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nurse sneakers

The answer is a resounding yes. Sneakers are a popular choice for nurses and there are many reasons for this.

However, depending on the guidelines of the healthcare environment you work in, the appropriate style of sneakers can vary.

This is reasonable.

Brightly colored sneakers with big, brand-name logos can portray an image that is less than professional.

Patients and their loved ones are putting their faith in those that are taking care of them, it might seem as if you do not take the role seriously if you are seemingly prioritized with making a statement through your footwear.

Let’s take a closer look at what can be seen as appropriate.

Appropriate Sneakers for Nurses

nurses sneakers 2

Formal dress code healthcare environments

If you are working in a formal healthcare environment where a dress code is implemented, you should stick to plain black or white sneakers.

Design motifs should be kept to a minimum, and if they do contain branding, this too should be subtle.

While this may seem as if it rules out a lot of sneakers on the face of it, this is not strictly true.

Even the most style-conscious sneaker brands provide options that are muted in design, but still offer the comfort of quality manufacturing and ergonomic principles.

More relaxed dress code healthcare environments

In healthcare environments with more relaxed dress codes, you can expand your level of choice and opt for sneakers with a splash of color.

I would still recommend that you do not stretch the limits of the dress code, however. Mainly, because of what I stated in the introduction above. It just doesn’t look professional, (you will rarely if ever, see a head of department or senior healthcare worker pacing around in bright yellow and red sneakers for example).

Also, imagine if you were a loved one to a patient in critical care. If you saw the hospital staff walking around with footwear designed for the gym, would you see that as appropriate?

Patients and their families come first.

Sneakers with laces or velcro straps?

Sneakers with straps or laces are perfectly fine. However, with the former, you do need to think about safety.

Untied laces could cause you to lose your footing when you least expect it. They are also a little tougher to pull on and off, with the need to untie and tie each time you want to give your feet a short rest.

Sneakers with velcro straps eliminate both these issues. Ultimately, however, the choice is yours.

Benefits of Sneakers for Nurses

nurses sneakers laces

Once the nature of your workplace is established and you decide that sneakers are for you, there are many advantages to wearing them.

Let’s take a quick look at some now.

  • The quality level of support and comfort for your feet
  • Ergonomic design principles with lots of investment spent by brands on superior performance
  • Breathability as they are generally designed for sports
  • Non-slip soles – most sneakers (especially running style) have non-slip soles
  • Many styles of sneakers are easy to wipe clean
  • You can find sneakers with robust toe areas for increased protection
  • Lots of styles to suit varying dress codes
  • Lots of price points to suit all budgets

AS you can see, there are many benefits for nurses that choose to wear sneakers at work. Just be sure to check your work dress code guidelines and think about your professional image when it comes to the style of sneaker you go for.

About Hannah Drake

Hannah Drake, RN, CSP is a registered nurse and owner and founder of Nurse Focus. Her nursing career spans almost two decades, and in that time she has developed her skill base across a variety of settings, including med surg nursing, clinical informatics system administration and implementation, and healthcare community management. Contact Hannah.

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