Can Shoes Help Herniated Disc?

Can shoes help herniated disc?”Wearing appropriate shoes with proper arch support and cushioning can help alleviate the discomfort of a herniated disc.”Can Shoes Help Herniated Disc

Herniated discs can be incredibly painful and debilitating.

This condition occurs when the soft, gel-like center of a spinal disc pushes through a tear in the tougher exterior casing.

It can lead to excruciating pain, tingling sensations, and even muscle weakness.

While medical treatments are available, including surgery and physical therapy, there’s growing interest in the role that footwear might play in managing this condition.

In this article, we’ll explore the question: Can shoes help herniated disc? We’ll delve into the science, the types of shoes that may provide relief, and other relevant considerations.

Also check:Best Running Shoes For Herniated Disc

Can Shoes Help Herniated Disc?

Understanding Herniated Discs

Before we jump into the potential benefits of shoes, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of what happens in a herniated disc. The spinal discs act as cushions between the vertebrae, providing flexibility and absorbing shock. When a disc herniates, the inner material pushes against spinal nerves, causing pain and discomfort.

The Role of Footwear

While it may seem counterintuitive, the shoes you wear can have an impact on your herniated disc. Here are some factors to consider:

Arch Support

Footwear with proper arch support can help maintain the natural curvature of your spine. This support reduces the strain on the lower back, potentially alleviating some of the pressure on the herniated disc.


Shoes with ample cushioning can absorb shock when you walk or stand. This can reduce the jarring impact on your spine, providing relief from herniated disc pain.

Orthotic Inserts

Custom-made or over-the-counter orthotic inserts can improve the alignment of your feet, which, in turn, can influence your posture and spinal health.

Shoe Options for Herniated Disc

Now that we’ve discussed how shoes can potentially help with herniated discs, let’s explore some specific shoe options to consider:

1. Orthopedic Shoes

Orthopedic shoes are specially designed to provide superior support and comfort. They often feature arch support, cushioning, and roomy toe boxes.

2. Stability Running Shoes

Stability running shoes are engineered to provide a stable platform for your feet. They can help with balance and reduce the risk of further injury.

3. Walking Shoes

Walking shoes with thick cushioning are excellent choices for individuals with herniated discs. They offer support during everyday activities.

4. Custom Orthotics

Consult with a podiatrist or orthopedic specialist to determine if custom orthotics are suitable for you. These inserts can be tailored to your specific foot shape and condition.

Other Considerations

While choosing the right shoes is crucial, it’s not the only aspect to consider when managing a herniated disc. Here are a few additional tips:

1. Physical Therapy

Combining the right shoes with physical therapy exercises can be highly effective in managing herniated disc pain.

2. Lifestyle Changes

Maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding activities that strain the back are essential for managing herniated discs.


1. Can wearing high heels worsen a herniated disc?

Yes, wearing high heels can exacerbate herniated disc symptoms. High heels alter your posture and spinal alignment, putting additional strain on the affected area.

2. Are flip-flops recommended for herniated disc sufferers?

No, flip-flops lack proper support and cushioning, making them unsuitable for individuals with herniated discs. Opt for shoes with better arch support and shock absorption.

3. How do I know if I need custom orthotic inserts?

If you have a herniated disc and are experiencing persistent pain, consult with a podiatrist or orthopedic specialist. They can assess your condition and determine if custom orthotic inserts are necessary.

4. Can I continue running with a herniated disc?

Running with a herniated disc can be risky. It’s essential to consult with a healthcare professional to determine if it’s safe for your specific case. They may recommend alternative forms of exercise.

5. Should I wear the same shoes all day with a herniated disc?

It’s a good idea to have a variety of supportive shoes for different activities. Avoid wearing worn-out shoes, as they can lack the necessary support for your condition.


So, can shoes help with a herniated disc? The answer is a resounding “yes.” The right footwear can provide much-needed support, cushioning, and alignment that may alleviate pain and discomfort associated with this condition. However, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice and to ensure that you’re making the best choices for your specific case.

Shoe Practitioner

Greetings! I am Rob, a licensed podiatrist. It is with great pleasure that I extend a warm welcome to you on board.

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