Foot Levelers

Leading Provider of Custom Orthotics

5 Reasons Orthotics Help Your Entire Body

Whole body health

Our body is an interdependent system and when one part is not functioning properly, it can negatively impact other parts leading to over or diminished use. Physicals exist because it is necessary to be examined from head to toe, literally, down to each and every toe, and specialists alone cannot effectively treat our entire body. Chiropractic medicine takes a holistic and comprehensive approach to the body to help ensure and optimize functioning so that we can live our daily lives more easily.

  read more

5 Terrible Things People Do to Treat Plantar Fasciitis

5 Terrible Things People Do to Treat Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue in your foot and nearly 2 million Americans suffer from the discomfort of plantar fasciitis. Although many people think that plantar fasciitis affects only the heel of the foot, it can actually affect any part of the bottom of your foot since all of that tissue is at risk for inflammation. Early morning foot pain and/or stiffness is typically a good indication that you’re experiencing plantar fasciitis, as is pain or discomfort after spending long periods of time on your feet.  read more

How Chiropractors Can Fix Plantar Fasciitis

Chiropractor helping plantar fasciitis

With nearly 2 million American’s dealing with plantar fasciitis, it’s a very common problem that requires attention. Sadly, though, many people ignore their symptoms and discomfort until it becomes debilitating or until they have more time to get treatment. But, treating and alleviating plantar fasciitis can be as simple as seeing a Chiropractor and you can even take steps (no pun intended) to help prevent it from returning.

The feet are the foundation of the body. Problems with your feet are akin to having a sinking or cracking foundation in your home. It’s a chain reaction that influences how the rest of the body operates, but discomfort can also cloud your mind and negatively impact your mood and productivity, too. So how can you tell whether you have plantar fasciitis? read more

3 Bad Things Over-The-Counter Insoles Do to Your Body

3 bad things about over the counter insoles

Over-the-counter (OTC) orthotic insoles are foot supports made from various materials including foam, leather, and plastic. OTC insoles are designed to go inside your shoe and provide some type of relief. OTC insoles are popularized by clever branding and packaging techniques and can be bought at local pharmacies and grocery stores. Some are marketed as providing additional comfort. Others promise to relieve pain from common conditions like bunions, plantar fasciitis, and arch support issues. Additionally, you can buy OTC insoles for a variety of shoes like high heels, athletic shoes, and boots, so as to seemingly work with every consumer’s lifestyle. read more

Chiropractic Seminars

If you’re looking for great seminars related to your practice and profession, Foot Levelers hosts many 8-12 CEU, one or two day seminars throughout the country. Speakers are engaging and are experts in their field. Click here to visit and register for one (or more) of our Chiropractic Seminars.

Understanding What Makes Up the Best Pillow

best pillow for sleeping
The best pillow for sleeping is one that’s both comfortable and supportive.

Empirical Usage

People with chronic and/or acute neck pain are often overwhelmed with web pages, ads, emails, etc. about what is the best pillow for them. Most bedding stores have a line of pillows they tout as the best pillow to buy for neck pain.  Is there any scientific support for the claims made for better sleep, lowered neck pain, and headache relief? Which of the many different designs of support pillow is most likely to be helpful for most people?  Are there any risks or problems associated with the use of cervical pillows?  read more

Everything You Need to Know About Plantar Fasciitis, Including Whether or Not You Have It

Nearly 2 million Americans suffer from plantar fasciitis.

Heel and foot pain, spurs, tight tendons, and stiffness could be signs that you had a long day, you wore the wrong shoes, or that you have a common condition known as plantar fasciitis, along with nearly 2 million other Americans. For many of us living busy lives, we often brush off our own health unless or until we experience excruciating pain or some form of debilitation. But, foot pain, even a mild amount, is nothing to put on your to-do list for when you have time. The feet are the foundation of the body and when your feet aren’t operating at 100%, neither are you. Identifying, diagnosing, and treating plantar fasciitis can be fast and easy, leading you to have more comfort as you handle everything else in your life. read more

Custom Orthotics Featured on “The Doctors” TV Show

Foot Levelers Custom Orthotic featured on “The Doctors” TV Show

Whose custom orthotics are under that tape?

So, our custom orthotics got some national exposure last week, but because of pesky little sponsorship restrictions, you wouldn’t have known it!

There was a segment on the syndicated TV show The Doctors about relieving back pain — which products work, and which don’t.

What’s best for your shoes, insoles or custom orthotics?

The guest on the segment was Dr. Fab Mancini, a huge advocate of Chiropractic. He used to be the President of Parker University (Chiropractic college) and has appeared on Dr. Phil, ABC, CNN, FOX, and many other national platforms getting the word out about all the benefits Chiropractic offers. read more

Foot Levelers Custom Orthotics Help World Champion Hopeful with Low Back Pain

Becci Holcomb is a strong woman. At age thirty, she has a retired USA Powerlifting deadlift record of 501 pounds and can squat 644 pounds. This is the equivalent of deadlifting a dumpster and squatting a large vending machine. In a sport dominated by males, Becci is stronger than many of the men.

Holcomb got her start in powerlifting while enrolled at Life University. She saw a flyer at school for the powerlifting club, and it got her interested. From there, a fellow student and powerlifter got her started. Becci quickly found out that she was a natural for which she credits to genetics and her upbringing.

Originally from the small town of Blanchester, Ohio, Holcomb comes from a family where she and her siblings are naturally tall and strong. Her father, Mike Holcomb, was an All-American wrestler and a member of the 1984 Olympic wrestling team. She grew up on a small family farm where carrying fifty-pound bags of feed was a regular chore. This helped her develop her physical strength even before she knew what powerlifting was, but it is Becci’s training and hard work that has gotten her to where she is today.

Becci trains 15 hours a week and works full-time as the Assistant Wellness Center Director at Life Wellness Center. For her, that means late nights and early mornings. She lifts five days a week and on Saturday’s commutes two hours, round trip, to train with her powerlifting coach. She also maintains a rigid diet, eating six small meals throughout the day. Holcomb is the first to admit that balancing work, training, and personal life takes a lot of discipline and commitment, but it has led to her success.

In her first competition, Holcomb placed second and qualified for nationals in her weight division. She broke and set new Georgia state records in squat, deadlift, and total. She would go on to win the USA Powerlifting Open Nationals three years later and qualified for the World Championships in Europe. Holcomb was ecstatic. She had placed second and third in both national and international competitions, but she had never won a national championship. 

 After returning home, Becci started to experience pain in her feet, hips, and back. Her joints were under a lot of stress. Becci sought out Dr. Joseph Haezebrouk and Dr. Paul Donaldson at Life University for advice and treatment. They recommended Foot Levelers custom orthotics which provide comfort for the feet, support for the whole body, and are clinically proven to help reduce pain. “The key to lifting, making the weight stick, and holding onto it is good stabilization and support from the ground up,” said Dr. Haezebrouk.

Holcomb’s feet were scanned and, upon reviewing the patient report of findings, the scan showed one arch was higher than the other with the left decreased in function. She was fitted with a pair of Foot Levelers custom orthotics and felt immediate relief. “I noticed a definite difference in my low back pain when wearing my custom orthotics. They are comfortable, and my feet, hips, and back don’t hurt,” said Becci.

“Having the proper support and alignment that Foot Levelers custom orthotics provide helps with the downward compression from the weight when your feet are off balanced and holding too much weight,” Dr. Haezebrouk added. “With Foot Levelers custom orthotics, Becci’s stability and posture improved and so did her pain.  She used to take several minutes to get off the exam room table, and now she slides right off.”  

Holcomb wears her custom orthotics from the moment she wakes up in the morning to when she goes to bed at night, having multiple pairs of custom orthotics to fit her different types of shoes. During the day she tries to live an active lifestyle. “I do a lot of hiking and walking and am always sure to wear my Foot Levelers custom orthotics,” Becci said. She even squats and bench presses wearing her Foot Levelers custom orthotics. “During training and competition, my squats are much more even when wearing my Foot Levelers than they were before.”

Competing in powerlifting is one of the most exciting things Holcomb has ever done. She says it is an adrenaline rush to lift heavy weights in front of cheering crowds. When she first started powerlifting, she did not know she would love it so much. Powerlifting has changed her life.

The most noticeable change has been in her body composition as fat mass has been replaced with muscle. However, the most significant difference has been in how she sees herself. Powerlifting has helped Becci develop a level of self-confidence and respect for herself. When she started lifting, she hated just about everything about her body. “I was always bigger and did not fit the mold for the average person. I went through some hard times as everyone does, but powerlifting has helped me grow and appreciate who I am as a person,” said Holcomb.

In April, Becci finished second at the USA Powerlifting Open Nationals to secure a spot in the 2018 World Championship where she hopes to set a new world record. However, for Holcomb, powerlifting has become more than winning championships or setting records. It is about being a positive example to women, especially her younger sisters, and letting them know that true strength is not how much you can lift but about being able to love yourself and your body. “I have younger sisters. I want to be able to instill in them that you don’t have to look a certain way to be valued and appreciated,” said Holcomb. “I want them to know that they are capable of so much and can-do amazing things.”

FOOT LEVELERS ADDS NEW SHOETHOTICS TO GIVE PATIENTS MORE OPTIONS FOR FALL 2018!

Roanoke, VA, September 24, 2018 – Foot Levelers has added FIVE NEW Shoethotics® to their fall catalog making it easier for your patients to wear the shoe styles they like without sacrificing the pain relief, support, and comfort that comes with Foot Levelers custom orthotics. These NEW Shoethotics include shoes from Brooks, Merrell, and OluKai that your patients are sure to love.

Foot Levelers’ NEW Shoethotics include:

The Brooks® Ghost 11 – For Men and Women

 

The Brooks Ghost 11 running shoe is great for hardcore runners and active patients. The Brooks Ghost 11 has been improved with Brooks’ DNA Loft foam along with modifications to the upper and outsole. Paired with Foot Levelers custom orthotics, these Brooks provide a lightweight running shoe with the comfort and support your patient’s bodies need.

Merrell MOAB FST 2 WP – For Women

Give your patients the comfort on long hikes in this waterproof hiker that will help your patients traverse the most difficult trails and terrain with ease. M Select™ DRY impermeable membrane seals out water and lets moisture escape.  Combined with Foot Levelers custom orthotics, this hiker provides the comfort and flexible, intuitive support your patient’s bodies need to withstand those long hikes on the trail.

Merrell MOAB 2 WP – For Men

Help your patients gear up for a day on the trail with the Merrell® MOAB 2 Waterproof shoe. With durable leathers, the comfort and support of Foot Levelers custom orthotics, and Merrell’s Vibram traction, the MOAB (Mother-Of-All-Boots) is the perfect shoe for your patients who love the outdoors. The MOAB 2’s M Select™ DRY impermeable membrane seals out water and lets moisture escape which helps keep feet dry. 

OluKai Pehuea Hulu – For Women

A boot for all-day wear or cozy comfort on chilly evenings. This women’s boot comes with full-grain leather and genuine twin-faced shearling lining with a zipper for easy on and off. A soft, wool blend footbed cover has been added for maximum breathability, temperature regulation, and comfort. Paired with Foot Levelers custom orthotics, this boot for women provides the all-day cushioning, support, and comfort their body needs.

OluKai Pehuea Leather – For Women

This classy shoe comes in soft, unlined full-grain leather with a plush microfiber lining. With OluKai’s versatile Drop-In Heel™ for shoe or slide option, the Pehuea Leather is the perfect shoe that can dress any outfit up or down. A slip-on has never felt so comfortable or supportive when paired with Foot Levelers custom orthotics which help provide the comfort and support the body needs.

OluKai Nohea Slipper – For Women

The Nohea Slipper comes with OluKai’s patented Drop-In Heel® design that offers both a shoe and slide functionality and includes soft, premium nubuck leather, genuine sheepskin shearling lining and elastic gore panels for customized fit. Paired with Foot Levelers custom orthotics, the Nohea Slipper encapsulates style, comfort, and support for in the house, or out and about. 

OluKai Kulana – For Men

The OluKai Kulana is a stylish, island-inspired loafer made of premium smooth full-grain leather. It effortlessly transitions from boardroom meetings to backyard barbecues with its laser etched detail and sharp and modern look. Paired with Foot Levelers custom orthotics, the Kulana provides cushioning, support, and comfort for the whole body.

The exciting part is that these NEW Shoethotics are available for order today! To order, call 800.553.4860.

For more information, visit FootLevelers.com/products/orthotic-shoes. And, make sure to tune in every Tuesday for Shoesday Tuesdays for our Facebook Live product demonstrations.

###

About Foot Levelers

Foot Levelers is the world’s leading provider of individually designed stabilizing orthotics, custom orthotic flip-flops, Shoethotics®, and Sandalthotics®, as well as therapeutic products. We have been serving healthcare professionals and their patients for over 66 years with innovative products designed to help reduce pain in the feet, legs, hips, back, and neck, so people can enjoy a fuller and happier life at work, home, or play. For more information about how Foot Levelers is helping healthcare professionals deliver better health outcomes, and lower overall healthcare costs visit https://www.footlevelers.com. To keep up with Foot Levelers, follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo @footlevelers.

FOOT LEVELERS ANNOUNCES FALL SEMINAR SCHEDULE

Roanoke, VA September 10, 2018 – Foot Levelers is excited to announce their fall seminar schedule which includes Foot Levelers’ five new speakers!

For over 66 years, Foot Levelers has been a strong supporter of chiropractic and a leading provider of professional development and continuing education opportunities. Foot Levelers Chiropractic Seminars feature leading experts and are an excellent educational resource allowing doctors to earn up to 12 CEUs per seminar.

Foot Levelers’ seminar fall schedule includes:

November 10-11, 8 CEU SEMINAR (San Francisco, CA) read more

FOOT LEVELERS GENERATES RECORD SALES WITH NEW LOOK FOR KIOSK AT NATIONAL BY FCA


Foot Levelers, the world’s leader in custom stabilizing orthotics, revealed the new look for its Kiosk in Orlando, Florida, at the National by FCA. The new design attracted huge interest from chiropractors and generated record Kiosk sales.

The Foot Levelers Kiosk, premiered in 2017, is an innovative foot scanning device that makes it easy and efficient for patients to scan themselves for custom orthotics and for medical professionals to prescribe them. The new design includes a fresh, clean look, interactive graphics, and presents information in a way where patients can understand how imbalances in their feet are impacting their daily lives.

“We are thrilled to announce a new updated look to our Kiosk for our doctors. This innovative design is receiving praise throughout the profession! The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive! Every chiropractor should have one in their office,” said Kent Greenawalt, Chairman and CEO of Foot Levelers, Inc.

Patients love the Kiosk and their ability to scan themselves for custom orthotics. This saves the doctor and their staff valuable time, allowing them to spend more time reviewing the report of findings and treatment options. Kiosks with the new design are available for order today! For more information on the Kiosk or to order your Kiosk today call Foot Levelers at 800-553-4860.

###

About Foot Levelers

Foot Levelers is the world’s leading provider of individually designed Stabilizing Orthotics, customer orthotic flip-flops, Shoethotics® and Sandalthotics®, as well as therapeutic products. We have been serving healthcare professionals and their patients for over 66 years with innovative products designed to help reduce pain in the feet, legs, hips, back, and neck, so people can enjoy a fuller and happier life at work, home, or play. For more information about how Foot Levelers is helping healthcare professionals deliver better health outcomes, and lower overall health care costs visit https://www.footlevelers.com. To keep up with Foot Levelers, follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo @footlevelers.

Are Your Patient’s Shoes Causing Pain In Their Body?

Musculoskeletal health is one of the largest costs in healthcare today. With one in two Americans having a musculoskeletal condition, the need for proper support and body alignment has never been greater. A recent survey found that most Americans today wear three pairs of shoes throughout the week. (1) Most of these shoes were not made to support their body, to fit their feet, and are harmful to their musculoskeletal health. Your patient’s health and freedom from pain are important for their quality of life and it starts with continuous support for their body from the ground up. 

Many consumers have been convinced, to get the proper support, it is only a matter of buying a more athletic, “comfortable” shoe. In 2015 alone, the athletic footwear industry generated $17.2 billion in sales according to the NPD Group. While athletic shoes being produced today may be more “comfortable”, the truth is they do not provide the support the body needs and can negatively impact posture and body alignment.

Most shoes, whether athletic or dress, are more fashion than function. When a shoe is designed, most are designed based upon a sample size. Typically, shoe companies use a men’s size ten and a women’s size eight shoe as their sample size. Manufacturers then add or subtract materials to create the larger or smaller sizes of the shoes. The outcome are shoes designed to fit and provide maximum performance for the sample size, not to each individually sized foot. (2)

Shoe companies such as Nike and Adidas have worked to remedy this. Nike’s new technology and foam sole enables Nike to make shoe sizes that fit the perfect size of the foot. This means each size is perfectly designed to maximize performance and no two sizes will have the same sole texture or design. While companies like Nike produce shoes that are made for different sizes of feet, their shoes still provide little or no support for the body.

Just look at the shoes your patients wear for evidence of the pronation in their feet. Shoes are designed to protect feet from the elements and adapt them to specific activities. They are not designed to handle the additional forces necessary to support the body. The shoes just break down. If you look at the extensive wear patterns, shoes show the evidence of the imbalances in the feet and the inability to provide the necessary support to correct them.

As a medical professional, it is vital for your patient’s health that they have the proper support no matter what shoe type they are wearing. Recommending multiple pairs of orthotics is critical to your patient’s musculoskeletal health. The effects of excessive foot pronation impacts everyone. While performing daily activities on their feet, your patients are most likely pronating wearing shoes that do not support their body. Without the proper support, their body will revert to the impact of the imbalances in their feet and, if not addressed, will cause pain in the knee, hip, back, and neck.

Far too many patients ignore and even put up with the pain caused by the poor fit and lack of support shoes provide for their body. Pronation in the feet combined with shoes that do not fit and that provide no support have a negative impact on the posture and alignment of the body. Patients who wear shoes without the proper support will regret their choice down the line. By recommending multiple pairs of custom orthotics, you can ensure your patients will have the continuity of support no matter what shoe type they are wearing. It will improve their health by helping them maintain proper posture and support and quality of life. 

  1. Robbins, Todd (2018, February 28). How Many Pairs of Shoes Do You Wear in a Week? Retrieved from https://98txt.iheart.com/content/2018-02-28-how-many-pairs-of-shoes-do-you-wear-in-a-week/
  2. Tepper, Fitz (2018, January 23). Nike Just Released Its First Shoe With An All-Foam Bottom. Retrieved from https://techcrunch.com/2018/01/23/nike-just-released-its-first-shoe-with-an-all-foam-bottom/

The Importance of Multiple Pairs

By Dr. Tim Maggs

The feet are the foundation of the body. Just like a house, when the foundation is not level everything that sits atop is not supported and is crooked. This means that normal foot mechanics can adversely influence the normal functions of the ankle, knee, hip, back, and neck. If left untreated, many foot conditions eventually contribute to health concerns up the kinetic chain.

This foot-spine-body connection is one of the most important and most common ones we see in our patients that walk into our office every day. After 40 years of practice and 17 years of digitally scanning every patient’s feet, my simple conclusion is that every human has some degree of arch collapse in their feet. No one is immune to plastic deformation, and the arches of the feet continue to collapse with age.

Genetics plays a significant role in the collapse of the arches in the feet. However, factors like shoe types, activity levels, and injuries can play a role. The shoes that people buy, whether they are athletic or dress, tend to provide minimal support for the feet. It is more fashion than function. If one looks at the bottom of most shoes, there is minimal arch support present. In most cases, the body goes years with imbalances and learns to compensate for the collapsed arches. This leads to pain in the ankles, knees, hips, back, and neck.

As an architectural structure, the feet are the foundation, and all work must begin thereby addressing the imbalances in the feet and the impact they are having up the kinetic chain. Using the Structural Fingerprint® Exam, we assess the biomechanical imbalances with every test. We do-leg length, muscle tenderness, joint mobility, digital foot scan and then the biomechanical x-rays. These assessments help demonstrate imbalances, fixations, distortion patterns and in many cases, dysfunction.

In most cases, the body has gone years with imbalances and has learned to compensate for the collapsed arches and the abnormal biomechanics. Re-educating the body is critically important, and that starts with Foot Levelers custom orthotics. Once Foot Levelers custom orthotics are introduced to the foot and shoe, the body will go through a re-education period. Just by wearing the custom orthotics, the feet are forced to exercise different muscle groups to align the body and provide full body support.

Re-educating the body is critically important and can only be truly successful when the patient has continuity of support in all their shoes. A study in Time Magazine found that the average person has 27 pairs of shoes. Due to the multiple shoe types we all wear, it is critically important to equip each shoe type with a custom orthotic. Without the continuity of proper support across shoe types, the body will revert to and compensate for the imbalances and diminish your patient’s outcomes.

This means that we as providers need to address that issue at our report of findings. Take the time to understand how many different shoe types the patient wears, walk slowly through the explanation of cost, and stand firm on the importance of wearing them continually. The continuity of wearing these supports cannot be over-emphasized. The result will be a win-win for you and your patient.

For all my patients, I start out by recommending two pairs. A recent survey found that 61% of respondents said they wore two or three pairs of shoes in a week. A great start is recommending one pair for their athletic shoes and one for their work or dress shoes. These two pairs of custom orthotics alone will cover a majority of their week and ensure that they have the consistent support their body needs no matter what shoes they are wearing.

Foot Levelers Launches Elite Comfort Orthotic

ROANOKE, VA, July  3, 2018 – Foot Levelers, the world’s leading provider of custom orthotics, is excited to announce the launch of its newest custom orthotic, the Elite Comfort.

According to the Daily Mail, half of the world’s employees spend 75 percent of their working day on their feet.  Nurses, pharmacist, construction and assembly line workers can spend up to 12 hours day standing which can take a toll on their health. Especially without the proper support.

The Elite Comfort is specifically designed for patients who spend a lot of time on their feet and whose bodies need the extra comfort and support. The Elite Comfort is made of advanced materials including a durable top cover, a soft, but supportive mid layer, and extra shock absorption to cushion the heel strike. The Elite Comfort comes with Foot Levelers exclusive three arch advantage that provides full body support and is backed by Foot Levelers industry leading 1 year / 100% guarantee.

“The Elite Comfort is designed for men and women who spend long hours standing on their feet and need the comfort, support, and pain relief to keep going during and after the work-day ends. As the world’s leader in custom stabilizing orthotics, we are excited to provide the Elite Comfort to doctors and their patients whose bodies need the extra comfort and support,” said Kent S. Greenawalt, Chairman and CEO of Foot Levelers.

The Elite Comfort is available for patients today! Now your patients can have the extra comfort, support, and pain relief their body needs for long days on their feet. They also make a perfect second pair! To order call 800.553.4860.

About Foot Levelers

Foot Levelers is the world’s leading provider of individually designed functional orthotics, custom orthotic flip-flops, Shoethotics® and Sandalthotics®, as well as therapeutic products. We have been serving healthcare professionals and their patients for over 66 years with innovative products designed to help reduce pain in the feet, legs, hips, back, and neck, so people can enjoy a fuller and happier life at work, home, or play. For more information about how Foot Levelers is helping healthcare professionals deliver better health outcomes and lower overall health care costs visit https://www.footlevelers.com. To keep up with Foot Levelers, follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo @footlevelers.

 

###

If you would like more information, please call Nathan Day at (540) 682-2336, or email nate.day@footlevelers.com.

FOOT LEVELERS LAUNCHES NEW CUSTOM ORTHOTIC FOR WOMEN

ROANOKE, VA, June 25, 2018 – Foot Levelers, the world’s leading provider of custom orthotics, is excited to announce the launch of its 5th Avenue collection, a line of custom orthotics designed by women for women.

Heels and flats are some of the trendiest shoes for women however, they are also some of the worst for the feet and body because they provide minimal comfort and no arch support. Women are left to decide between shoes that look good with their outfit or shoes that feel good. Women’s feet should be comfortable, and their body fully supported no matter what shoes they are wearing.

The new 5th Avenue Stabilizing Orthotics are designed to provide comfort, support, and pain relief for women in flats and heels up to two inches. The luxurious top cover and super-soft mid-layer help keep the feet comfortable while the arch corrections keep the body balanced. The slim design helps the 5th Avenue fit easily into women’s flats and heels. It is perfect for women who spend hours on the job but need the comfort, support, and pain relief to keep going during and after the work-day ends.

“Women should be able to wear shoes that fit their outfit without the dread of how they are going to make their feet or body feel. With 5th Avenue custom orthotics, women can wear flats and heels that are comfortable for the feet and that provide the support the body needs. Wearing flats and heels has never felt better,” said Dawn Galbraith, Senior Vice President of Foot Levelers. 

The 5th Avenue collection is available for patients today! Now women can have the comfort, support, and pain relief their body deserves wearing flats and heels. They also make a perfect second pair! To order call 800.553.4860.

About Foot Levelers

Foot Levelers is the world’s leading provider of individually designed functional orthotics, custom orthotic flip-flops, Shoethotics® and Sandalthotics®, as well as therapeutic products. We have been serving healthcare professionals and their patients for over 66 years with innovative products designed to help reduce pain in the feet, legs, hips, back, and neck, so people can enjoy a fuller and happier life at work, home, or play. For more information about how Foot Levelers is helping healthcare professionals deliver better health outcomes and lower overall health care costs visit https://www.footlevelers.com. To keep up with Foot Levelers, follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo @footlevelers.

###

If you would like more information, please call Nathan Day at (540) 682-2336 or email nate.day@footlevelers.com.

Stay Cool, Look Good and Stay Supported this Summer

By Jennifer Illes, DC 

Summer and warmer weather mean more patients are wearing sandals and flip-flops! They are gaining popularity for use for a variety of occasions for their casual and comfortable style. A survey on 1,000 females showed that approximately 43% of them preferred wearing flip-flops over sports shoes during shopping. (1) And although it’s always fun to kick your typical non-summer footwear aside, sandals are typically known to be the most non-foot-friendly shoes.

The typical sandal or flip-flop is very thin and offers little support or cushioning to the foot. When wearing flip-flops, people tend to alter their gait by taking shorter steps, which often results in hip and lower back pain. 2 And while the sole may seem soft and comfortable, this can cause pain in the heels, arches, ball of the foot, and toes. The foot also ends up over-pronating (rolling inward) in flip-flops, especially with no added support for the arch of the foot. (2)

Flip-flops also make the muscles and tendons work overtime. Since there is only a little V-shaped strap coming from between the toes and across the arch of the foot, there is not much holding the flip-flop to the foot. As people walk, they end up gripping their toes, making the muscles and tendons in their feet do all the work, which can lead to tendinitis.

Of all the summer footwear options, flip-flops are the most damaging to the feet. And despite what we tell patients, they are going to continue wearing them. So here are 4 “C’s” for your patients to consider when choosing sandals or flip-flops this summer.

Top 4 “C’s” to Wear Custom Orthotic Sandal and Flip-Flops:

#1: Column of Support: Orthotic Sandals (like the regular custom-made orthotics) may correct foot positioning. While typically flip-flops are worn on a variety of uneven surfaces, like sand, their job is to realign the feet with the lower limbs of the body to reduce stress in the ankles, knees, and back.

#2: Comfortable: Orthotic flip-flops give ultimate comfort to the rest of the body. It’s easier to walk all day and still feel relaxed. The body is given a solid foundation from the feet contributing to a very good posture and alignment of the body. Also, you will notice it is quite easy to make strides with the orthotic arch support sandals as minimal strains are incurred to the arches of the feet.

#3: Convenient: Easy on-and-off means it’s convenient to wear at any point.

The great news is that Foot Levelers has a trendy variety of men and women’s custom orthotic flip-flops and sandals which are designed to offer the casual footwear with the support the world has long needed. Ordinary flip-flops can do a tremendous amount of damage to the feet and the body. Foot Levelers builds in their exclusive their 3-arch support to all their custom orthotic flip-flops that provide the comfort and support and helps align the body.

Assess your patients’ feet and shoes as part of your normal intake process, and don’t miss the opportunity to talk to them about having the proper support in their flip-flops. Encourage your patients to choose their summer footwear carefully—it’s critical to good health. Sandals or flip-flops that don’t properly support the feet negatively impact the kinetic chain. High-quality, supportive footwear, ideally with support for all three of the foot’s arches, gives the body a healthy, solid foundation that is less likely to experience biomechanical problems and more receptive to chiropractic care.

References
1. Carl TJ & Barrett SL. Computerized analysis of plantar pressure variation in flip-flops, athletic shoes, and bare feet. J Am Podiatr Med Assoc. 2008. 98(5): 374-8.
2. Parker-Pope, T. (2008, June 5). Summer flip-flops may lead to foot pain. Retrieved from http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/06/05/summer-flip-flops-may-lead-to-foot-pain/

FOOT LEVELERS RELEASES NEW DATES AND CITIES FOR THE PRACTICE XCELERATOR

Half-day training helps chiropractors improve patient care and take their custom orthotics business to the next level

Roanoke, VA – Foot Levelers is excited to announce new cities and dates for the Foot Levelers Practice Xcelerator®.

This free, half-day coaching session is a unique opportunity for doctors and their staffs to learn simple, executable, and proven models of care for both acute and non-acute patients. During this half-day session, chiropractors learn a step-by-step diagnostic process designed to address the clinical and financial aspects and challenges of the doctor-patient relationship. It is an intuitive, simple, and researched-backed approach to musculoskeletal care that improves patient outcomes, patient compliance, and the overall success of a practice.

“We are excited to announce these new Practice Xcelerators! Doctors who have attended a Practice Xcelerator are seeing real results in the overall success of their practice. This is an opportunity you do not want to miss. I encourage any chiropractor who wants better patient outcomes and better income to register to attend one of these upcoming Practice Xcelerators,“ said Dawn Galbraith, Foot Levelers Senior Vice President.

“The experience that I had at the Foot Levelers Practice Xcelerator is one that I soon will not forget. Attending the Practice Xcelerator has both improved my patient quality of care and the success of my practice as well,” said Dr. Seth Blocker.

New upcoming Practice Xcelerator cities and dates include:

Philadelphia, PA
Friday, June 8th

Schenectady, NY
Thursday, June 14th

Chicago, IL
Friday, June 22nd

San Francisco, CA
Thursday, June 28th

Los Angeles, CA
Friday, June 29th

Denver, CO
Friday, July 13th

Bethesda, MD
Thursday, July 26th

Charleston, SC
Friday, July 27th

Boston, MA
Friday, August 3rd

Orlando, FL
Thursday, August 16th

St. Louis, MO
Friday, August 24th

Newark, NJ
Friday, September 7th

Baltimore, MD
Saturday, September 8th

Niagara Falls, NY
Friday, September 14th

Atlanta, GA
Saturday, September 15th

Chicago, IL
Thursday, September 20th

Chicago, IL
Friday, September 21st

Philadelphia, PA
Saturday, September 22nd

Minneapolis, MN
Friday, September 28th

Anchorage, AK
Wednesday, October 4th

Overland Park, KS
Thursday, October 11th

Charlotte, NC
Sunday, October 21st

Madison, WI
Friday, November 2nd

Indianapolis, IN
Friday, November 2nd

Syracuse, NY
Thursday, November 8th

Raleigh, NC
Friday, November 9th

San Francisco, CA
Saturday, November 10th

Pittsburgh, PA
Friday, November 16th

Chicago, IL
Thursday, November 29th

Chicago, IL
Friday, November 30th

Denver, CO
Friday, November 30th

Oklahoma City, OK
Saturday, December 1st

Kansas City, KS
Saturday, December 8th

Chiropractors who are serious about wanting to grow their custom orthotics business should attend this event. Practice Xcelerator Alumni join an elite networking and knowledge-sharing group eligible for exciting perks like free customized marketing, special alumni-only contests, and alumni-only promotions.

Pre-registration is required due to limited seating. To reserve your seat, please call 800.553.4860 or register online at  www.FootLevelers.com/PracticeXcelerator.

About Foot Levelers

Foot Levelers is the world’s leading provider of individually designed orthotics, custom orthotic flip-flops, Shoethotics® and Sandalthotics®, as well as therapeutic products. We have been serving healthcare professionals and their patients for over 66 years with innovative products designed to help reduce pain in the feet, legs, hips, back, and neck, so people can enjoy a fuller and happier life at work, home, or play. For more information about how Foot Levelers is helping healthcare professionals deliver better health outcomes, and lower overall health care costs visit https://www.footlevelers.com. To keep up with Foot Levelers, follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo @footlevelers.

###

If you would like more information, please call Nathan Day at (540) 682-2336, or email nate.day@footlevelers.com.

Custom Molded, Flexible, Three Arch Custom Orthotics are an Effective Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis

Foot Levelers Plantar Fasciitis and Plantar Heel Pain

by Kevin Wong, DC

Our feet are perhaps the most overused and under-appreciated parts of the human body. We use them relentlessly, depending on them daily to bear our body weight, transport us places and allow us to stand, walk and run. Only in cases where they are painful do we bother to have them looked at. Even then, proper and complete knowledge of the feet, their movement patterns and their effects on the rest of the body are rarely adequately taught.

In the world of foot pain, heel pain and plantar fasciitis are among the most common ailments people consult a medical provider for. Up to ten percent of the population will present with heel pain over the course of their lives, and it can affect everyone who engages in weight-bearing physical activity. (1) It is important for the healthcare consumer to understand the various treatment options available.

Aside from physiotherapy modalities (i.e., cold laser, ultrasound, muscle stim, etc.), stretching/strengthening exercises and braces, foot orthotics are very often prescribed. The belief is the bottom of the feet are supported by an external device to “shore up the arch”.

British Journal of Sports Medicine

On March 19, 2018, an article was published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine (BJSM). The article was titled Efficacy of foot orthoses for the treatment of plantar heel pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis. It reviewed “current” literature and analyzed how effective orthotics were for plantar heel pain. In conclusion, the article found that there was no difference in improvement in pain or function between prefabricated, custom-made and sham orthoses in the treatment of patients with plantar heel pain.

Since the article’s release, some media outlets have released news reports discussing the article, but they have interchanged plantar heel pain with plantar fasciitis. Although the areas of involvement are close to each other, clinically speaking they are not the same and not synonymous. It is essential for patients and the public to know the difference so let’s make sure we define these terms as separate ailments.

Plantar Heel Pain and Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar heel pain is soreness or tenderness of the heel that has a location restricted to the underside or pad of the heel. It often radiates from the central part of the heel pad or the medial tubercle to the back of the heel itself.

Plantar-Heel-Pain

Plantar Fasciitis involves inflammation or irritation of a thick band of tissue (the plantar fascia) that runs across the bottom of your foot from the heel bone to your toes. In this instance, pain is located anywhere on or radiate from the medial tubercle across the plantar fascia up to the toes. Here the plantar fascia gets excessively stretched and irritated.

Because of their location, plantar heel pain and plantar fasciitis are not the same thing. It may seem like splitting hairs, but in the study, we mentioned above, their findings made conclusions only for plantar heel pain, not plantar fasciitis.

The argument of which treatment(s) are helpful for plantar surface foot pain has been made for years by different health care providers and patients. Some believe there is no effective treatment for plantar surface foot pain while others vehemently disagree. It comes down to the patient and their specific situation. There is not a one size fits all treatment for Plantar Heel Pain and Plantar Fasciitis.

How to Treat Plantar Heel Pain and Plantar Fasciitis

To better understand what can be done to help these conditions, let’s take a look at the anatomy of the feet. The twenty-six bones of each foot are supported on the underside by three arches: the medial, lateral, and transverse. Most people only think we have one arch.

These three arches are fully formed by age seven, and together they are vital for supporting not only the feet but the ankles, knees, hips, pelvis and the entire spine above.

Now back to the BJSM Study. Recall, that the study evaluated existing research that had previously been published. The article found that there was no difference in improvement in pain or function between prefabricated, custom-made and sham orthoses in the treatment of patients with plantar heel pain.

If one analyzes the information in the study carefully, the type of orthotics that had been studied were custom made or prefabricated, hard, rigid, single arch support inserts. The orthotics in those studies were not custom molded, flexible and three arch support. There is a big difference between these types of orthotics and those classically made which are rigid.

The types of orthotics discussed in the study did not provide adequate support for all three arches of the feet. So, to be very specific, the study itself came to conclusions that are aimed explicitly at classic hard, rigid orthotic with one arch support.

When a custom molded, flexible, three arch orthotic is worn by the patient, it gives the appropriate amount of support for the feet. The three-arch support takes the stretch or elongating force caused by the overpronation or supination to the plantar fascia and reduces it significantly minimizing or eliminating the pain.

Pat McKee, a retired University of Toronto professor of occupational science and therapy, used to teach students how to make custom foot orthotics out of thermal plastics. She had this to say about custom orthotics and Plantar Fasciitis to CTV News: “Some (custom orthotics) are created better than others. I think it is better if they are shock absorbing and not a hard plastic.”

Custom molded, flexible and three arch support orthotics do the following:

1. Absorb 30% more ground shock with each step thereby reducing the stress on the ankle, knee, hips, pelvis and the spine.
2. Provide individual support for all three arches under each foot in all weight-bearing positions.
3. Help enhance the nerve sensation, circulation and muscle balance in the feet.
4. The reduction of stress in the joints above the feet will allow the muscles to fire in a healthier pattern, reduce nerve involvement and reduce pain.
5. Help prevent injuries in the joints of the body that arises from the repetitive stress created by over-pronation and excessive supination.

Ultimately, treatment for Plantar Heel Pain and Plantar Fasciitis comes down to the patient and their specific situation. Custom orthotics can be an effective treatment for Plantar Fasciitis. The types of orthotics discussed in the study were hard, rigid orthotics with one arch support and did not provide adequate support for all three arches of the feet. Custom molded, flexible, three arch orthotics give the appropriate amount of support and take the stretch or elongating force, caused by the overpronation or supination to the plantar fascia, and reduces it significantly minimizing or eliminating the pain.

Athletes and Hip Injury Prevention

hip painby John Danchik, DC, CCSP, FICC

The competitive and the recreational athlete can each be affected by injuries to the muscles and ligaments around the hip.  These injuries can significantly interfere with sports enjoyment and performance levels, and they occasionally will end participation completely.  Poor shock absorption and excessive pronation have been found to be underlying causes or contributing factors for many leg/hip injuries. (1)  Orthotics, which have been custom made to improve the biomechanics of the feet and reduce the extent of pronation, can help to prevent many sport-related leg injuries.

Excessive Foot Pronation a Factor

Busseuil et al. looked at the foot biomechanics of athletes who reported a recent foot or leg injury and compared them to an uninjured control group. (2)  The researchers determined that those athletes with more foot pronation had a much greater statistical probability of sustaining one of five leg injuries, including iliotibial band syndrome (which is due to excessive tightness of the hip abductor muscles).  This study helps us understand how providing appropriate orthotic support to patients who are involved in sport or recreational activities lowers their likelihood of developing both traumatic and overuse hip injuries.

In the Busseuil et al. paper, sixty-six injured athletes who ran at least once a week, and who had no history of traumatic or metabolic factors, were the study group.  Another (control) group of 216 athletes were matched who had no symptoms of lower extremity injuries.  The amount of pronation during standing and while running at “regular speed” was determined by measuring the angles of their footprints.  This quick and inexpensive method of determining the amount of pronation during functional activities (plantar prints) had been previously investigated. (3)

The investigators concluded that those athletes with more pronation had a much greater likelihood of having sustained one of the overuse athletic injuries.  While both the standing (static) and running (dynamic) prints showed some correlation, the amount of pronation seen in the static weightbearing footprint was the most predictive of developing an overuse injury.  This study helps remind us that it is very important to athletic performance and for injury prevention to check the alignment of patients’ feet in the standing position.

Hip Injuries and Hamstring Control

Many hip injuries develop from poor biomechanics and gait asymmetry, especially when running.  Smooth coordination of the muscles that provide balance and support for the pelvis is needed for optimum bipedal sports performance.  This includes the hamstring muscles and the hip abductor muscles, especially the tensor fascia lata (the iliotibial band).  When there is a biomechanical deficit from the feet and ankles, abnormal motions (such as excessive internal rotation of the entire leg) will predispose to pulls and strains of these important support muscles.  The hamstrings (comprised of the biceps femoris, semimembranosus, and semitendinosus muscles) are a good example.

During running, the hamstrings are most active during the last 25% of the swing phase, and the first 50% of the stance phase. (4)  This initial 50% of stance phase consists of heel strike and maximum pronation.  The hamstring muscles function to control the knee and ankle at heel strike and to help absorb some of the impact.  A recent study has shown a significant decrease in electromyographic activity in the hamstrings when wearing orthotics. (5)  In fact, these investigators found that the biceps femoris — which is the most frequently injured of the three hamstring muscles (6) — had the greatest decrease in activity of all muscles tested, including the tibialis anterior, the medial gastrocnemius, and the medial and lateral vastus muscles.  The authors of this study theorized that the additional support from the orthotics helped the hamstrings to control the position of the calcaneus and knee, so there was much less stress into the hip joint and pelvis.

Hip Injuries and Excessive Pronation

Using orthotics to correct excessive pronation and to treat hip problems requires an awareness of the various problems that can develop.  The following is a list of the pathologies that are seen in the hip and pelvis secondary to pronation and foot hypermobility: (7)

  • Anterior pelvic tilt
  • Hip adductor muscle strain
  • Hip flexor muscle strain
  • Hip joint capsulitis
  • Iliotibial band syndrome
  • Piriformis muscle strain
  • Tensor fascia lata strain
  • Trochanteric bursitis

These conditions will develop much more easily in athletes who push their musculoskeletal systems, in order to achieve greater functional performances.

Conclusion

Excessive pronation and/or poor shock absorption have been shown to be an associated or causative factor in many leg injuries — from the foot itself, up the lower leg to the knee, thigh, and into the hip joint.  The good news is that many of these conditions can be prevented with custom-made orthotics.  Evaluation of foot biomechanics is a good idea in all patients but is especially necessary for those who are recreationally active, or for anyone who has experienced hip problems.  To avoid potentially disabling hip injuries, competitive athletes must have regular evaluations of the alignment and function of their feet.  Additional preventive measures include wearing well-designed and solidly-constructed shoes.  When athletes are provided with custom-made orthotics, we chiropractors can prevent arch breakdown and biomechanical foot problems, and we can also treat numerous injuries to the lower extremities, including the hip joints.

 

References

  • Dahle LK et al. Visual assessment of foot type and relationship of foot type to lower extremity injury. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 1991; 14:70-74.
  • Busseuil C et al. Rearfoot-forefoot orientation and traumatic risk for runners. Foot Ankle Intl 1998; 19:32-37.
  • Freychat P et al. Relationship between rearfoot and forefoot orientation and ground reaction forces during running. Med Sci Sports Exerc 1996; 28:225-232.
  • Mack RP. AAOS Symposium on the Foot and Leg in Running Sports. St. Louis: Mosby; 1982.
  • Nawoczenski DA, Ludewig PM. Electromyographic effects of foot orthotics on selected lower extremity muscles during running. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 1999; 80:540-544.
  • Garrett WE. Muscle strain injuries. Am J Sports Med 1996; 24:S2-8.
  • Hartley A. Practical Joint Assessment: A Sports Medicine Manual. St. Louis: Mosby YearBook; 1991:571.
  • read more

    « Older posts

    © 2019 Foot Levelers

    Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑