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How Sagging Pants Could Lead to the Chiropractor

Sagging pants have long been a fashion statement for teens and twenty-somethings. Even when I was in high school more than ten years ago, sagging pants were all the rage - but so was complaining about the sore hips and back that came along with wearing them.

To wear the look correctly, you have to adjust your gait to swing your hips enough to keep your pants from falling all the way down. Now chiropractors and orthopedic specialists are warning that this constant need to walk in an unnatural manner could lead to health problems down the line.

Dr. Michael Gerdine, a St Louis chiropractor, says “these young men (and women) who are walking around with their pants sagging, you can rest assured there’s going to be an epidemic of hip replacements because of the way they have to alter their gait to swing those legs to keep those pants up, they are wearing the hip joints out.” Many “saggers” who were interviewed by ABC News in St. Louis said they felt back problems and pain in their legs and feet. Some had even stopped “sagging” because of the pain. Former sagger Michael Bennet explained that he’d suffered enough pain in his legs and feet, to pull up his pants and start wearing a belt. The pain disappeared - and Bennett says his mom was happy, too.

Dr. Robert Jamieson, a hip and knee specialist, also sees the potential for trouble. “In the short term, what you can do is throw of your mechanics enough that you definitely could have more tendinitis and low back problems," he explained. Still, he thinks most “saggers” will be spared from long term problems because sagging is a trend that most people eventually grow out of, returning to a normal way of walking. He says he doesn’t expect to treat many former “saggers” in his practice as they age.

My high school boyfriend briefly tried the sagging trend, and I remember him complaining that it hurt his back and legs. Still, he only gave it up when he momentarily forgot he was “sagging” and bent down to drink from a water fountain - and his pants fell down in front of dozens of other students at our high school. The next day he was back to wearing pants with a belt.

Hopefully nothing as embarrassing will happen to this generation’s “saggers” - and hopefully they can avoid a future trip to the chiropractor, as well. 

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