Yes, tottering in high heels for long periods can make your back sore, but too much time in the wrong flats can do just as much damage.
“Heels can cause problems because they force your foot forward, altering the angle of your body so your weight isn’t evenly distributed over the foot and therefore the spine, which can trigger pain from your knees all the way up to your back,” explains our sports chiropractor Mel Davis from Back 2 Balance chiropractic clinic.
“But popular styles of shoe – such as ballet pumps and flip-flops – aren’t a great deal better as they allow your foot to slide around. Again, the lack of stability that this causes puts pressure on your spine,” accordingly to Mel. She suggests choosing shoes that holds your foot firmly in place to keep you stable and to protect your back. If you want to read about choosing shoes for your kids click here.
Most of the women in your family probably spent most of their lives wearing high heels to work. I have personally only worn them a few times and one of those times nearly resulted in a broken ankle. I’m all for donning a pair of heels when wearing an outfit that requires a bit of elegance, but I’d much rather put on a pair of comfy trainers. Here are 7 ill effects of high heels on your body, just in case you aren’t aware of just how detrimental these fashionable accessories can be.
1. LOWER BACK PAIN
High heel shoes are created with fashion in mind and not comfort. There is usually a lot less support in heels than in running shoes or even sandals. The constant pressure on the balls of your feet causes weight distribution to be less even and lower back pain is often the result. Nerves can also become stressed in the lower back because of the odd posture held when wearing high heels. I’ve dealt with nerve pain in my lower back for many years and it is no fun at all!
2. FOOT PAIN
The shape of high heel shoes is meant for holding the foot in a particular position to benefit your appearance, not provide comfort. Resting all your body weight on the balls of your feet is going to cause considerable pain after awhile. Walking around on the balls of your feet all day also tends to create yellowed areas on the bottom of your feet that remain sore even after the high heels are removed.
3. SORE CALVES
This ill effect does often pass once you get used to wearing high heel shoes. However, daily use of high heel shoes not only causes sore calves, but also protruding veins in your legs. Once veins begin to stick out from your legs, they don’t usually tend to go back in. This can create some unsightly looking legs for a woman who once prided herself on having nice looking legs. This is something to keep in mind when wearing heels on a regular basis.
4. SPRAINED ANKLES
I’ve often wondered how many sprained ankle cases are caused by wearing high heels. The world is a very uneven place. There are pot holes, cobblestone roads, air vents, drainage grates, and so many other things that are just waiting to latch onto the pointy tip of a pair of high heel shoes. Besides ankle sprains; think about the broken ankles, bruised knees and elbows, and even the occasional concussion caused by wearing high heels. They almost seem a bit dangerous, don’t they!
5. AFFECT THE NATURAL CURVE OF THE SPINE
The lower back becomes even more arched than usual when you wear high heels. Also, the higher the heels are, the more the lower back has to arch to keep you positioned upright. If you don’t spend a lot of time walking around in high heels, then you might not notice how curved these shoes cause your back to be. This extreme curve is also a contributor to back pain in both the lower and the upper region.
6. CONSTRICT BLOOD VESSELS
Many styles of high heel shoe are shaped to make the foot appear very long, thin, and rather elegant. The shape of the shoe squeezes the foot into an unnatural position, thus constricting blood flow and sometimes even causing blood vessels to break. I personally don’t relish the thought of having aching feet with bulging blood vessels purely for the sake of fashion.
7. CROOKED FEET
I’ve seen my grandmother’s poor misshapen feet and learned when I was very young that this crooked appearance was all due to years and years of wearing badly fitting shoes to work. She now has not only crooked feet, but also achy ones most of the time, due to the misshapen bones. Plus she’s had an operation on them to straighten them out in a bid to reduce the pain during walking.
I have no desire to squash my feet into a pair of high heel shoes purely for the sake of fashion. If these 7 ill effects of high heels on your body don’t cause you to take more notice of what these shoes are doing to you, then I don’t know what will. I’m not putting heels down, but I do think they should be worn with caution. If you wear high heels, what do you do to lessen the pain that occurs when you wear them? Do you wear high heels because you want to or because you think you should?