I guess you could say the whole insole thing started way back when I was a student employee at General Motors during my summer holidays from Podiatry School. , I worked 5 summers as a student employee at the General Motors assembly plant in St. Catharines, Ontario Canada where I grew up. Four of the summers I spent on the V8 assembly line and one summer doing maintenance. Up until recently, I had lingering back pain as a result of those summers on the hard concrete surfaces of an automobile assembly plant. Sure, we had anti-fatigue matting at our workstation, sometimes stacked three or four high to get some sort of relief (“the heck with safety”). Even though I had a stationary job, I still moved quite a bit around my workstation, on and off the matting. The summer of maintenance was extremely destructive to my body, due to the amount of walking and complete lack of any anti-fatigue or comfort intervention. This was despite the fact that I was wearing very expensive top of the line safety footwear.
As, I was in Podiatry School at the time, ideas started to float around in my head. Through fifteen years of private practice in three different countries I continued to study and put the focus of my clinical practice on lower extremity biomechanics and insole and orthotic therapy. It wasn’t until years later though that the opportunity arose for me to put al my ideas into practical reality. I was asked to develop a shock absorbing insole for military use, due to the switch from jungle to urban soldiers. Current military footwear was designed for a jungle environment yet today’s soldier found themselves being deployed to mountain terrain or urban centers. There was a concern about the lack of shock absorption in these boots and the resulting lack of comfort and increased injury rates. I consulted with Professor Pat Carley who had done some early investigation into the use of anti-fatigue shock absorbing insoles with the US Post Office (and was not competently satisfied with any of the insoles that were available on the market at the time). I set about to develop and design the ultimate anti-fatigue comfort shock absorbing insole for use in both military and safety footwear. The idea being that in the workplace the insole could one day replace current anti-fatigue floor matting. Hence the MEGAComfort Personal Anti-Fatigue Mat Insole was born.
Since that time, I have since given up my private practice to travel around and educate both employers and employees alike on the benefits of insole in the workplace. It is such a wonderful feeling to be able to help people and the emails and thank you's I receive, makes it all worth while. As a Podiatrist colleague of mine recently told me, I am very fortunate that now rather then being able to use my knowledge and expertise to help 40 patients at most in one day, I am now able to literally help thousands of individuals daily all over the world.
Dr. Kevan Orvitz
The Insole Doctor