When we buy shoes, it's often all about how the shoe looks. How it feels and performs tends to take a distant backseat. Sometimes function is more important than fashion, though. If you have mobility issues or are concerned about preventing a fall, choosing the right shoe should be more about how they fit and how well you can walk in them.
The first step is to have your feet measured. Just because you've always worn a 9 wide doesn't mean that you still do. Your size can change over time, especially if you have health conditions that can cause foot problems such as diabetes or arthritis. It's also important to get a diagnosis for conditions specific to the foot, such as plantar fasciitis, and buy the right shoes or inserts. If you're not placing equal weight on all parts of your feet because you're in pain, you may stumble and fall.
Many elders like slip-on shoes because they're usually comfortable and easy to put on, but the foot can slide around when you walk and potentially trip you up. It's better to go with a sturdy shoe that has laces and a firm, nonslip sole. Consider getting a shoehorn with an extended handle to help put your shoes on. You can also get spring laces, which stay tight and don't need tying, or shoes with Velcro fasteners.
So far, all of our ways to prevent a fall have to do with potentially modifying medications or other things that you use on a daily basis. Next, learn how exercise can help prevent a fall.