Home PodcastJulie Alli Stepping with Care: Health Tips for a Fulfilling Hajj

Stepping with Care: Health Tips for a Fulfilling Hajj

by Luqmaan Rawat
Wearing good, comfortable shoes will make your Hajj experience even better Photo Pexels

South Africa – While much attention is given to various aspects of Hajj, such as rituals and spiritual preparation, one aspect often overlooked is foot care. Our feet are the hardest working limbs of our bodies, and neglecting their health can lead to discomfort and potential health issues. 

Hajj involves significant physical activity, including a lot of walking and standing for extended periods. The hot climate in the Arab countries further adds to the strain on the feet. Therefore, it is crucial to prioritise foot care before and during Hajj to ensure a comfortable and safe pilgrimage experience. 


Selecting the right shoes and socks for Hajj

Before setting off, it is pivotal  you pick the right shoes and socks to wear, explained Mohammed Azeem Shaik, Podiatrist at Podiatry Africa. Comfortable shoes which provide adequate support, amongst other things, are vital. 

“The type of shoes you are going to take is very important especially when you are doing your Hajj. We would recommend you select something comfortable, well fitting, has adequate support and cushioning. What we would recommend is something with good ankle support. Your foot is locked into the shoe and it doesn’t slide around. If your foot tends to slide around, you tend to get a lot more blisters and your foot tends to hurt.”

It is also important to get the shoes a few weeks ahead of time, explained Shaik. This way you can walk in them or break them in, so they are not so stiff when you are on Hajj.

Another important thing which may not seem important is the type of socks you wear. Wearing moisture-wicking socks is highly recommended during Hajj. These socks are designed to draw moisture away from the feet, preventing the accumulation of sweat and maintaining dryness.

“When you wear cotton socks, which tends to hold the moisture in and keep it near your feet. Moisture causes fungus. If you do have a fungus infection on your foot, when your socks are moist, it is perfect for the infection to get worse.”

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Dealing with the heat

The intense heat during Hajj can make wearing socks uncomfortable for some individuals. However, it is crucial to prioritise foot hygiene and health. One can opt to not wear socks, but those who do need to take extra precaution.

“That’s where we would recommend moisture-wicking socks. When your feet sweat it will remove the moisture. If you suffer from athlete’s foot or your feet tend to get a bit sweaty, you do have the powders you can put in your socks that helps to stop fungal growth and bacteria in your socks.”

It is important to keep your feet dry but also not too dry. When your feet get too dry, it is more likely that you will develop cracks on your foot which could open up and become wounds.

“For your diabetics, wounds are not a good thing. Especially with diabetic patients. They take longer to heal. With it taking longer to heal, it is susceptible to infections. That’s why it is important to keep it dry but not too dry.”

It is important to keep a first aid kit on hand, a few plasters, antiseptic ointment and painkillers. You need to be able to treat any cuts and wounds when they immediately appear. Also keep an extra pair of socks on hand in case your socks get wet so you can change them.

Foot care is often overlooked, but it plays a significant role in ensuring a comfortable and healthy Hajj experience. Prioritising your feet’s health is an essential part of your overall Hajj preparation and will make it a more enjoyable experience.


Mohammed Azeem Shaik shared his wisdom with Julie Alli on the importance of nail care and what kind of khuff is best to wear and how to wear them. Listen to that discussion here:

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