ITV hit the streets

It was inevitable that I’d be dragged out eventually to harass the poor unsuspecting high heel wearers of Bristol, I just didn’t expect it to be with a full crew and camera.

Just outside The square Bar clifton, we chanced up on a lovely lady just arriving from work in a beautiful pair of 4.5″ Louboutin black patent stilettos. “hi we are from ITV and we are doing a piece (getting the lingo) on high heels, do you mind if we ask you some questions? .. of course not … came the slightly guarded reply.  It turn out that she wears stilettos all day every day for work and play. “It must be great to take them off at the end of the day and put on a pair of flats” I say, trying not to be too leading …..“Absolutely not! I struggle to put my heels to the floor and have to wear heels at home.” “Do you get any pain when you wear heels?” I ask. “Yes, my back and knees hurt when I wear my heels and my calf goes into cramps at night

Well, after watching her walking and after a few more questions I offered some simple advice … “You might want to see a physiotherapist or sports masseuse to help increase the flexibilty of your calves as they have become far too tight, then once you can get your heels to the floor, try some light sport to help strengthen your bottom” 

It’s becoming like an episode of Embarrassing bodies!

We didn’t have to go far to reach our second volunteer, as a lovely young Glasgow girl came wobbling over on a pair of crazy 8″ leather platforms. “I see you are wearing a fantastic pair of heels, are these your typical shoes?”. “No way! tonight’s special, I’m just off out for a meal with my boyfriend” came the happy reply. When asked how she was getting on with them, her boyfriend cheerfully pointed out that she had fallen over spectacularly just out of sight from us.  All smiles though …. only a bruised ego to show for it!

While looking at her walking it was clear that the heels were far too high for her bum and leg control as it was impossible for her to keep her knees and ankles straight.  “If you are really desperate to wear these shoes but don’t want to hurt yourself, then you need to go to the gym and train to improve the strength of your bum and then practice wearing these shoes an awful lot before you venture out.” I hope she listens!

With the Daily Mail!

After makeup (they obviously have seen my picture) and 90 min of chat with Liz Hoggard (Daily Mail London), the High Heel Masterclass was in back action. Maybe I should have asked to get my hair and nails done too!  The square Bar clifton, was a beautiful private location to host this event.

Liz was lovely, and was genuinely curious to attend the class as she has a bit of a thing about wearing heels, well … actually, about NOT wearing heels to be precise!

Article: My man thinks high heels are sex on legs. But can I find ANY that aren’t agony?

She is genuinely a bit terrified of the things and was reassured when I told her that was actually the best place to start.  ‘The worst place to start from is complacency’, I told her.  If you sit heavily on your heels in anything more than a 3″ heel then your body is completely thrown out of balance and your muscles will quickly become lazy. To stand in them and walk more assertively brings your body into control and shows off your posture.

The fitter and more athletic you are the more you can be trained to cope with the unusual changes to your posture and tune an elegant posture in the same way you train to ride a bike.  On the other hand, girls who permanently wear heels, whose bodies have tuned to this abnormal alignment can also look naturally elegant, but they are unwittingly creating problems for themselves in the future..

I reminded her that it is vital for her to:

  • Don’t go higher than a 3″ heel if you want to keep your legs in control
  • Improve bum strength to maximise knee control
  • See an Osteopath or Chiropractor to loosen up her torso and shoulders (all those years of carrying heavy recording kit and manuscripts – thank goodness for ipads and dictaphones)
  • Practice Practice Practice

Her final comments about her heels … ” They are not the enemy now, but they will never be my friend either!”

Remember, it’s YOU who makes the shoe, not the shoe that makes you!

The Great British Wobbly Bum (GBWB)

What a fab evening!  Everyone learn’t really important lessons about their posture and control and how to cope with the changes caused by shoes of different heel heights.  You have to be really fit and strong to cope with the postural changes created by the ridiculously high ones.  Some of these girls tonight have been trained professionally to wear heels and actually struggle to walk with control on UK pavements never mind cobblestones.  If in doubt… go lower!

This is just to tell you the reasons why I have started this initiative, to combat the surge of the Great British Wobbly Bum! (It deserves capitals! Lets just call it the ‘GBWB’)  So many girls suffer from GBWB syndrome, it gives them knee problems, back pain, numb feet and generally Wonky (with a capital!) legs and bodies.

Lets look at really wonky knees, or let’s not in some cases … knobbly, in turned, over extended knees are prevalent on our high streets causing over strain to the backs of the legs stretching the bits that were never meant to be stretched and forcing otherwise gorgeous girls to stand just like storks with their knees bent back.  This in turn causes you to stand with your pelvis tilted forward and encourages your feet to go flat and then turn out…. not a good position to train your body is it and we haven’t even started on what it can do to the alignment of your back!

As soon as you tighten your butt, and transfer your weight slightly forward over your toes, you move your knees out of this really lazy locked position and turn them back straight, this lifts your pelvis and allows your arches to spring back.  Easy said but really difficult in practice if you have spent years developing this posture.

Bikini Dream Team

Wow…It’s the end of the 1st Bikini Dream Team Challenge! The girls are looking amazing having experienced treatment from the team.  Expert advice regarding weight loss from naturopath Fiona Campbell, balanced personal training from Bristol’s finest trainer Alex Pool, deep tissue physiotherapy and core conditioning from Peter Culliford with expert psychological mentoring from Paul Burden and its now my turn!

7 girls are now sitting supping champagne and and waiting to learn about their posture in the anticipation that with some tweaks to their body alignment & muscular control that walking in heels can become shapely, smooth, elegant and much much safer.

Let the fun commence!