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High Heel Hell

High Heel Hell

They make you taller, make your legs look longer, and all-around look fantastic. So what could possibly be wrong with wearing some sexy high heels? Let us enlighten you.

It’s much like wearing a corset or putting rings around your fingers, when you put consistent stress on the same parts of your body there are always going to be consequences. Before you strap on your stilettos, you may want to consider what they are doing to you.

Sprained ankles, dislocations, even broken bones

Those strappy, high-heeled sandals look fabulous, but what happens if you miss a step? The answer: sprained ankles, dislocations, and even broken bones. When you “fall” off your high heels and roll the side of your foot you are putting immense stress on the bones, tendons, and ligaments of your foot and ankle, which in some cases can lead to permanent damage. Ouch.

No wonder your back hurts

Our bodies can handle a lot, but when you are constantly putting strain on the same areas there is going to be a price to pay. High heels cause your centre of gravity to lean forwards which in turn misaligns the hips and causes an increased curve of the lumbar spine (hyper-lordosis). No wonder your back always hurts at the end of a long day or even the next day too. Additionally, you are putting strain on the inside of the knee, which is a common area where osteoarthritis often strikes women later in life.

Muscle fibres can shorten permanently

When you wear high heels, your calf muscles are held contracted for extended periods, which with regular wear can even cause muscle fibres in your calf muscles to shorten permanently. This can lead to problems if you partake in athletic activities, as the stress on the muscle caused by going from short (contracted) to long (stretched) can result in tears and strains.

What is the solution?

Whilst the best solution would be to stick to flats, understandably this just may not be something you are willing to do, particularly if you are attached to the contents of your shoe closet. As a woman and a chiropractor I completely understand this dilemma first hand. If you “have to” wear heels try to keep them under 4cm (1.5 inches), or at the very least keep the standing and walking to a minimum. You may also want to consider chiropractic to resolve any old tension or postural patterns that have occurred as a result of your lifetime of high-heeled body use.


Are you a high-heel lover and do you have aches and pains? Let us know what your body is telling you.

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