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The Perfect Driving Footwear

Driving, as we’re sure you know, involves a lot of work from your feet. Whether that’s travelling at speed on a motorway or stopping and starting in traffic, your feet and ankles are under pressure to control the pedals properly at all times.

That’s why wearing the right shoes when you drive is so important. Now, this doesn’t mean that you should necessarily go out and buy a dedicated pair of driving shoes to keep in your car. But it does mean that you should think twice before you get behind the wheel wearing high heels or super heavy boots.

Why are shoes important?

When you have the correct shoes on while you drive, your feet can relax. Not only this, but it can also mean that you have better control of the car, you can react faster and more confidently if confronted with a hazard, and typically have an overall smoother ride.

According to a study by the AA, 27% of people surveyed said that they had experienced difficulties driving because of the shoes that they were wearing. 5% of people said that the shoes they were wearing caused them to drive dangerously, either through losing control or having an accident. The Telegraph say that if these figures apply to the 37 million people holding a driving licence in the UK, this means that 1.8 million drivers could be wearing shoes that are not suitable for driving – which could prove to be dangerous.

What makes a good driving shoe?

When it comes to choosing shoes to drive in, think about the soles. If the soles are too thick then it can be hard to feel the pedals, making it difficult to judge how much pressure is required. This can also mean that you find it tough to brake smoothly. Guidelines recommend that soles are no more than 1cm thick, although 4mm is preferable.

Another thing to look out for is heels. As the accelerator and the brake are both often operated with the heel of the foot on the floor, wearing high heels can affect the way a person operates these pedals. Although it may sound tempting to not wear shoes when you drive for maximum feel of the pedals, this is not advised. Driving barefoot can cause injury to the feet due to a lack of protection, and may impact the way that you operate pedals if you’re in pain. Also, if you are in an accident, it can be dangerous to get out of a car with no shoes on, in case there are sharp objects on the floor.

Top driving shoe tips

When it comes to getting behind the wheel there’s no need to get too worried about your choice of footwear, as long as you keep the following top tips in mind:

  • The sole of the shoe is important – pick shoes that aren’t too thick so that you can feel the pedals.
  • Don’t be tempted to drive barefoot – this can be dangerous and cause injury to your feet.
  • Try to pick shoes that are lightweight, and easy to move around in.
  • Avoid shoes that are too wide – this can mean that you press on two pedals at the same time accidentally.
  • Make sure that the shoes you wear don’t restrict the movement in your foot or ankle.

Do you have a favourite pair of shoes to drive in? Tweet us at @JCBGroupAutos and let us know!