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.
Summer and warmer weather means more patients wearing sandals and flip-flops. They are very popular for use of a variety of occasions for their casual and comfortable style. A survey on 1,000 females showed that approximately 43 percent of them preferred wearing flip-flops over sports shoes during shopping. And although it’s always fun to kick your typical non-summer footwear aside, sandals are typically known to be the most non-body-friendly footwear.
Wear patterns on shoes can be a useful—though often confusing—indication of problems with the feet. By examining wear patterns, we can understand a patient’s gait cycle and recommend the appropriate adjustments and orthotics to enhance their performance. The confusing part can be explaining why certain conditions lead to certain wear patterns. For example, it’s counterintuitive to patients to explain why their foot rolling inward can cause excessive outer heel wear.
In order for your adjustment to hold properly, your patients need to maintain proper postural support throughout the day. Patients who quickly or easily slip back into postural misalignment after an adjustment are usually victims of improper support in their shoes. You must ensure your patients’ pedal foundation is corrected and supported all the time, to properly support their pelvis and spine. Davis’s Law says soft tissue models according to imposed demand. If pronation or supination exceeds norms of degree or duration, stability of the entire musculoskeletal complex is at risk.
In September, 2017, after serving for four years as the director of sports injuries and sports biomechanics at Christian Brothers Academy in Albany, New York, I received approval that would allow me to treat students in the school during the school day once a week. Before treatment each student had to first go through a complete biomechanical exam in my office, then go through a report of findings with their parents to decide if they wanted to go through weekly treatments at the school. To date, we have over 45 students getting treated weekly.