Sievi Footwear could be the difference between blisters and bliss
The average person walks five times around the earth in a lifetime and each step of simple walking can exert up to two times your body weight of force through your lower limb. So, a person weighing 10 stone will have between 15 and 20 stone of impact going through their heel on heel-strike. When you consider this, together with the hazards our feet are exposed to in our working life, it is no wonder that working feet need care and attention in order to survive. The good news is that it is never too late to start to look after your feet and a range of footwear from Finnish manufacturer Sievi is now available in the UK to help keep the British workforce comfortable on their feet all day.
Fit and comfort are regarded as the most important factors when purchasing any footwear, so why should it be any different at work? There is a misconception that safety footwear, especially if they have a toecap, will be uncomfortable, but if they have the correct design and construction, and are fitted correctly, this should not be the case.
All feet are unique so how do we go about finding the correct fit and comfort? The SieviScanner uses state-of-the-art laser-assisted scanning technology to measure the length, width and, importantly, the arch shape of the foot. The resulting measurements are then used to accurately specify the most suitable shoe or boot from the range for optimum fit and comfort. With the arch measurement, we can recommend a suitable anatomically designed Sievi Dual Comfort insole with neutral, high or extra high arch for correct support and exceptional cushioning. All this makes the process of choosing footwear quick, easy and effortless and avoids the delays and hassle of returning footwear that doesn’t fit and re-ordering.
The SieviScanner will be available to use through the manufacturer’s national and local distributor network, so individuals can arrange a fitting at their local Sievi distributor or, if the builder’s business has a few staff (normally 5+), the SieviScanner is easily portable and a sizing session can be arranged at their business premises. Anyone who wants to be “sized” should get in touch with Sievi for information on their nearest distributor or to assist with making arrangements for a site visit.
Footwear for both men and women The building industry is still predominantly a male environment but this is changing. Using all of their 60+ years’ experience of designing footwear, Sievi have produced a number of different lasts (the mould used to shape the inside of the footwear) to fit a variety of foot shapes and, with more and more women being attracted into the building industry, this includes a number of styles designed to fit the female foot. With sizes as small as UK 2/EUR 34 up to as large as UK 16/EUR 50 there is every chance you will find footwear that fits. In fact, it is extremely unusual if you don’t.
So, other than the fit and comfort, what else should you consider when purchasing footwear for work?
- Wear footwear that is appropriate for your job and suitable for your working environment. You may need to consider different linings such as Gore-Tex if it’s wet or wool if it’s cold. Not all safety footwear is ugly – the Sievi range of footwear has dozens of different styles that are suitable for all sorts of occupations and working conditions.
- Wear footwear that fits properly with enough room for your toes to wiggle, especially if you are wearing toecaps. A lot of safety footwear is quite narrow which may cause the toecap to rub and does not allow the foot to spread out. Sievi offers different width fittings, including extra wide, to ensure you get the correct fit and support.
- The insole is an important and often overlooked part of any working footwear – particularly if you cover a lot of miles as part of your working day. With the help of the SieviScanner, not only will you find the correct size and shape of footwear for your foot shape, but also whether you require specific arch support. If your work involves a lot of walking, look for insoles with additional cushioning in the heel and ball of the foot and make sure you have the correct arch support – you’ll notice the difference.
- Where possible, wear footwear with a strap, lace or other fastening instead of slip-ons as this will increase support and stop your foot sliding forward.
- If you can, have two pairs of shoes for work so you can alternate daily so any sweat can dry out properly to reduce the possibility of athlete’s foot and bacteria that causes smelly feet.
- The correct sole. Select the most appropriate sole material, tread pattern, flexibility and cushioning for your work. Sievi’s unique Flexstep sole material eliminates strain to the feet and spine and offers excellent shock-absorbing properties and flexibility even in freezing weather conditions.
- Wear slip resistant soles. Flexstep sole material is blended at the Sievi factory and creates a biting friction on slippery surfaces for exceptional grip. This gives excellent slip resistance all year round – even in freezing temperatures – for additional safety.
Whatever work you do, be sure that your footwear meets the relevant safety standards and specification for your job function. Then it’s all about the fit and comfort – the difference between blisters and bliss.