It takes an astonishing three-and-a-half days for feet to go back to normal after wearing ill-fitting shoes
Nearly 30 million people have damaged their feet by wearing shoes that don’t fit properly – so much so they found it uncomfortable to walk afterwards.
The average person wears uncomfortable shoes two days each month – adding up to more than three weeks of recovery time over a year.
One in five, meanwhile, haven’t had their feet measured in 10 years or more, leading to millions having no idea what their shoe size truly is.
Dina Gohil, a podiatrist and foot expert, warned that as well as crippling our feet, wearing poorly fitting shoes can even result in back and neck problems.
She said: “Think of shoes as the foundations of your body, if the foundations don’t support you properly it puts more pressure on other areas of the body like you knees, hips and lower back.
“This extra pressure will cause for overcompensation on these areas. It is incredible how so many people are unaware that something as simple as the footwear may cause lower body pains and aches and even in your neck.”
The study also found that surprisingly, one in eight adults knowingly wear the wrong size shoes despite the agony they cause – simply because they like the style.
And nearly a third have shoes they describe as ‘sit down shoes’ only – that they can’t actually walk in.
As a result of wearing the wrong size footwear, one in 10 have to deal with bunions on a day-to-day basis.
Thirty-eight per cent report hard skin on their feet, while more than one in 20 are contending with painful blisters.
It also emerged four in 10 adults say looking good is their primary consideration when buying shoes, while a tenth are more concerned whether their legs look nice.
And just under a fifth also believe they must wear the wrong size shoes because the ones they want aren’t available in half size or different width options.
Victoria Betts from shoe brand Hotter, which commissioned the research, said: “We are on a mission to measure the nation’s feet. Our shoes come in four fittings, and with half sizes, we have over 6,500 options in our collection so we can precision fit every pair.
“Our 3D Hotter Footprint scanners measure feet in five seconds and we’re taking them across the nation to share the joy of shoes that fit perfectly.”