How to Make a Stand Up Job Easier on Your Legs and Feet

Wearing heeled shoes to work? You're making your leg pain worse.

Wearing heeled shoes to work? You're making your leg pain worse.

Standing the day away at work is an intimidating proposition, particularly for your feet and legs. These unlucky lower extremities will be forced to bear the brunt of your standing-up hours, likely leaving them aching even after you have clocked out and gone home. To reduce the pain, put to use some simple tips. In the long run, your feet and legs will thank you.

Pick shoes for comfort, not style. If you know your job will have you on your feet all day, don’t even think about slipping into anything with a heel, no matter how cute the particular pair of pumps may be. Select a pair of flat shoes with supportive, cushy soles and a blunt -- not pointed -- toe that will keep your tender tootsies as comfortable as possible.

Ask for a mat. The surface on which you are standing will be a major factor in determining how comfortable your feet and legs remain as you toil away. Implore your employer to provide you with an anti-fatigue mat. These cushy mats provide a gentler surface for your feet and reduce the strain that standing all day will put on your leg joints. This is particularly important if you work on an unforgiving concrete floor; this type of floor is especially mean to feet and legs.

Vary your posture regularly. The act of standing isn’t quite as taxing on your legs and feet if you aren’t standing, like a British guard to the palace, in the same position for the entire eight hour shift. Adjust your position regularly to ensure that you engage all of your muscles in keeping you upright. If you can, place a box or footrest in front of you, recommends, ergonomics consulting group PS Associates. Simply lifting one leg and putting it on the box for a period of time then switching to the other can make your day of standing easier.

Discuss any new or worsening leg pain with your doctor. Coming home with sore legs after a day of standing is understandable; however, leg pain that differs from the norm can be a sign of a more serious medical malady cautions Dr. Sheldon G. Sheps of the Mayo Clinic. Particularly if your leg pain is accompanied by swelling or redness, you should visit your doctor and have the situation checked out to ensure that there isn’t more at play than simply a day of standing.

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About the Author

Erin Schreiner is a freelance writer and teacher who holds a bachelor's degree from Bowling Green State University. She has been actively freelancing since 2008. Schreiner previously worked for a London-based freelance firm. Her work appears on eHow, and RedEnvelope. She currently teaches writing to middle school students in Ohio and works on her writing craft regularly.

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