Shoe teeth.jpg

In Part 1 of How to Tie Your Shoes, we discussed lock lacing, a way to prevent heel slippage.  But did you know that there are several other lacing techniques designed to address a multitude of foot issues?  Check out this chart and see if any of them apply to you.


This link also shows how-to videos for all those lacing techniques.

This link shows a few alternatives with good photos of the lacing methods.


Proper lacing is important, but it means nothing if your shoes don’t fit.  Here are some tips to make sure you get the proper size.

·      Try on shoes in afternoon or evening.  Feet tend to swell during daily activity.  You want to try on new shoes when your feet are at their largest size.

·      Always try on shoes while wearing the socks you will normally wear with them.  This may mean bringing a pair of socks with you to the store.

·      Have a salesperson measure both of your feet, and measure them while standing.  The measurement more accurately reflects your actual size when taken while standing.  And, since foot size and width can vary between a person’s feet, it’s a good idea to verify you are getting the right size.  If there is a difference, chose a shoe based on the larger foot’s dimensions.



When trying on shoes, you should be looking at 3 key areas.

·      Toes - Your longest toe should be approximately one finger width away from the end of the shoe. You should also have enough extra room to wiggle your toes up and down freely, but not so much that the shoes feel loose.

·      Heels - The back of the shoes should snugly hold your heel in place without any pinching or discomfort. It should be snug enough that your heel stays put when walking. Any slippage could cause rubbing and lead to blisters.

·      Width - From the heel to your toes, the shoes should be wide enough to comfortably hug your foot without squeezing. Your foot shouldn’t slip from side to side nor forward and backward in the shoes when walking.

Know that while a shoe states it is a certain size, the robot or person who stitched it could have been off.  If it doesn’t seem right, try another pair.

Hopefully with these tips and alternate lacing methods you can find a shoe that fits and feels right for you.  Have you tried one of these lacing methods?  Tell us about it in the comments.

--by Geoff Rand