Nursing “uniforms” have changed dramatically over the decades – good rid of the white tights – and that includes shoes.
Today’s nurse can express her individuality while protecting herself from heel pain, plantar fasciitis and other ailments. However, having so many choices can make it difficult to choose a pair that keeps up with your pace while protecting your feet.
Each year, Nurse.org asks its online community of more than 133,000 members for shoe recommendations, then asks healthcare providers to wear and rate the most popular ones. Healthcare workers wear a pair for one or more shifts before assessing them.
Four brands scored five – the highest rating – this year. Here’s what testers had to say about them.
Alice Benjamin, MSN, BSN, RN, is a critical care nurse and host of the Ask Nurse Alice podcast. She wore the Asics Novablast SPS for three shifts.
“I usually wear Nikes or running shoes because they’re comfortable and don’t hurt when I’m running all day,” said Benjamin, who usually works 12-hour or longer shifts.
Of the 10 categories the shoes were rated in – quality, cost, comfort, water resistance, slip resistance, style/fashion, foot/ankle support, durability and cleanability – Benjamin gave the Asics a rating of 5 out of eight. For water resistance and foot/ankle support, she rated the shoes a 4.
Benjamin also tested and rated Bala Twelves. This shoe is designed by nurses and is designed around the morphology of the female foot. The result is a perfectly fitting nurse’s shoe without compromise.
“I liked their snug fit and comfort. They’re actually liquid resistant,” said Benjamin, who gave the shoes a 5 in each category.
Wali Khan, BSN, RN, is a critical care/emergency nurse with 10 years of experience. He wore the Brooks Ghost 12 running shoes three times before reviewing them.
Although he usually wears Nike Free Runs, Khan said his feet “didn’t hurt after intense movement. The fit of the shoe was true to size and didn’t require a ‘break-in’ period. I also ran several miles in the shoes to test comfort and durability and they turned out to be great shoes.
Khan rated the shoes a 5 for quality, comfort, foot/ankle support and durability. For cost ($110), slip resistance, style/fashion, and cleaning ability, he gave them a 4. The other two categories received an N/A.
Everett Moss II of Atlanta, BSN, RN, is a critical care/vascular access nurse with five years of experience. He wore the Nike Vapormax to work for a full shift.
Moss rated the Vapormax a 5 for quality, comfort, and style/fashion, saying they are “very light and comfortable.” However, Moss also prefers “more fluid resistant shoes” and only ranked them 2 in this category.
You can check out the other seven shoes on Nurse.org.
Nurses today can express their individuality while protecting themselves from heel pain, plantar fasciitis and other ailments. However, having so many choices can make it difficult to choose a pair that keeps up with your pace while protecting your feet.