A lot of people have found that today’s digital economy has tied them to a desk, and the health concern for the age is the dreaded, keyboard-induced Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Until flat screens came along there were also some concerns that we were being slowly microwaved by the glow from old-style monitors, but technology seems to have solved that one for us.

Not everyone works at a desk, though; plenty of people still spend their working day on their feet, in jobs ranging from restaurant service staff to production line workers and construction tradesmen. That can put plenty of strain on the body too. Can technology do anything to help them?

Many service industry workers spend an amount of time on their feet that most of us can barely imagine. A waiter spends an entire eight-hour shift walking around the restaurant, seating customers, taking orders, bringing drinks and collecting meals from the kitchen. The average person takes about 7,000 steps a day but many waiters do double that just in the course of one shift. A lot of retail staff are in the same boat, and even just standing behind a counter for hours can result in aching feet at the end of the day.

Luckily technology does have an answer. Workers who spend all day on their feet get aches and pains because their legs are taking the strain of supporting their entire weight all day (plus loads that vary from a tray of cheeseburgers to a 100lb sack of Portland cement.) One way to ease the load is with Custom insoles Singapore that spread the weight better and reduce the stress on the soles of the feet. Good insoles also contain a shock-absorbing layer, which soaks up some of the beating our feet take with every step. For anyone wearing protective footwear there’s another advantage; custom insoles hold the feet snugly in place, which compensates for the fact that the boots don’t break in so well. By providing proper support they also improve posture, and bad posture is a major cause of knee trouble and lower back pain.

Factory workers don’t generally have to walk around as much, but they’re still often standing for hours at a time. There’s another complication too; many industrial jobs require protective footwear for safety reasons. In the past it was common for people to use military surplus boots for this, and at least they were designed for some degree of comfort. Army boots are becoming lighter though, with old-style heavy leather being replaced by lightweight fabrics, and at the same time safety regulations are being toughened up; the only option for many is now purpose-designed safety footwear with steel caps and often steel-shanked soles, too. These do a great job of protecting the feet from dropped tools and sharp metal scrap, but there’s a price to pay in comfort. Being constructed for safety they don’t break in and mould to the feet as well as normal footwear does, so the fit is often less than perfect. Soles designed for strength aren’t as good at taking the shock out of impacts, either; just compare the soles of running shoes and work boots and see which ones have more bounce.

Naturally construction workers have the worst of both worlds; they’re walking around the site all dayΒ andΒ they need protective footwear. They also have to carry heavy loads of building materials, which just increases the stress on their joints.


By Olivia

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