WIDESPREAD CHANGES How your feet can get bigger as you age
If you’re over 40 and feel your running shoes don’t fit like they used do, it’s not your mind playing tricks – they don’t. Your feet widen with age, says Dr Steven Pribut, a podiatrist at George Washington University Medical Center, US, who estimates that ‘people over the age of 40 can gain as much as half a shoe size every 10 years’. That means some runners will need shoes two sizes bigger at 60 than they did at 40. Doctor Jim Christina of the American Podiatric Medical Association gives more detail: ‘The feet’s tendons and ligaments lose elasticity over time, flattening the feet, lowering the arch and causing swelling,’ he says. ‘The fat pads underfoot also become thinner, causing them to absorb less shock.’ To make up for this, make sure your shoes are adequately cushioned, get your feet measured every 18 months and consider buying your shoes in a wider width.