Foot Pain from Flip Flops

Person wearing black flip flops while running on beach

Can Flips Flops Cause Foot Pain?

It’s the middle of summer, which means flip flop season is in full swing. If you’re experiencing heel pain or aching arches, your beloved sandals could be the cause. Though flip flops are a summertime staple, they can often lead to painful feet and conditions like plantar fasciitis. Flip flops with arch support, like PowerStep® ArchWear™ orthotic sandals, can help relieve and prevent foot pain from flip flops.

Blue PowerStep orthotic flip flops for women

Are Flip Flops Bad for Your Feet?

Most flip flops lack the necessary cushion, support, and functionality to be good for your feet. While they do help mitigate infections from public swimming pools or beach showers, they can also increase your chances of injury and foot pain. Wearing them in moderation or simply switching to arch support flip flops can help you avoid risking your foot health.

Woman wearing flip flop with broken toe post

How Flip Flops Affect Your Feet

Not everyone suffers from flip flop induced foot pain. People with normal or neutral arches are more likely to tolerate flatter shoes since they need less support than someone with flat feet. Still, flip flops should only be worn temporarily as pain occurs gradually. Abnormal foot structure, or your arch height, can make wearing flip flops more painful and worsen problems with stability.

Hot feet in the summer are unbearable and flip flops offer an easy, breezy way to cool down from the heat. Still, a thin foam sole with zero support or tread and unprotected, exposed toes puts you at an increased risk of injury. Broken or stubbed toes, fall injuries, and ankle sprains are some common injuries from wearing flip flops.

Man walking on street in flip flops with no support

Foot Conditions Caused by Flip Flops

If your feet hurt when wearing flip flops, it’s likely due to a lack of support, stability, and shock absorbing cushioning. Flip flop foot pain is gradual, so the more often you wear them, the worse the pain gets. Some common foot ailments caused or made worse by wearing flip flops without support are:

  • Plantar fasciitis: A lack of arch support and cushioning puts excess stress on the plantar fascia as your toes and feet struggle to keep the shoes in place. Your heel absorbs most of the impact, causing heel pain from flip flops and inflammation leading to plantar fasciitis.
  • Metatarsalgia: Flat shoes or flip flops can also cause excessive force and pressure on the ball of your foot, resulting in inflammation and ball of foot pain or metatarsalgia.
  • Tendinitis: The tendons on either side of your ankle help encourage stability as you walk. Wearing flip flops causes you to take shorter than normal strides, which puts strain on those tendons, causing inflammation and tendonitis.
  • Blisters: Thong style sandals, like most flip flops, often cause friction injuries or blisters between your big toe and second toe as the skin rubs against the strap.
  • Ankle Injury: Most flip flops provide little to no stability, so the ankles roll more which can affect gait, worsen stability problems, and make it more likely to sprain or twist an ankle. Instability is a common cause of ankle pain in flip flops.
  • Flatfoot Pain: People with flat feet or fallen arches need supportive footwear that complements their arch type. This means that the average flip flop with a flat bed and no support is more likely to cause foot pain.

A pair of worn, white flip flops on the grass

How to Prevent Foot Pain in Flip Flops with Orthotic Sandals

Tired of foot pain keeping you from fun summer activities? Experience the freedom, relief, and comfort of a flip flop with arch support with PowerStep orthotic sandals. Designed by the #1 podiatrist recommended brand for foot pain relief, our flip flops and slides feature built-in arch support to help prevent and relieve pain from common foot conditions like plantar fasciitis. 

Man outside wearing black PowerStep men's flip flops with arch support

Our trusted support aims to correct mild to moderate pronation while the deep heel cradle provides enhanced stability most flip flops don’t. As the best flip flops for heel pain, this design promotes better functionality and control.

At the same time, cushioned midsoles help absorb shock on impact and reduce foot fatigue. PowerStep sandals are a safe alternative to flip flops with a non-slip tread to help prevent injury. Supple, elastic straps offer a custom fit while a soft toe post stops painful digging.

Person holding black PowerStep orthotic slide with arch support

PowerStep® Orthotic Flip Flops with Arch Support

PowerStep orthotic flip flops for women and men's orthotic sandals are the best sandals with arch support, providing much needed stability, cushion, and contoured support. Discover sleek and stylish designs from comfortable orthotic slides to women’s fashion sandals. When it’s time to put on your work shoes or casual shoes again, get the same support and relief with PowerStep orthotic insoles.

Woman on couch and wearing white PowerStep orthotic sandals for women

When you need flip flops for foot pain, PowerStep sandals both prevent and relieve discomfort whether you’re just wearing them around the house, to the beach, or out and about. Get the support you need and the freedom you love while avoiding summer foot pain with an arch supporting flip flop by PowerStep.


Pizzano, D. D. M. (2016, July 14). 3 Foot Conditions From Excessive Walking In Flip Flops. Roxbury Foot & Ankle Center.

(2016, August 4). Foot Conditions Caused by Wearing Flip-Flops. DeNiel Foot and Ankle Center - Ejodamen B Shobowale, DPM.