July 8th, 2011
Study Shows SOLE Footbeds Reduce Plantar Fascia Strain by 34%
Study Shows SOLE Footbeds Reduce Plantar Fascia Strain by 34% Without Unnecessarily Controlling Other Foot Biomechanics
Optimizing Natural Motion™Recent research titled Changes in multi-segment foot biomechanics with a heat-mouldable semi-custom foot orthotic device (Benson and Ferber) published in the Journal of Foot and Ankle Research on June 21, 2011 shows that SOLE Custom Footbeds reduce plantar fascia strain by 34% but do not control other measured foot biomechanics (including rearfoot, shank, or arch deformation) compared to walking without an orthoses. The research also states that "...the moulded condition resulted in overall greater reductions in plantar fascia strain compared to the non-moulded condition." The research was exhibited at the National Athletic Trainers Association in June 2011
Why is this significant?This finding is significant in that SOLE Custom Footbeds (excluding other external modifications) do not control the natural biomechanics of your foot, yet reduce plantar fascia strain, a major concern for plantar fasciitis and other foot and lower body pain. SOLE products allow your body to function naturally, Optimizing Natural Motion™, with one focus being to reduce plantar fascia strain. It can also be inferred that SOLE Custom Footbeds, when worn in various types of footwear, do not interfere with the footwear technology, whether minimalist or cushioning, as the technologies work independently.
In addition, the moulded SOLE Custom Footbed resulted in greater overall reduction in plantar fascia strain than the non-moulded SOLE Custom Footbed, adding evidence regarding the improved efficacy of using a mouldable footbed vs. a non-moulded footbed as treatment for plantar fascia strain. To learn how to mould your footbeds, please check out our footbed fitting instructions page.
Here are some additional answers Dr. Reed Ferber provided, as a follow up to this research:
Q. Could this research be extrapolated to running (as the tests were done with subjects walking)?I would think that plantar fascia strain would be greater whilst running with no orthotic and that the plantar fascia strain would be reduced to a greater extent (greater relative change compared to no orthotic)... I would further hypothesize that plantar fascia strain would be similar between walking and running when using the orthotic. In other words, greater strain when running with no orthotic compared to walking (with no orthotic) ... little-to-no change in plantar fascia strain when running with an orthotic compared to walking (with an orthotic).
Q. In a population that wasn't "free from injury," specifically a population that was suffering from foot ailments including plantar fasciitis, would we expect even better results regarding plantar fascia strain?I would think that the results would be independent of injury status and depend more on foot structure. Someone with a flat foot (pes planus) would have greater relative reductions in plantar fascia strain whether they have plantar fascia pain or not.
Additional resourcesTo learn more about how SOLE can help, please check out our foot health section. If you're interested in learning more about heat moulding your footbeds, please check out this blog post. If you still have questions after reviewing these resources, please leave a comment below.
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