Have you ever heard some people describe some parts of a shoe and you do not really get them? No worries, its just some terminologies of shoes and we are here to teach them to you! Get to know some and it may be your turn to impress the others!
Seems like a lot of names? Let's just deal with a few ones that are common in every shoes. We will go clockwise starting from the heel.
HEELCAP --- Also known as the 'heel counter. It is an insert used to reinforce the heel cup of a shoe and increase the support. A good firm heel counter helps to lock the foot in place and reduces over-pronation. Therefore, its important that the heel part of the shoes you are getting is not too soft and flexible! If not, your foot will be moving around a lot inside the shoe!
TONGUE --- Nope it's not that thing that you stick out from your mouth. This tongue refers to the strip of material under the laces of your shoe! It protects the top of your foot and also prevents abrasion of your feet against the laces. Have you ever faced the very minor but very very irritating issue of the tongue slipping to the sides in your running shoes? Below is an interesting way of lacing that get rid of this itch! Video credited to Jared Ning.
TOE CAP --- Also known as the toe box, it refers to the roofed area on top and around the toes. Its purpose is to retain the shape of the forefoot. It also adds strength to the upper front of the shoe which is an area that receives a lot of stress.
WELT --- It is a strip of material that joins the upper of the shoe to the sole. If you were to take out the insoles of the shoes, you will be able to see the welt!
VAMP --- Sounds like vampire? Don't worry it won't bite! In fact, it is supposed to protect your toes! It also often made up of more than 1 piece of material to create decorations for the shoe. There are different types of vamps to create different kinds of shoes!
QUARTER --- Not half, not full but quarter! Its the upper part of the shoe behind the vamp that covers the side and back of the foot. The quarter and vamp may be separated but can also be made together using one continuous piece of material.
SHANK --- It's not in the picture but it is a piece of material that is inserted between the sole and the insole underneath the arch of the feet. It gives the shoe structure and supports the feet. Below is a picture that shows where the shank is located in a shoe.
Now that you know some terminologies of shoes, you can impress others but most importantly, you will also know what to look out for when you buy a shoe!