The Benefits of a Wide Toe Box Design in Your Footwear

In our daily lives, our feet bear the weight of numerous activities, often without receiving the attention they deserve. Foot problems tend to be overlooked until they become noticeable. Despite this, many of us tend to overlook the importance of proper footwear until foot problems come knocking. Today, let's delve into the concept of oblique-toe shoes and the benefits of a wide toebox design in your footwear.

Oblique Toe, in terms of shoe design, signifies a square and roomy toe box that aligns with the natural shape of a person's foot. This unique feature offers additional space in the toe box, ensuring both comfort and freedom of movement. This subtle shift in design can make a significant difference, particularly when considering the natural contours and shapes of our toes.


Research reveals that a substantial 56% of reported foot problems originate in the forefoot, underscoring the pivotal role of a wide toe box. This design concept allows the toes to splay naturally, providing ample room for comfort. To assist individuals in maintaining optimal foot health, our team offers tips for assessing shoe fit. These insights can help ensure that your footwear aligns seamlessly with the natural contours of your feet, minimising the risk of toe problems.

Toe Bumps: If you notice your toes pushing up into the shoe upper material, creating a bump, it's likely that the shoe is too tight or too shallow in the toe box.

Toe Length: If your toes touch the end of the shoe or there's less than a thumb's width past the longest toe when you stand up, it's likely that the shoe is too short.

Insole Check: To verify if the shape of the shoe matches your toes, remove the insole and stand on it. If the toes are sitting at the edge of the insole or hanging over, the toe shape may not be correctly matching your foot.

Foot Movement Marks: Examining the impression on the insole from the movement of your toes during walking, especially in older shoes, can provide valuable insights. If the toes are nearing the end of the insole, it may indicate that either the shoe is too short or better lacing techniques are needed to hold the foot in place.



For those seeking relief from foot issues, a visit to Pure Performance is in order. Our unparalleled expertise, facilitated by a functional fit, allows us to match the shape and requirements of each person's foot to the functional features of the shoe at a retail level. We also offer a diverse range of shoes designed with wider, squarer toe boxes and fewer seams, providing more depth for enhanced comfort.

Several prominent brands known for their spacious toe box designs include Altra, Topo, and Birkenstock. Altra and Topo specialise in crafting adventure shoes tailored for outdoor enthusiasts, offering square and wide-toe boxes ideal for navigating diverse terrains. Meanwhile, Birkenstock excels in enhancing everyday comfort, ensuring a more comfortable experience for daily activities.


THE OLYMPUS 5 from Altra

The Altra Olympus 5 shoes are a top-of-the-line trail running shoe that offers exceptional comfort, stability, and protection. The shoes are designed with Altra's zero-drop platform and a wide toe box to provide a more natural foot positioning and improved stability on uneven terrain.

The Olympus 5 features a highly durable and aggressive Vibram outsole with deep lugs for superior traction on any trail surface. The upper is made with a breathable and flexible mesh material that adapts to the foot, while reinforced overlays add support and durability.

The EGO midsole delivers exceptional cushioning and energy return, making these shoes ideal for longer distances and challenging terrain. With its combination of comfort, stability, and durability, the Altra Olympus 5 is an excellent choice for serious trail runners who demand the best performance from their footwear.

Explore all Altra Oblique Toe Range Styles

The Ultrafly4 from Topo

The Ultrafly 4 introduces footwear that breaks away from tightness, offering a liberating experience without compromising on comfort. It's the perfect choice for those seeking unrestricted ease without sacrificing a secure fit. 

If you've ever felt the discomfort of standard-width shoes crowding your toes or found wide-fitting ones too spacious, this everyday trainer is your ultimate solution. Engineered with a unique square toebox, the Ultrafly 4 champions absolute comfort by offering ample space for natural toe-splay. 

This latest edition, building upon the triumph of its predecessor, remains exceptional while embracing eco-friendliness, a lightweight build, and an improved heel fitting. Get ready to step into a shoe that not only prioritises comfort but also champions sustainability and performance.

Explore all Topo Oblique Toe Range Styles

The Arizona from Birkenstock

The Birkenstock Arizona sandal has become an enduring emblem of timeless comfort and style since its inception. Rooted in the brand's rich heritage dating back to 1774, Birkenstock has cultivated an array of styles, but none more iconic than Arizona.

This classic sandal boasts a distinctive two-strap upper adorned with sturdy buckles, offering personalised adjustments for an optimal fit. However, what truly sets Arizona apart is its legendary Birkenstock footbed. This signature feature is renowned for its anatomically contoured design, delivering a spacious, wide-toe box and remarkable support.

Comprising six fundamental design elements, the Birkenstock Footbed ensures comfort and orthopaedic benefits:

  1. Shaped Heel Cup: Stabilises and supports the foot upon ground impact, maintaining the heel in the correct orthopaedic position.

  2. Heel Mould with Raised Sides: Provides additional support and guidance for the heel.

  3. Longitudinal Arch Support: Strengthens the inner arch of the foot.

  4. Transverse Arch Support: Supports the midfoot and combats splay-foot.

  5. Raised Toe Grip: Stimulates the rolling motion of the toes.

  6. Footbed Edge: Offers protection to the toes and the entire foot.

This sophisticated anatomical construction evenly distributes the body's weight across the entire foot, enhancing comfort for wearers across various lifestyles. The footbed itself is crafted from four natural ingredients: cork, jute, latex, and suede leather. This blend not only provides cushioning but also ensures breathability while offering insulation against heat, cold, and moisture. The fusion of these components underscores Arizona's versatile nature and enduring comfort.

Available in an assortment of materials and colours, the Birkenstock Arizona remains a steadfast companion for individuals seeking both enduring comfort and classic elegance.

Explore all Birkenstock Oblique Toe Range Styles

Now, as you step into Pure Performance's world of oblique toe shoes, you're not just investing in footwear; you're investing in the well-being of your feet. The journey to optimal foot health begins with acknowledging the importance of the foundation beneath you. Our commitment to merging foot health and comfort seamlessly is reflected in every step you take.

Click to explore and shop our diverse oblique toe ranges, and experience a transformative shift in your approach to foot care. After all, the road to foot wellness is a journey worth taking—one step at a time.

Find Pure Performance store for a professional fit-up

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