High heels have been all time favorite for most of the women despite knowing its effects to the body. Knowing the negative impacts of high heels barely stops women from wearing them occasionally and often daily. Most women have at least one pair of high heel in their wardrobe and many wear them every single day. Studies show that 77% of women wear them for special occasions, 50% wear at parties and out to dinner, 33% wear for dancing and 31% wear them to work on a daily basis.
Studies have revealed that these towering shoes can be costly in many ways; problems with spine, hips, knees, ankles and feet, while altering posture and gait. Wearing high heeled shoes frequently increases loads on the toes, alters foot shape and walking patterns.
A heel’s height determines the weight carried by the footwear. The higher the heels, the greater the pressure on the forefoot or ball of the foot. Flat shoes help evenly distribute the body weight throughout the foot. The increased weight on the balls of the feet causes the pelvis to tilt forward. To compensate, the person wearing high heels lean backward which puts a strain on lower back. This causes lower back pain. Wearing high heels puts excess pressure on knee joints as well as on the hip joint increasing the risk of fractures and trapped nerves if used regularly.
Wearing high heels on a regular basis can shorten the calf muscles which can cause muscle pain and spasms. Calf muscles are relaxed when feet are flat. This is why many women experience painful leg cramps after wearing heels.
If you are still wearing high heels, here are some recommendations to consider.
Avoid wearing high heels for long period of time.
Stretch leg muscles before and after putting them on.
Do not wear shoes with a heel higher than 2 inches. The American Podiatric Medical Association recommends wearing wedges or heels that are two inches or less. Even if the wedges are not great for feet, they lessen the pressure on the ball of your foot.
Buy shoes at the end of the day, when feet are at their largest.
Do not go for the pointed heels.
Choose shoes with leather soles to keep foot from slipping.
Try on both shoes when buying footwear. One foot is often larger than the other.
Stand and walk around in the shoes before buying them to make sure they are comfortable.
Do not rely on shoe sizes. Always try on shoes as sizes vary among brands.
Buy shoes that are comfortable when you first try them. Do not expect them to stretch.