Rothrock Chiropractic & Rehabilitation


July 11, 2024

Hey, State College! Summer is in full swing, and many of us are looking forward to getting out to Arts Fest this week and weekend! Picking the correct footwear for this event really does matter, though.

While flip-flops might seem like the perfect footwear choice to beat the heat, they may not be the best option for your spine and overall foot health. At Rothrock Chiropractic & Rehabilitation, we care about your well-being from head to toe, so here are the top 5 reasons to reconsider flip-flops for Arts Fest.

  1. Lack of arch support. Flip-flops are typically flat and lack the arch support necessary for prolonged walking. This can lead to overpronation, where your foot rolls inward and over-flattens excessively. This in turn puts strain on your knees, hips, and lower back. Proper arch support is essential for maintaining spinal alignment and preventing discomfort during long periods of walking during Arts Fest.
  2. Minimal cushioning. The thin soles of flip-flops provide minimal cushioning, offering little shock absorption for walking on the hard surfaces of concrete and asphalt in downtown State College and Penn State University’s campus. This lack of cushioning can result in increased impact on your feet, knees, and spine, leading to pain and discomfort. So instead opt for footwear with adequate cushioning that can significantly reduce the strain on your spine and joints.
  3. Poor stability. Flip-flops often have loose, flimsy straps that can cause instability. This lack of stability can lead to an uneven gait and increased risk of slips, trips, and falls. In fact, often you have to overuse your toe flexors just to keep a flip-flop on your foot! Choosing shoes with secure straps and a more supportive structure can enhance your stability and protect your spine and legs.
  4. Altered gait patterns. Wearing flip-flops can alter your natural gait pattern. The need to grip the flip-flops with your toes can lead to shortened stride length and increased muscle fatigue in your feet and legs. Over thousands of steps, this altered gait can affect your posture and lead to spinal misalignment. Shoes that promote a natural walking pattern can help maintain proper posture and reduce the risk of back pain and other injuries.
  5. Increase risk of foot injuries. Flip-flops offer little protection for your feet. They leave your toes exposed, increasing the risk of stubs, cuts, and other injuries. Injuries to the feet can cause you to change the way you walk, potentially leading to compensatory issues in your knees, hips, and spine. Choosing footwear that offers more closed-toe coverage and protection can help prevent injuries and maintain spinal health.

While flip-flops may be a convenient and popular choice for summer footwear, they are not the best option for events with excessive walking, such as Arts Fest in downtown State College. For the sake of your spine and overall well-being, consider opting for shoes that provide better support, stability, and protection. Your feet and your spine will thank you!

If you experience any discomfort or pain, don’t hesitate to contact Rothrock Chiropractic & Rehabilitation. We’re always here to help you stay healthy and pain-free all summer long! Thank you all for your continued support.