​The Podiatry Department at Singapore General Hospital (SGH), a member of the SingHealth group, offers tips on what you should look out for when choosing shoes with good support and fit.

How to choose the right pair of shoes

When choosing a pair of shoes, always ensure that the shoes are appropriate with supportive features and are of good fit.

Footwear should ideally have removable insoles and sufficient depth to allow insertion of orthoses, if required.

What to look out for when choosing a supportive shoe


1. Wide and Deep Toe Box

Allows for sufficient room for toes and prevents skin abrasions from occurring

2. Laces or buckles

Secures feet firmly to shoes and prevents slippage and risk of falling

3. Firm and rigid heel counter

Holds your heel in place when you are walking

4. One thumb's width spacing

Allows for one thumb's width spacing from the longest toe to the front tip of the shoe to ensure adequate space for your feet when you walk 

5. Flexible toe box

Shoe should be flexible only at the balls of the feet so as to encourage efficient toe-off when walking

6. Midsole

Midsole should not be too flexible to maintain stability of the mid-foot

What to remember when buying a pair of shoes

  • Before buying, it is best to try the shoes to ensure proper fit of the shoes
  • Avoid having someone else buy the shoes for you or even buying them online without first trying them

Avoid buying/wearing these types of footwear

Avoid buying open-toed sandals and slippers

Open-toed sandals or slippers

   Avoid narrow-fitting shoes  

Narrow-fitting shoes that compress the toes may cause foot problems

Foot care tips to remember at home


Do not walk barefooted at home.

This is to prevent injuring your feet when:

  • An object accidentally drops on your foot, or
  • You accidentally hit your foot against an object, or
  • You accidentally step on a sharp object

Remember: Always wear protective cushioning slippers at home to protect your feet

Ref: M19