Midlands Spine Center

How to Find the Best Footwear for Your Health

Cover Image for How to Find the Best Footwear for Your Health
McKenzie Hames
Authored by
McKenzie Hames
April 4, 2022

Your body was made to move. Motion keeps your bones, muscles, and joints active & healthy – including your spine! While there are a lot of great techniques your chiropractor can assist you with to make motion easier, especially as you age, one of the biggest choices you can make regarding your ability to move is one that applies to all people of all ages, and that choice is footwear.

When aiming to take the best care of your overall health, it’s essential that you wear the right footwear. But how do you make the right selection for your individual needs with all of the choices available? Many people choose fashion over function, wearing shoes that will inevitably cause pain in their feet and back. Sometimes compromises have to be made! But here are a few tips from Midlands Spine Center on how to find the best footwear for your health.

How Do Shoes Affect Your Spine?

Everything in your body is governed by your central nervous system. Your central nervous system must be able to interact freely with the rest of your body in order for it to function at its best. If you have joint constraints in your spine, this might affect how well you communicate as well as your general health. This is why maintaining your spine’s health and fitness is so important.

Although there are numerous causes for back discomfort, such as your posture, one that is commonly underestimated is footwear selection. It’s not always true that poorly fitting shoes or high heels are the only contributors to one’s back pain. Shoes that fit well but are too soft and unsupportive,  or too hard and offer little shock absorption, can also cause problems. When it comes to shoes and the health of your spine, you need to pick a shoe that fits properly, absorbs shock, and has the ideal heel height to support your spine. Want to know one of the best ways to protect the health of your spine? Find the best footwear choice for your health & your lifestyle.

What type of shoes do you need?

A shoe that is appropriate for one person may not be appropriate for another. People are unique, and their feet are no exception. The first step in selecting the sort of shoe you require is to identify which of the following foot types you have:

  • Flat Feet: Feet that have a low arch are referred to as “flat feet”, also known as “overpronation”. The reason for the term overpronation is that when walking the foot rolls too far inward. If the size of the footprint you leave behind looks as large as the whole sole of your foot, you may have flat feet. If you have flat fleet, you need shoes that will assist in controlling the motion of your foot with strong, supportive midsoles and extra stability.
  • High Arch Feet: Typically, the feet of those with high arches do not absorb shock as well as other types of feet. If your footprint shows no band, or a narrow band, connecting the forefoot to the heel, you likely have feet with high arches. The best types of shoewear for those with high arches are well-cushioned shoes capable of strong shock absorption, with exceptional flexibility. Shock absorption and flexibility will allow those with high arch feet to move fluidly through each step.
  • Balanced Feet: Some people are lucky enough to have well-balanced feet. When we say someone has a ‘well-balanced foot’, we mean that the arch in their foot is normal and that when they walk, their foot lands on the outside of the heel and rolls slightly inward in order to assist with shock absorption.

How do I find the best footwear for my health?

Talking with a chiropractor is the first step toward ensuring that your feet are well taken care of. They may assist you in determining how your feet touch the ground and the problems that may arise as a result of not matching your foot type to the appropriate shoe. Chiropractors such as Dr. Jason Mubarak at Midlands Spine Center may also be able to assist you in finding the right orthotics for your unique case, which can do wonders for your long-term spinal health.

Another key step in finding the correct shoe is to have your feet measured at a specialty shoe store. They can help determine what size shoe will work best for you and lead you to shoes that address concerns you may have about the way your foot strikes the ground.

Also, for more than just walking around the pool, avoid wearing high heels, dress shoes without sufficient support, or flip-flops. These shoes won’t be able to adequately support your foot or body, which might lead to serious complications if worn too frequently.

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