Pedorthics is the design, manufacture, modification, and fit of footwear, including foot orthoses, to alleviate foot problems caused by disease, overuse, congenital defect, or injury. It is footwear, carefully fitted, to relieve or accommodate temporary or permanent foot problems.
Our feet are the foundation of everything we do while mobile. They function as our interface between the ground and the great deforming force on the human body called gravity.
With each step a foot handles huge forces upon 26 tiny bones and the average person takes in excess of 10,000 steps per day and places a force of 3.5 times their body weight upon their feet with each step.
When the parts of this remarkable marvel of bio-mechanical engineering slip out of alignment foot problems and pain can start.
As this begins to occur, the pedorthic solution is to re-balance the foot and stabilize the limb for improved mobility.
The pedorthist takes his experience and knowledge of lower limb musculoskeletal biomechanics and applies it to either the doctor’s diagnosis or to his own assessment of the patient’s symptoms. His goal is to balance both sides of the lower extremities: from foot and ankle through knees to hips.
As the pedorthist assesses the biomechanics, he gives the physician or the patient many conservative, or non-surgical, treatment options. These can range from shoes professionally fitted, shoe modifications to assist in the control or realignment of the foot deformity, to over-the-counter or custom-made foot orthoses for improved support.
As ABC certified pedorthists, we have performed extensive studies of foot and lower limb anatomy; pathology; biomechanics, which involves human locomotion; gait analysis; footwear fitting; lower extremity orthotic design, fabrication and materials; shoe construction and modification; and patient management. After studying and being mentored, we have attended specific pedorthics courses which are prerequisites for the certification examination. Marsden’s certified pedorthists maintain their certification by following continuing education and renewal requirements.
Relying on the pedorthist’s ability to provide, fit, and maintain the appropriate footwear and to fabricate and manage the proper foot orthosis design can make a profound difference in the quality of an individual’s daily life.