Bunion Correction improves walking

Bunion Correction Improves Body Balance and Gait Stability

Current study at the Max Planck Institute displays a more stable, economical and harmonic gait when using the novel splint system Bunion Aid™ for bunion correction.

Munich, 17 Oct 2007 – The new splint system Bunion Aid™ with an innovative joint function for treatment and pain relief in case of hallux valgus not only corrects and supports the foot during the affection but also has an influence on movement and posture of the entire body. This is the result of a current study of the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Munich.

Accordingly, wearing Bunion Aid™ supposedly leads to a clearly improved body balance and a more economical and stable gait. The scientists have examined the movement behaviour of the test persons while walking with the Bunion Aid™ orthosis on and then compared it with other “conditions of the foot“.

They analyzed “walking with a splint“ as well as “walking barefoot“ and “walking with constrained toes“ meant to simulate the condition of the foot while wearing tight modern shoes. The tests were performed in the laboratory for sensomotoric coordination by Director Dr. Rafael Laboissière and the expert for "biomechanically optimised gait“ physiotherapist Ralph Schleer, M. Sc. at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences. Modern test methods were used like optoelectronic measurements allowing scientists to measure three-dimensional movement patterns and electromyography (EMG): by means of electrodes attached to the body activity currents of single muscles can be recorded during the course of movement.

The bunion correction improved entire balance and an economical gait

The scientists could demonstrate that wearing the Bunion Aid™ splint significantly helped improve the posture and the course of movement of the test persons while walking. While wearing the Bunion Aid™ splint the leg axes were clearly “more erect“ when compared to other two conditions. This means that while walking the hip was significantly more inline with the heel without displaying excessive and asymmetrical sidewards movement during the gait phases. According to the opinion of the researchers, this indicates improved gait stability by wearing Bunion Aid™, which not only benefits hallux valgus patients. The scientists state that the positive effect is achieved by means of the splay and support function of the foot orthosis, which leads to an increased contact surface of the foot and greater freedom of movement of the toes. The splint wearer has a more stable and flexible course of movement.

The results show the experts the positive effect on the gait by wearing Bunion Aid™: statics, dynamics and the entire balance of the body are optimised, gait stability is improved – even for those wearing it who do not have hallux valgus. That leads to more economical and flexible movement with more security at more joint relief. Thus the gait optimising effect of Bunion Aid™ can counteract excessive stress on especially the hip and knee joints during sports and everyday life – an interesting effect of the novel toe splint for those people who are not directly affected by "bunions“ (hallux valgus).

Information for the editorial staff:

Printable pictures concerning hallux valgus and Bunion Aid™ can be downloaded at www.alphaorthotics.com

Bunion Aid™ is a newly developed and internationally patented orthosis for the effective treatment and correction of the big toe malpositioning hallux valgus. The dynamic splint is fastened to the foot by means of a toe and metatarsal bandage, it supports the transversal arch of the foot and additionally supports the metatarsal by means of a pad. The metatarsal is optimally stabilised and the painful bunion is relieved, the toe malpositioning is corrected and the foot returned to its natural shape and held there. By means of an incorporated joint at the height of the bunion the base joint of the big toe can move naturally. Thus for the first time – contrary to the traditional rigid hallux valgus night splints – Bunion Aid™ enables wearing a hallux valgus splint while walking in comfortable wide-fitting shoes during the day.-

« Previous: Warm up exercises may reduce injuries stemming from bunions | Back to Bunion News articles