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The Science of Shoe Sizing: Why Finding the Perfect Fit Matters


Your shoes are like the wheels of a Formula One car. Whether you’re in the fast lane while at work or exercising, or slowing down on your weekend, so much of your daily life relies on your shoes.

And just like F1 car tyres, your shoes need to be the exact correct size – or else the results could be pretty catastrophic.

No, you won’t be losing a Grand Prix, but you will be putting yourself at risk of spinal deviations, foot problems and ankle pain!

Here, the team at Forbes Footwear explain the science of shoe sizing and why finding the perfect fit matters:

The key dimensions for shoe sizing

The science of shoe sizing starts with the numbers: the dimensions of the shoe and what they mean for your foot. These include:

  • Length
    The length of the shoe from heel to toe, reflected in your shoe size.
  • Width
    The width of the shoe is also very important, but it often isn’t outlined by the shoe manufacturer. Commonly, shoes are either a regular fit or a wide fit, if one is offered by the shoe brand.

Why shoe size is important

Getting the right shoe size is crucial for a number of reasons:

  • Comfort
    First of all, comfort. Even if you’re not wearing a particular pair of shoes on a daily basis, if they’re the wrong size, you’ll simply be uncomfortable. For daily wearing shoes, the effects are much more dire.
  • Foot health
    Wearing shoes that are too tight or too loose on a regular basis? Chances are, your foot health is slowly but surely declining. Shoes that are too tight can lead to ingrown toenails, callouses, corns, blisters, bunions and a range of other complications. By wearing shoes that are too big, you’re more at risk of tripping or rolling/spraining an ankle, and they will not be offering the support they should. Always choose the right size of shoe so that your feet, and the rest of your body, enjoy maximum comfort and functionality.
  • Posture
    There are several studies which suggest that wearing the incorrect shoe size can lead to back pain and posture issues. Your correct shoe size gives you better foot support, which in turn promotes great posture.

There’s a real science to measuring shoe sizes and, at Forbes Footwear, we’re specialists in proper-fitting shoes. We stock a myriad of choices for shoes in a range of sizes, including extra-large shoe sizes. We’ve been providing Australians with healthy footwear for over 80 years, so we know what makes a great shoe. Browse the range online today, or come visit our Hornsby location for a professional fitting.