Heels and Osteoporosis

  • It should come as no surprise that heels are not the best thing for your feet. They’ve been linked to hallux valgus, musculoskeletal pain, and osteoarthritis1. But one important thing should really be considered, and that’s wearing heels while osteoporotic.
  • Osteoporosis is a condition is which bone becomes thin and porous loss, resulting in decreased strength and bone mass. Hip fractures are the most common complication of osteoporosis, with the femoral neck being the part of the hip complex that is the most susceptible to bone loss.
  • Now the goal for this population is to load the bones and stimulate bone growth, which is heavily achieved through exercise. With that in mind, here are some interesting consequences of wearing heels:
  1. While in heels, the pelvis shifts forward to compensate.
  2. This decreases the amount of weight you’re bearing with your hips.
  • This is important, because as I mentioned earlier, the goal for osteoporotic patients is to maximize the opportunity for bone growth. By wearing heels you’re limiting that natural opportunity that walking can provide for hours on end, while predisposing yourself for injury. Simply put, heels should be avoided if you have osteoporosis!


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Written by Dr. Brandon Buchla, DC, CSCS

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