It's a condition more commonly known as stone bruises and can affect anyone for various reasons especially people who are overweight, athletes, women who wear high-heels, and anyone who wears shoes that do not properly cushion the balls of the feet. It is a condition that actually refers to a group of various symptoms and is called metatarsalgia.
The ball of the foot and the part of the foot where the three middle toes meet the ball are known as the metatarsal and the metatarsal heads, respectively. When metatarsalgia occurs, the metatarsal bones rub together causing the nerves in between to become inflamed and painful. These are the regions which are directly affected when stone bruising occurs.
Let me tell you more about this condition, before you learn what the best shoes for metatarsalgia are:
It is given this informal name due to the fact that patients have reported the symptoms to feel as if they are walking on tiptoe over stones.
There are other parts of the feet that the pain can spread to including the toes and even shooting pains through the entire foot region.
The symptoms are reportedly much more pronounced when walking barefoot, when walking on hard surfaces, while standing or moving around for extended periods, and when subjecting the feet to high impact exercising.
While this condition is usually alleviated by application of ice, pain medication and staying off ones feet, people who suffer from metatarsalgia often have a difficult time finding relief when they have to be on their feet again. A significant contributing factor to stone bruising is caused by wearing shoes that do not properly cushion the balls of the feet (s. shoes for flat feet).
For this reason, it is particularly important than those suffering from this painful and at times debilitating condition, choose the proper footwear to minimize the discomfort and inflammation, and also to prevent the symptoms from becoming more severe.
Thankfully, there are footwear options for people who suffer from metatarsalgia and the following types of shoes for both men and women are not only designed to provide extra cushion and support but are practical and basic enough for everyday wear as well.
Here's are my shoe recommendations for anyone suffering from metatarsalgia:
Combining extreme protection with unique engineering and design, the Brook's Addiction Walker Walking Shoes put emphasis on manufacturing shoes to maximize comfort for runners.
Since running is an exercise that subjects the feet to repeated high impact pressure, these shoes aim to create the most cushioned shoe on the market.
The arch is supported by HydroFlow® technology that consists of "dynamic gooey fluid units in the heel and forefoot" which provide extra shock absorption along with another special feature, the Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar (PDRB®) which gives even greater impact absorption throughout the natural movement of the foot while walking or running.
The features are certainly high tech and this shoe is definitely geared towards the runner and its athletic appearance make it a great casual shoe for men with metatarsalgia.
For a shoe that is not quite as pricey and much more suitable for both business casual and active footwear, the Arlington Oxford By Drew Shoes is one of the best options out there.
Not only is this shoe designed to provide therapeutic comfort and relief for many types of foot issue and discomfort but it's cushioning and extra support are hidden with extra depth construction and one of the special insoles can even be removed if desired.
The downside is that these shoes may take a little time to break in since they have a rubber sole construction that is quite thick.
For women, Drew also makes a comfortable walking shoe that can double as a light use athletic sneaker as well.
The Excel Sneaker also has the signature double padded insole which provides extra comfort and shock absorption as well as the option to remove one of the insoles for greater foot depth.
It is made with a mesh material that is both breathable and which offers a little extra padding for the entire foot.
Women who are looking for a shoe that is primarily an athletic shoe with extra comfort and foot protection can check out another style made by Drew called the Flare Walking Shoe.
It features a tempered steel shank and also a medial heel stabilizer which gives the foot cushioned stability and allows for protected movement of the different parts of the foot during motion (s. shoes for overpronation).
It is also made of a stretchy mesh fabric to give the feet breathability and support. This shoe is also available in either black or white and has the dual shock absorbing insoles which can be worn together for added impact resistance.
The importance of choosing the right shoe, particularly for sufferers of metatarsalgia, or other painful foot conditions cannot be overstated. To minimize the harsh impact the feet must endure from exercising or simply from walking, the right footwear can mean the difference between providing a manageable way to minimize the pain and easing the difficulty of walking or potentially causing extreme discomfort or possibly causing even more severe and debilitating symptoms.