Many different factors can contribute to back pain. It can be caused by something as simple as sitting or aging or just wearing the wrong shoes. If your back pain tends to occur most often when you are standing, walking, or running, then the way that you walk and your shoes may be the problem.
If you wear shoes that don’t provide you with adequate support – particularly if you also have an abnormal walking gait – then your body has to work harder than normal to stabilize your frame. As a result, extra pressure is placed on your lower back, hips, and knees.
You can determine whether your shoes and gait are contributing to your back pain. First, you need to examine your posture. Read on to learn how you can relieve your back pain with new shoes.
Check Your Posture
Find an old pair of shoes that you often wear for walking. Turn them over, and look to see where the most tread has been worn off. This will allow you to see how you pronate, which means how your foot hits the ground when you are walking or running.
If your shoe shows that the tread has primarily been worn off on the outside of the foot, this is called underpronation, or supination. This means that when you walk, your foot rolls out and you place the majority of your body weight on the outside of your foot. Underpronating can cause pain in the lower back, hips, knees, and ankles.
If your shoe shows that the tread has primarily been worn off on the inside of the foot, this is called overpronation. This means that when you walk, your foot rolls inward and you place the majority of your body weight on the inside of your foot. Overpronating can cause the foot’s arches to fall, which can result in lower back and joint pain.
If your shoe shows that the tread has been worn fairly evenly, this is called neutral pronation. This means that your gait is well balanced.
Correct Your Posture
If you find that you overpronate or underpronate, you can work on correcting your posture. It can be difficult to change this habit, but try to focus on your posture when you walk. Keep your shoulders back, and your back slightly arched.
You can also visit a specialised shoe store for help with correcting your pronation. The experts there can recommend shoes that are best for your type of pronation and that will help to support your foot correctly. They may also recommend that you try shoe inserts or customised arch supports to help adjust your pronation and provide you with a more balanced gait.
Shop for Shoes
Go shopping for shoes at the end of the day, when your feet are likely to be most swollen. Bring the socks that you would normally wear with the shoes you will be buying, as well as any shoe inserts or orthotic devices that you will be using. Have your feet measured by the employees of the shoe shop.
Feet do change in size as we age and gain or lose weight, so your feet should be professionally measured at least once a year. Choose shoes that are appropriate for the activity that you will use them for. For example, choose running shoes for running and walking shoes for walking.
If you need help finding a new pair of shoes to relieve your back pain, visit Foot Solutions in your area. Our professionals will measure your feet, assess your gait, and help you find the perfect shoes for your specific requirements.