An Excerpt from Happy Feet

Walking and Your Feet

Everywhere we turn, we hear about the benefits of walking. Walking is the perfect low-impact exercise for developing and maintaining fitness. Good health, increased energy and muscle tone, fitness, and weight loss are all benefits of a routine walking regimen. A walking routine can also reduce the risks of heart attack, type 2 diabetes, and other health problems. But walking can also stress the joints, strain the muscles, make the feet susceptible to hot spots, blisters, and lead to problems with toenails, stubbed toes, sprains, and strains.

Walking requires very little basic equipment-shoes, socks, and insoles. Yet the war against foot problems can be lost when one of these three is ill fitting. Our feet are unique. Even though yours may look similar to mine, they are as different as our fingerprints. Although our feet may fit into the same size and shape of shoe, there are differences in how our feet actually mold into the shoe.

Walking becomes more enjoyable when you become aware of what makes a good fit in your shoes. This involves everything from choosing the best socks to treating common foot problems.

Each walker needs to find what combination of shoes, socks, insoles, and foot care works for them. Everything you put on or around your foot becomes related to how well your foot functions. That's the goal of this booklet-to help you get the most enjoyment out of your walking experience.


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