Re: Best shoes both dress & casual for severe back painp
Improper structural alignment contributes to problems with the spine. If someone has a problem like pronation, it throws alignment off from the feet all the way up, causing the ankles to lean in, which causes the leg to rotate, which leads to the pelvis tipping, which can cause the vertebrae to wear unevenly, to mention just one example.
About 12 years ago I went to a podiatrist for what I thought was a foot problem. He made a mold of my feet and I ended up with custom orthotics. Years later, sometime after my first lumbar fusion, and long after I had stopped wearing those first orthotics, it was pointed out to me that I over-pronated, and the therapist proceeded to point out how it had, in all likelihood, contributed to my spinal problems. My pelvis was rotated forward, I was carrying one hip higher than the other (which made some PTs think I had one leg that was shorter than the other), etc. Turns out what was going on with my body posture was not all that uncommon, that many people experience the same thing but aren't aware of it until back pain strikes.
The problem with orthotics is that you can find them at all price points...and I think some probably do as much harm as good if they aren't properly fitted.
Usually a good physical therapist can tell you about your structural alignment and whether your feet are causing part of the problem. Then if you need orthotics, I suggest you look for a person qualified and trained to make them... a pedorthist.
Of course, not everyone who has a problem with their back needs orthotics.
You have to be careful with a lot of the new shoes that change the bio-mechanics of walking, like MBT, some of the new fitness shoes, etc. as they can alter structural alignment and have an affect on posture as well. Particularly if there is any instability in the spine, it is difficult to force the body from one posture to another as shoes are changed during the course of a day.