Footcare and Shoes for Seniors

Having a good fitting pair of shoes can help to prevent falls in senior citizens. This is extremely important because there are over 27,000 reported deaths each year due to falls in the US alone.

When you’re shopping for shoes for seniors, there are several helpful things to keep in mind. You want your loved one to stay safe, and these simple guidelines can help achieve this goal.

Shoe Safety Considerations

There are dozens of shoes designed for seniors available, and you want to make sure your choice has a good back. A good back will help with stability issues. It’s also important to purchase a shoe with a grooved or scored sole. This sole will give the shoe grip on a variety of surfaces and make seniors less likely to slip and fall.


The shoe’s heel is also another important consideration. You can buy a flat shoe with no heel, or choose a low, wide heel for added stability. It should also have cushioning for additional comfort while you walk. Laces or Velcro can ensure that your shoes fit snugly, and Velcro is good for people with arthritis.

Shoe Buying Tips

Go shopping for your new shoes in the afternoon. This is when feet tend to swell, so your new shoes won’t be too tight. You’ll want to bring your own socks and any orthotics you wear, so you’re sure the shoes are comfortable. Also, one foot is slightly bigger, so always try on both shoes.


If you’re worried about the shoes molding to your feet, try a leather shoe. Leather stretches and conforms to your foot. A wider shoe is another good choice because it won’t pinch your toes when you wear it.


Finally, you want a small amount of space between the end of the shoe and your toes. It shouldn’t be large enough to trip you, but you want enough room, so your feet don’t rub against it.


Your new shoes should have a larger opening, so it’s easier for you to slip them on and off. Some shoes even slide straight on, and this makes it easy to get up and go.

Things to Avoid

Now that you have a good idea what to look for in your new shoe, you have to know what to avoid. Generally, you don’t want to buy shoes with narrow or high heels. They can contribute to balance issues and make you more prone to falling.


It’s also important that your shoes don’t stretch out too much. If they do, this will take away from the support they give you. You want to avoid backless shoes as well because they won’t give you the support you need. The soles shouldn’t be flat, and they should provide a good grip when you walk.

scott grant ATP

About The Expert
Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS®

Assistive Technology Professional, Custom Wheelchair Specialist, Medical Equipment Guru, Dad and Grandfather

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Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS®

Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS®

Assistive Technology Professional, Custom Wheelchair Specialist, Medical Equipment Guru, Dad and Grandfather | Scott Grant is dad to four awesome daughters and grandfather to three pretty terrific grandkids. When not working as a custom wheelchair specialist at a regional home medical equipment company, he enjoys early morning runs and occasional kayak trips. He is also a self-admitted nerd who loves anything from the 1980's.
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