Objective: To review studies regarding effects of high-heeled shoes on body posture of adolescents.
Data sources: The research was conducted in the Scopus, SciELO and PubMed databases between 1980 and 2011, searching for articles written in English and Portuguese with the following key-words: "posture", "center of gravity", and "high-heeled shoes". Among 55 retrieved articles, 20 were analyzed regarding posture of the spine and lower limbs, the center of gravity, and the effects of high-heeled shoes in the musculoskeletal system in adolescents.
Data synthesis: Frequent use of high-heeled shoes leads to modification of the gravity center and body balance, which can lead to changes in the alignment of body segments. This has a negative impact on motor development of adolescents. In this phase, it is necessary to keep the posture in order to maintain the physiological growth and development of the musculoskeletal system.
Conclusions: High-heeled shoes in adolescents can lead to the development of postural disorders, among which stands out the forward head posture, lumbar hyperlordosis, pelvic anteversion, and knee valgus. The height and width of the heels are characteristics that exert most influence in the emergence of postural changes and body imbalance.