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View Full Version : What shoes for a bad back?


stevenwags987
10-23-2010, 11:43 AM
My dad who is 51 and a bad lower back which bothers him if he's not wearing a good pair of shoes. However, it usually takes him many attemps of buying shoes to find out which shoes will not leave his lower back in pain after he's done playing

So Im just wondering if anyone else would know what kind of tennis shoe may be the best for his bad lower back. Price is not an issue at all

If you or someone you know have had the same problem and found a shoe that really works please let me know.

Thanks a lot everyone

ollinger
10-24-2010, 09:29 AM
Doesn't matter much. I've spoken to half a dozen docs who only do back surgery at the top places in NYC (my wife is having lumbar surgery in 4 days) and they all say what you wear when you're NOT playing tennis is what really matters. All say not to wear shoes with hard leather-type heels and soles, only wear spongy crepe style soles. All agree that tennis shoes for the most part are comparable in how much they cushion.

stevenwags987
10-24-2010, 02:47 PM
Doesn't matter much. I've spoken to half a dozen docs who only do back surgery at the top places in NYC (my wife is having lumbar surgery in 4 days) and they all say what you wear when you're NOT playing tennis is what really matters. All say not to wear shoes with hard leather-type heels and soles, only wear spongy crepe style soles. All agree that tennis shoes for the most part are comparable in how much they cushion.

Alright, thank you

r2473
10-24-2010, 02:54 PM
I've heard good things about barefoot tennis.......

EcoRick
10-24-2010, 04:19 PM
If I don't wear a good pair of tennis shoes, my back will definitely be sore after playing. I exercise and stretch regularly, so the comments about daily care is helpful. I still think your dad should wear good tennis shoes to avoid problems. I found Barricades good for me. They have good support and cushion. My friends swear by New Balance, so if you have a NB store close by, maybe you could check them out as well.

Nuke
10-24-2010, 05:16 PM
The insole of most new tennis shoes is usually a thin styrofoam thing. Replace it with Dr Scholl's Sports Gel insoles, or some other replacement insole (Superfeet has a lot of fans) to make almost any shoe absorb shock better.

SystemicAnomaly
10-24-2010, 08:46 PM
The shoes with some of the best cushioning on the market are Nike Air Monarch IIIs. I use these for tennis even tho' there are actually a x-trainer. They seems to be better for my shins, knees, hip flexors and lower back than my more expensive tennis shoes (which include K-Swiss and 2 different models of New Balance tennis shoes).

However, cushioning should not be your only criteria for your footwear. Support is just as important or possibly even more important than cushioning.


The insole of most new tennis shoes is usually a thin styrofoam thing. Replace it with Dr Scholl's Sports Gel insoles, or some other replacement insole (Superfeet has a lot of fans) to make almost any shoe absorb shock better.

A custom orthotic might be your best solution.

The next best thing would be a pseudo-custom insole -- something like CustomFit (http://www.footmapping.com/footmapping/home/index.jspa) inserts (http://www.footmapping.com/footmapping/home/index.jspa) from Dr. Scholl's. For me, they've worked even better than the Sports Gel insoles. The CustomFit inserts can be found at a DS kiosk in many CVS & Wal-Mart stores. The kiosk employs hardware and software that will perform footmapping on your feet. The footmapping software will determin which of 14 different CF inserts is best suited to your needs.

I've also had some luck with green and orange Superfeet insoles. The green worked a little bit better for me than the orange (which are also popular). However, I had to go up 2 sizes from the standard size suggested for my shoe size in order to get the arch support in the proper place. Best to consult with an expert to get the proper Superfeet type and size for your feet.

Still, I'd go with the CF inserts if you don't want to spend hundreds of $$$ on custom orthotics.
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charliefedererer
10-24-2010, 09:07 PM
I'm on about my eighth pair of Asics Gel Resoltion 2 tennis shoes. It is the most comfortable tennis shoe I've ever worn, with great cushioning. Here is the Tennis Warehouse review: http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Reviews/AMGR2BW/AMGR2BWReview.html

No tennis shoe has a good stock insole. They all seem to be made of thin foam that quickly crushes down, and then fails to provide cushioning. Solution: remove the insole that comes with the shoe and replace with a replacement insole. My favorite is the Superfeet Orange for providing cushioning and support: http://www.runningwarehouse.com/descpage-SFMO.html . The Dr. School's Custom Fit Insoles mentioned by SA above sound like a good alternative if fit is a difficulty.

SystemicAnomaly
10-24-2010, 11:00 PM
^ Will have to try those Gel Res 2 shoes. I've searched for them previously to give them a try but not yet found them in my area. They really impressed me since they got high marks for both cushioning (comfort) and support.

GameSetMatch
10-25-2010, 05:29 AM
Cushioning. So as to reduce the shock going into the back. Try some Sorbothane full strike or double strike insoles.

SystemicAnomaly
10-25-2010, 08:47 AM
^ We may be focusing too much on cushioning and not enough on support. Note that footwear and insoles alone are often not enough to prevent lower back pain. Here are a couple of resources that talk about foot support and other factors:

http://www.bigbackpain.com/footwear.html

http://www.footsmart.com/HealthCondition.aspx?ailmentId=67
(http://www.footsmart.com/HealthCondition.aspx?ailmentId=67)
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El Diablo
10-25-2010, 09:14 AM
The "resources" are commercial sites selling products. I'd hope we could have more objective information.

r2473
10-25-2010, 10:25 AM
The "resources" are commercial sites selling products. I'd hope we could have more objective information.

Are you new to this here internetz thingy?

This is what "objective information" is these days.

SystemicAnomaly
10-25-2010, 04:16 PM
The "resources" are commercial sites selling products. I'd hope we could have more objective information.

Did you look at both links? Only one of them was a footwear site? I posted that one because it provided a wealth of information. I had added this link because it provides quite a bit of information that is not related to "merely a footwear solution". This goes to the point that I was trying to make to the OP -- while proper shoes and orthotics may help, there are other important factors to consider to prevent & to deal with lower back pain.

The primary link that I provided does not appear to provide or promote any commercial products at all. While they do have ads for various items, the web site does not appear to mention or promote any of them in the text of the information that they are providing. The information on that site appears to be impartial.
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Hominator
10-30-2010, 12:42 PM
The insole of most new tennis shoes is usually a thin styrofoam thing. Replace it with Dr Scholl's Sports Gel insoles, or some other replacement insole (Superfeet has a lot of fans) to make almost any shoe absorb shock better.

New replacement insoles is great advice. You may need to go half a size bigger, however.