Women in high heels : The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine has come under fire this week for requiring female soldiers to march in high heels in an August parade.
Is it necessary for female soldiers to wear high heels? Why Do Women Continue to Wear Uncomfortable Shoes?
The uniform was judged sexist and hazardous to the soldiers’ health.
The ministry now states that while heels will still be required, female troops would be given “more comfortable” and safer heels with lacing to keep the shoes in place.
The uproar over these Ukrainian soldiers’ footwear begs the question of why so many women continue to wear uncomfortably high and perhaps deadly heels.
High Heels Have A Long History
In the 15th century, the first high-heeled shoes were worn in Venice.
Some say they were worn as a prestige symbol by aristocratic women, while others claim they kept flooding feet dry.
After Caterina de’ Medici wore heels to her wedding to Henry II in 1533, heels became popular in France in the 16th century.
It wasn’t simply women who wore them; Louis XIV wore them to compensate for his short stature.
Only the upper classes wore high heels at the beginning, but by the Victorian era, women of all classes wore them to keep their gowns from dragging on the ground.
The majority of women who wear high heels in 2021 will not be wearing lengthy skirts.
Furthermore, the medical community now has a better grasp of the health hazards associated with high-heeled footwear, particularly the often irreversible biomechanical impacts.
So, what’s the allure of this obnoxious and sometimes deadly footwear?
Both men and women consider women in high heels as more beautiful than women in low shoes, according to numerous studies. There are several hypotheses as to why this is so.
Why Are Women Perceived As Attractive When They Wear High Heels?
High heels give women a more feminine walk, according to researchers who conducted biomechanical analyses.
The elevated heel shortens the stride of the woman and enhances the rotation and tilt of her hips.
According to the experts, this display of femininity may make high-heeled women more attractive to men.
According to another study, male humans have evolved a preference for women with a specific lumbar curvature, and wearing high heels replicates this ideal lumbar curvature.
If our newly biped female ancestors’ centre of mass was not relocated back over their hips, it appears that pregnancy was a problem for them.
These women’s muscle tiredness and pain throughout pregnancy would have had an impact on the nutrition of both their unborn foetus and their other children.
According to the argument, this made women with a certain lumbar curvature less appealing as possible mates in the evolutionary sense.
As a result, there is now a predilection for women with a specific lumbar curvature.
This evolved lumbar curvature preference, according to researchers, is why we think high heels are appealing in women today.
Indeed, their research discovered that wearing high heels boosted women’s attractiveness only when they changed their lumbar curvature to a more evolutionarily appropriate position.
Another group of researchers claims that “high heels appear to be a sort of female sexual signalling.”
The study participants were shown a photo of either an attractive or unattractive male.
They next asked the participants which shoes they would choose if they were going on a date with the man in the photo.
When the ladies imagined a date with the gorgeous man, their preference for high heels was substantially higher.
Shorter women, according to these experts, wear high heels to visibly stretch their leg length and therefore boost their physical attractiveness.
Regardless of which of these explanations about why women wear high heels is most correct, all of them suggest that women wear high heels to appear more sexually desirable.
Returning to the problem of the female Ukrainian soldiers, requiring them to wear heels is equivalent to requiring them to make themselves more sexually desirable for the male parade viewers.
At the very least, they will be provided with “more comfortable” high heels.
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