When you do your pre-trip and see your tread is wearing, you make sure you get a new tire, right? Well, have you pre-tripped yourself lately?
How are your truck driver shoes looking? Is your tread wearing a bit? Maybe it’s time for a new pair of work shoes and, better yet, running shoes for your training days.
Keeping those feet and ankles healthy are an important part of keeping you moving — whether it’s your foot pushing the pedal or your feet hitting the pavement gearing towards your next 5K.
When you first started at PAM, your orientation instructor covered the key features of proper truck driver shoes, but we wanted to give you a friendly reminder of the PAM footwear policy:
As a professional driver, you are exposed to a wide variety of environments that require the correct shoes. You will find yourself on slick surfaces and around heavy objects. You will encounter gravel lots that may cause twisted ankles without the proper footwear.
Why is there a policy? Well, let’s talk a little more about why it’s important to have proper truck driver shoes.
Proper Truck Driver Shoes Prevent Injuries
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 52,070 work-related foot injuries and 60,830 ankle injuries in 2014 — nearly 10% of total injuries — which caused workers to be away from their jobs an average of 7 days.
The proper footwear can keep you injury free and earning those miles. Just like your fingerprint, your foot is unique and your shoes should complement how you move.
According to The Bright Foot Clinic, shoes are designed with five major components:
- The toe box is the tip of the shoe that provides space for the toes. Toe boxes are generally rounded, pointed, or squared, and will determine the amount of space provided for the toes.
- The vamp is the upper middle part of the shoe where the laces are commonly placed.
- The sole consists of an insole and an outsole. The insole is inside the shoe; the outsole contacts the ground. The softer the sole, the greater the shoe’s ability to absorb shock.
- The heel is the bottom part of the rear of the shoe that provides elevation. The higher the heel, the greater the pressure on the front of the foot.
- The last is the part of the shoe that curves in slightly near the arch of the foot to conform to the average foot shape. This curve enables you to tell the right shoe from the left.
Where to Get Fitted for Shoes
Now that you know the five major components of a shoe, where should you get fitted for the perfect truck driver shoes? We suggest going to a shoe fitting specialist or your local podiatrist. They will help you get shoes and/or shoe inserts that are designed for you.
Here are some suggestions for where to start in your shoe selection journey. All these places are in close proximity to PAM Transport’s corporate office in Tontitown, Ark.
Next time you’re in Tontitown, think about making an appointment with Dr. Bright at the Bright Foot Clinic in Springdale. (Only 4.9 miles from corporate.)
For athletic shoes, check out Fleet Feet Sports in Fayetteville. (Only 9.8 miles from corporate.) They also have stores in 34 states and 169 cities nationwide and have been fitting footwear for more than 40 years. “Our FIT process focuses on providing you with the right shoes, gear, and knowledge for you to move at your best — whether that’s a 10-minute walk, running a marathon, or anything in between.”
What Sorts of Shoes Do You Need?
Turn over your truck driver shoes or sneakers and you’ll be able to see a wear pattern or pronation pattern. Per athletic shoe brand asics:
Pronation is the way the foot rolls inward when you walk and run. It is part of the natural movement that helps the lower leg deal with shock. Some people pronate more (over pronation) or less (under pronation) than others. Though this is not bad in itself, it does affect the way you run and it may increase the likelihood of injury. This makes your pronation pattern an important factor in choosing the right running shoes.
The same goes for work boots.
Look at the bottom of your truck driver shoes now. Here are the three pronation patterns:
Are you neutral, over, or under? Understanding your pronation is highly important for preventing injury to your feet and ankles.
To help find the best shoes for truck drivers, that will help correct for any pronation, bring your current with you to the fitting specialist so they can see exactly what you’ll need when it comes to foot support.
Keep in mind that it’s not just about footwear, but also about foot care. Following Dr. Bright’s “Basic Foot Care Guidelines” will help keep you on your feet:
- Don’t ignore foot pain. It is not normal. If you experience any type of persistent pain in the foot or ankle, please contact your local podiatrist’s office.
- Inspect your feet regularly. Pay attention to changes in color and temperature. Look for thick or discolored nails (a sign of developing fungus), and check for cracks or cuts in the skin. Peeling or scaling on the soles of feet may indicate Athlete’s Foot. Any growth on the foot is not considered normal.
- Wash your feet regularly, especially between the toes, and be sure to dry them completely.
- Trim toenails straight across, but not too short. Be careful not to cut nails in corners or on the sides; this can lead to ingrown toenails. Persons with diabetes, poor circulation, or heart problems should not treat their own feet, because they are more prone to infection.
- Make sure that your shoes fit properly. Purchase new shoes later in the day when feet tend to be at their largest, and replace worn out shoes as soon as possible.
- Select and wear the right shoe for each sport or activity that you are engaged in (e.g., running shoes for running).
- Alternate shoes — don’t wear the same pair of shoes every day.
- Avoid walking barefooted. Your feet will be more prone to injury and infection. At the beach or when wearing sandals always use sunblock on your feet.
- Be cautious when using home remedies for foot ailments. Self-treatment may turn a minor problem into a major one.
- If you are a diabetic you need to have a check-up at least once a year.
So, now that you know a little more about foot care and footwear, let’s put your best foot forward and give your feet the fit they deserve!