Do you have heel pain, corns, ingrown toenails, hammer toes, plantar fasciitis, bunions, numbness, crossed toes?
Biologically, your body is designed to have and keep muscle tension balanced to allow the major joints to remain optimally functional which keeps the skeletal in proper healthy position to live a long active life without limitations.
If muscle tension and muscle length are modified over time, bones will be pulled or pushed in detrimental positions. Some joints will become too tight and restrict movement, some too loose not providing enough stability. Sometimes a combo of each: one side of the limb, joint or body is too tight and the other side too loose which makes the bones move "wonky" at angles and in ways they weren't meant to. This causes dysfunctional joint and structural wear and tear and pain. Arthritis and other maladies will develop and structural, muscular, pain and problems will surface.
Another way to seriously compromise your health is by making a habit of wearing shoes that will deform the feet. As you may have read on this website, a problem in one area of the body WILL create problems in the other areas of the body. Our body parts are inextricably interdependent on each other.
Here are 3 Main Problems with most SHOES today:
1. Heel elevation
When your shoe heel or "wedge" is higher than (2:1 ratio or more) the height of the forefoot of the shoe (under the ball of the foot), this extends the bones of the toes and toe joints and changes the angle of the ankle. The foot is now jacked up and can no longer distribute weight across the base of the whole foot. This puts the majority of weight in the bones of the forefoot (the metatarsals) and toes. This causes a myriad of painful problems for the foot and toes.
2. Toe Spring
The toes, forefoot and ankle are designed to bend and straighten to allow for freedom of movement and for open communication with the brain about the terrain. A rigid sole or inflexible platform prevents the foot's natural rolling motion which shortens the muscles (extensors) on top of the foot and over lengthens (flexor) muscles on foot bottom. Rigid shoes shut down the neurological communication feedback loop to the brain about the terrain.
Your shoes should allow you to bend it in half and to twist it in a wringing fashion. That is how much movement your foot should have and your shoes should allow. Feet that are in immoveable shoes will become immoveable too. A braced encased joint, joints or foot is a dying one.
Photo from Dr. Jonathan Cluett
3. Toe Box
Widest part of the foot is the toes or toes "box." Put your bare foot on top of a plain piece of paper. Draw around the outline of your bare foot on the paper. Now compare the width of your foot drawn on the paper with the width of the shoes you own. The outline of your actual foot shows how your shoes should be shaped.
Cramming your feet into too narrow or too short or or ill-fitting shoes is creating disturbances in the function of the muscles of your foot. Since our bodies function as an entire unit and not parts in isolation of one another, the ankles, knees, hips and pelvis and possibly shoulders can be negatively impacted as well--all because of the shoes you wear. Your body is designed to have a specific "gait". Shoes that impede your body's natural movement patterns will create muscle imbalances, tension and problems elsewhere in your body.
Although shoes can have a dramatic impact on your feet, ankles and gait, that is not all that may be creating pain in your feet, ankles and toes.
If your muscles which surround and operate joints and bones are not doing their jobs properly and completely, your limbs and joints won't move properly. If you do have muscle imbalances in your body this can wreak havoc on all other areas and joints and even organ systems over time. Proper shoes are critical but they won't necessarily fix a dysfunctional hip or knee or shoulder or spine.
Muscles move Bones. Muscles can move bones out of their proper position over time. Muscles can be reprogrammed to move bones BACK into their proper position with the Correct Stimulus. It doesn't matter who in your family had or has what you have. It doesn't matter your age. What matters is your muscles have forgotten some of their jobs over time due to injuries or habitual patterns of movement or non-movement.
Many of our clients have been very successful returning their bodies to the functional status they once had and getting themselves out of pain naturally without "state of the art" shoes, gizmos, surgery or drugs.
Corrective foot surgery, corrective shoes, orthotics, special running shoes that correct for supination or pronation are merely providing a crutch for your feet, ankles and body. Once the crutches are removed the underlying problem is still there. Don't sweep your pain and physical problems under the rug. Come in for an evaluation. We know you (like many others) will be astounded at what you will discover about your body's position, movement patterns and muscle imbalances. Call today: 772-559-1532
Catee Ingwersen is a Posture Alignment Specialist trained, certified by the Egoscue University in The Egoscue® Method. She empowers people every day to overcome pain and physical limitations unlike any other healing or medical intervention. Call 772-559-1532 or stop by our Clinic in Vero Beach, Florida to discuss this common sense approach and your individual needs.
Catee Ingwersen is an Egoscue certified Posture Alignment Specialist and Licensed Massage Therapist.