PDA

View Full Version : Clarks vs. Merrell shoes



Pages : 1 [2]

zaphyre14
01-03-2012, 05:11 PM
I wear Merrill open backed clogs just about every day in New England. I have tan fabric ones for summer and black leather for the rest of the year. I can get about two years hard wear out of the leather ones. I buy them either through The Walking Store or Zappos which means pretty much full price. Once I did find a pair in Marshall's for about half price but I've never found them since.

I've had just about every foot problem you can have and my chart makes orthopedists wince. Merrill's fit my feet the best of any shoe I've ever tried.

Which reminds me, I need to stock up on another black pair. If I have to pay full price, well so be it. I figure I'd rather have a pair of good shoes I can wear every day for a year than a hundred cheaper pairs that I have to take off after a couple of hours.

myhoneyhoney
01-03-2012, 10:17 PM
Has anyone tried Dansko?

vesperholly
01-03-2012, 10:27 PM
because having my heel elevated, and putting the pressure on the ball of the foot, instead of the heel, helped the PF pain tremendously.

Interesting! I developed plantar fasciitis BAD this summer, first in my right foot and now in both :mad: and wearing flats (except for my cute Crocs slingbacks) makes my feet ache.

Did the cortisone shot help a lot?


I had such bad PF and multiple cortisone shots for years until I ignored my doctor's advise and went for physio. I followed her instructions religiously and after only 3 months my pain completely disappeared

Would you mind sharing the advice? I find arch support inserts make my pain worse, not better. I do a few stretches daily and it only seems to help for 5 minutes.

OT: I had a pair of Clarks for one day. They were very comfortable in store and the width was perfect. However, the toe box was too shallow, and my chubby toes were completely squashed. Also, the backs rubbed my heel like crazy. Too bad, because the soles were so soft and supportive. They actually looked like shoes that might last a while instead of falling apart.

sk8pics
01-03-2012, 10:38 PM
I have a pair of Dansko clogs with a closed back and they are very comfortable. They're not as cushioned as I would like if I'm walking a distance in them, but normally they're fine.

I have several pairs of Merrells, all the same model. My first pair, I got more than 5 years ago. They are falling apart along the inner seams on the top, but I still wear them. I just got another pair over the weekend, only $62, which is a bargain for me.

I had a bout of plantar fasciitis myself, and the Merrells have not caused me any problems. I do make sure not to wear the same pair of shoes on two consecutive days, and I think that helped as well. It's been years since I had any trouble.

skatemomaz
01-03-2012, 10:55 PM
I love Clarks (their Indigo line has some great looks), I just bought a beautiful pair of black boots with a very comfortable heel. My Naots are great in the summertime, but my go to shoe in the winter time is Tsubo. They make a fantastic short boot (http://www.zappos.com/tsubo-cusus-claret-pale-gold) that I can walk in all day. I have two pair, one grey and on red.

I usually buy through Zappos or endless.com

nyrak
01-04-2012, 01:50 AM
I have a couple pairs of Born shoes which are excellent, one pair I bought on sale at the Bay about 5 years ago, have worn them a lot since, and there's only minimal wear on the sole and the leather looks almost new. I've since bought another piar (same style, different colour) on ebay, and they're just about as good too. Definitely worth the money :)

I'd never heard of Keens until about 3 years ago when I was in the Shoe Company and saw these shoes that were so wide. I have super wide clown feet....I tried them on just to feel what shoes that wide felt like. After about 5 seconds I didn't care what they cost, I had to have them. I've since bought a few more pairs & love them all. Again definitely worth the money, for quality, but mostly for fit/comfort.

Back to the original question ;) I have a pair of Merrell slip-on shoes that are 3-4 years old, while still comfortable enough to wear for short periods of time, they are broken down and basically look like crap.

And I have one pair of Clarks too, a wide-width pair I bought in a Clarks factory outlet store in the states a couple years ago, they're comfortable and still in perfect shape as I don't wear them much....they're dress shoes and I don't dress up much, but they are comfortable and I'd wear them more if they went with my sweats ;)

Lurking Skater
01-04-2012, 03:18 AM
Interesting! I developed plantar fasciitis BAD this summer, first in my right foot and now in both :mad: and wearing flats (except for my cute Crocs slingbacks) makes my feet ache.

Did the cortisone shot help a lot?

I've had cortisone shots for PF in both feet and that was the only thing that got rid of my pain. I've also done the night splint (which I hated).

Like Bev, I had orthotics made from the podiatrist and that has kept me pain-free.

Skate Talker
01-04-2012, 06:57 PM
Interesting! I developed plantar fasciitis BAD this summer, first in my right foot and now in both :mad: and wearing flats (except for my cute Crocs slingbacks) makes my feet ache.

Did the cortisone shot help a lot?



Would you mind sharing the advice? I find arch support inserts make my pain worse, not better. I do a few stretches daily and it only seems to help for 5 minutes.

OT: I had a pair of Clarks for one day. They were very comfortable in store and the width was perfect. However, the toe box was too shallow, and my chubby toes were completely squashed. Also, the backs rubbed my heel like crazy. Too bad, because the soles were so soft and supportive. They actually looked like shoes that might last a while instead of falling apart.

My experience with cortisone shots was - well mixed. The first time the doctor gave me the shot he didn't say anything about the pain of the shot. I have an exceptionally narrow heel and it felt like he was plunging a spear into my bone. I spontaneously yelled blue murder, which made him laugh but I'm sure scared the heck out of everyone in the waiting room. He really hadn't prepped me for it properly or I would have had someone else there with me as I had to drive home to the country flexing that foot on the brake and gas and I don't know how I didn't pass out from the sensation. By the next morning I wondered if I had imagined the whole thing - no more needle pain and also no more PF pain - gone like magic.

After almost 12 months I noticed the PF pain was gradually returning. That's when I went to a podiatrist. After numerous expensive visits and a set of what I am now sure were fake off the shelf orthotics at a custom price, the pain was only increasing rapidly. The doctor's explanation was that the inflamation must have already set in too much for the orthotic to help and that if I would just get another cortisone shot from my GP, I should never get the pain back again provided I kept up with the orthotic.

Well I fell for that so back to the doctor. This time I arranged for someone else to drive. I reminded him how much the previous shot had hurt so he made sure to super-freeze my heel before the injection. This time the injection was bearable, though I could still feel incredible pressure, but I spent many more hours in excruciating pain than I had the first time when the freezing started to come out. I think it took almost a day before my eyes stopped watering in pain.

This time the shot didn't seem to work as completely and the pain started to increase after only 10 months, plus the other foot was starting to get twinges. The GP had always told me that physio would be of no use but I decided to give it a try. Usually you need a doctor's referral for insurance coverage but fortunately he agreed to sign off on it after the fact. I told the physio my goal was to avoid any more cortisone shots and she felt she could accomplish enough pain management to make that a reality but delivered so much more.

You asked about the advice. Sorry I really meant the treatment and exercises. Each visit she would show me additional exercises to do at home to simulate the treatments she gave. We always started off with a 10 minute period of warming up the feet in heated water. At home I used a foot bath. Then a series of exercises. Her treatment included ultrasound and some sort of electric stimulation, which I couldn't of course simulate. Each session finished off with 5 minutes of icing off each heel. I really cannot remember specifics anymore but there were of course many stretches and also one where I rolled my heel on a golf ball, and another where I picked up towel with my toes many times over. That one was the hardest for me.

When I said I followed her advise exactly I meant that although this took at least a full hour each evening, I kept up with it religiously and never skipped even a single day. The payoff was worth it as after 3 months I realized the pain had completely disappeared. I then started skipping days and when there was no sign of the pain returning, I stopped the exercises altogeher. I have only had to be careful with shoes and inserts and have not had a recurrence of the PF for 10-15 years now. I can get warning twinges from time to time that warn me to change shoes or take it easy on foot-pounding activity. The inserts I wear are just off the shelf.

I may have a much different reason for my PF than you though. I have very long, narrow feet with a high arch. Although a damp foot impression will not show the arch, I was told that in fact my arch has fallen, so it must have been very high indeed originally. For that reason I find it very comfortable to wear a shoe with good arch and an added arch insert. I wear shoes with very little heel for the most part and find them the most comfortable. If the shoe is really really flat I can't wear it two days in a row, likewise if there is more than a one-inch heel. I do wear structured footwear at all times when my feet meet the ground. I have not found a reasonable slipper of any kind so always have a designated pair of open back clogs in the winter and slip on sandals in the summer that I wear only indoors. They are on my feet before I let my feet hit the floor each morning. If I am spending more than an hour at someones house I also make sure to take a pair of indoor shoes along whenever I go visiting. I know some people allow nothing but sock feet in their homes but I have always made sure they know why I need them, that they are indoor only shoes and that the soles are non-marking.

My sister also has PF and other foot problems. However she has always had flat feet and finds she needs a heel to be comfortable. I don't think this is a one-size-fits-all problem or solution. Still I highly recommend going to a physio. Doing the wrong exercises, or the right exercises the wrong way can do more harm than good. If you don't like the way the physio is going, try a second therapist. I have to admit I had a perfect one. She was also very very careful of my money and in the end I am sure I had only about 5 sessions with her. She wanted me to have some of my insurance coverage left since it was early in the year and if at some point things started to get worse again I wouldn't hesitate to see her for some additional help. Also, it is perfectly naturally to find that you actually hurt more after the initial treatment due to all the added manipulation, but a good therapist will make sure you have a quick follow-up visit scheduled to help out with that.

Good luck to you. The right solution can make life so much more pleasant.

loopey
01-04-2012, 08:42 PM
Being in the shoe industry, I can confirm that many of the "old reliable" shoe companies have recently (over the last 2-3 years) switched to the lower-end Chinese Factories. The amount of arch support, and the quality of the materials used for that arch support is one of the first ways to cut costs. Most of the big names mentioned in this thread Clarks, Dansko, and Merrell have all moved at least some of their manufacturing to these cheap factories. But all of the above have also kept quality of arch and support in some of their styles. The problem is that internet and discount shoppers often go for price and end up with the cheaper versions. People outside the industry just cannot differentiate by looks. If you want the top of the line, you are, I am afraid going to need to visit a knowledgeable brick-and-mortar and ask them for the more supportive styles.

For PF the very best brands that don't have "cheap" styles are Finn, Naot, and Kumfs. Yes, you will spend more money. Unfortunately, building arch support and arch stability into shoes costs money.

Shoe industry is a bit of a mess right now. Many of the factories in China that have made shoes for reputable companies have taken those designs and styles, and created their own "knock-offs". These knockoffs used to be easy to spot on the internet. All you had to do was look closely at shoes shipping directly from China and you could bet they would be "fake". Then they got smarter and started setting up shipping warehouses in the US and Canada. Made it more difficult. Now they have even started selling to the internet companies. Internet companies that want to make money can buy some "real" product and some "cheap" product and can make a fortune. Just one of the ways the internet doesn't necessarily benefit the end users. Great bargains, but sometimes you still get what you pay for.