One of the most fundamental element of work wear wardrobe is the work boot and most often than not, it is the least focused area. Whether you work at a construction site or in an area where electrical hazards can take place, having the right type of boot can save you from minor as well as major accidents.
Examples of workers facing different problems in their legs or feet are not uncommon but have you wondered why that happens? It is because either they are wearing the wrong type of footwear or their work involves standing at one place for too long. The human feet have to bear the maximum impact of your day to day work. Uncomfortable and bad footwear, prolonged standing, slippery surfaces, hidden nails, lack of protective insoles and falling objects can just about increase the danger or risk to your feet and life within your workplace.
There are several different types of danger that your feet will be exposed to during work. The dangers can lead to work related foot injuries, which can be divided into three categories.
- Category I: The first category of work related foot injuries includes sprains, punctures, lacerations, and crushing. This type of injury accounts for almost 10 percent of total work related disabling feet injuries.
- Category II: The first category of work related foot injuries includes the most commonly happening phenomenon like trips, slips, and falls. Injury caused due slips or falls account for almost 15 percent of total work related disabling feet injuries. Although, slips and falls can lead to far more serious injuries than simple foot injury, it does bring back the focus to one place – lack of foot safety.
- Category III: There is a third category as well, which is caused by uncomfortable footwear. This category takes into account the various conditions that arise due to the type of work boots that people wear and their personal hygiene like ingrown toenails, corns and calluses, and discomfort leading to pain and fatigue. Sometimes accidents happen due to a pair of tired feet!
The 3 Important Aspects for Choosing Work Boots for Men
Most of the work related injuries and feet problems are caused by inadequate and uncomfortable footwear. For example: if you are working in an oil rig then you just can’t wear your everyday snickers to work because there is a high risk of slipping. Your work area is bound to have an oily surface hence you would require slip-resistant shoes. Some of the top oil rigs require their workers to wear rubber boots that are steel toed and CSA approved.
The best work boots for men are those that offer safety especially where there is a high risk of your boots getting crushed or getting caught in a part of the machinery, or even getting hit by an object or getting pierced. In a construction area, there is always the risk of standing on sharp objects like nails and hence the perfect boots in such environment are those with puncture-resistant soles.
The best work boots for men are the ones that take into account the three important aspects:
How is safe are your work boots? The most important factor for consideration is safety. Accidents can happen anytime at your work environment and different work environments have different type and degree of risk. Hence, it is important to focus on the safety aspect based on the type of environment you are working in and the nature of your work. The safety aspect lies in the soles of your work boot and also in the construction. Some of the safety aspects to look out for include:
- Safety toe: Work boots with steel toes have been in use by workers in oils rigs and construction areas for ages. Today, the safety levels have been increased thanks to technology and you can find boots for men with composite toe. The composite toe boots are made using composite materials like carbon fibre, high impact plastic, and even Kevlar.
- Metatarsal: One of the best work boots for men is the metatarsal work boots. These boots are also known as “meta boots” or “meta guard boots”. The name comes from the fact that the structure of the boots has incorporated an external or internal guard.
- Hazard protection: Different areas of work like construction, electrical, machinery, oil rigs, and other outdoor work may increase the risk of a different type of hazard. For example – oil rigs increase the risk of slipping while building construction increase the risk of falling and those working with electricity are prone to getting electrocuted. Depending on the industry, the best work boots for men may have security or safety functionalities like non-conductive, static dissipating, slip resistant or non-skid, and waterproof among others.
Is your work boot comfortable enough? You are probably thinking that these boots should be naturally comforting. No! There are hundreds of manufacturers and brands of work boots for men and all of them don’t provide the level of comfort that you require. Again, the comfort factor is dependent on the type of environment you work in. If you are working outdoors and need to be always on your feet for inspection then you need a boot that will not lead to feet fatigue. The level of comfort depends on the type of insole and foam your boots have. Work boots that have multilayer shock absorption system are considered to be more comfortable than the ones with single layer shock absorber. Comfortable insoles will ensure:
- Full surface shock absorption
- Provide extra degree of comfort especially in the high-strain part of the feet
- Ensure there is a high degree of breathability due to the use of moisture absorption
Will your work boot last long enough? Last but not the least, the durability of your work boot matters! If you invest in a pair of work boots and they don’t last more than 6 months then it is definitely an expensive proposition. Durability is dependent on the construction material used and the safety offered. The best work boots for men are those that can help you to work in extreme weather conditions providing safety and comfort.