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Shyheels

Dodgy Backs And High Heels

Question

As something of a novice in the world of high heels I have been quite surprised by one aspect of wearing them. I have read and heard much from medical types about how high heels - and they consider 'high' anything over an inch - are supposed to be bad for your back and feet, but I have found quite the opposite to be the case.

 

I have quite a dodgy back - have had surgery on it in fact - and often do work at a computer standing up to avoid sitting for long periods. I had wondered what the effects of wearing heels might be and had pretty much resigned myself to the idea that this might just be something I do on occasion. Much to my surprise however, I found that wearing heels actually made my back feel better. I had been troubled with back spasms - they come and go with me - but when I put on my boots, the pain and knoting eased up considerably. It was very noticeable. And very nice. Enough so that I would have worn heels long ago had I known of this effect, even if I hadn't fancied a pair of over-the-knee boots. (My heels by the way are 4", stiletto-ish - but not needle sharp - and on a size 46 foot the slope of the foot bed is not all that steep)

 

Now, admittedly I am but a study group of one, and perhaps my physiology or the engineering of my spine is just weird in some way, but has anyone else noticed this kind of thing?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Isn't it funny how reality is just the opposite of what the so called medical professionals say. Several here discovered the same thing, myself included. Heels have done wonders for my lower back.

 

Remember that being a professional only means they're getting paid for it, not that they're actually any good.

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I think you're right. So you've noticed this too - with heels and lower back pain? It really surprised me. I had a very badly ruptured disc a few years ago and while surgery helped immensely - very successful surgery it was - I still get the odd few days of spasms in the lower back. I was having just such a period when I started wearing heels and the difference was immediate. It ought to be better known, even if it mightn't work for everybody.

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I too understand the advantages of high heels and my back. I also have tight muscles - In other words, I have never been able to touch my toes. I'm lucky if I can get within 6 inches, but in heels, I seem a bit more flexible. Heels also work different muscles in my legs, and seem to help my knee's

 

I'm sure a Doctor would tell me I'm full of it.

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Oddly enough I have fairly limber back muscles. Even though now they are, for me, relatively tight I can still touch my toes easily, just not palm the floor and put my face on my shins like I used to. But they still have a way of seizing up for a few days every now and then. The heels made quite a difference, very quick relief. I am interested to see if they keep the spasms from recurring, or from recurring as often. As you say, no doubt a doctor would say we were full of it. On the other hand, when I had an extremely badly ruptured disc, and literally could not walk and had no feeling in my legs the first GP I saw diagnosed a 'sore back' and said it would either clear up or it wouldn't. So I am not sure I will worry too much about the medical profession's view on heels.

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I agree.  Wearing heels a few times every week has made my knees, ankles and legs (not to mention my back) less prone to tightening up.  I've always been pretty agile but wearing heels has without a doubt increased my range of motion.  I don't wear heels exclusively and tend to put upwards of 10 miles on a pair of "dress trainers" almost every work day but I think that helps to as my lower body is always being flexed and worked differently.  Medium support pantyhose also make a pretty big difference from my experience.

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Yes, I've also found that wearing heels can be helpful when I've had back pain (due to a sedentary job). I think it's mostly because wearing heels tends to encourage me to keep a better posture. Heelster makes a good point about heels working different muscles in your legs, so maybe it's the variety of wearing heels and flats that also helps. I have noticed a little knee-pain, quite possibly as a result from wearing high heels too much, so now I try to be quite sensible about changing into flats to walk long distances, and that seems to eliminate the knee-pain and prolong my enjoyment of wearing my heels.

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It could be the variety that helps, although I noticed an immediate difference, or almost immediate, the first time I put on heels. I wear mine only around the office and while that means I do not walk very much I do stand a lot since sitting tends to be troublesome for my back. Wearing heels obviously in some way alters my posture in a beneficial way. I suspect, too, that it is also building some core strength in the muscles in my lower back and hips because I can also feel them being gently worked, in a good way.

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Don't want to be a "me too" here, but me too. Although I've narrowed it down purely a posture issue. If I think about my posture and stand tall (head up, shoulders back) instead of my usual tendency to slouch forward, I have less back pain. Wearing heels seems to make me stand tall as soon as I put them on, but in flats I tend to forget and start to slouch then my back starts to hurt.

 

Jeez... getting old really sucks sometimes... 

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It's because heels alter your centre of gravity and can improve posture. Most back pain is caused by poor posture.

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It's because heels alter your centre of gravity and can improve posture. Most back pain is caused by poor posture.

Yes, that's it exactly!

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It's because heels alter your centre of gravity and can improve posture. Most back pain is caused by poor posture.

That has been a very pleasant surprise. I should have adopted heels long ago. In my case I did have a very badly ruptured disc (caused I think by too many long haul flights, endless hours of sitting in bad seats) and I have tried to be better with my posture, or thought I did, but the heels really made a surprising difference. I really can't get over it. I was working today in my heels and marvelling at the difference.

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I too have a bad disk. Heels seem them give me less back pain but perhaps here is why. Its the hamstrings and backs of the calf. With heels they are not being stretched and not pulling on parts of the back that could otherwise cause pain. I can tell mine have tightened up and when I wear flats the pulling hurts my back. BUT! With my wife it is the opposite. Any heel heel gives her back pain.

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I do know heels force one to arch their lower back more in order to find the most stable center of gravity with good posture.

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It's the arching that does it, I think. Lordosis - the inward curvature of the spine - was one of the neat new scrabble words I learned, and learned about, during my rehab after surgery. And you're right, the subtle realignment one makes while standing in heels seems to correct the curve (at least on my spine and, by the sounds of it, yours and others as well) and do a little gentle strengthening.

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I noticed long ago my walking posture is pretty poor in flats, I don't so the typical slouching that most do, but strangely I seem to lean forward about 10% or so from the waist, and eventually after long walks or standing in place for a long time, my back gets pretty sore.  I have tried for many years to correct that by pushing my shoulders back as I walk and trying to force myself to remain upright consciously and usually that does not last long. 

 

With heels on however, I am basically forced into the correct posture and stand much straighter and upright.  I have been able to go for very long walks (several miles or more) in heels without any of that familiar back pain.  My feet might not always feel that wonderful after that long of a walk, but the back feels great. 

 

So I am here to join in with a "me too" comment  :)

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So I guess I am not unique - clearly so by the number of people who have found similar relief to back pain by wearing heels. There is clearly something to this. We're not all just making it up.

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Just joined the site & adding my 'me too' bit.

 

A couple of years ago I had a really bad sciatica attack - never had it before & haven't got a scoobie what caused it. If any of you out there have ever suffered from this you'll know how painful it can be.

 

I was totally immobilised for three weeks flat on my back, every tiny little movement making me scream out in pain. There were no obvious signs of any improvement. My lady was trying everything to make me comfy & in a desperate attempt to immobilise my legs she laced me into my thigh length ballet boots. It hurt like hell while she did it but once it was done I actually managed to get some sleep without being woken up every time I shifted my legs. I can't say this would work for everyone but it worked for me. After wearing ballet boots for three days I was back on my feet, much to my, (and my doctor's) amazement.

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I also find high heels don't cause me problems with my bad back.  I suffer from osteoarthritis of the lower spine and have done for the last 25 years.

I first walked in high heels back in august 2009 to raise money for charity.

I walked 5 miles in a pair of 7.5'' platforms with a chunky sole.  if im honest my back felt better for walking in them.

the following year i walked 10 miles again for charity wearing a pair of 6 inch platforms but with steel tipped stiletto's.

again no problems and my back felt great.

My calf muscles also felt great on both walks. I'm sure walking in heels is good exercise and tones your muscles.  Well that's my theory anyhow.

In two weeks I am starting my latest charity event.  It involves wearing a pair of 4 inch platforms with chunky heel for the whole month of October.  This will surely tell me or not if I benefit wearing heels.  I will of course let you know my opinions at the end of the month.

At present i only wear heels for fundraising but if i thought i would benefit wearing them all the time i would consider purchasing a pair for daily use.  I would be looking at a pair of heels maybe an open toe ankle boot with flat sole or thin platform and chunky heel of around 3 to 4 inches.  Problem is finding a wide fitting high heel ankle boot in size UK10

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I can support what Krazykev and others have said on this topic of heels and bad backs. I myself suffer with the disease anklylosing spondylitis I will let you look it up, cut a long story short my back has now totally fused together can no longer move or bend, my ribcage has totally fused as well. Soon my neck will no longer move so I cannot move my head side to side and I will start to slowly start to bend over, I can feel that happening already I have to force my self to try and walk upright, but the good news is when I am wearing heels say 3 inch or above my back feels fine and my posture becomes more upright and I feel a lot better and I no longer feel that I am leaning forward all of the time, only time will tell, what I will be like in 5 years time nobody knows so I will stick with my heels for now.

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i am sure that since i have been wearing the mary janes in my avatar for the last seven days that i have found a cure for my aching back.  i have had them on my feet every day for between 10 and 14 hours except when im driving.  my back is pain free and im not using any painkillers of any sort.  i no longer walk like neanderthan man as i have a good posture.

normally i would only wear heels for fundraising but now i am seriously thinking about getting a pair of ankle boots with a block heel around 2.75 to 3 inch high.  i also want a flexible sole with no platform. 

i have seen a few styles that i like but finding them in a size UK10 with a wide fit is going to be hard.  i dont want to spend too much either.  i quiet like the open boots as well.  below is a picture showing what i would consider suitable for everyday wear.  does anyone know of a supplier of these boots in my size?  i dont want anything thats too girly looking.  i think i could pull off the open boot with no problems.  its surprising how many people have not noticed my mary janes.

i am so much loving my pain free back

post-3576-0-19821000-1412720825_thumb.jp


I have just been doing a bit of reading regarding DWW's medical condition.  This is the page I was reading

http://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/ankylosing-spondylitis/what-is-ankylosing-spondylitis.aspx

Although I have been diagnosed with spondylitus and osteoarthritus, I have in the past suffered from reactive arthritus which has lead to my current health problem regarding my back.

I seriously believe that I may also suffer from DWW's condition although I would need to be tested and re-assessed to confirm this.

I think I should book an appointment with the quack and explain my findings and the effect that high heels have on my back.

I have now asked the wife for a pair of heeled cowboy boots for my birthday.  I have found this one for £20 which has a 2.5 inch heel

post-3576-0-37724000-1412806146_thumb.jp

 

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well it is over 2 years since i done the month in heels challenge.  i wore the heels for the whole month with no pain whatsoever.  my back was transformed and i was a lot more agile.  here are the heels i wore for the monthmonth heels.JPG

for the last 2 or 3 months i have plucked up courage to wear heels on a daily basis.  i am doing very well and i have no pain at all.  here are some more pics of my daily wear heels.  the beige sandal boots are currently on order.  heel heights range from 2.75'' with no platform to 3.75'' with a platform

CHINESE OXFORDS 4.75'' HEEL.JPG

DSCF0451.JPG

heel mod.jpg

NEW LACE UP BOOT.jpg

NEW SANDALS.jpg

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