High Heels, High Danger
If you’re still teetering around on stiletto heels in the interest of fashion, maybe you need to think again. Here are some of the problems that can come from wearing high heels, and how to solve these issues:
1. Ball of Foot Pain
Why? “High heeled shoes tend to throw the weight onto the ball of the foot and toes. This is further aggravated by a narrow toe box effectively squeezing the toes. To relieve pressure, the shoe needs to be as wide as possible, have a more cushioned sole and incorporate some support for the foot to spread the load. A strap across the foot can also help to hold the foot ‘back’ in the shoe and reduce pressure on the ball of the foot.” Renowned podiatric surgeon Trevor Prior.
Fix: Give Wedges A Spin – They are just as cute and come in a variety of hot styles. Wedges provide much-needed arch contact with the larger amount of surface area given to help distribute body weight. Whenever you stand or walk without support and feel pain, it’s an indicator that you have damaged your soft tissue. If you need to wear a heel, wear a Vionic style that can support your body adequately while still providing the stylish edge you crave.
2. Sore Feet
Why? Walking or standing with little support and uneven weight distribution causes stressed & tired soles.
Fix 1: Stretch your feet! “Rolling your barefoot over a cold soda can will provide both stretching and cold compression. You may also roll your feet out on a tennis ball. Soaking the ball in warm water to soften hard skin can be useful and also feels great! There are a number of plantar fascia and general foot stretches and exercises available online to assist in improving your comfort.” – Brian Hoke, Sports Physical Therapy Specialist
Fix 2: Find the Right Fit – “One of your best friends is a shoe specialist that can really get you the appropriate sized shoes. A lot of times, we’ve been wearing the same sized shoes we have since we became adults, and for some of us that may have been a long time ago. Our feet change shape as we age. Sometimes they get a little longer or they can change shape in width, so that’s why it’s really important not to buy based upon what you think your size is, but to have someone actually size your foot because every shoe and brand is a little bit different.” – David Armstrong, Phd, MD, World Renowned Podiatrist & Specialist on Diabetes
3. Have to Wear Heels for Work or Events
Fix: Commute in Comfort – If you feel the need to wear higher-heeled shoes to work, it’s beneficial to wear a more comfortable, supportive shoe to get to and from your workplace and wear the higher shoes while sitting around the conference table. Wearing heels for 3-4 hours is OK, but save your feet during the in-between moments with active shoes, casual or dressed up flats, or a bootie that looks refined with more ankle & sole support.