Work safety shoes are more than just a pair of shoes - they are an essential tool for workers in many industries. These shoes are designed to protect our feet from a wide range of hazards, from sharp objects to electrical charges, and much more.
But have you ever stopped to wonder what makes work safety shoes so effective? The answer lies in their component parts. Each part plays a critical role in ensuring that the shoes provide the necessary protection, comfort, and support for the worker.
From the outsole to the insole, work safety shoes are a complex piece of technology, built to withstand the toughest work environments. In this blog, we will explore the inner workings of work safety shoes and take a closer look at the component parts that make them a superhero for our feet.
Why Learning The Structure Of Safety Footwear Matters
It is critical that you understand the structure of the work boots that are available on the market today, to be able to identify the best one for your work environment based on your specific needs.
There are usually distinct areas of safety that are focused on and delineated by protective work boots for different purposes. For instance, it is possible to provide protection for the toes of boots with steel toe caps.
The safety shoes for work are made to protect the metatarsal part of the foot and a metal shank is placed beneath the outsole to protect the bottom of your foot from abrasions and injuries.
Due to this factor, it is crucial that you have a detailed understanding of the structure of the safety boots before you buy them.
The basic makeup of all shoes is the same, regardless of the fact that specific shoes differ a little from one another. As we look at protective footwear surfaces, let us take a closer look at the various surfaces involved in making them.
A safety work shoe covers the tips of the foot at the front of the shoe, and it is generally known as the toe cap. Since it is most vulnerable to injury as a result of its vulnerability, it needs to be insulated to prevent injuries.
There is a certain amount of pressure that must be applied to toe caps for them to pass safety tests. Steel, aluminum, and composite toe caps are some of the various types of toe caps available on the market.
A shoe with steel caps will provide the strongest protection, but on the other hand, the shoe will be heavier. Whereas it is relatively lighter to use aluminum or composite caps, they provide a medium level of protection as compared to steel caps.
One of the most bothering things when it comes to steel caps wearers is in areas that have metal detectors, such as airports and sites that require a high level of security clearance, steel caps are inconvenient, which highly affects your work efficiency.
One of the main aspects of safety shoes is that they provide complete upper protection. Materials such as leather and rubber are used to make this part. It is possible to use flammable, waterproof, acid-resistant, or breathable materials for the layer depending on the requirements.
For instance, oil-resistant leather is used for shoes intended for use in places with a high risk of hydrocarbon spills, such as in the oil and gas industry. Similarly, breathable, lightweight materials are used for shoes intended for use in hot environments, such as in the construction or manufacturing industries
In terms of footwear, the inner lining can be considered to be the invisible part of the upper, since it is the lining inside the shoe. As a result, liners can be made from breathable materials or made of materials that offer high levels of thermal insulation for the cold months of the year, such as wool.
To ensure that the greatest level of safety is ensured, it is important to pay attention to both the specific requirements of the job being carried out as well as the features that the best work safety shoes possess while performing tasks in the designated position.
When you walk, the outsole is part of your shoe that comes into contact with the ground and bears weight. PU, TPU, EVA, or rubber is most commonly used as an outsole material, and in most cases, the outsole is dual density.
The benefits of each material will vary depending on the environment in which it will be used. Different types of footwear can be distinguished by their level of slip resistance, comfort, durability, and protection against heat or chemicals.
Thus, depending on the conditions and environments in which you are going to work, you, as the wearer, should choose the right material that offers the highest level of protection.
The basic knowledge of density: Dual density vs. Single density
Unlike single-density soles, dual density soles are made of two layers, in most cases, two layers of a material called PU.
On the inside, there is a layer that is softer and thicker, which provides comfort, and on the outside, there is a layer that is thinner and harder, which provides durability and grip.
A mono-density sole is another type of sole that can be used. There is only one layer of PU in this sole, and it is made of rubber. While these soles are lighter in weight, it is imperative that preference be given to the stiffer compound layers of the soles.
In light of this, they are likely to be less comfortable to wear and certainly less durable, particularly in applications that have a high level of use.
Insoles are the parts of safety work shoes that directly contact the wearer's feet, and they are made from fibers, leather, and non-woven materials depending on the type of shoe.
The main features of these shoes are their contact resistance and their ability to remove moisture, both of which allow them to dry quickly after wearing them since they often contain a cushioning material to aid shock absorption and provide extra comfort to the wearer.
It is possible to have an insole that provides shock absorption at either the heel or the front of the foot, according to the needs of the wearer. In addition to providing support for the arch of the foot, removable insoles may also provide you with some additional cushioning.
However, you need to take care when selecting such insoles as they can interfere with the protective properties of the shoes. This is what happens when ESD or antistatic shoes are fitted with removable insoles.
The protective midsole is also known as a penetration-resistant midsole, and the midsole is usually made of steel or composite fabrics and is designed to prevent the wearer from being injured if they step on a sharp object such as a nail or any other sharp object.
Midsoles made of steel are usually nested within the outsole, while the ones made of composites are normally nested between the outsole and the insole.
In terms of resistance to penetration by sharp objects, both of them offer a similar level of protection for safety working shoes. There are, however, a few areas around the edges of the sole that are unprotected due to the fact that steel midsoles are completely embedded within the outsole construction.
In some environments, such as those that require workers to pass through metal detectors before entering the workplace, they may be unsuitable for wearing because of the properties of metal, such as their ability to conduct cold, heat, and electricity.
There are many benefits to using textile inserts over foam inserts, such as their lightness, flexibility, and comfort. It is extremely durable, does not conduct electricity, and has the ability to withstand extreme temperature changes.
Midsoles made from stainless steel are one of the most durable steel materials since it is not as susceptible to corrosion as coated carbon steel, which eventually weakens through corrosion.
They are usually designed to help enhance the rip and compression of the heel and ankle area of the shoe. This type of footwear is usually made of rubber and provides a snug fitting, as well as comfort, stability, and support.
So there you have it – the superhero-like component parts that make up the most comfortable safety shoes!
From the protective toe cap to the comfortable insole, each part plays an important role in keeping workers safe and comfortable on the job. We hope that this journey through the inner workings of work safety shoes has given you a newfound appreciation for this essential piece of workwear.
So take a moment to appreciate the engineering that went into them, and how they are designed to be your personal superhero for your feet. Stay safe and keep stepping forward!