It was not ever thus though, at least, not in the western world. Prior to the AD era shoes and other footgear like sandals were no nonsense, and paid complete attention to the requirements of locomotion in a sensible way. Even these sandals from the later dynastic period of Egypt are, apart from the level of decoration applied to them, essentially practical footwear.
The next innovations to hit the streets were chopines and pattens. First devised as a way for ladies to walk the streets without getting their clothes mucked up, chopines eventually became footgear in their own right, while pattens remained something one attached to shoes. In the case of chopines, they permitted a lady to soar skyward, sometimes reaching over 20 inches in height, and during the Renaissance prostitutes routinely wore them, as it made them more visible on the crowded streets, increasing the possibility of paying customers.
For some time shoes had been getting produced with very low heels and flat soles, hence the need for pattens in the first place, but over time heel height grew. It happened slowly at first but by the time of the English Restoration in 1660, shoes for both men and women were sporting 2 inch heels, and sometimes a bit higher.
At the end of the 1930s we saw the emergence of the platform shoe, which though not uncomfortable in itself was mighty dangerous on a cobbled city street.There must have been more than a few twisted ankles and other injuries from these.
Shoes also continue to be inspiring to sometimes wildly sexual fantasies, and insanely restrictive of motion; (which is I gather, the point).
As a final note, I find it interesting that the two places on the human body where unbridled creativity is given voice are the extreme ends of it. I'll have to think about that, and why that might be so. (grin) Who knows? There may be a post about it some other day.