Can bad posture affect your feet?



What are the two important functions of the foot?


The foot and ankle provide various important functions which include:


  • Supporting body weight
  • Providing balance
  • Absorbs impact
  • Interaction between the ground to the body
  • Compensation for strain
  • Substituting hand function in some individuals


Bad posture can potentially cause foot and ankle problems by placing stress on different parts of the feet and causing circulation issues. The feet and ankles may swell due to poor blood flow. The bones and ligaments will struggle to handle the shifting weight load, potentially causing pain and other issues. Conditions of the foot and foot structure may also cause poor posture such as flat feet, or low arches, encouraging the foot to roll inwards towards the arch and collapse against the ground. This places stress on the foot, ankle, and, subsequently, the hips and lower back.


Flat feet can be painful, but they can also impact your overall posture, leading to injury and pain, which affects far more than your feet. Ideally, we should stand with our feet parallel as much as we can, and line our kneecaps up to point over the centre of our ankles. When the feet and legs turn out, the back of the pelvis and the low back narrow. Your toes should point forward (every toe from the big toe to the pinky toe should be facing forward — not turned outward or inward). Picture having headlights on your hipbones, kneecaps, and big toes. Make sure all of your headlights are facing straight ahead.



What parts of the foot affect the body?

In addition to bones and joints, your feet are also full of muscles, tendons, and ligaments that connect to the rest of your body. Any pain in your feet can also commonly travel into your legs. The lower legs are most commonly affected since that is where the soft tissue is most closely connected.



How does bad footwear affect posture?

Your shoes can have a noticeable impact on your posture and improper footwear can cause back pain and worsen posture issues over long periods of time. If your shoes are not supporting the curve of your feet properly, the alignment of your spine can be impacted as a result, which can lead to both back and foot pain. 


10 exercises to improve your posture:

  • Child's pose
  • Seated twist
  • Cat cow
  • Cow face  
  • Cow face with Eagle arms
  • Cobra
  • High plank
  • Side plank
  • Downward-facing dog
  • Tiger pose





Yoga poses: