There has been much furore over ‘heels’ in the last few days. With Julia Roberts walking the red carpet bare feet at Cannes, to a receptionist in Britain being sent back from work for not wearing heels, all attention seems to be focused on a notorious pair of shoes!
As physiotherapists, we at HEAL understand why heels receive so much flak. Here’s what happens when you wear high heels:
High heels leads to an excessive weight shift towards your forefeet. As a compensatory mechanism to maintain the body close to its centre of gravity, you are most likely to lean back and arch excessively from the low back. This alteration in the back biomechanics can lead to chronic low back pain with symptoms sometimes radiating up to the feet (sciatica). High heels cause an imbalance between the heel and the ball that the ankle is forced to become the fulcrum for your entire body. And, since ankles aren’t built to take that kind of pressure, falls and twisted or sprained ankles can also be pretty common. Knee and ankle pain, ingrown toenails, bunions, plantar fasciitis are some of the other common risks associated with wearing high heels.
They say “Behind every successful woman are a fabulous pair of shoe!” So here’s the good news, you don’t have to break up with your favourite pair of pumps! But remember these key points that will help reduce the stress and pain while you flaunt your favourite pair.
Go women, conquer the world! Continue to wear those stylish shoes- without paying the painful price!
Saloni Shukla is a physiotherapist at The HEAL Institute. Saloni has a Masters in Musculoskeletal and Sports Physiotherapy and worked with Flinders Medical Centre (Adelaide), University of South Australia School Clinic (Adelaide), Happy Valley Football Club (Adelaide), International Premier Tennis League (Delhi).