Ladies, let’s chat about your high heels.
In fact, numerous studies have shown that these (admittedly beautiful) shoes can take a negative toll on your ankles, spine, hips, knees – and not to mention your feet. And they do this damage all while shifting your posture and gait.
And, a recent study from Stanford University found that heels 3 1/2 inches or higher put so much stress on women’s knees, it could increase the risk for osteoarthritis.
But we know some of you are die-hard fans of high heels, so what’s a girl to do? Well, according to the American Osteopathic Association, regular stretching of the plantar fascia and calves will loosen hamstrings and work to alleviate back pain from your high heels. They recommend stretching before and after long periods in heels and sneaking in some foot work during breaks in your day.
Try this stretching routine during your next break:
- Lay a book with a one-inch spine on the floor.
- While standing, place the ball of your right foot on the book and rest your heel on the ground.
- Bend forward at the waist and try to grab the toes on the book. (If you need to bend your knees a little, that’s OK).
- Hold for 30 seconds.
- Switch feet. Repeat two to three times.
Gradually increase the height of the book by 1-inch increments per week to a maximum of 3 inches.