How can getting the right footwear be the best way to celebrate Independence Day?
The fourth of July is just around the corner and this Independence Day is like no other. We're in an unprecedented time and this crisis has forced us to a new normal. Hence in order for us to go on with our lives and move forward, we need to change our perspectives and look on the brighter side of things.
Others may find it insensitive, but we have to hold on to anything that we can celebrate. Since mass gatherings should be avoided at all costs, congregating for parades and attending fireworks displays will be out of the equation.
Yet we can still honor it with low-key celebrations at home. July 4th is the pinnacle of patriotism. As a nation, we have survived all kinds of war and what we're facing now is an invisible war.
On the 4th, it can be the most important Independence Day yet. We have to conceive new ways of living. We have to adapt to what is in front of us, to look ahead, and be strong to the challenges we're facing. Internationally and locally we're facing a tough battle.
But we are a proud nation, we have led wars and won it all, how can it be different now?
What is its true meaning?
Independence can mean different things to a lot of people. It can be through freedom of speech, human rights, from the havoc COVID-19 has presented us, or even independence from the wrong footwear.
I'm not saying that other kinds of shoes aren't good. They serve their own purpose. As an Occupational Therapist, what matters to me is how people who are physically challenged can move independently and more freely.
I have seen their sufferings, even a trip of walking to the bathroom can be difficult. If you have experienced a serious accident and you've got severely injured, it may take you a while to recuperate. It is not only because of the physical damage but the emotional and mental toll that hit them.
Some don't even recover their entire life. How about those with a serious illness like Parkinson's Disease or Multiple Sclerosis? There is no known cure but hard and laborious therapy. Even the elderly needed constant care. How can these people feel free?
Their challenges have given them a lifetime constraint. This is the reason why giving them the right footwear gives them a better chance of living more independently.
What does Science say?
According to Pubmed.Gov, footwear influences balance and the subsequent risk of slips, trips, and falls by altering somatosensory feedback to the foot and ankle and modifying frictional conditions at the shoe/floor interface.
Walking indoors barefoot or in socks and walking indoors or outdoors in high-heel shoes have been shown to increase the risk of falls in older people. Other footwear characteristics such as heel collar height, sole hardness, and tread and heel geometry also influence measures of balance and gait.
Because many older people wear suboptimal shoes, maximizing safe shoe use may offer an effective fall prevention strategy. Based on the findings of a systematic literature review, older people should wear shoes with low heels.
Firm slip-resistant soles should also be a must both inside and outside the home. Future research should investigate the potential benefits of tread sole shoes for preventing slips. Whether shoes with high collars or flared soles can enhance balance when challenging tasks are undertaken.
They need proper shoes for the elderly with balance problems. Not only the elderly require this, but those who have experienced injuries could also be wearing foot and ankle brace. They need orthotic friendly shoes.
A shoe that has the right tools to make them feel comfier. Most of the time they opt for a bigger shoe to make them fit in or don't wear anything at all. Just to let you know, wearing a shoe is a must if you're wearing braces because it makes it ineffective if you are not wearing one.
According to Summit Orthopedics, the shoe should be sturdy and supportive. Slippers, loafers, and some sandals may be inappropriate. Your brace may not fit all of your shoes but it can be modified to fit most casual shoes that are accommodating.
Sometimes, because we are too lax to care, we ignore this advice and it is to our own peril. Hey, it's from the experts, how couldn't we?
What should we do?
As carers for those we love, don't we owe it to them to give the right tools to make them feel more independent?
This lockdown has given us time to reflect. To plan for the best solution that can be applicable to those we love with such difficulties. Doing so can give them a sense of fulfillment and joy. In my profession, seeing them pains me. It is difficult to see someone get frustrated for their inability to move.
I've seen that multitude of times. The sorrow in their eyes whenever they can't do a simple task is heartbreaking. I highly recommend that since you love them so much, then you give them something that can somehow make them feel free.
I highly recommend that you give them Friendly Shoes as an Independence Day gift. If you care for them so much, you will never think twice about doing this. As a matter of fact, you can never be prouder if you do so. If the festivity for others is to watch the fireworks in the backyard or online, then for them, having to receive Friendly Shoes can be so liberating.
It will be life changing for them as you will be able to make a difference in their lives forever. That is something that could never be forgotten. Caring for the family means caring for your country. Remember that everything starts at home and it can be the most patriotic thing that you can ever do.
The simple yet classy designs of Friendly Shoes can be a great mix to the red, white, and blue get-up that you will be interested in making them wear. It's the best time to do so since they are giving away 25% off for every pair, here's their website to check it out at Friendly Shoes.
Let us free them for the difficulties and burdens they are experiencing. Being tied to the wrong footwear is a form of slavery and it's a shame for our founding fathers if we will not liberate them from this.
Happy Independence Day and together let us all keep the freedom alive in our hearts!
Co-Author: Arthur Tolentino