Getting the Right Fit – How to Choose the Best Work Boot For the Job

Even though they stand on their feet all day on the job site, wearing the right footwear is often the last thing on a worker’s mind. However, the right choice in work boots can make all of the difference in occupational health. Any piece of industrial clothing goes beyond just comfort and is also expected to provide protection against hazards as a part of a comprehensive personal protective equipment (PPE) program.
With these two ideas in mind, here is a look at the major factors in outfitting workers with the right footwear. Proper footwear provides day-long comfort as well as providing protection against injury.
The Right Fit
Just like all PPE and industrial clothing, footwear will only provide protection and comfort if it is fit correctly. It is important to take the extra time in sizing footwear to the worker. It’s a good idea to try on multiple pairs in different sizes, brands, and styles to find the right fit.
Leather is a commonly used material, but be aware that the material will be stiff when it is new. Leather needs to be broken in before it will feel the best, but getting the right size at the beginning is crucial.
Insulated boots for outdoor job sites and cold environments should be one half size larger than usual to accommodate for an extra pair of socks or thermal leggings. If orthopedic insoles or padding and liners are also used, the extra half of a size is required to maintain a good fit.
How Work Boots Get The Job Done
Even though getting the right size is the most important step of buying industrial clothing, there are many types of footwear to choose from, all designed for different applications. The most commonly purchased type of industrial footwear is by far the steel toe boot. These pieces of PPE provide the best all around protection on the job from crushing hazards, impacts, ankles sprains, and even vehicle traffic. The reinforced toe, high ankle, and rugged design protect the feet and toes.
There are also many choices in waterproof and water-resistant footwear. Waterproofing is ideal for anyone who works outdoors and on wet surfaces, but the boots are also part of PPE in the presence of any chemicals that can be spilled or splashed. Chemicals that can soak through to the foot will cause aggravated injury and irritation. It’s important to realize however, that water proof coatings have to be re-applied and water resistant materials have to be maintained to keep them free from holes or deep scratches.
The right footwear can also supplement industrial supplies designed for protection against electrical hazard. Electrical hazard boots are insulted in order to protect against a 600 volt discharge. In addition, slip-resistant soles are used for working on wet surfaces, insulated models are great for cold weather, and medical shoes can be used in sterile settings.
Brands And welder supply cable Styles
Purchasing the right brand is another key step in getting the right kind. Bates, Rocky, Nautilus, Georgia Boot, Wolverine, and Danner are all excellent brands. When looking at price, stay above $90 to ensure a quality product and be aware that top of the line styles could go for as much as $200.
Footwear comes in many different styles and is made from a range of materials. The typical style comes with a high ankle, but an athletic style that resembles a sneaker or cross trainer is available with a low ankle and profile.
Leather is a commonly used material since it is durable and supportive while providing good water resistance. However, leather is not a breathable material and can be heavy and reduce mobility. Combination boots combine leather with nylon mesh to achieve a balance of weight, durability, comfort, and insulation. Latex and rubber are used for waterproof boots and chemical splash footwear. Most models, regardless of type or material, can be accessorized with waterproof liners and padded insoles.
Industrial footwear is constructed by three main methods. The most rugged, and expensive, method is the stitch down construction that also allows boots to be resoled. A less expensive option individual supply and market supply is cement construction, where the upper and lower halves are glued together. Another method is direct attach, where the two pieces are molded together during manufacturing for a strong bond.
With all of these factors in mind, buying the right industrial clothing for safety and comfort can be an easy task. With a little extra effort into research and finding the right fit, work boots will offer a long life time of safety on the job.

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