Since the peak of the high heel trend back in 2008–when several catwalk models took a tumble while wearing higher-than-ever shoes–killer stilettos and super-sized platforms have become de rigeur. Throw in the fact that the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons reports women’s visits to specialists for foot and toe complaints shot up 75 percent between 2005 and 2009, and it really makes you wonder why we ladies sacrifice comfort–and safety–for style. Try these facts on for size.
-Small heels are good for you: Most people over-pronate, which means their arches and ankles collapse inward on each step. Slipping on a 1- to 2-inch heel turns your ankles slightly outward, counteracting the collapse. It also takes the strain off tight calf muscles, relieving pain and decreasing your odds of developing plantar faciitis.
-You don’t need more shock absorption: Pronation is your foot’s natural way to absorb the shock of hitting the ground. The foot essentially unlocks itself, softening to absorb the blow, then rolls outward, becoming rigid again to absorb your weight as you lift your other foot and begin to propel forward.
-Every inch of heel height can put another 25 percent of your body weight onto your forefoot.
-That burning sensation under the ball of your foot is actual heat: When your feet slip forward in high heels, the base of your second toe pushes into the sole of your shoe, which, according to studies, creates a literal increase in temperature.
-Running in heels may lead to knee arthritis.