How New Technology and Innovation Make the Difference in Footwear Safety — Occupational Health & Safety
How New Technology and Innovation Make the Difference in Footwear Safety
Tech-driven innovations are the key to providing workers with footwear that is comfortable, safe and convenient.
Safety and comfort are always top of mind for employees sourcing footwear products. Thanks to new innovations, it is increasingly possible to find protective equipment that can resist common job site hazards such as slips, trips, falls or puncture wounds without compromising comfort and wearability.
While one may think of common hazards first, protecting the feet encompasses much more. Factors related to comfort, like extreme fatigue, blisters and shin splints, can be just as debilitating to not only productivity but also overall job satisfaction. And, with many foot-related workplace injuries resulting from lack of proper protective footwear, all of these factors remain equally important.
Tech-driven innovations are the key to providing workers with footwear that is comfortable, safe and convenient. Below are three key factors transforming safety footwear.
Fit is the Foundation
Safety footwear should provide security, durability and stability to the wearer, but all of those factors are compromised without the right fit. The right size and width of a work boot can help ensure all-day comfort and also minimize the chances of jobsite injury.
Today, new advancements in fitting methods utilizing AI and 3D mapping provide and store impactful information to offer a highly customized work boot fit. This includes analyzing the size, shape, arch height, volume and pressure points on each foot, as well as making an assessment of work environment conditions and safety needs.
Fit should also take into account gender-specific footwear design because men and women experience differences in foot shape and needs. Progressive footwear manufacturers are working to examine and better understand these differences and, in some cases, have introduced purpose-built options made using gender-specific lasts or patterns to ensure the best fit possible. Having the right footwear selection that considers all employees fosters safety, comfort and inclusivity.