Boots, shoes, and knee support
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Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
No Jeremy we actually agree... on 02/13/2013 07:39:32 MST Print View

Perhaps it didn't come off as I intended, but I was actually criticizing all the orthotics floating around out there. Yes, there certainly are some people whose feet are just soooo floppy no amount of strengthening and stabilization is going to help.

But for the vast majority of people the orthotic just allows your foot to be lazy...and get lazier. Our bodies are inherently lazy, and will do the absolute minimum amount of work required of it (thus so many compensations in so many parts of our bodies that can end up causing injury). If your intrinsic foot muscles and the lower leg muscle that supports your arch don't have to work, they won't, and will just get weaker and weaker.

Leigh...thanks for the plug!! I'm very good at orthopedics, but wow am I computer stupid. I'm kind of impressed I can even post to this forum.

Jeremy Gustafson
(gustafsj) - MLife

Locale: Minneapolis
Re: No Jeremy we actually agree... on 02/13/2013 08:11:01 MST Print View

Jennifer, that's great to hear! From my experience, you are not the norm, so it is very encouraging..... Yes, get your blog going and start influencing other PTs and Chiros!

BPL has had some great articles on minimalist footwear and Staff Member Damian Tougas is a great advocate. See Toesalad.com for more info.

Tony Campana
(Velodadi) - MLife

Locale: Lowcountry Carolina
Orthotics on 02/14/2013 18:03:53 MST Print View

A comment on orthotics for consideration:

I agree that orthotics are a "crutch" in most cases, and over-prescribed. But every case is different.

I had significant forefoot pain I was dealing with when walking. I tried minimalist footwear and that hurt just as much as regular shoes. I went to an podiatrist and I found out that my big toe had some arthritis in the joint and did not carry all the load it was supposed to carry when I walked. This overstressed my toes and caused the forefoot pain.

I was not enthused when the podiatrist prescribed orthotics for the various reasons mentioned in this thread. But I had run out of options so I gave them a try.

In about two weeks the pain went away, so in my case they worked. I also realized that if I did not continue to wear them the pain returned. (I was ill for a few days and walked barefoot around the house, and the pain returned.)

So in my individual case they work as a crutch, relieving my symptoms. Until I find another remedy I'll take the orthotics to continue walking pain-free.