Orthotics. Do you need them?
Orthotics, when properly prescribed, can reduce pain and improve athletic performance.
Orthotics are footwear inserts custom designed and made specifically for you to correct imbalances in your body. Such imbalances may
- Cause you pain
- Affect your sporting performance
- Cause potential problems in the future
Orthotics can help correct fallen arches or high arched feet, leg length discrepancies and help resolve ankle pain, knee pain, hip pain, lower back pain, and they even make an impact all the way up the body to the shoulders, neck and jaw. Not surprisingly, for most of us, it is difficult to see that our back pain could be caused by a foot problem, and we will never make this link without assessment.
You may be wondering if you require orthotics or not, or may think that you can buy some insoles from a high street or online shop. It is important to realise such insoles are totally different to prescribed orthotics as they are not specifically designed for your feet and are generally made from a soft, short-lived material. While insoles can be helpful in certain circumstances, most of the time they are offering no relief to your problem and sometimes can make the problem worse.
We all have or own unique foot shape and movement problems. To make this complex structure perform correctly requires an orthotic to be made exactly to your needs. A custom-made orthotic will put your foot in an ideal position at every stage of walking, running and pivoting.
Would I benefit from orthotics, you may be asking yourself? If you fit into one of the groups below, then you will most likely benefit from orthotics:
- You know you have different leg lengths.
- You stand more than 6 hours a day, especially on hard surfaces.
- You are overweight.
- You suffer from arthritis.
- Sports players and runners exert much higher forces and are likelier to have problems.
If you feel you may require orthotics, then we can assess you here at the clinic. This is called a biomechanical assessment, and it involves a mixture of looking at your posture and a variety of special static and dynamic tests. This would include digital foot pressure measurement and looking at you walking on the treadmill. If, during the assessment, we spot any imbalances, then orthotics will most likely be needed.
If you wish to know more or feel that you may benefit from orthotics then feel free to contact us here at the clinic.