In the warm weather and the beach season, out come the flip-flops! Unfortunately however, many types of flip-flops can cause foot and ankle problems due to lack of support and stability. Non-supportive flip-flops can cause a common foot injury known as plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the tissue along the bottom of the foot and the heel. Here are some tips to prevent injuries:

• Don't wear flip- flops while playing sports, walking long distances or doing yard work.

• Check for proper fit by making sure your feet don't hang off the edge of the flip-flops.

• Flip-flops should have stability built in so they cannot bend or twist.

• Look for flip-flops that have built-in arch support to cushion your feet. The lack of support can

lead to numerous foot, ankle, knee and lower back injuries.

• The material from which the flip-flops are made is important. In some cases, a high-quality soft

leather will lessen the potential for blisters and irritation (compared to some rubber materials).

• Always break into new sandals or flip-flops for a few hours the first day. Then slowly increase

your wear time.

Dr.Robert F. Weiss is a podiatrist specializing in foot and ankle surgery, He was a member of the Medical Advisory Committee of the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Marathon Trials. Weiss is a veteran of 35 Marathons & has a practice in Darien, affiliated with Stamford Hospital and member of Stamford Health Medical Group-Foot & Ankle Institute, and resides in Westport.

For info visit his Web site at www.stamford

healthmedicalgroup.org, and find a Physician-Dr. Robert F. Weiss