What is the deal with flip-flops and sandals? Are they the worst shoes for keeping your feet healthy?
Wearing flip-flops often causes the whole foot to cramp up. This is because the whole shoe is held together merely by the thin strap between the toes. To ensure the shoe stays on, the toes are pressed against one another – a position that is extremely unnatural for the foot. This causes cramping in the entire foot, which can contribute to the development of hammer toe or claw toe. With every step, the joints and muscles are working in a different way than usual, which alters the stability and weight distribution during walking, causing discomfort in the knees and back. In addition, wearing flip-flops has an influence on the gait pattern.
You are more likely to take smaller and weaker steps, and are also more likely to shuffle or walk with a so-called “stork walk”. Either way, the feet do not perform the correct roll-through movement.
As has already been discussed with regards to wearing high heels, this is really damaging to the foot. There is nothing wrong with wearing flip-flips for a short period of time (in wet rooms and public swimming baths which is a must for hygiene reasons). It is wearing them over a long period of time that can cause real problems. If you are looking for open and airy shoes for the summer, then you should go for sandals that strap around the foot (e.g. cross strap sandals, gladiator sandals, Velcro sandals etc.).