We often neglect our feet, and instead of cloaking them with comfort, we tend to choose impractical footwear as we rush out the door to get to work and run errands. Even when we are mindful of what we’re wearing, we tend to choose attractive shoes versus the styles that are designed to protect our spine. Here are a few simple footwear tips to help you protect your back (and still look good in your favorite outfits).
#1: Avoid high heels and flip-flops
Now, you don’t have to take these out of your closet completely. However, you do need to be mindful how often you wear these styles of shoes and for how long. When it comes to high heels, the taller the heel, the shorter amount of time you should wear them. If you prefer to wear heels when you work, focus on finding lower heels that have the right orthopedic attributes for your feet.
When it comes to flip-flops, you can wear them when the event calls for it such as going to the beach or hanging by the pool. However, it’s recommended that you invest in a style that offers comfort and support. Thin sandals are so easy to slip on and off that we forget that they offer no support until we start to feel pain in our back.
#2: Know when to discard old shoes
It can be tough giving up a favorite pair of shoes, but for the health of your back, it becomes necessary. If the sole becomes worn or you start to notice the shoe separating at certain points, then it’s time to invest in a new pair. If you aren’t sure when you should be replacing your old shoes, talk to your chiropractor about how many miles your particular footwear is designed to withstand.
#3: Be mindful when wearing vintage shoes
Whether you find some great deals at thrift stores, or you have hand-me-down shoes that you like, make sure that the fit is right for you. Because our feet has their own unique imprint, a used pair may not give your particular shape the best support.
#4: Get a chiropractor’s opinion
If you’ve changed your style of shoes, but still have back pain, then it’s time to get your chiropractor involved. They’ll guide you in the best exercises and the proper shoes that you should perform the movements in. Having expert knowledge will give you more confidence when making decisions about protecting your back, and it will save you time and money at the shoe store and the doctor’s office in the long run.
#5: Have your feet properly measured
Over time, your shoe size can shift. And if you’re still squeezing into the same size you wore over a decade ago, then it might be time to have your feet measured. To protect your spine and make the most of your footwear, one of the first steps is to ensure that you’re wearing the right shoes that offer protect, and in the right size for your feet.