Orthotics/Gait analysis

Biomechanics is the medical and scientific understanding of the function and movement of your musculoskeletal system. Lower limb biomechanics is the area concerning how your feet, ankles, knees, hips, pelvis and lower spine work together to carry your body through the daily activities of standing, walking and running. Biomechanical abnormalities arise when this system is not functioning as it should.

These finely tuned movements during walking require specific actions at precise moments to allow painfree walking and running. When these movements are out of sequence or do not happen at all, then a variety of problems can develop including:

If a biomechanical abnormality that requires external support has been identified, then orthotic insoles may be prescribed for you. Orthotics provide support for the feet, which by improving alignment and controlling motion, reduces or eliminates pain in the feet, ankles, shins, knees, hips and lower back.

At an initial assessment at the clinic we will observe how you are walking and standing and we will examine the quality and quantity of the movements of your joints from your lower back down to your big toes. Your footwear will also be examined. From this investigation we will have a good idea of how you are supporting yourself and moving around on your feet and legs. We may prescribe custom foot orthotic devices to treat your abnormal foot function. Orthotics can be temporary, `off the shelf` or customised insoles that help restore regular balance to your standing and walking pattern. Additional stretching and strengthening routines for muscle groups may also be recommended to help the biomechanics of the feet. To make orthoses we will take certain measurements and then make Plaster of Paris slipper casts.

It is recommended that everyone who wears orthotics be reviewed every two years. In the same way as our bodies change as they mature, so do our feet and their support needs to be altered to allow optimal foot function. Under 18’s obviously grow in size also and these need to be reviewed every two years or two shoes size, whichever comes first.

Orthotics can successfully treat the following common conditions:
• Plantar fasciitis
• Achilles tendonitis
• Metatarsalgia
• Deformities such as bunions & corns
• Shin splints
• Knee Pain
• Low back pain
• Lower limb fatigue
• Hip pain