Friday, January 24, 2014

High heel miscarriage: Is it avoidable?

Madonna bruised a bone falling off her pumps, Emma Thompson walked onstage at the Golden Globes without footwear for fear of pain, and Camila Alves de-heeled herself at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, lest she be the latest star to fall from grace. Falling over high heels is certainly a cause for concern at Victorian hospitals in Australia according to a recent survey where 240 people (236 women and four men) were treated for injuries resulting from stumbling or falling from high heels in a recent survey. The study covered the period between 2006 and 2010, and the researchers believe this is likely to underestimate the actual number of high-heel injuries seen in public hospitals, because some cases would simply have been recorded as falls not linked to high heels. Sunday mornings are the busiest time for the walking wounded to appear at emergency departments. Reported injuries due to high heel miscarriage* include sprains to wrists, hands, ankles and knees and fractures to the legs and feet, as well minor lacerations to the face. In the survey 45 people were stepped on and 16 people were assaulted with a high heel. These were separate from the study cohort of 240 injured people. The average age of the group was between 20 to 24 years. Six children aged up to nine were injured wearing high heels during a dance class or performance. November, December, and January are the summer months in Australia and the most likely time to take a tumble with holidays and race days the busiest time for A&E.

(sic. The study failed to include the number of people inebriated at the time of injury ).

Meghan Cleary is a shoe expert and author of “How to be Truly Unstoppable in Your Stilettos” believes success on high heels is all about planning. Her advice is never wear dangerous daggers for more than an hour at a time. Other experts recommend only wearing shoes that fit comfortably and give you confidence to walk. Some even suggest exercing the abdominal muscles and intrinsic foot muscles to give perfect deportment whn walking in high heels. Balance seems to be key feature and in a recent published study from Brigham Young University researchers found activities that force people to think about balance has the potential to influence decision-making. Researchers designed a series of experiments to test how a heightened awareness of balance affects people's actions. In one test, study participants were asked to tilt backwards in their chairs while shopping a selection of TVs online. When balancing, people were more likely to select a middle-of-the-road 42-inch TV for $450, rather than a 32-inch for $300 or a splashier 50-inch for $650. Other everyday activities can trigger the balance sensation and reaction, too, the study authors wrote. For example, shopping in hugh heels , or after navigating an icy winter sidewalk, or after attending a yoga class would likely have the same result.

* The platform shoe, popular with the women from Venice and Florence in the 17th century had laws passed to govern the height of the platform because of the number of accidents reported by ladies falling over. It is thought the term ‘miscarriage’ initially referd to the fall from the chopines and not specifically to the gynecological complications.

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