Podiatrist’s recommended shoes for back pain

Back pain can be caused by a variety of factors, including not extending properly after a workout, defying nature’s plan by sitting for 10 hours a day in front of a computer, or…it could be your shoes.

“The alignment of all the joints in your lower body can be affected by improper shoe wear,” says podiatrist Cary Gannon, DPM. “Consider your feet to be the foundation of your home. If it isn’t stable enough to sustain [everything] above it, the house will collapse.” Meaning: If your ankles, knees, hips, and lower back aren’t stable, neither are your ankles, knees, hips, or lower back. This forces your muscles to work harder to keep you balanced and aligned, which can result in lower-back pain when those muscles tense and work abnormally.

According to Dr. Gannon, “if your pain is centred in your lower back or hips, it could be connected to incorrect shoe gear.” Dr. Gannon believes that “high heeled shoes in all forms are horrible for your feet and back.” If you wear high heels frequently, they’re likely adding to your pain.

When buying shoes for back pain, the first thing to consider is how well they fit. “In your shoes, you should have a full thumb’s width of space at the end of your toes.” Dr. Gannon adds that because your feet swell every day, shoes should fit loosely in the morning and snugly in the afternoon. Second, she recommends selecting shoes that have the proper shape for your feet—basically, steer clear of tapered toe shoes. Third, choose for shoes that are more solid and structured. She claims that “flexible shoes are the primary source of foot pain and instability.” HOKA shoes, as well as Nike Air Force One, Golden Goose, Birkenstock, Dromedaris, and Ecco, are highly recommended by her.

Here are six pairs of back-pain-relieving shoes recommended by podiatrists.

$150.00 Hoka One One Bondi 7

These incredibly cushiony shoes, especially around the ankles, are both supportive and pleasant. Regular and wide widths are available, as well as a choice of colours ranging from colourful and cheery to simple and neutral.

$110.00 Nike Air Force 1

The legendary low-top sneaker features a classic shape and is extremely comfortable. Its boxy design allows your feet to stretch as they swell over the day, which is an important design factor in back pain shoes.

$150.00 Ecco Soft 7 Mono 2.0

These white sneakers have a simple style that feels refined and professional, and they’ll match with almost anything in your wardrobe. Those are all good reasons to like them, but their hard soles and roomy toe box make them worth it if you’re looking to relieve back pain.

Kelsy Boot by Dromedaris — $196.00

Dromedaris is noted for its ultra-comfy, detachable footbeds that aid with stability and relieve pressure on the toes. You won’t have to worry about your toes getting squeezed in these boots because they have a low heel and a rounded forefoot that doesn’t taper. With this and a sturdy sole, you’ll have plenty of support with every stride.

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