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Insights Magazine
Business Insights for Women
PNC INSIGHTS Magazine Spring/Summer 2014 Issue
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While heels remain de rigeur in many businesswomen's closets, choosing the right stylish shoes can prevent a lifetime of pain.

Those killer heels may be doing a number on your whole body. While high heels (which fashion insiders consider anything over 1.5 inches) may flatter the legs, they can also lead to decidedly unflattering foot conditions. Tightly crushed hammertoes, protruding bunions, bony heel growths called Haglund's deformity and even numb toes caused by a nerve condition called Morton's neuroma are just some of the dreadful possibilities.

Prolonged wearing of high heels can also permanently shorten the Achilles tendon and spur tendonitis. Sciatica, a nerve condition that causes pain and numbness all the way down the leg, can also result from wearing too high of a heel too often. How? Because high heels shift your center of gravity, they can throw your spine out of alignment.

Don't toss those slingbacks just yet, though. Following a few common-sense rules should help you avoid serious health issues.

  • For day-to-day wear, experts advise choosing thick rather than spike heels no higher than 1.5 inches.
  • It's OK to go higher once in a while, but limit the more vertiginous heights to once or twice a week. More frequent use is apt to put your Achilles tendon at risk.
  • In addition, make sure your shoes fit snugly. Foot damage occurs when a loose shoe requires your toes to do the work of keeping your foot from sliding forward.
  • And wearing insoles may help soften the impact of heels on your knees.


The article you read was prepared for general information purposes by McMurry. These articles are for general information purposes only and are not intended to provide legal, tax, accounting or financial advice. PNC urges its customers to do independent research and to consult with financial and legal professionals before making any financial decisions.These articles may provide reference to Internet sites as a convenience to our readers. While PNC endeavors to provide resources that are reputable and safe, we cannot be held responsible for the information, products, or services obtained on such sites and will not be liable for any damages arising from your access to such sites. The content, accuracy, opinions expressed, and links provided by these resources are not investigated, verified, monitored or endorsed by PNC.