Are you ready for summertime travels and adventures? Maybe you’re planning a day of fun at an amusement park. Or, perhaps, you’re headed to a national or state park for a trek in the woods. Wherever your journey takes you – a bustling city, a quiet country retreat, or an exotic foreign land – make sure your feet are up to the task. Below are 8 foot care travel tips to ensure your adventures are a success – and not mired by foot pain or injury.
Foot Care Travel Tips Before You Leave
Tip No. 1: Evaluate Your Feet.
Before you leave for your journey, check your feet to ensure they’re in good shape. Look for any foot abnormalities, such as a bunion, hammertoe, or overlapping toes may cause you pain or discomfort when walking. Even minor foot conditions, like a corn or callus, can be exacerbated due to the stresses of walking and varying terrains, especially for long periods.
Tip No. 2: Consult Your Doctor about Existing Foot Conditions.
If you have any existing foot conditions, talk to your doctor or foot care professional for advice on specific treatments, or any precautions you should take while on your trip. For example, if you have diabetes, your doctor may recommend specific things to do to protect your feet while you’re away.
Tip No. 3: Condition Yourself for the Walking You Plan to Do.
Are you planning to hike through the Great Smokey Mountains? Or, perhaps you plan to take a walking tour of several European cities? Ensure you’re physically fit to walk the distance you plan to cover. Several weeks before your trip, begin walking each day. Gradually increase your distance until your body becomes used to walking the daily distance you plan to walk on your trip.
Tip No. 4: Choose the Right Shoes Based on Your Activities.
Determine what activities you’ll be doing while away. Then choose the right shoes to pack for your trip. For example, if you’ll be hiking the Grand Canyon, you’ll want to pack hiking boots. If you’re going on a cruise, you’ll walk to pack comfortable, sturdy shoes for your shore excursions. Flip-flops and canvas espadrilles won’t provide your feet with the support they need while you’re pounding the pavement. Otherwise, your feet will likely be hurting later in the day. However, flip-flops or water shoes are perfectly fine for a day at the pool or the beach.
Tip No. 5: Ensure Your Footwear Fits Well.
Whatever footwear you choose to take with you on your adventure, make sure they fit properly. Your heel should fit snug in your shoes. Plus, your toes should have room to move around. Ill-fitting shoes can cause discomfort, pain, and even injury. For more information on how to properly fit your shoes, refer to the WalkEZStore Shoe Fitting Guide.
If you buy new shoes for your trip, break them in slowly before you leave. Otherwise, you may suffer from blisters, corns, or calluses on your trip. You want your shoes to feel comfortable when walking.
Tip No. 6: Support Your Feet with Custom Orthotics.
Most standard footbeds in shoes provide minimal support for your feet. Eventually, they wear down with use. Therefore, if you want to provide your feet with the
support they need, you should consider wearing custom orthotics like ezWalker® Custom Fit Orthotics in your shoes.
ezWalker® Custom Orthotics are designed to improve the biomechanics of your feet. They will correct any abnormal movements while you walk, improving your posture and the way you walk. They also reduce the stress and strain on your feet due to impact forces while standing or walking. Therefore, your feet will be healthier and happier. Plus, you’ll experience little to no pain in your feet, knees, hips, and back.
ezWalker® Custom Orthotics are ultra-thin and ¾ in length, so they fit in all types of footwear. Therefore, you transfer them from shoe to shoe, saving you money.
For more information about ezWalker® Custom Fit Orthotics, visit the WalkEZStore website. To schedule an appointment to learn more about your gait, your foot issues, and to be fitted for ezWalker® Custom Orthotics, click here. Or, if you’re unable to visit our shop in the Indianapolis area, you can purchase a casting kit to have our custom orthotics created specifically for you, visit our online shop.
Foot Care Travel Tips While Away
Tip No. 1: Don’t Hike or Walk Long Distances in Flip-Flops or Sandals.
Often, when your hiking, you’re walking on uneven, and sometimes, slippery terrain. Tripping and falling can be a major concern. Flip-flops and sandals won’t provide your feet with the protection and grip they need. Even if you’re walking long distances in the city, you may encounter uneven or wet pavement. Don’t risk the possibility of injuring yourself.
Tip No. 2: Wear Footwear in Public Areas and Bathrooms.
Shoes protect your feet from jagged surfaces as well as from fungus, bacteria, parasites, and other microbes. Wear shoes in all public areas. This includes swimming pools, shower facilities, and public restrooms. Fungus, bacteria, and parasites can easily enter your body through your feet. Therefore, make sure they’re covered.
Tip No. 3: Wear Moisture-wicking Socks.
When walking or hiking for long distances, you want to keep your feet as dry as possible and prevent friction. While pure cotton socks may feel great, they tend to soak up moisture from sweat or rain. By wearing blended wool and synthetic, moisture-wicking socks like the Thorlos brand, you can keep your feet dryer.
Tip No. 4: Trim Your Toenails.
Before heading out on your adventure, clip your toenails. Otherwise, your toenails can rub against the toe box of your shoes, causing discomfort. Cut your toenails straight across instead of rounding them. If not, you increase your risk of ingrown toenails. Also, don’t cut them too short into the quick (the skin-colored portion of the nail) for the same reason. File your toenails after cutting them to reduce friction on your socks and shoes.
Tip No. 5: Rotate Your Shoes Daily.
Your feet can sweat around a pint of moisture a day. By wearing a different pair of shoes every day, you’ll enable your shoes to dry out. Damp shoes can increase the friction between your shoes and feet, which can lead to blisters. Additionally, dampness from sweat can cause bacterial infections.
Tip No. 6: Apply Sunscreen on Your Feet.
If you’re planning to go to the pool or beach, make sure you apply sunscreen to your feet, especially the tops. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends you use a sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher and protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Also, make sure your sunscreen is water resistant, especially if you’ll be in the water or sweating.
Tip No. 7: Inspect Your Feet if You Experience any Discomfort.
Don’t ignore foot problems. As soon as you experience any pain, check your feet. If you have any redness, blisters, scrapes, or cuts, apply a bandage or moleskin to prevent further damage. For more serious injuries, see a doctor for treatment.
Tip No. 8: Rest Your Feet.
During the day when walking or standing a lot, take breaks to give your feet a rest whenever you can. At the end of the day, elevate your feet to decrease swelling. You can also soak your in warm water with Epsom salts to reduce swelling and pain due to inflammation. You may even want to massage your feet to relieve pain and improve blood circulation.
Have Happier Feet with These Foot Care Travel Tips
By following these 14 foot care travel tips, you can ensure you’ll get the most out of your adventure with the least foot pain. Don’t wait until your feet hurt before acting. Your feet will thank you. And your trip will be more enjoyable.
Put ezWalker Custom Fit Orthotics in your shoes! Because … when your feet feel good, you feel good.®
Disclaimer: The information included in this article is for educational purposes only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
Cover photo credit: 123RF / Dmitriy Shironosov