We hope everyone is doing well. It is so nice that things are opening up again gradually while the weather is so beautiful. This month’s newsletter discusses the favorite summer shoe-the flip flop and the issues these shoes can cause with prolonged wear. It also talks about the benefits of a favorite way to cool down in the summer- swimming!

Flip Flop Folly

A favourite in the summertime, these breezy shoes pose many risks to your short term and long term health when worm more than occasionally, or for longer walks.  Veggin out on the beach in your favourite flip flops is one thing-going for a trail walk is another.  Walking with flip flops for a prolonged period of time allows our foot to collapse affecting our gait and posture, which can lead to a tremendous amout of stress not only to the foot but to the rest of the body as well.  A domino effect starting in the foot, ankle, and up throught he back and hips.

Our feet naturally pronate while walking.  While wearing flip flops, our feet pronate for longer periods whilc alters the biomechanics and pressure distribution on the foot.  This can exacerbate underlying foot issues such as bunions, and hammertoes.  It can also creat new problems such as arch/heel pain shin splints, and achillies tendonitis.

The arch of your foot is supported by the pantar fascia, a bowstring-like ligament that connect your heel bone to your toes.  Because flip flops offer not arch support, the plantar fascia is forced to overstretch which can cause tiny tears. This can lead to pain, swelling and increased weakness of the plantar fascia and intrinsic muscles of the feet over time.  Feet are the foundation of our body; problems wiht the foundation can lead to problems in other areas.  If you are experiencing pain, we can help with stretches and exercises.

The fact that these shoes are treadless makes the possibilty of injury much greater since they offer no protection agains slips, twisting an akle or worse; flipping off your foot and slipping under the gas pedal causing a car accident!

Now that we know the reason not to wear flip flops for prolonged periods-what is the alternative? The solution? Wear summper slide shoes (for example Birkenstocks) as they are just as conveniet. You can slpi them on and off, they keep your feet cool, but they are far more comfortable and supportive.  A summer slide with an arch incorporated into its design of a wedge that is 3/4 inch as opposed to a flat will help support the foot properly.  The over strap of a summer slide can help the shoe stay on the foot instead of the need to grip the flip flops with our toes so that they stay on.

Swimming: Not just a way to cool off in the summer!

Swimming is one of the most beneficial exercises that thier is for anyone, at any age.  Here are just a few reasons to take up this activity:

  1. Swimming is gentle exercies: An activity that is gentle to the joints while providing a good workout since the resistance of the water is much stronger than air resistance.  Swimming is a perfoect choice for people that have existing joint injuries.  It is a safe way to keep your body in shape.
  2. Swimming is also beneficial for cardiovascular health and circulation.  It provides a full body workout challenging the heart to pump blood to all the muscles.  Endurance and interval training can increase the cardiovascular effects of swimming.
  3. Swimming improves lung function over time.  The breathing pattern required during swimming of holding one’s breath between strokes stimulates the lungs to work harder.  The humid air inhaled can also be beneficial to the lungs and decrease asthma symptoms however, this does not apply in a chlorinated pool.
  4. Swimming promotes muscle strength.  Swimming involves the entire body; strengthening and toning the arms, shoudlers, back, abdominal muscles and legs.  Doing a variety of strokes can increase the number of muscles used.
  5. Swimming has psychological and mental health benefits. Much like other physical activities, swimming promotes a heightened sense of well-being, builds confidence and self esteem, and helps develop skills like goal-setting and time management.  It can be a great stress relief to many people by providing an inner peace while out in the water.

Dont’ forget to follow our practitioners on social media:

Dr. Frederick is on Facebook @Dr.Frederick Chiropractic, and instagram @Dr_Frederick_Chiropractic.

Lori is on Facebook @Lorraine Tangen RMT, and instagram @LTangenRMT