but I can't remember anyone at the moment.

So, I was going to urge you to get some different job duties for a few months that would allow you to sit. I will be totally thrilled if you don't have to do this! Please come back and let us know how you are doing. Jobs are so scarce these days that sometimes people just can't insist on sitting at work without endangering their livelihood. It may take a while (it does for all of us) but it would be really encouraging to a lot of people if your feet improve substantially.

Carole C

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Julie on 2/08/03 at 11:28 (108467)

Anna, my first impulse was to say that I doubt whether you'll ever be able to heal if you continue to do a job that involved standing all day on a hard surface. But it's your profession, and I'm sure you wouldn't want to change it even if you could!

You say in your latest post that walking doesn't bother you, and that you're ok if you rest. So I'd like to suggest that in addition to taking up the suggestions from the foot professionals that you've had, you try to modify your duties a bit. Think about what you could do sitting down (cutting up vegetables, breaking eggs, etc?) and get off your feet whenever possible. And walk around whenever you don't actually have to be standing in one place.

A little ingenuity, a little tweaking here and there, might make a significant difference to your pain. I hope so.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/08/03 at 16:51 (108495)

Thanks for the additional comments...no, i'm not wanting to give up cooking. Sat behind a desk for 15 years before this and wouldnt' like to go back...fortunately I'm also in grad school workign on a MS in Nutrition so once that's done I wont' be cookiing in an industrial setting anymore but more on a one on one basis with clients which wont' be in 8 hour stretches....but that's still a few more years away...so I don't want to completely ruin my feet in the meantime.

On the bright side...my left foot problems ahve actually improved since last summer...used to be they bothered me all the time. I had to spend most of the summer off my feet. Things were better in the fall..,and now my feet only bother me on days that I work, which I fortunately am able to do on a part-time basis. Right now I work every other day so my feet recover in between....Being off my feet all summer and having foot problems though i've gained weight instead of lost it so that isn't helping. I used to be very active but everything I enjoy doing is weight-bearing....so i'm trying to convince myself swimming and biking is fun and hoping the weight loss will help. I've got about 45 to lose. :-(

The frustrating part is that the other foot is bothering me now which it wasn't before...even when it was bad last summer it was only the left. When I went back to cooking in the fall the other foot started.

I don't have pain in the morning and if I work shorter shifts of about 4 hours I'm good...it's when I'm doing 8-10 hour shifts that I start getting the pain...

I couldn't find the Brooks shoes while I was out today and did want something different before Monday so at the Rockport/Reebock store I picked up some of hte walking shoes with the DMX technology....anybody tried those? I wore them for about 3 hours today and my feet were pretty comfy. But it's only day one, it wasn't very long, and I was walking not standing...

ONly discovered this site yesterday...seems to be a wealth of information here! :-)

Re: Taping

Julie on 2/09/03 at 04:21 (108544)

Hi Anna

I'm tempted to be frivolous and say that just about anyone who had to stand for a 10-hour shift on concrete would hurt! But that won't help you, so I won't. Seriously - I'm glad you're able to work part time, with days off to let your feet rest, and that you'll eventually be able to work in a setting less challenging to your feet.

Meanwhile you're engaged in damage limitation. You ought to read the heel pain book, if you haven't yet. Click on the blue link right here. It will give you a lot of information about plantar fasciitis and conservative treatments for it, as will these message boards, as you've already discovered.

I'd like to suggest that you try taping your feet for work. Taping supplies the support needed by the arch that the injured/inflamed plantar fascia can no longer give. In so doing it relieves pain, but more importantly 'rests' the fascia, and thus contributes to healing. The doctors here have said that taping, if it helps, indicates that orthotics are needed to correct abnormal biomechanics. I know you already have orthotics, but some of us, including me, have used both together with good results. I taped my foot daily for several months while my PF was at its worst, and I'm in no doubt that it was one of the main factors in my recovery (I have been fully healed for over a year). I'm an enthusiast for taping, and would certainly recommend you to try it - it can do no harm and you may find it a help.

You'll find instructions for taping in part 2 of the heel pain book. Several taping techniques are illustrated: I used the simplest, two-strip one, which was as effective for me as the tape-intensive, complicated full wrap my podiatrist used, and that's would be the easiest to start with. You need a good quality tape that can hold its tension throughout a working day: cheap ones stretch and lose their capacity to support. I used Leuko tape (if you do a search on Leuko tape you may find the link to an on-line supplier). And you'll need to experiment to get the tension right: too loose and it won't do the job, too tight and it may hurt.

If you decide to try it, and if you have any problems with it, I'll be glad to help with what I know from my own happy experience with taping, so please come back and ask questions.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 07:33 (108548)

Anna, I want to wish you luck in your healing. I hope you can find the shoes mentioned and that they will help you. Perhaps some cushioning added to your orthotics could help substantially, as one of the doctors mentioned.

As a teacher, I have moved recently to a new school building with concrete floors. I understand how hard they are! Many in my building who before had no problems are complaining of hurting ankles, legs, and hips. I am mostly recovered from PF but am being very careful, only wearing Birkenstock shoes (and only with the soft footbed; I seem to need that extra padding) or SAS shoes with an orthotic. I will say that the SAS shoes which seemed to work well on wooden floors with carpet do not feel nearly as good now on the concrete.

I bought some carpet for a large area of my classroom. Do you think you could get some kind of fatigue mat to use at work? Are you mostly standing in one area so that would be feasible? I know how much better standing on the carpet in my room is than when I step onto the non-carpeted area or into the hallway.

Hope things go well for you!
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 07:38 (108549)

Were they the Reebok DMX walking shoes, Anna? Of course everyone has individual experiences, but I bought some DMX walkers not long after my onset of PF, and although they seemed cushiony at first, they felt terrible after wearing for awhile. I read later on this website that they were not good for PF as they allowed for too much heel movement, I believe. I don't want to discourage you if that is what you bought, but just be careful and notice how they feel at work. You might take some other shoes to change into if you wear those to work - just in case they start really bothering you.

Good luck!
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/09/03 at 14:56 (108595)

yeah, they are the reebox dmx walkers....i see reading ehre today lots of bad experiences. Couldn't find the Brooks mentioned above while I was out looking yesterday...and while my pod. had no real concrete suggestions for shoes he did say rockport/reebok might be worth trying...sigh...

I also have a new pair of New Balance cross trainers I picked up a couple weeks ago to work out in. These are 661s which I don't see mentioned here but I do see lots of good comments about NB in general. I hate wearing white shoes in teh kitchen but might try these this week as well for work to see how I do in them.

I know you all understand my frustration! My feet have healed a lot from last summer when I couldn't even walk across the family room and don't bother me at all unless I'm working. I've had no pain this weekend despite hitting the gym yesterday, walking at the mall all afternoon yesterday, and taking the dogs for a 3 mile walk this AM....but I know I'll be hurting around 2pm tomorrow! Not an achy kind of hurt but the shooting pain, nail in the heel kind...

Been reading all the other helpful suggestions on this site about taping, icing and stretching and will try some of those as well....hopefully will find the magic combination at some point! :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 15:13 (108596)

Yes, be sure and try the taping while you are at work, Anna, and also the icing and stretching. The stretching REALLY helped/helps me. Did you read about Julie's stretches which now can be accessed, I believe from clicking on the word yoga? The right kind of stretching is so important so as not to reinjure yourself.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings about the Reebok shoes. I can't say that will be the case with you, but it was with me and with others I have read about here. New Balance, on the other hand, is well thought of. There are many different types. I hope yours help.

If you don't mind a little more advice: be careful with long walks until your feet are completely healed. Reinjuring just makes the whole process take a lot longer. But you are right: I DO understand your frustration!

Take care. Let us hear from you again.
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Julie on 2/09/03 at 15:15 (108598)

Anna, be careful with stretching. Weight-bearing exercise may not be right for you. If you try any of the weight-bearing stretches recommended on the site or anywhere else, do them very carefully and observe how your feet react to them.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 16:39 (108613)

You might want to take a look at Helen's post on gel-filled mats on the Treatments / Symptoms / Products Category board on this site.

Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

nancy sc on 2/10/03 at 09:13 (108665)

I also was diagnosed with PF last summer and am mostly healed now. I went to a reflexologist for help at one point, and, although the reflexology didn't work for me, she gave me a footwear suggestion that helped me tremendously, which was to wear Dr. Scholl's exercise sandals while at home.

I still wear them all the time while in the house, from the time I get out of bed. Even while my PF was still bad, I could cook in them for hours on a hard tile floor, while all other footwear gave me problems.

I now wear them with socks because my house is cold, and while this looks weird (my kids make fun of me) I wouldn't give them up for anything.

My podiatrist, by the way, thought that the exercise sandals were a bad idea, said they could cause hammertoes. However, I wear them because they feel so good on my feet if I have to stand a lot. They force you to grip with your feet, and this feels like a stretch to me. Also the footbed is hard, with an arch, and this provides a lot of support.

Just thought I'd mention it since they were so good for me while standing, cooking, cleaning, etc.

Nancy Sc.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Ed Davis, DPM on 2/07/03 at 19:59 (108403)

Anna:

One option may be the Brooks Addiction WT. It is an all leather version of the Brooks Addiction V running shoe.
Ed

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Richard, C.Ped on 2/08/03 at 08:44 (108446)

hi Anna...
I have found that in cases such as yours, when you basically stand in one spot all day, it can be harder to adjust to the orthosis...especially a hard one. With my athletes and their constant movement, they do not feel the new support as much, until they either take a break such as a football huddle, or a time out.

If it were me, I would have added an extra layer of cushion such as 1/8' 30 durometer EVA.

Richard

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/08/03 at 08:53 (108448)

Thanks for the responses. I am thinking maybe the orthotics arent' the right ones for me....mostly because when I got them I was only having problems with my left foot and now am getting bad pain in both feet after standing. My feet only bother me on days I work...general day to day life and exercise don't seem to bother them, only the prolonged standing. I took a month off from work in January and my feet didn't bother me at all...now back at work for a week..and ouch! :-(

Anyway, thansk for the advice on the Brooks shoes, I'll see if I can find a pair to try on somewhere....and will talk with a podiatrist about possible different orthotics.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Carole C in NOLA on 2/08/03 at 09:29 (108451)

Anna,

I'm so glad that some of the best foot professionals that visit this site answered your question! I am glad that you plan to try everything that Dr. Ed and Richard C.Ped have suggested. They both really 'know their stuff', and if anything will work for you they'd know about it.

I'm just someone who has been through PF myself and I didn't know what to say in answer to your post. So far, I don't think I've seen anyone post on this site who has managed to recover from PF while standing all day on concrete, no matter what they wore. Maybe there is someone but I can't remember anyone at the moment.

So, I was going to urge you to get some different job duties for a few months that would allow you to sit. I will be totally thrilled if you don't have to do this! Please come back and let us know how you are doing. Jobs are so scarce these days that sometimes people just can't insist on sitting at work without endangering their livelihood. It may take a while (it does for all of us) but it would be really encouraging to a lot of people if your feet improve substantially.

Carole C

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Julie on 2/08/03 at 11:28 (108467)

Anna, my first impulse was to say that I doubt whether you'll ever be able to heal if you continue to do a job that involved standing all day on a hard surface. But it's your profession, and I'm sure you wouldn't want to change it even if you could!

You say in your latest post that walking doesn't bother you, and that you're ok if you rest. So I'd like to suggest that in addition to taking up the suggestions from the foot professionals that you've had, you try to modify your duties a bit. Think about what you could do sitting down (cutting up vegetables, breaking eggs, etc?) and get off your feet whenever possible. And walk around whenever you don't actually have to be standing in one place.

A little ingenuity, a little tweaking here and there, might make a significant difference to your pain. I hope so.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/08/03 at 16:51 (108495)

Thanks for the additional comments...no, i'm not wanting to give up cooking. Sat behind a desk for 15 years before this and wouldnt' like to go back...fortunately I'm also in grad school workign on a MS in Nutrition so once that's done I wont' be cookiing in an industrial setting anymore but more on a one on one basis with clients which wont' be in 8 hour stretches....but that's still a few more years away...so I don't want to completely ruin my feet in the meantime.

On the bright side...my left foot problems ahve actually improved since last summer...used to be they bothered me all the time. I had to spend most of the summer off my feet. Things were better in the fall..,and now my feet only bother me on days that I work, which I fortunately am able to do on a part-time basis. Right now I work every other day so my feet recover in between....Being off my feet all summer and having foot problems though i've gained weight instead of lost it so that isn't helping. I used to be very active but everything I enjoy doing is weight-bearing....so i'm trying to convince myself swimming and biking is fun and hoping the weight loss will help. I've got about 45 to lose. :-(

The frustrating part is that the other foot is bothering me now which it wasn't before...even when it was bad last summer it was only the left. When I went back to cooking in the fall the other foot started.

I don't have pain in the morning and if I work shorter shifts of about 4 hours I'm good...it's when I'm doing 8-10 hour shifts that I start getting the pain...

I couldn't find the Brooks shoes while I was out today and did want something different before Monday so at the Rockport/Reebock store I picked up some of hte walking shoes with the DMX technology....anybody tried those? I wore them for about 3 hours today and my feet were pretty comfy. But it's only day one, it wasn't very long, and I was walking not standing...

ONly discovered this site yesterday...seems to be a wealth of information here! :-)

Re: Taping

Julie on 2/09/03 at 04:21 (108544)

Hi Anna

I'm tempted to be frivolous and say that just about anyone who had to stand for a 10-hour shift on concrete would hurt! But that won't help you, so I won't. Seriously - I'm glad you're able to work part time, with days off to let your feet rest, and that you'll eventually be able to work in a setting less challenging to your feet.

Meanwhile you're engaged in damage limitation. You ought to read the heel pain book, if you haven't yet. Click on the blue link right here. It will give you a lot of information about plantar fasciitis and conservative treatments for it, as will these message boards, as you've already discovered.

I'd like to suggest that you try taping your feet for work. Taping supplies the support needed by the arch that the injured/inflamed plantar fascia can no longer give. In so doing it relieves pain, but more importantly 'rests' the fascia, and thus contributes to healing. The doctors here have said that taping, if it helps, indicates that orthotics are needed to correct abnormal biomechanics. I know you already have orthotics, but some of us, including me, have used both together with good results. I taped my foot daily for several months while my PF was at its worst, and I'm in no doubt that it was one of the main factors in my recovery (I have been fully healed for over a year). I'm an enthusiast for taping, and would certainly recommend you to try it - it can do no harm and you may find it a help.

You'll find instructions for taping in part 2 of the heel pain book. Several taping techniques are illustrated: I used the simplest, two-strip one, which was as effective for me as the tape-intensive, complicated full wrap my podiatrist used, and that's would be the easiest to start with. You need a good quality tape that can hold its tension throughout a working day: cheap ones stretch and lose their capacity to support. I used Leuko tape (if you do a search on Leuko tape you may find the link to an on-line supplier). And you'll need to experiment to get the tension right: too loose and it won't do the job, too tight and it may hurt.

If you decide to try it, and if you have any problems with it, I'll be glad to help with what I know from my own happy experience with taping, so please come back and ask questions.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 07:33 (108548)

Anna, I want to wish you luck in your healing. I hope you can find the shoes mentioned and that they will help you. Perhaps some cushioning added to your orthotics could help substantially, as one of the doctors mentioned.

As a teacher, I have moved recently to a new school building with concrete floors. I understand how hard they are! Many in my building who before had no problems are complaining of hurting ankles, legs, and hips. I am mostly recovered from PF but am being very careful, only wearing Birkenstock shoes (and only with the soft footbed; I seem to need that extra padding) or SAS shoes with an orthotic. I will say that the SAS shoes which seemed to work well on wooden floors with carpet do not feel nearly as good now on the concrete.

I bought some carpet for a large area of my classroom. Do you think you could get some kind of fatigue mat to use at work? Are you mostly standing in one area so that would be feasible? I know how much better standing on the carpet in my room is than when I step onto the non-carpeted area or into the hallway.

Hope things go well for you!
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 07:38 (108549)

Were they the Reebok DMX walking shoes, Anna? Of course everyone has individual experiences, but I bought some DMX walkers not long after my onset of PF, and although they seemed cushiony at first, they felt terrible after wearing for awhile. I read later on this website that they were not good for PF as they allowed for too much heel movement, I believe. I don't want to discourage you if that is what you bought, but just be careful and notice how they feel at work. You might take some other shoes to change into if you wear those to work - just in case they start really bothering you.

Good luck!
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

anna k on 2/09/03 at 14:56 (108595)

yeah, they are the reebox dmx walkers....i see reading ehre today lots of bad experiences. Couldn't find the Brooks mentioned above while I was out looking yesterday...and while my pod. had no real concrete suggestions for shoes he did say rockport/reebok might be worth trying...sigh...

I also have a new pair of New Balance cross trainers I picked up a couple weeks ago to work out in. These are 661s which I don't see mentioned here but I do see lots of good comments about NB in general. I hate wearing white shoes in teh kitchen but might try these this week as well for work to see how I do in them.

I know you all understand my frustration! My feet have healed a lot from last summer when I couldn't even walk across the family room and don't bother me at all unless I'm working. I've had no pain this weekend despite hitting the gym yesterday, walking at the mall all afternoon yesterday, and taking the dogs for a 3 mile walk this AM....but I know I'll be hurting around 2pm tomorrow! Not an achy kind of hurt but the shooting pain, nail in the heel kind...

Been reading all the other helpful suggestions on this site about taping, icing and stretching and will try some of those as well....hopefully will find the magic combination at some point! :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 15:13 (108596)

Yes, be sure and try the taping while you are at work, Anna, and also the icing and stretching. The stretching REALLY helped/helps me. Did you read about Julie's stretches which now can be accessed, I believe from clicking on the word yoga? The right kind of stretching is so important so as not to reinjure yourself.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings about the Reebok shoes. I can't say that will be the case with you, but it was with me and with others I have read about here. New Balance, on the other hand, is well thought of. There are many different types. I hope yours help.

If you don't mind a little more advice: be careful with long walks until your feet are completely healed. Reinjuring just makes the whole process take a lot longer. But you are right: I DO understand your frustration!

Take care. Let us hear from you again.
Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Julie on 2/09/03 at 15:15 (108598)

Anna, be careful with stretching. Weight-bearing exercise may not be right for you. If you try any of the weight-bearing stretches recommended on the site or anywhere else, do them very carefully and observe how your feet react to them.

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

Suzanne D on 2/09/03 at 16:39 (108613)

You might want to take a look at Helen's post on gel-filled mats on the Treatments / Symptoms / Products Category board on this site.

Suzanne :-)

Re: shoes for standing wtih orthotics...

nancy sc on 2/10/03 at 09:13 (108665)

I also was diagnosed with PF last summer and am mostly healed now. I went to a reflexologist for help at one point, and, although the reflexology didn't work for me, she gave me a footwear suggestion that helped me tremendously, which was to wear Dr. Scholl's exercise sandals while at home.

I still wear them all the time while in the house, from the time I get out of bed. Even while my PF was still bad, I could cook in them for hours on a hard tile floor, while all other footwear gave me problems.

I now wear them with socks because my house is cold, and while this looks weird (my kids make fun of me) I wouldn't give them up for anything.

My podiatrist, by the way, thought that the exercise sandals were a bad idea, said they could cause hammertoes. However, I wear them because they feel so good on my feet if I have to stand a lot. They force you to grip with your feet, and this feels like a stretch to me. Also the footbed is hard, with an arch, and this provides a lot of support.

Just thought I'd mention it since they were so good for me while standing, cooking, cleaning, etc.

Nancy Sc.