High heels may make your feet feel cramped and achy, but did you know that you could actually be shrinking your muscle fibers?
It's true! On average, women who frequently walk around in high heels have calf muscle fibers that are 13% shorter than women who stick with flats.
In fact, if you wear high heels for too long it may even affect the way you walk when you finally kick them off. You may know the discomfort we're talking about.
The shortening of the calf muscles actually increases the angle at which your ankle bends when it is relaxed. It also thickens the Achilles tendon. This is why it is slightly more uncomfortable to walk flat-footed if you wear heels often.
So, are doctors saying to ditch the pumps completely? Most doctors are realistic enough to know that many women are willing to suffer a little for fashion. However, they do suggest that you do give your legs a break sometimes and do calf and foot stretches to counteract the high heel effect.
- High Heels 'Shrink Calf Muscle Fibres' (BBCNews)
- High Heels Can Shrink Muscle, Thicken Tendons (CNN)