The Rise of Plantar Fasciitis– Everyone’s got it…but why?

As a Pedorthic clinic as well as a destination store for comfortable footwear, orthopedic shoes and high-end running footwear we see all kind of foot pain at Soles in Motion. Lately, though it seems we’re seeing one problem more and more, and that is plantar fasciitis.

Plantar fasciitis is an overuse/repetitive strain type injury, and typically presents as heel pain, often particularly acute first thing in the morning, or when getting up after being at rest.  Pain typically diminishes with a few minutes of walking but may come back with extended weight bearing.  Pain may also exist in the arch of the foot.

The plantar fascia is a band of connective tissue that connects the heel to the toes, and it supports the arch of the foot.  Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of that tissue and is typically brought on by a sudden increase in activity, improper footwear, poor foot biomechanics or some combination of these factors.  With the inflammation comes increased strain at the insertion point into the heel bone, and consequently increased heel pain.  The increase in pain in the morning or after rest is due to cramping/tightening of the tissue that occurs when weight is taken off the foot.

Given this information, the question becomes why are so many people from so many different walks of life suffering from the same condition?  It’s impossible to say for sure, but there are a number of possible explanations.  For one, as we become more knowledgeable about the dangers of a sedentary lifestyle more and more people are trying to be more active.  In fact, it seems almost everyone has a step counter of some kind these days!  While this is undeniably a good thing, it does increase the impact and strain on the feet. The prevalence of hard surfaces in our world (asphalt roads, concrete sidewalks, concrete floors, hardwood, tile, laminate) likely contributes as well.  One more option I’ve been considering recently is recent trends in footwear design.

It seems like footwear companies lately have shifted their focus toward making their shoes as soft and as lightweight as possible, often at the expense of proper support.  This creates a shoe that out of the box feels fantastic, and you’ll often hear rave reviews like “it feels like there’s nothing on my foot!”  However, these shoes are often marketed as “walking shoes” or “running shoes” and when footwear that lacks adequate support is used for physical activity it can often be a recipe for foot pain.

At Soles in Motion our trained footwear staff, as well as our two Certified Pedorthists are happy to discuss treatment options for plantar fasciitis or to discuss ways to avoid the problem in the first place.  Drop in or call for an appointment today!

Pedorthics vs Podiatry

One of the most common sources of confusion that we encounter at Soles in Motion is the difference between a Pedorthist and a Podiatrist. Today, I’d like to clear that up once and for all.

Imagine a scenario: You find yourself suffering from persistent foot, leg or back pain that just doesn’t seem to want to go away. It reaches the point where you decide something needs to be done, and so you consult with your doctor (or Dr. Google) and determine that you should be talking to somebody about custom foot orthotics. You call Soles in Motion, and the clinic coordinator offers to book you an appointment with one of our Canadian Certified Pedorthists. Typically, that offer generates a response something along the lines of “Pedorthist? Is that like a Podiatrist?” Well, yes and no. It’s true that both Pedorthists and Podiatrists work with feet, but the scope of practice is quite different.

According to the College of Pedorthics of Canada, a Pedorthist is “an individual who is trained in the manufacturing, fitting and modification of foot appliances and footwear” with the goal of “alleviating painful or debilitating conditions of the lower limb” and “accommodation of foot deformities” among others. So, a Pedorthist specializes in using orthotics and shoes to treat a number of conditions of the foot and lower limb.

A Podiatrist is a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine, meaning they have completed graduate studies and hospital residency in the field of podiatry. As such they are trained and qualified to diagnose and treat many feet and ankle problems. Podiatrists may perform minor surgeries as well as providing treatment for various foot ailments such as calluses, corns, warts, ingrown nails and many more. Podiatrists may also fit patients for orthotics in addition to other treatments provided.

Now, that still might not seem like a big difference, so allow me to summarize the key points. A Podiatrist is able to assess and diagnose your foot pain, and in some cases, they may be able to provide treatment in the form of minor surgery, corn, callus or wart removal, nail trimming or removal, etc. A Pedorthist is a professional trained specifically in the use of custom orthotics and related devices to treat various disorders of the foot and lower limb.

In the end, both professions are valuable resources for anyone dealing with foot pain, and many treatment plans will involve input from both Pedorthists and Podiatrists. That said, knowing the difference between the two will help you get started in the right place and get you on track to feeling better as soon as possible!

If you would like more information about Canadian Certified Pedorthists and what they do you can visit www.pedorthic.ca or www.cpedcs.ca, or you can contact Soles in Motion to book an appointment with either Graham or Sandra and they’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Don’t let sore feet slow you down this spring!

There can be many reasons why your feet hurt – improper footwear, not enough support in the right places, not enough cushioning, medical condition or an injury.  It is hard to know where to start.  The best option is to see a Canadian Certified Pedorthist for an assessment.  Assessments determine what the problem is and what solution would be best for you.

Custom and off the shelf orthotics are shoe inserts that can:

  • Correct gait problems
  • Address structural foot fault
  • Provide foot support
  • Relieve pressure on painful areas of the foot
  • Provide motion control

Custom-made orthotics provide individual correction specific for your foot problem. There are different types of orthotics.

Functional orthotics are used to correct problems with a person’s foot mechanics such as overpronation (the foot rolls inward) or supination (the arch is too high and the foot rolls outward) Accommodative orthotics are designed to fit and protect the foot generally from where it functions via cushioning and specific unloading and to relieve pain and pressure in the foot. They improve tolerance for the weight-bearing tasks of daily life and typically used with diabetic patients.

Custom orthotics can be used to treat many different medical conditions such as:

  • Arch pain
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Ball of the foot pain (Metarsalgia)
  • Shin splints
  • Bunions
  • Leg or knee pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Flat feet

Generally speaking, your feet should NOT hurt. Pain indicates that something is wrong.Consider making a no obligation appointment with one of our Certified Canadian Pedorthist to have a gait and lower leg assessment. The goal of the Pedorthist is to understand your foot problem and come up with a solution that will minimize your pain, maximize your mobility, and provide long-term gain.

Soles in Motion has two Canadian Certified Pedorthists on staff – make a no obligation appointment today by calling 902-468-7911.Submitted by Jen Estabrooks, Co-owner, General Manager, Soles in Motion, 133 Baker Drive, Dartmouth 902-468-7911 (solesinmotion.ca)

Happy Walking!

The Holiday Season!

Does it make you feel as good as we do! If not come see us! 

The team at Soles in Motion wants to thank everyone who has made our first year in our new location a success.  It brings us great joy to know we have helped enough people to grow and build a family of happy customers.  Our services and products are a great solution to all those who want to be healthier, more active and in less pain.  Whether you want to run your first marathon or do your daily chores the team at Soles in Motion will work together to come up with the best solution for you.

Whether your pain is from a medical condition like arthritis or an injury we have a wide selection of braces to fit you and your lifestyle.We offer a 30-day free trial program on our Osteoarthritis knee braces to make sure they are going to work for you before you commit to purchase.  We are dedicated to making sure our products work.  We also have a new world’s first unloader hip brace that is very successful.

This is the holiday season when shopping should be enjoyable, not stressful.  Most people want to shop and continue to be independent but sometimes the pain in your feet gives you a totally different outlook on the holidays.  Have a foot assessment, it will cost you nothing but your time, to see what type of treatment plan is recommended.  It is possible, you are wearing the wrong footwear, need a little help with an off the shelf orthotic, or you may require a custom orthotic.  Whatever it is the solution to being pain-free is priceless.

As part of a full-service team, we also offer a full range of athletic, casual and business footwear in multiple sizes and widths to improve your gait, cushion those sore feet, improve your runtime, stabilize your feet and help with alignment.  From head to toe we’ve got this!  Our staff are well trained and educated.

Usually, my talks are about certain conditions and how we can help, but I love the holiday season and my best gift to anyone is helping them in the healing process, reducing their pain and giving them the best quality of life possible.

Submitted by Jen Estabrooks, Co-owner, General Manager, Soles in Motion, 133 Baker Drive, Dartmouth 902-468-7911 (solesinmotion.ca)

 

Arthritis Awareness Month

September is Arthritis Awareness Month.  Here are some key points about arthritis that I am sure you have heard at one time or another but this disease needs public attention.  Arthritis can impair a person’s ability to perform “everyday” tasks. Physical activity has a positive effect on arthritis and can improve pain, function and mental health. Factors in the development of arthritis include injury, abnormal metabolism, genetic makeup, infections and immune system dysfunction. Treatment for arthritis aims to control pain, minimize joint damage and improve or maintain a quality of life.

There are many types of arthritis and one of the most common is osteoarthritis. I believe education and solutions to delay future damage and keep active is extremely important. Osteoarthritis is a progressive disease that tends to get worse over time. Because of this, early treatment for OA is incredibly important to take control of your disease, delay future damage and keep your joints healthy. Look at your non-surgical options, and make your own decision. As part of the Medicine in Motion team, there is a non-referral Knee Clinic day offered every month.  Patients can make an appointment directly with a Sports Medicine physician who specializes in joint injuries and diseases. Soles in Motion offers a no risk 30 day trial on our Osteoarthritis Unloader Knee Braces. By unloading the affected compartment of the knee, the unloader brace offers people with knee OA a safe, proven, low-risk treatment that will reduce your pain and improve your mobility. I have seen the results and am confident you will be able to maintain or return to an active and healthy lifestyle as a result. As part of our Centre of Excellence, we also provide physio, massage and a specialized exercise/rehab clinic dedicated to working with clients with injury and disease.

Soles in Motion focuses on providing you with the best solution to improve your lifestyle, mobility and activity level no matter what your ability.  Come in a talk to us, we would love to help you!

Submitted by Jen Estabrooks, Co-owner, Soles in Motion, 133 Baker Drive, Dartmouth

Osteoarthritis---rheumatoid-arthritis

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease of the entire joint involving the cartilage, joint lining and ligaments and underlying bone. The breakdown of these tissues eventually leads to pain and joint stiffness.

The joints most commonly affected by osteoarthritis are the joints that get heavy use, such as hips and knees, hands, the spine and also often the base of the thumb and the big toe joint.

Nearly 1 in 2 people develop symptomatic knee osteoarthritis by the age of 85, and 1 in 4 people develop hip arthritis in their lifetime.4 Knee osteoarthritis is one of the five leading causes of disability among non-institutionalized adults. Weight loss of 11 pounds can halve a woman’s risk of developing knee osteoarthritis.

Taking part in moderate physical activity 3 times or more per week can reduce the risk of arthritis-related disability by 47% in older adults with knee osteoarthritis.

Between 1979 and 1988, osteoarthritis was responsible for an average 0.2 to 0.3 deaths per 100,000 people. This figure has increased over the years, with OA accounting go around 6% of all arthritis-related deaths in 2003, working out to around 500 deaths per year.

These calculations are likely to be underestimated as they do not include deaths related to things such as gastrointestinal bleeding caused by medications used to treat OA.

For more information on osteoarthritis, see our article: What is osteoarthritis? What causes osteoarthritis?

Does your Back Pain travel down your leg?

Sciatica (pronounced sigh-at-eh-kah) is not a medical diagnosis in itself. It is a symptom of an underlying medical condition. Common lower back problems that can cause sciatica symptoms include a lumbar herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, spondylolisthesis, or spinal stenosis. Sciatica is often characterized by one or
more of the following symptoms:

  • Constant pain in only one side of the buttock or leg (rarely in both legs)Back-Pain
  • Pain that is agitated or worse when sitting
  • Leg pain that is often described as burning, tingling
  • Weakness, numbness
  • Pain that radiates down the leg and possibly into the foot and toes (it rarely occurs only in the foot).

The sciatic nerve is the largest single nerve in the body and is made up of individual nerve roots that start by branching out from the lower spine and then combine to form the “sciatic nerve. It runs from both sides of the lower spine through the buttock into the back of the thigh and all the way down to the foot. It serves a vital role in connecting the spinal cord with the leg and foot muscles.

When patients engage in a regular program of gentle exercises, they can recover more quickly from sciatica pain and are less likely to have future episodes of pain. Referred pain from arthritis or other joint problems that may cause leg pain (which feels like sciatica) is actually more common than true sciatica.

There is a wide range of sciatica symptoms and the type and severity of pain depend on the condition causing the symptoms, as well as the individual patient’s experience of the pain. Wearing a back brace can help relieve pain caused by sciatica and will not weaken the muscles but assist in recovery and relieving pain. It is always best to come in to see a Certified Brace specialist and try on several of the products to see if they are the right solution for you.

Submitted by Jen Estabrooks, Certified Brace Specialist, Co-owner, Soles in
Motion, 133 Baker Drive, Dartmouth 902-468-7911 (solesinmotion.ca)

Enjoy the Summer!

Skiing and Snowboarding season is here!

skiing-and-snowboarding-injuries

These popular winter sports are a great way to stay active.  Although the incidence of injury in both skiing and snowboarding is relatively similar, on the body where these injuries occur are considerably different. Skiers tend to injure the lower extremity – most commonly the knee – while snowboarders are more likely to injure their backs and upper extremity – specifically areas such as the wrist.

The most common knee injuries in skiing are the MCL (medial collateral ligament) and ACL (anterior cruciate ligament).  They occur for different reasons based on the skier’s skill level, the most common being when the knee tilts inwards and the lower leg is forced forwards. This often happens during a fall or when catching an edge.  Preventing knee injuries when skiing is multifactorial. With the pediatric and youth skier, appropriate strength is required before jumping into ski boots. This also is true for the adult skier. Areas of specific focus should be in the hip stabilizers, knee stabilizers, hamstrings and lower back.  Knee braces are designed to prevent injury during skiing and provide support and stability after an injury to keep you on the slopes.  There are several different kinds of knee braces for ligament protection – light weight, designed to fit with ski boots, provide the highest level of twisting and lateral movement.

The most common snowboard injury is the wrist.  The upper body is used to help generate turning forces on the board. In the event of a loss of balance and a subsequent fall, the instinctive reaction of a snowboarder is to outstretch a hand to try and break their fall. This mechanism is commonly known as an ‘FOOSH’ ( Fall Onto an Out Stretched Hand).  There are wrist braces designed to provide maximum protection for the wrist while allowing a range of motion to match your needs.  Made of carbon fiber, they are incredibly strong and are designed for high impact sports.

Soles in Motion services and products are an excellent solution for everyone who wants to be healthier, more active and in less pain.  Whether you want to ski, skate or do your daily chores.  Our team works together to implement the best solution for you.  Soles in Motion also offers a 30-day free trial program on our Osteoarthritis hip and knee braces to make sure they are going to work for you before you commit to purchase.  We are dedicated to making sure our products work.

Soles in Motion believes in giving back & building a community of happy, healthy Raving Fans!

Soles in Motion is a locally owned small business in its 10th year.  We believe small businesses keep people in town which benefits the community as a whole.  As a small business that believes in helping people lead an active lifestyle, we sponsor events and programs to encourage everyone to be active and involved.  Soles in Motion wants our customers to know how we’re making our community a better place and we find causes we’re passionate about.

Sole-Sisters-2016-Marathon_200Soles in Motion is the Presenting Sponsor of Sole Sisters Women’s Race Series.  Sole Sisters celebrates the strength of female runners and the lifelong friendships developed on and off the running roads with three events: June’s 5K run/walk, June’s Li’l Sisters Races and October’s 5K, Quarter & Half Marathon.  Sole Sisters supports Girls Gone Gazelle Run Club.  These races help make Girls Gone Gazelle an empowering program for girls in our community!

maritime-race-weekend_logoSoles in Motion is a sponsor of the Maritime Race Weekend.  Maritime Race Weekend Association is a not-for-profit society committed to raising money to support local not-for-profit groups. Maritime Race Weekend encourages and motivates everyone in our community to get more active. The race takes place on September 16th& 17th.

the_lung_association_nova_scotia_runway_runAlways dreamed of walking down the runway!  Well Soles in Motion is an Executive Class Sponsor of the Nova Scotia Lung Association Runway Run.  Hit the runway with us at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport on September 10, 2016 to help make Nova Scotia a healthier place to live and breathe!

shoes-at_St.-Andrew-United-ChurchAs part of our commitment to helping others, we encourage our customers to bring in their gently worn shoes and donate them to Dr. Colin Van Zoost’s organization, Walk in our Shoes, at St. Andrew’s United Church every Sunday.  He and other volunteers fit the homeless in the Halifax area with footwear and give foot care services.  Soles in Motion has been doing this for over 5 years and is committed to help people less fortunate in our area.

Internationally, Soles in Motion has found a way to help those less fortunate by donating braces, footwear and other products through one of our favourite customers who travels to health care centres located in small towns throughout South Africa to help those in need.

soles-in-motion-Canada-Cuba-GoodwillWe were also very pleased to play a small part in the Canada Cuba Goodwill Tour when we were given the opportunity to donate new footwear to the young Cuban baseball team that came to visit Halifax Regional Municipality.  It is so important for our young people recognize how fortunate we are to be Canadians.

We would love seeing you!

Get back to what you do best!

Most people have some type of back problem at one time or another in their lifetime.  Back problems can occur anywhere from the neck to the tailbone and can be a result of wear and tear, overuse or injury.  Injuries frequently occur when you use your back muscles in activities that you do not do very often such as lifting heavy objects, yard work, painting, etc.  Overuse injuries are most often from improper movement or posture.  Minor injuries also occur from tripping, falling a short distance or excessive twisting of the spine.  Severe back injuries may result from vehicle accidents, falls from significant heights, direct blows, a high-energy fall onto the buttocks, or a penetrating injury such as a stab wound.  Common medical conditions/deformities such as ankylosing spondylitis, osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, scoliosis, kyphosis affect your daily activities, restrict movement and cause different levels of pain. There are many thoughts on the effect of a back brace.  Some facts on back braces are:

  • Back braces remind the wearer to avoid undesirable movements
  • Back braces help to achieve proper posture
  • Back braces stabilize the pelvis and spine

A very common myth is that wearing a back brace weakens the abdominal muscles and causes poor body mechanics.  Back braces are designed to help the wearer achieve proper posture and increase awareness of the position of the pelvis and spine.  This constantly reminds individuals of their body positions, making it easier to avoid undesirable postures while in the healing or strengthening process.  By increasing the intra-abdominal pressure, a back support acts much like the stays and support rings of a barrel.  If the support rings are tightened a stabilizing effect is achieved.  A properly designed spinal support stabilizes the spine and acts in the same way.  There are many types of back braces. It is important that the correct brace is selected for the condition or injury but as well, it is as important that the brace fit the shape of the individual.  When the patient cannot avoid certain activities, such as work, then the use of a brace is an important part of the treatment process.  It is important that you be assessed by a professional who takes all aspects of your health, lifestyle, and body type into consideration.  Most insurance companies cover braces if prescribed by a medical professional.

Soles in Motion also encourages you to come in and talk to us, let us assess your gait and the footwear you are wearing, these too may be contributing to your pain.  We are here to help and keep you moving no matter what your abilities!

Submitted by:
Jen Estabrooks,
Co-owner, General Manager,
Soles in Motion,
133 Baker Drive, Dartmouth 902-468-7911 (solesinmotion.ca)

Be Smart – Choose Summer Footwear……

BE SMART – CHOOSE SUMMER FOOTWEAR AS CAREFULLY AS YOU CHOOSE YOUR WALKING & RUNNING SHOES!

spring-shoes-soles-in-motionHow many of you take time to choose the right footwear to walk, run, work in but come summer put on a flip flop that is flat, thin and consists of very little material?  Can’t wait to get those feet out of your good healthy shoes and feel the summer heat!

Healthy feet are vital for feeling good and being able to stay active, whether your day consists of your work routine or other activities. Neglecting your feet can lead to unnecessary pain and other foot problems later.

The right type of footwear, with the right foot and the right shape, are essential to keeping your feet healthy and happy.

Things to look for in healthy, stylish summer sandals and shoes are cushioning, arch support or removable insoles for those with orthotics, well-constructed and adjustable straps.

Summer styles even flip flops need to be good for your feet.

Soles in Motion specializes in choosing summer sandals and footwear that keep your feet healthy, happy and styling!  We have over 100 styles to choose from. Your feet are worth it.  Make lying around in the sun this summer your choice, not because your feet are hurting too bad to move around!