Thursday, January 02, 2020

If the shoe fits.... Wear it?

Everyone knows choosing the right shoes can be a hard decision. Common sense would indicate choosing shoes with wide based heels would appear more beneficial than those with a narrow based heel (similar to stiletto heels). However, research supports women are making the wrong choice and wide heeled shoes are more likely to do harm than good.

Walking in wide-heeled shoes increases the pressure on the inside of the knee by 26%, while stilettos increase the pressure by 22%. Experts interpreted this data as heels probably can contribute to inconvenient knee pain (i.e. niggling soreness) but by themselves are the unlikely cause of knee osteoarthrosis.

Foot health professionals have for decades associated shoes with sore feet but in in the absence of independent scientific evidence it is unlikely these are the primary cause of serious foot pathologies. Ill fitting or inappropriate footgear does contributed only an exciting factor but not the primary cause.

Common sense would lead us to realise shoes need to be able to fit and protect the foot. Fashion on the other hand has a propensity to exaggerate and often styles reflect an insouciance to convention. In other words, some styles are deliberate in their attempt to display the impossible. Why is this so?

Well according to fashion experts it has much to do with one upmanship. No matter how ludicrous it appears to the uninitiated, the cool costume exudes elitism. Take for example kids who wear very expensive trainers designed to protect the foot during periods of intense activity. Many will sport these with the laces deliberately left undone. Yes, it annoys the hell out of parents and teachers but also clearly sends a message shard by youth. "It will never happen to me.!" We all did it, or if not outwardly then we consciously suppressed the desire to do it. But through length of days comes understanding.

I well recall when my own children followed the fashion dictates of the eighties and Bros. The blonde duo from London who spent a fortune on their credit cards before disappearing into rock star oblivion. The boys sported Beck's beer tops in their trainer laces. Needless to say I have to change my favourite tipple to accommodate the need for suitable beer tops to adorn my childrens' (and their friends) shoes.

Not new of course and fifties kids would be only too familiar with the penny loafer, where a lucky penny was included in the shoe design.

My own favourites were the boots Joe Cocker wore on stage at Woodstock.

Reviewed 2/01/20

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