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High Priced Heels?

Posted Nov 29 2008 12:27pm
We have a tradition here in D.C. on the night before Halloween. Its not as PG-rated as decorating your apartment with cobwebs, dancing to Thriller in the dark, making ghosts out of tissue paper, or carving jack-o-lanterns into your pumpkin. We have the High Heel Drag Race!

That's right, 50 Halloween costumed drag queens race in high heels down the 17th street strip. I have never seen this in the four years I have lived in DC, so I thought it was time to check it out. Needless to say, it was hilarious and fun time. Luckily no one broke a nail, lost their wig, or smeared their mascara in the heat of competition.

This event got me thinking about how wearing a high heel would affect the wearer.

What high heels does to the foot and ankle complex:

  • Calf muscle is shortened ( contracted) as toe is always in a pointed position

  • No arch support for the foot

  • Decreased ability to absorb ground reaction forces

This all may result in:

  • Increased stress on the ankle, knee, hip, and up through entire kinetic chain

  • Muscle imbalances from a tight and overactive calf complex

  • Foot will look to flatten out (inversion) or arch up (eversion)

  • Increased rotational forces on the knee joint

  • Decrease in power output for jumping, running, jumping, and changing directions

  • Injuries to the foot, ankle, knee, and/or hip

Minimize Your Risk:

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not telling you to throw away your favorite pair of stilettos and sport something more orthopedic . I appreciate all pain and discomfort ladies (and after tonight, some gents) have to go through to wear heels. I think it is well worth it and looks great, but know the consequences of your fashion.

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