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How Your Shoes Impact Your Spine

By Sara Butler

You may wonder what on earth your shoe choice has to do with your spine, but it turns out that it's quite a lot! Not because your spine cares about your fashion choices but because every single part of your body is connected and what goes wrong one place can be felt in another. That's why, in order to ensure your spine stays healthy, you need to put some thought into your shoe choices. Here are a few of the ways your shoes can impact your spine.

Just Say No to Heels

Any heel above a half-inch on a shoe should probably only be saved for special, and rare, occasions. That's because high heel shoes contribute to back pain because of the way they push your body forward and throw off your body's center of balance. Combine that with placing more pressure on the ball of your foot in a way that forces you to alter your gait and you've got a recipe for back pain as well as shoulder and neck pain.

Don't Go Too Flat

While you don't want to go too high with a heel, you also don't want to go totally flat, either. Flat shoes such as ballet flats or flip-flops don't offer enough support in the arch or enough cushion. If shoes are backless, like a sandal or a flip-flop, then they tend to cause you to scrunch up your toes so they don't go flying off. This shortens your gait and tightens the muscles in the arch of your foot, which isn't a great combination if you're looking to avoid back pain.

Replace Often

You may get attached to your favorite pair of comfy shoes, but it's important to replace your shoes regularly. Over time the support offered by shoes lessens and that might have a big impact on how you walk -- which then impacts the wellness of your spine. Make sure to replace your shoes every three to six months, depending on how far you walk in them each day. The farther you walk, the sooner they'll need to be replaced.

Back pain can be a serious problem. If you're experiencing back pain and suspect your shoes may be to blame, then come to The Joint Chiropractic to talk to the chiropractors today. They can assist you to determine if your shoes are the issue and help you find the right support.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Austin, Tex.

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