Crocs: Healthy Shoes or Just Comfy? | Fort Worth Podiatry (2024)

Crocs: Healthy Shoes or Just Comfy? | Fort Worth Podiatry (1)

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Crocs: Healthy Shoes or Just Comfy? | Fort Worth Podiatry (2)

Crocs — those clog-like shoes in bright colors — might not match everyone’s idea of fashion, but fans swear by their comfort. And Croc lovers say they bring health benefits to the two extremities that carry us all to the places we go.

Crocs — those clog-like shoes in bright colors — might not match everyone’s idea of fashion, but fans swear by their comfort. And Croc lovers say they bring health benefits to the two extremities that carry us all to the places we go.

Are Crocs really good for our feet? WebMD got some feedback from doctors, consumers, and the shoe’s creators.

A History of the Croc

Born in 2002, the shoe was initially intended as footwear for boating, with its nonslip tread and waterproof tendencies.

“The product was originally produced in Canada in clog-form,” says co-founder Lyndon V. Hanson, III, vice president of Crocs. “We added a strap for utility, and gave it some flair.”

Crocs are certified by the U.S. Ergonomics Council and the American Podiatric Medical Association. Hanson says that what Crocs lack in aesthetic value, they make up in therapeutic benefits. The company created what it calls an Rx line of models specifically with healthy feet in mind: Croc Relief, Croc Cloud, and Croc Silver Cloud.

“These shoes were designed specifically to eliminate plantar pain and achy feet,” says Hanson. “They also help people with injured feet,bunions, anddiabetes. You’ve got a lot of inner support, heel cups and massaging heel nubs, and arch support. They’re ideal for people withfoot problems.”

Crocs in the Clinic

Some doctors are even recommending them to patients withfoot problems.

“These shoes are especially light,” says Harold Glickman, DPM, former president of the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA). “They have huge room in the toe that affords the front part of the foot lots of room, especially for people with bone deformities like bunions andhammer toe. With the Rx Crocs, they’re lined with antibacterial material that will prevent fungal andbacterial infections.”

For people withdiabetes, Crocs offer added value in the protection they provide. Because people with diabetes have reduced circulation in their feet, Glickman says, they’re at higher risk for open sores and wound infection. The spare room and antibacterial properties of Crocs help combat these problems.

“I do not have stock in the company or work for the company, but I recommend them to patients all the time, and I wear them all the time,” Glickman tells WebMD. “I wear them when I’m operating for three or four hours at a time and I get the sense I’m standing on water — noleg pain, noback pain, and no arch pain.”

When the temperature starts to rise and flip-flops abound, Glickman also recommends trying Crocs instead.

“Crocs offer more protection for your feet than flip-flops,” says Glickman. “Flip-flops don’t provide a lot of arch support; they’re open-toed so you can stub your toe and hurt yourself. Crocs offer more protection and comfort than that.”

Professional Skepticism

Crocs have the official seal of approval from the APMA, meaning the shoes have been found to be beneficial in promoting good foot andanklecare. But not all doctors have signed on to the medical value of the shoes.

“They are very lightweightand are good for people who have trouble walking,” says Bob Baravarian, MD, chief of foot and ankle surgery at Santa Monica UCLA Medical Center. “They are very stable, they don’t bend and twist side to side much, and they have a good heel cup and arch contour compared to other shoes.”

Baravarian says Crocs have more positive attributes than negative, but they’re no substitute for the real deal.

“Because the shoe is considered medical, it gets overused by people who need more support than they can get from the shoe,” Baravarian tells WebMD. “It’s not as good as an orthotic or a medical type shoe; it’s made out to be better than it is.”

And it’s not made for marathon wear either, adds Baravarian.

“It’s a good shoe for going to the beach, kicking around the house, going to the corner market, but they’re not made to be worn at Disneyland all day long,” says Baravarian.

Some doctors haven’t crossed paths yet with Croc fans.

“Boy, I have never heard of the shoes, and haven’t had patients who tried them — that I know of,” says Richard Deyo, MD, a professor of medicine and health services at the University of Washington in Seattle. “I guess I’m out of touch with the popular culture!”

And until aclinical trialpublished in medical journal says so, he probably won’t be recommending them to patients.

“I’m a professional skeptic, and that applies here as well,” says Deyo. “Unless they have some persuasive randomized trials, I’d regard the therapeutic claims as theoretical.”

What Crocs Fans Say

People who wear Crocs are die-hard fans, and stand by — and in — the shoes all day long.

“I saw them in a store, and I tried them on, and ended up with a pair that are light pink,” says Jamie Jessick, a registered nurse at Santa Monica UCLA Medical Center. “I like that they’re really light and comfortable.”

For Jessick, who is on her feet for hours at a time, a comfortable pair of shoes is a must-have.

“They’re so comfortable that it’s like wearing slippers at work,” says Jessick, who is part of a small minority that actually finds the shoes attractive.

“I thought they were cute, that’s why I bought them, but turns out they’re also comfortable,” Jessick tells WebMD, adding that her colleagues are catching on, too. “A couple of nurses have tried them on and seem interested in them.”

While it seems the jury is still out on these shoes, Crocs have been spotted almost everywhere, from hospitals to hockey rinks, beaches, boats, and even Hollywood.

Originally published

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Crocs: Healthy Shoes or Just Comfy? | Fort Worth Podiatry (2024)


Crocs: Healthy Shoes or Just Comfy? | Fort Worth Podiatry? ›

Because the shoe is considered medical, it gets overused by people who need more support than they can get from the shoe,” Baravarian tells WebMD. “It's not as good as an orthotic or a medical type shoe; it's made out to be better than it is.” And it's not made for marathon wear either, adds Baravarian.

Do podiatrists recommend wearing Crocs? ›

Not well, according to Dr. Megan Leahy of the Illinois Bone and Joint Institute in Chicago. "Unfortunately, Crocs are not suitable for all-day use,” Leahy, a podiatrist, told The Huffington Post. "[Crocs] offer nice arch support," ... but "these shoes do not adequately secure the heel.

Do orthopedics recommend Crocs? ›

Crocs are lightweight, breathable, and offer plenty of room, which makes them good for gyms and public showers, post-pedicure, running outside for a minute, and more. That said, Crocs lack arch support, so exercising, walking for an extended period of time, or working in them is not recommended by foot specialists.

Are Crocs healthy shoes? ›

The bottom line. Many people enjoy wearing Crocs. They're lightweight, comfortable, and roomy, which makes them ideal for a range of activities. On the other hand, their lack of arch support can cause issues like plantar fasciitis, while their plastic construction may give you sweaty, smelly feet.

What shoes do foot doctors recommend? ›

Cushion Neutral
  • HOKA. Bondi. Stinson. Speedgoat.
  • Saucony. Ride.
  • TOPO. Ultrafly 5mm drop.
  • New Balance. 890. 990. 1080.
  • Mizuno. Wave Rider. Wave Creation.
  • Nike. Pegasus. Vomero. React Infinity Flyknit.

What are the disadvantages of Crocs? ›

Here are 10 reasons why Crocs should be packed back up, shoved to the back of the closet or just straight up thrown away.
  • Blisters. ...
  • Foot sweat, and consequentially, smelly feet. ...
  • Not ideal for unpredictable weather. ...
  • What are you supposed to wear with them? ...
  • Danger. ...
  • Not good for activities. ...
  • Not durable. ...
  • Overpriced.

What shoe brand has the best arch support? ›

“This cushioning acts as a buffer between your feet and the ground, reducing the stress on your joints and muscles.” After researching the options and consulting experts, we determined that Asics' Gel-Kayano 30 is the overall best sneaker for arch support while Hoka's Arahi 7 is the best for cushioning.

What are the health issues with Crocs? ›

When Crocs aren't used as they were designed for, they place additional strain on the sole and the heel pad. Inadequate support would mean that the toes need to grip, leading to tendonitis or worsening any preexisting issues. You may also develop issues such as corns and calluses or other toe deformities.

Are Crocs bad for plantar fasciitis? ›

When plantar fasciitis starts to become a problem for you, a good pair of arches will make all the difference. Crocs can be a great option because they provide comfort and arch support.

Are Crocs good for the spine? ›

Invented as a shoe for people who work on and around boats, Crocs may seem like an odd alternative to flip-flops, but in fact they have several features that bode well for your spine.

Why do doctors use Crocs? ›

Surgeons and medical professionals spend long hours on their feet, requiring shoes that provide excellent support and cushioning. Crocs, with their proprietary Croslite material, offer exceptional comfort and shock absorption, reducing the strain on the feet and legs during surgeries or prolonged standing.

Are Crocs OSHA approved? ›

OSHA doesn't specifically approve or disapprove brands like Crocs. Rather, they outline general guidelines that all work shoes should follow. For instance, you need foot protection if there's a risk of foot injuries from falling or rolling objects, objects piercing the sole, or exposure to electrical hazards.

Is arch support bad for your feet? ›

At first, prefabricated arch support may feel comfortable, but you never know when it will begin to place additional strain on other muscles or joints, perhaps leading to damage. Also, keep in mind that two people with nearly identical arch types will react to the arch support in different ways.

What shoes do podiatrists recommend for seniors? ›

The Best Walking Shoes For Older Adults, According To Podiatrists
  • Men's Adidas Ultraboost 20 sneaker.
  • Women's Dr. Comfort Victory shoe.
  • Vionic Walker classic shoe.
  • Women's Orthofeet Francis walking shoe.
  • Skechers Go Walk Arch Fit sneaker.
  • Women's Orthofeet Joelle shoe.
  • New Balance 990v5 shoe.
  • Skechers Glide Step shoe.
Sep 22, 2023

What shoes are healthiest for feet? ›

Shoe Brands That Are Good for Your Feet
  • Allbirds. Allbirds provide enough support for day-to-day activities. ...
  • Vionic. If you are looking for a variety of styles fit for most occasions, the Vionic brand has you covered. ...
  • Brooks. Brooks produces supportive athletic shoes. ...
  • New Balance. ...
  • Chaco. ...
  • ABEO. ...
  • Ecco. ...
  • Hoka One One.
Nov 16, 2022

What shoes do orthopedic surgeons recommend? ›

Klaw 528
  • Klaw 528. Best orthopedic shoe overall. ...
  • More options. Dansko Fawna Mary Jane for Women. ...
  • More options. Cole Haan Men's Original Grand Shortwing Oxford. ...
  • Hoka Bondi 8. Best orthopedic walking shoe. ...
  • More options. Puma Deviate Nitro 2 Running Shoes. ...
  • More options. ...
  • Vionic Karmelle Oxford Casual Sneaker. ...
  • Kuru Atom.
Mar 21, 2024

Are Crocs or Birkenstocks better for plantar fasciitis? ›

Why We Recommend It. Birkenstocks are a favorite for foot pain thanks to their moldable cork footbed that fits to your foot for complete support. Birkenstock Milano sandals also feature a third strap around the back of the foot for added support, and all three are fully adjustable to keep feet in place.

Are Crocs still in style in 2024? ›

I'm a sucker for a cool pair of shoes. IMO, shoes completely transform the look and feel of any outfit. Shoes can evoke that comfy, casual vibe I love so much, but swap them out for a fancier pointed-toe heel and you're likely ready for a date night.

Do Crocs help with arch support? ›

"The only two types of patients that may benefit from wearing Crocs are patients that have a very high arch or those who suffer from excessive edema of their legs and ankle," Kor said.


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