High heel shoes

Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. Updated: January 16, 2017
Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer

You may have heard more than once about how bad it is to wear high heels. The effects of wearing these shoes on a daily basis are several, which is why you may want to find an alternative that also gives you that extra height.

As wedges have come into fashion lately, they may seem like the perfect substitute to wearing high heels but, are wedges better than high heels, or is it just a myth? At OneHowTo we are going to analyse this question so you can make a decision wisely.

You may also be interested in: How to Walk Comfortably in High Heels
  1. The impact of high heels on your health
  2. Difference between high heels and wedges
  3. What is the best footwear for your feet?
  4. When to choose heels over wedges

The impact of high heels on your health

Though they may not be as bad as they seem, there are several serious downsides to wearing high heels when it comes to health issues:

  • The narrow base and difference of height between the heel and the foot ball makes the lumbar spine hyper-extend itself, which can cause lower back pain and even more serious conditions such asForaminal stenosis.
  • The thoracic spine is also affected, as high heels cause your body to lean forward, which in turn causes the natural curve to of your spine, which helps reduce stress on the vertebrae, diminish. These may cause Spondyloisthesis.
  • The difference in height also causes the foot to move forward, which usually results in your feet crushing towards the tip. This not only causes pain but can also cause bunions or other foot problems.
  • Wearing high heels or stilettos daily may also contribute to moving your knees forward, as well as making your tendons thicken and your calve muscles to shorten.
Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer - The impact of high heels on your health

Difference between high heels and wedges

But are wedges better than high heels? Let's take a look at the difference between the two to know if there is actually a difference, both aesthetically and health-wise:

Aesthetic differences

High heels will make you look more elegant, as they stylize the figure more, highlighting the curve of your body and making your legs look thinner due to the fact that there is a bigger difference between the heel and foot ball.

High heels will look best on more formal and elegant dresses whilst wedges will suit more casual wear. Wedges are also great with jeans.

Health differences

Heels are better when walking on straight ground, whilst wedges are better for wet surfaces as they have more stability, making it harder for you to fall when wearing them. It is precisely thanks to the higher stability of wedges that these are better if you're going to walk for long.

The platform on wedges will give feet cushioning from the ground. Wedges usually have more padding than high heels too, making the strain on your feet when in contact with the ground less hard on them.

If the wedges support your ankle they will be better for your heels. They will also put less strain on calf muscles, will ease some of the weight and give you more balance than high heels.

If you have low back pain choose wedges instead of heels as they will give some relief, though they're not the best option. Keep on reading to find the type of shoe that will be best for your condition.

Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer - Difference between high heels and wedges

What is the best footwear for your feet?

Now you know the difference between both, it's time to determine which of the two is better. Though the height of both shoes will put extra strain on your body, if we had to choose, wedges are better for your health.

The main reason is that the higher the difference between your foot ball and your heel, the worse it is for your feet, adding up to 25% more body weight for this extremity to cope with. The ideal difference between the two should be of two to three inches maximum.

Wedges will always be better than heels and stilettos, though it will also depend on the amount of support your ankle has as well the difference between your heel and foot ball.

However, going totally flat is not good either as this does not distribute your body's weight and has no cushioning. The best shoes to wear are sports trainers, as they are specially designed to cover all of your foot's necessities.

When to choose heels over wedges

If you're in love with high heels and can't stand the though of not wearing them as often then take a look at the times when it's appropriate to choose heels over wedges:

  • If you're preparing yourself for a special night or date, high heels are appropriate as they stylize your figure more, give you a more sexy look. Just make sure you follow the advice given below.
  • If you're planning to walk a bit, choose high heels with a chunkier heel, you will walk better in them and will support your heel better. Take a look at these tips on how to walk comfortably in high heels for more information on the subject.
  • To avoid too much strain on your ankle, choose high heels with straps.
  • Always wear extra padding. There are many gel pads available in specialized shops and pharmacies nowadays.
  • As long as they don't hurt, go ahead! Your body is wise and will warn you in the form of pain when something isn't right.
Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer - When to choose heels over wedges

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Are Wedges Better than High Heels? - The Answer