Many things can contribute to the development of back pain. While you already know that a lack of exercise and sitting too much during the day are culprits, have you considered the role that your shoes play in back health? The fact is that choosing to wear shoes that are not right for your feet create stress that goes far beyond the feet, ankles, and lower legs. Here are some things you should consider when choosing any type of footwear.
What Features Lead to Back Pain?
The features that are included in different sorts of footwear can either minimize the potential for back pain or increase the odds. By knowing which features are more likely to cause problems, you will find it easier to select shoes, boots, and other types of footwear that are better for you and your back.
One of the main culprits happens to be high heels. In particular, heels that are unusually high and create additional stress on the muscles long the backs of the legs will increase the possibility of back pain. Extremely high heels also minimize the ability of the arches to absorb the natural shock to the feet that occurs when people walk. While you don’t have to avoid high heels altogether, it pays to opt for heel designs that do place less stress on the legs.
You will also find that flats of most types increase stress. They also interfere with the ability of the arches to absorb the impact of walking. With flats, you would want to opt for a design that includes more arch support in order to minimize the negative impact.
So What Sort of Shoes Will Work?
Your best options are shoes and boots that fit snugly but comfortably and provide you with ample control of the motion of your feet and ankles. A prime example would be running shoes such as those offered by New Balance Shoes or Sorel Shoes. Many of these designs include support that works in tandem with the arches to ease tension on the feet and lower legs. At the same time, the comfortable fit will allow you to walk naturally and not restrict your range of motion. The result is feet that don’t seem to tire as quickly. You will also notice that your ache is less likely to ache.
When you need to wear something more formal, you can’t go wrong with picking up a pair or two at a Rockport shoe store. Many designs sport low heels that allow you to avoid the pitfalls that can arise with some designs for flats. You also don’t have to be concerned about the problems caused by unusually high heels. What you do get is support for the arches, cushioning for the feet overall, and even some extra support around the toes and the instep. All these elements help to reduce tension on the lower back.
Tips for Choosing the Right Shoes
There are some points to keep in mind when you set out to buy a new pair of shoes. One has to do with the shape of your arches. Most people have arches that are classed as flat, high, or normal. You can determine what type of arch you have by wetting the feet and stepping on a piece of absorbent paper. If the imprint has roughly half of the arch region filled in, then you have a normal arch. When the heel and the ball of your foot is imprinted, you have a high arch. A completely filled in outline of your foot means you have flat arches.
Knowing the type of arch you have will make it easier to focus in on shoe designs that provide the support and stability you need. The good news is that reputable brands like Sorel boots and shoes offer designs that will work fine with flat, high, or normal arches.
The range of motion is another factor you should consider. It matters with any type of shoe, but it’s especially important when you are looking for a high-quality running or walking shoe. When considering a given shoe, take look at the amount of cushioning found around the heel as well as the front area. The goal is to have enough padding to support the area around the toes while also helping the heel to hold up well to some of the shock that the arch is absorbing. While some may tell you this only matter with running shoes, it’s also important for walking shoes. The cushioning becomes even more of a factor when you work in an environment that calls for standing or walking on concrete for most of the day.
You Don’t Have to Sacrifice Looks for Support
The days when shoes tailored to provide more support had to be plain and less than fashionable are long gone. Today, many highly-recommended brands offer styles that are appropriate for all sorts of occasions and include the features needed to reduce the stress that leads to back pain. Like other less brands, these designs are also offered on sale from time to time. That means you can be on the lookout for a Geox shoes sale, find something suitable for work, for fun, and for exercise, and still pay a price that is kinder to your wallet.
Remember that your feet, legs, and back are intended to last for your entire life. How well that works out depends a great deal on what you do to protect your health. Just as you seek to eat a balanced diet, choose a mattress that helps to keep your spine properly aligned while you sleep, and exercise on a regular basis, you must consider the type of shoes you wear. Resist the temptation to purchase shoes that may look great but happen to be made using cheap materials and include little to no support in the design. The result will be fewer trips to the podiatrist, less leg and back pain at night, and in general feeling better for more years.