Keeping both feet on the ground

Preventing foot injuries requires creating the right environment and – yes – wearing the right shoes

Twenty-six bones, 33 joints, and more than 100 tendons, muscles, and ligaments. That’s what you’ll find in each of your feet.

The American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society claims that the average person takes approximately 10 000 steps per day, or three-million steps per year, and we carry approximately four to six times our body weight across the ankle joint when climbing stairs or steep inclines.

Considering the number and relative size of the components that make up human feet, and how much work they do for us without our realising it, it is critical that the appropriate type of footwear is used to prevent injury and make feet as comfortable as possible while in the workplace.

As with all types of injury prevention, the correct measures to take include having the correct processes and procedures in place, as well as ensuring the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided and used.

MedicineNet, an online healthcare media publishing company, suggests the following to prevent landing up with a broken foot:

• The foot is placed under considerable stress on a daily basis, absorbing the pounding of walking, running and jumping. Poorly constructed and -cushioned shoes, as well as obesity, help contribute to stress fractures and general instability of the foot.

• Certain occupations increase the risk of foot injury. These include the construction trades in which weights may be dropped on a foot, or falls from height may occur.

• People with osteoporosis or peripheral neuropathy may have increased risk of foot injury. It is important for these people to decrease clutter to prevent an injury from falling. It is also helpful to limit the number of throw rugs on the floor that can cause a person to trip and fall.

• High-impact sports, that include twisting and direct blows to the feet, increase the risk of fracture. Appropriate

protective equipment will help decrease the risk of injury.

While PPE is an important line of defence, when it comes to footwear it has to be protective while being comfortable, and, increasingly, as stylish as possible. This is why Bronx Safety Footwear, distributed by BBF Safety Group, has released its latest range of footwear – which is designed to flow easily from work to play with a blend of style and durability, and safety-compliant protection and performance.

According to Peter Gerbrands, group marketing manager for BBF Safety Group: “Bronx Safety Footwear is committed to providing consumers with quality, comfort and durability while merging the always-ready-for-life approach to design with the safety that today’s South African worker needs.”

To address the specific needs of the modern consumer, Bronx performed in-depth consumer research and testing to develop the line. The result is a specialised range of men’s safety footwear that offers protection in both casual and formal styles.

Each style features a rubber sole for high heat resistance, oil resistance, anti-slip and excellent durability; an anti-static top sock with heel pump and air channels to promote airflow; mesh inner-lining for comfort and breathability; and a padded heel shock absorber for added cushioning and energy absorption.

In addition, the eight different styles feature individual protective properties.

The range will be available through a mix of retailers and specialist safety-equipment distributors and resellers nationwide.

“Bronx Safety Footwear is designed for fashion-conscious individuals who want quality and comfort without compromising on style. While its safety footwear may be fashionable, it retains every aspect of functionality and safety certification,” Gerbrands concludes.

Now that’s some news you can put your feet up for.

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SHEQ Management

SHEQ MANAGEMENT is the definitive source for reliable, accurate and pertinent information to guarantee environmental health and safety in the workplace.
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