High Heels Can Mess Up Your Calf Muscles And Tendons

Do high heels hurt your feet and legs — even after you’ve taken them off? A new study says that women who wore high heels daily for years had “shorter calf muscles and stiffer, thicker Achilles tendons than women who favored flats,” says NPR’s health blog. Ew!

Study author and physiologist Marco Narici compares the effect to muscle atrophy that strikes people confined to their beds for a long time. Bed rest keeps muscles in a fixed position, causing some muscle fibers to become shorter.

Women who wear high heels a lot do much the same thing by keeping their heels in an elevated position day after day, Narici says.

Personally, I’ve always been a sneakers and jeans sort of girl, but I can imagine this news is somewhat heartbreaking for those of you who really like heels.

A biomechanics expert interviewed for the story says heels are just not worth it:

“It’s not worth it,” she says. “We’re living long enough that all of us are going to get arthritis and anything you can do to minimize the severity is a good thing.”

Why High Heels Hurt Even After You Take Them Off [NPR]