Shoes for Cafe Work


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Feb 28, 2008
Near Philadelphia, PA
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Hello Everyone,

I know this isn't quite a coffee business related topic, but in a way it can be considered one.

I often work long hours in the cafe, and I'm on my feet all day. I've always worn either Rockport or New Balance shoes for cushioning and stability for work, but lately even the new pair of New Balance shoes isn't helping my yapping piggies feel any better. Can anyone offer a suggestion....maybe you've found shoes that work for you?

I went to WalMart and tried the Dr. Scholls Foot Mapping machine, where it anyalyzes your feet and suggests an insert. I know several people who bought them and were happy with the result. I bought a pair for $49.99 and tried them in my shoes. Needless to say, that idea didn't help much. At least they have a guarantee, and after talking to the customer service person, I was able to send in my receipt to get my money back.

Any suggestions?

I have bad feet as it is so I rely pretty heavily on Dr. Sholls. But my doctor in the past has told me several times I need to visit the Orthotic Specialist for a checkup and possibly custom inserts.

I had them as a kid growing up and I can say I really have never felt better in my life then when I had them. I'm just to cheap to go have a pair made up and somewhat happy to rough it with a little help from the good Dr. Sholls!
sore feet here too. nothing helps, really, when you are on them all day. But a month ago I bought some "real" earth shoes. a kind of tiva like sandal. slightly lower heel, very very supportive and cushy. I'd avoided the brand, as some lower heels aggravate plantar factitious. so far they are incredible. wonderful, comfortable. feet, back, hips, knees. all feel better. I feel like throwing out every shoe in my closet and just wearing these.
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Hi Debbie

Wow! That's quite an endorsement!

When you say you're tempted to throw out all the shoes in your closet, I tend to believe that you've found the perfect shoe for you!

One of my birthday gifts this year was a pair of black Sketchers Shape Up shoes for work (the work ones have the slip resistant bottoms) I just started wearing them a few hours a day at home, and I'm still adjusting to them. They're supposed to simulate the exercise benefits of walking on sand, and they're supposed to be comfortable for standing and walking for long hours at a time. I have my doubts about them working out for my 9 1/2 hours days on my feet. I plan to give them a test run when I go back to work on Sunday.

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Cute! Especially coming for someone who hides the bar stool in the shed!

The problem with sitting (even for a few minutes) is that it's sooo difficult to get up and get going again.

We have a bar stool, too. It's made of wood, and it's hard, and high, and it hurts my back to sit on it. It's a very good deterrent from wanting to rest my bones for a while!

Besides that...I'm a firm believer in "if you're leaning, you should be cleaning." I wish everyone else felt the same way!

I started to explore the Earth Shoes on-line. I see they make all sorts of styles.

I wear Crocs when I am in the kitchen or office. I have noticed after the last few days of working in the coffee shop on a terrazzo floor that my legs are more fatigued and my feet hurt like crazy!~ Back to the custom orthotics and running shoes for me.
I picked up a pair of black sketchers made for Restaurant work several years ago. They've got super grippy anti-slip soles and no laces, and are pretty comfortable for working hours on end. I think they were part of a Sketchers "Work Shoes" line - construction boots and such.

Anyway, long story short, look for a good pair of boots made for restaurant work...that or just a pair of Crocs. That's what all those chefs at fancy restaurants wear all day long.
There's no secret answer that fits all. I need good lateral support.
Orthotics are a good way to go because they distribute the weight across your foot evenly and hold you feet the way they want to be placed.
Red Wings make good work shoes
I am not on my feet all day, but Asics are good shoes. Try their X-training shoes.
You should get cushion mats for behind the counter. It helps tremendously!!! I also swear by doc martin shoes...

I see that most of the replies center around the shoes. Actually, ...topher hit on one of the THE MOST IMPORTANT elements in "long term standing customer service." The floor surface is the first item, and from an employee health standpoint, the most important contributor to overall body health after a shift.

Speaking as a past owner of two manufacturing firms, our production areas, not walkways, were always "matted" with rubber cushions. And today, when doing trade shows, we always ship rubber mats that are layed down prior to our own carpeting. The difference between standing eight hours on a rubberized and carpeted floor versus concrete/hardwood, etc., is like night and day. Neighboring vendors in adjoining booths, and booth visitors, always notice the difference the minute they step on the rubber/carpet combination.

And as for the workshoes, I used to visit professional uniform stores. But when I examined the ultra-light, high cushion soul and insert setup of the shoes there, I found that K-Mart and Walmart had similar shoes for much less. I haven't shopped for work shoes in a few years, but still own the "mock Rockport Wingtips" that I bought at K-Mart nearly ten years ago. I still use them for trade shows because they're so light.

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