Shoes for Haglund’s Deformity

Haglund’s deformity is the clinical name for an inflammation of the bursa, a fluid-filled sac between the bone and the tendon, on the back of the heel; it is a bony enlargement and can become red and quite painful as it causes the soft tissue surrounding the Achilles tendon to become irritated and inflamed. Haglund’s is most commonly found amongst women who wear slip-on heels, hence the deformity’s more commonly known name – pump bump. Because of the discomfort Haglund’s can cause, it is important to choose footwear that minimizes further irritation, pain and discomfort.

Shoes with a high-heel or pump should be avoided if you suffer from Haglund’s because their typically rigid structures, especially around the back of the foot, encourage further bursa aggravation and enlargement. Other footwear with stiff structures like men’s dress shoes, ice skates and rollerblades are also primary pump-bump culprits that should be avoided.

Fortunately, there are several orthotic products out there to help those who suffer from Haglund’s deformity. Heel lifts, for example, have been found to help with pump-bump, especially amongst patients with high arches as the added lift helps to decrease pressure placed on the heel. Heel lifts also help minimize direct pressure on the irritated area. Placing heel pads inside shoes adds extra cushioning which has been found to reduce pump-bump irritation as well. Custom arch supports can also help as they help control and minimize foot motion within the shoe.

If you find choosing the right orthotic device confusing, why not visit a professional? Specialist shoe store staff can offer valuable advice regarding your specific foot shape and structure and can likely offer a shoe or product to help alleviate and prevent irritation.

Shoe styles that include a padded collar around the heel have also been found to help Haglund’s deformity because the feature prevents the top collar of the shoe from irritating your heel. Shoes with a strap or lace are also helpful as the additional support helps keep your foot in place and not slipping and sliding which can irritate the back of your heel and encourage further inflammation.

If you’re on the hunt for a specific shoe brand that is perfect for Haglund’s deformity, you’ll have to do some firsthand research because it ultimately depends upon your specific foot structure. That being said, many athletes praise the Asics brand for its foamy heel, Mizuno for its lack of sharp plastic structure around the heel and Adidas for its low-rising back lip.