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The Good Posture Blog

Friday, July 27, 2012

Is Mary's Arm Pain Caused by Bad Shoes?

I have a patient I want to mention  - let's call her Mary. I've been treating Mary for over a year with very good results. About 3 months ago she started having pain in the front of her left shoulder that responded just fine to treatment but then got worse again. This happened every time she got treated.

I know from the way that her pain responds, that I am fixing what is creating the twist in her shoulder that makes her hurt. Then she goes out and does something that's bad for her body (sitting, standing, or sleeping) that re-sets the twist again. I have a gut feeling that her shoes are making her whole body worse.

Take a look at these sandals. She has been wearing these sandals since the weather got better a few months ago and I suspect they are what is causing her body to reset itself all the time. She says she doesn't believe that such a small support under the arch could cause her arm pain.

Finally, Mary went shopping and came in with 3 pairs of sandals, all of which should work great for her.  She is going away for a few weeks and not taking her bad sandals with her (I hope). This should be a good test.

Stayed tuned, I will let you know what happens.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Some Popular Sandals Can Be Bad For Your Posture

You can’t imagine how bad of a rap I have with my female patients. I am forever critiquing their shoes – and believe me, this is like walking through the jungle, never knowing exactly where the danger is.

Unfortunately, many of the shoes my women patients buy, they get unaccountably attached to. Getting them to let go is like prying water off of the sidewalk. I know going in that my chances aren’t real good.
This picture is from sandals a patient wore the other day. I knew we were about to have one of those moments. The problem is that these shoes are very good in many ways (they always point this out to me). The only bad thing is bad enough to cancel out all the other good things that these shoes do – and this isn’t fixable on these shoes.

Take a guess now if you want to…

Okay, here it is. It’s in the arch area. Overall, these shoes are really flat in the arch. But, look near the sides, were the seam is sewn about ½ in from the edges all around the base. This area is a few millimeters higher than the rest of the shoe. This was enough to distort her posture. After wearing these for a several days in a row they caused her enough pain to need getting treated by me.

She stopped wearing them immediately. Her willingness to keep her body in good shape made my day.
(Alternate ending: truth) She promised she wouldn’t wear them more than a day at a time. I’ve mellowed; this is enough for me.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Some Flip Flops Assist Your Body Posture And Others Ruin It

I was working on a patient today and looked over at her flip flops. I told her that I thought they looked really good for her posture. She said they are Havaianas, from Brazil. I didn't realize it but Brazil is where Havaianas are made.

The funny thing is that I called my wife and my daughter-in-law over to admire the Havaianas and they were both wearing Havaianas also! I know Havaianas cost more but my wife usually gets about 2 years of wear from a pair.

I have been recommending Havaianas to my patients for years. Most flip flops break down in a few weeks. In fact, last week, a patient of mine was wearing a pair of flips flops she had for 1 day - they were already wasted. The rubber had molded to her feet and they were disturbing her posture.

Even though the Havaianas are slightly raised in the heel area than the toe area, we often put in heel chips to give them a little more heel height.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Airplane Seats; End The Pain And Enjoy Your Flight

Some of the worst seats people have complained to me about are airline seats. The sitting mechanics they use are terrible for your body and cause a lot of discomfort.

Unfortunately there are too many things wrong with airplane seats to fix everything but, there are a few tips I can give you that should find you feeling much better when you reach your destination.

The first thing to do is to get your hips up so, you need to sit on something. Try a seat cushion first but if it’s too high in back then try a blanket or whatever you have with you. Next, you need to support your lower or mid back.

Take a look at the airplane seat in this picture. Notice in the mid back area how the seat is banana shaped? Sometimes the arched part is down into the lower back area. Where ever it is you need to support your back there it will end being as hunched over as the seat is.

Take a thin magazine from in front of you and fold it in half. Next place it behind your back and move it up and down a bit until you feel it give you the best support.

I have flown across the country this way and felt refreshed and awake, without the usual aches, when I arrived. What a pleasant surprise!