STAPLETON: Don’t skimp on your shoes

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By Dr. James Stapleton

Whether you’re an athlete, a stay-at-home mom or an ironworker, don’t skimp on the quality of your footwear.

The most important factor with shoes is how they function, not how they look.

If athletics is your thing – whether it’s tennis, running, walking or basketball – giving your body a sturdy platform to work from is important. Shoes should fit properly, be appropriate to the sport – the construction of running shoes, for instance, makes them inappropriate for the lateral movement in tennis – and provide support. Walking shoes are designed to let the entire foot roll and push off.

The same rule about function applies at home and in the workplace. High heels are a common cause of injuries among women.

Among other things, they contribute to a shortening of the muscles in the calf that can cause heel pain. High platform shoes also pose danger to ankles.

Problems that start in the feet can often work their way up into other parts of the body, like the knees, hips and lower back. Chiropractic treatment can help correct misalignments and pain stemming from foot problems.

However, no matter how good a shoe is, if the biomechanical structure (the arches) of the feet are collapsed, then it is essential that a custom orthotic be put in the shoe to maintain alignment from the ground up.

They will make your shoes wear evenly too if they normally don’t, making shoes last a lot longer. Talk with a chiropractor about footwear appropriate to your lifestyle.


Back pain can vary

If your shoes aren’t doing their job, you will find that back pain can come in various forms. There is, alas, no one definition.

It can occur suddenly and sharply and go away as fast as it came. It can be a dull, persistent ache that is confined to one part of the back, or it might radiate into the shoulders, arms, lower back and legs.

The pain might also have neurological symptoms, such as numbness, tingling or weakness in an extremity.

Back pain also can bring on headaches. It’s estimated that some 80 percent of the adult population will encounter some form of back pain.

Back pain can be caused by the trauma of a fall, car accident or some other sudden shock to the body. Or it can come as a result of lifelong wear and tear on the spine and other parts of the body, whether it’s through repetitive motion or improper posture.

Stress can also bring on back pain.

Whatever the type and whatever the cause, doctors of chiropractic are trained in the diagnosis and treatment of back pain. Chiropractic has also been identified as an effective and cost-effective treatment for back pain. Talk with your chiropractor about ways to treat – and avoid – back pain.


Dr. James Stapleton is an owner of Shelby County Chiropractic. You may reach him at 633-1073 or visit www.shelbycountychiropractic.com.