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Buying shoes for orthoses

What type of footwear is the most suitable?

Generally lace up shoes are the best choice as they offer the most adjustment. Velcro or buckle straps can be used but offer less adjustment.

What type of shoe is unsuitable?

Sandals and low cut shoes are generally unsuitable. A shoe with a high heel is also not suitable.

Footwear to accommodate orthoses

The most important feature is the access of the foot and the orthoses in the shoe. Look for footwear with a fastening that extends as low as possible, and has removable insoles. This will provide the extra depth which may be necessary to accommodate the orthoses. Boots and high-backed shoes are also good for orthoses.

The best footwear to buy are those where the sole and heel units are made up in obvious layers. This is the easiest to adapt. It will look better and last longer.

What type of footwear should be avoided?

Footwear with exaggerated shaping or variable colours in the sole and heel unit is difficult to adapt and the finished adaptation would be much more noticeable.

Any special type of sole and heel unit such as air or liquid cushioning makes the adaptation almost impossible.

Footwear with flashing lights in the heels and soles should also be avoided.

Contact us

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 4.30pm on 0114 271 7271 or email us on scn-tr.orthotics@nhs.net

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Please note this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s. The details in this resource may not necessarily reflect treatment at other hospitals. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professionals’ instructions. If this resource relates to medicines, please read it alongside the medicine manufacturer’s patient information leaflet. If you have specific questions about how this resource relates to your child, please ask your doctor.

Resource number: ORT3

Resource Type: Article

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