Testimonials for littleSTEPS®
"The littleSTEPS gait plates are exactly what we needed to help my son with his in-toeing gait pattern." CHANDA JOTHEN Doctor of Physical Therapy
As a physical therapist, I have worked with a wide variety of shoe orthotics and inserts. Often times, I have worked with different orthotists to find the right fit for the kiddo I’m working with.
Today, I want to talk about a personal experience with my own son and the shoe orthotic that finally worked for us!
In January of 2021, my son broke his leg sledding. He fractured his tibia and fibula and had what they call a Cozen’s phenomenon. I was warned this may be a possibility due to his type of fracture on day one.
Never heard of it? I hadn’t either and I had experience working in both orthopedics and pediatrics. It is something that may happen when a proximal tibia metaphyseal fracture occurs.
Fast forward 8 weeks and the cast is off, weight bearing has resumed, and slight knee valgus is already there. I was prepared for this to happen, but what I wasn’t prepared for was the increase in in-toeing that I also saw on his left side.
I should rewind a bit and mention that previous to breaking his leg he had a very mild in-toeing gait pattern, not affecting function, but not to the extent of what was happening after the fracture.
This picture was shortly after his cast was off. You can see the increased knee valgus on the left leg.
We worked on all the traditional core, hip, and lower extremity strengthening and lots and lots of swimming. His strength was good, but given the increased valgus of his knee he continued to have an abnormal gait pattern. We still continue to work on all things strength through play.
In the following videos he is aware he is being recorded so I’m not getting quite the gait pattern I would see naturally. He is trying to walk with less in-toeing due to being on video.
I tried many different over the counter foot inserts and orthotics without any great success. I even tried some kinesiotaping and he seemed to respond even worst to kinesiotaping.
The more I looked and analyzed his gait and slowed down the videos, I realized that he needed more control at his heel.
Enter In littleSteps Gait Plates
littleSTEPS are a line of over the counter foot orthotics from the company Nolaro24. This company has a wide selection of foot orthotics for the entire family.
The littleSteps Gait Plates were the game changer for us. They provided that control at the heel that I needed in an over the counter orthotic with the emphasis on reducing in-toeing.
With a Cozen’s phenomenon the maximum valgus deformity is often observed at 12-18 months that in most cases will gradually resolve within 3 years. So, I knew for right now, I knew his leg alignment wasn’t going to change for the better.
Below is a picture of his knee valgus about 11.5 months after the fracture. We are approaching the time where we will be seeing the maximum deformity. That being said, thanks to littleSTEPS gait plates his gait looks so much better!
Unaffected Side (Right Leg) Fracture Side (Left Leg)
I think that his barefoot gait has improved, even with an increase in his knee valgus, after the use of the gait plates.
Where I really could see the huge immediate difference was in his soccer league. His running pattern was even worst than his walking. The first day he wore his littleSteps Gait Plates on the soccer field I could see an immediate difference in his running.
He wears the inserts in his shoes everyday and I have a pair for his boots as well. I have been absolutely thrilled what these have done for my own son.
The littleSTEPS gait plates are exactly what we needed to help my son with his in-toeing gait pattern.
Looking back, due to his very mild in-toeing gait pre-fracture, I wish I would have used these when he was younger for a more optimal pattern.
With any in-toeing pattern I would encourage trying a pair of gait plates out! These work by utilizing a semi-rigid shell that effectively alters the break of the ball of the foot during propulsion to encourage the re-alignment of the hip during gait. They go even further to address foot pronation by incorporating the features of a foot orthosis including a deep heel cup, medial rearfoot posting, and skive to control subtalar joint pronation during contact and midstance phases.
CHANDA JOTHEN Doctor of Physical Therapy
..I honestly can't tell you the difference it has made with her – her teachers, our family and I all agree. She WANTS to wear her sneakers every day and tells me they help her run super-fast!! ...– she was running around crazy and I have never seen her do that before her magical inserts. Thank you for helping her be able to run and play and not know the difference." - Shannon M
"I am so pleased with the gains my three-year old son has made since he started using his LittleSteps orthotics. Because of his flat arches and tendency towards excessive pronation he has had difficulty with balance which was impacting his mobility and safety. Immediately upon using his orthotic inserts, his balance improved resulting in less falls, better coordination and he no longer complains of fatigue in his legs with walking and running. Best of all, his confidence has increased greatly! ~Melissa D, Physical Therapist (MSPT)