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Walk Fit Orthotic Inserts: Does it Work for Your Health?

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Walk Fit Orthotic Inserts: Does it Work for Your Health?
By: Lauren Keith

Day Two of my special "Does it Work" health tests focuses on the feet.

Walk Fit Orthotic Foot inserts promise your back will even feel better after wearing these inserts for a few days.  It also helps get rid of foot pain.  So, I wonder--can something as simple as a foot insert really relieve all this pain?  Let's ask Dr. Doug Foltz with the Ferguson Medical Group in Sikeston.

"Half a dozen patients or so have brought these in--lots with foot pain---and have asked me if these are effective or ineffective," says Dr. Foltz.

To find out, Dr. Foltz will even wear them himself.  In fact, he already wears specially-made shoe inserts to help a flat foot problem he's had since childhood.  That even prompted him to become a podiatrist.

"I've been through many different devices.  If I don't wear them, I've had knee problems in the past," says Dr. Foltz.

Dr. Foltz says the $20 Walk Fit brand shows some promise.

"The only thing I see at first is this is a very narrow product or device.  A lot of people have a wide foot," he points out.

What's interesting...Walk Fit provides you with different arch supports that you adjust.  You can choose a medium or high level.  Dr. Foltz chooses the highest support.

"There's a lot of pressure on my arch.  There's material up under my feet, too." he says.

So, how do they feel after he walks around a bit?

"They don't feel uncomfortable.  I tell patients it's always good to give it a fair shot and give it time.  Start off with arch devices easy.  If they start to feel uncomfortable, take them out of your shoes and continue gradually," says Dr. Foltz.

This doctor follows his own orders and agrees to wear the Walk Fit inserts for a week or so, but even before that testing begins and the more Dr. Foltz walks around in these, the more he's starting to think they're not going to work for everyone.

"The device is a bit firm, not too much cushioning and it's narrow.  My foot is overlapping it, so it's going to cause some discomfort," he says.

In fact, I spoke with Dr. Foltz again one week later, and he's not willing to wear the Walk Fit inserts any longer.  He says he could wear them for about four hours a day before he had to take them out because they caused too much discomfort, but he does feel others might have better luck.

"If you have the right foot to fit these, then you might do ok, but otherwise, they might cause you some discomfort," he says.

So, does Walk Fit 'walk the line" Dr. Foltz says 'no' for him, but points out, he is a walking testament of how personally-fitted inserts can work.  He and I agree somebody though, might fill the shoes for this product, so we'll give the Walk Fit Orthotic Foot Inserts a 'C plus' on this Does it Work test.

I got the Walk Fit inserts at Bed, Bath and Beyond in Carbondale.  You can also buy these $20 inserts at various stores, like some Walgreens.

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