Shoes are like books, and every pair tells a story. Your healthcare professional can “read” yours to learn a lot about your lifestyle and health, specifically your risk for postural conditions. Your feet are your body’s foundation, so shoes that are worn out, poorly constructed, or don’t fit properly can shift the entire body “off-kilter,” and cause problems in your legs, knees, hips, pelvis, and spine.
Here are a couple of clues that your postural problems need to be addressed:
- Heel wear – As the heel of your shoe wears, it should wear evenly on both sides of the shoe. If one side of the heel is worn more than the other side, this indicates a possible body imbalance. Now examine two shoes of a pair together, side by side. Is one shoe more worn than its mate? This screams “imbalance” too, which can translate into pain and instability up through the lower extremities and into the spine.
- Sole wear – Look at the soles of your shoes. From top to bottom, does one sole show wear that is creeping closer to the heel? This is another indication of bodily imbalance, as your foot on this side is likely pronating (rolling in) more than the other. (Pronation is a normal part of the walking cycle, but excessive pronation can have serious health consequences. We’ll talk more about pronation in a future post).
Check out that uneven heel wear — yikes!
What you put on your feet is not just about your feet. Proper fitting, supportive shoes are important for your body’s overall wellness, and functional orthotics in every pair go the extra mile in protecting and maintaining your health. Learn about the Foot Levelers’ functional orthotics, plus our Shoethotics and Sandalthotics.