Other Than Style, What Makes a Good Shoe?

We are very particular about the brands we choose to carry. Even something as seemingly innocuous as a pair of shoes matters. That’s why we carry brands like Red Wing, Vans, and Converse. Customers of our Salt Lake City boutique have a certain expectation of quality that we work very hard to maintain.

How do you feel about shoes? Do you have a closet full, or are you happy owning just one or two pairs? Regardless, it’s best to know what constitutes a good idea before you buy. This post is designed to give you some insight into what constitutes a good shoe, above and beyond style alone.

Self-Securing Design

According to Australian physical therapist and self-proclaimed wellness nerd Grant Frost, a good pair of shoes is designed to be self-securing. In other words, they hold themselves in place so that you do not have to work so hard to keep them from falling off. This allows your feet to relax and work the way they were naturally designed to work.

You can see this sort of thing in every pair of Red Wing boots in our inventory. Boots for both men and women go at least to the ankle and have enough material to cover the entire foot. Most lace up to keep them securely in place.

A Flat Sole

Frost also says that shoes with flat soles are ideal. In fact, he is openly against heels of any kind. That might not sit well among those who are especially fashion conscious, but his feelings toward heels are not without reason. Heels prohibit our feet from walking and stepping naturally. They require extra work, they increase the risk of injury, and they tend to be more uncomfortable the longer you wear them.

Wider Toes

We’ve gone this far with Frost, so we might as well continue with his analysis of what makes a good shoe. He says that broader toes are good because they allow our toes to be toes. His point is that shoes with narrow toes force us to pack our feet into spaces that are too small. This isn’t good for the toes. It is also not good for the feet in general. If narrow, pointed toes are important for style purposes, going for a little extra length is a workable compromise.

Flexible Construction

Walking properly is an exercise that involves the whole foot moving across the ground in a fluid motion. The heel of the foot makes contact first, then forward shifting weight forces the foot to roll forward as energy moves from arch to toe. To make all this work as nature intended, we need flexible shoes. Needless to say our Converse shoes for men and women fit the bill.

Lightweight Construction

Frost says that good shoes are lightweight shoes that do not add unnecessary weight to the leg. He doesn’t offer any explanation as to why this is so. However, it does make sense. Extra weight in the shoes forces you to do extra work to walk. Heavy shoes can also increase the risk of injury by making it difficult to pick up your feet with every step. You’re more likely to trip in heavier shoes.

Frost certainly doesn’t discount aesthetics. He recognizes that a good shoe is one that is aesthetically pleasing enough that you wear it. If a pair of shoes meets all of the other criteria but is still ugly, they may never leave your closet. Fortunately, it’s not an issue with the shoes we sell. Here at The Stockist, we only sell the good stuff.

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