OROGOLD Reports: Could Those Sexy Heels Be Hurting Your Body?
Although walking around all day in high heels may be a painful experience that we get used to, finding the discomfort easier to ignore with time, many studies have shown that wearing high heels frequently can severely hurt your body, not only your feet but also your calves, knees, hips and back. OROGOLD reviews how those sexy heels we love to wear could be hurting our body.
Your feet usually act as shock absorbers, distributing weight evenly throughout your body, and protecting your skeleton from hard poundings. However, as soon as you put on a pair of high heels, you have shifted the location of those shock absorbers from your whole foot to just the balls of your feet, as well as your delicate toe bones. A study from the Journal of Applied Physiology states that the majority of the problems that high heels cause are due to the way that the foot contorts to fit into this unnatural shape. The higher the heel means the larger the impact, and studies have shown that a pair of four-inch stilettos can increase the pressure on the front of your feet by up to 30%. Over time, this does not just lead to blisters, bunions, ingrown toenails and calluses, but also more serious bone and nerve damage.
A recent study, carried out at Hanseo University in South Korea and published in the Journal of Clinical Practice, found that although high heels may at first strengthen the ankle, they then go on to weaken them, causing an imbalance as you get older, which would then lead to more future problems. The researchers suggest that those who wear heels should practice ankle strengthening exercises to prevent the ankles from weakening.
Your knees, which are the largest joint in the body, are also a major shock absorber. Although built to withstand a certain level of force, frequently wearing high heels means that more pressure is put on the inner sides of the knees, which will eventually lead to osteoarthritis.
When you wear heels, your weight is no longer distributed evenly throughout your body. The increased weight on the balls of your feet will cause you to subconsciously tilt your body forward, and, to compensate, lean slightly backwards, overarching your back and putting stress on your outer hip muscles and your tendons.
The unnatural position that your body forms to compensate for your high heels causes your spine to unnaturally sway. This puts an unnecessary stress on your lumbar erector spinae muscle, which would soon result in a sore lower back.
There are now so many studies that show how heels hurt the body, making it an extremely difficult topic to ignore. The size of the heel makes a big difference, so if it is possible, OROGOLD suggests choosing as low a heel as possible, and one that is wide rather than narrow. If you are going to be attending an event where high stilettos are a must for your outfit, OROGOLD recommends wearing a pair of flats and then changing into your heels before entering the venue, to reduce the amount of time you wear them. Although heels may be damaging, if you wear them responsibly, you needn’t completely cut them out of your life.