After over a decade in private practice, I continue to believe one of the most effective tools for relieving sore, achy, fatigued feet is adequate but comfortable arch support. Sounds simple, right? Think again! One of the most frustrating experiences I have as a podiatrist is helping my patients find and obtain a product that does just this. I’ve evaluated a massive number of over the counter arch supports, insoles, and orthotics, and have generally been underwhelmed.
When I also became a foot pain sufferer, I finally decided to design the “perfect” over-the-counter orthotic insole for my patients, as well as myself. Thus, the Samurai Insole was developed. By creating an orthotic insole that was comfortable, lightweight, affordable, and also fit in a wide variety of footwear, I was able to provide my patients with a convenient and effective way to get the arch support their feet needed. I quickly realized the magnitude of developing this simple little device. I could help so many people, many I’ve never met before, get back to doing the things they love.
As previously posted in our blog:
Dr. Lembo says common sense can go a long way when it comes to living with flat feet. His company, Samurai Insoles, is constantly working to develop products for people with flat feet, so they can get back to the activities they love, or simply come home from work everyday without limping.
Is there a person with flat feet who hasn't had one of those days when their feet have simply said, "Enough!"?
"The whole idea that people can make the right decisions about their feet, as long as you give them the information they need, that's what it's all about," says Dr. Lembo, a podiatrist who's been treating people with fallen arches for almost 20 years.
Dr. Lembo founded Samurai Insoles in 2013 and he says the response has been overwhelming.
"When we designed Samurai Insoles, we were simply creating something for patients in my office that had no other alternative for relief of their flat feet. They became so popular, we actually couldn't make them fast enough in the beginning. We've had thousands of happy users since then, it's really something."
It was important for Dr. Lembo to design a product that took all of the guess-work out of achieving comfort.
"When we started designing, every manufacturer we approached insisted that we have approximate sizing for our insoles, like everyone else out there. It makes it so much easier to stock and ship something when you have only 4 or 5 choices of size from a company standpoint. Then they make the customer chop up their new insoles to get them jammed into their shoes!"
After an exhaustive search, Samurai Insoles found the home they were looking for.
"We finally found a wonderful orthotic laboratory, right in the US, that told us they could do what we needed. Now we have thirteen sizes of Samurai Insoles available. Thirteen! This insures that anyone that needs them will get the exact ft they need. In our industry that's practically unheard of."
Samurai Insoles are specifically designed for people with flat feet, says Dr. Lembo. This makes them especially unique.
"Many people with flat feet can't tolerate custom orthotics because they're just too rigid to be comfortable. On the flip side most drug store insoles, or the one's you step on the fancy machine for, just aren't supportive enough. We needed something somewhere in the middle, and we've definitely achieved that. At least our customers say so!"
Flat feet commonly exhibit something called "overpronation", which describes the over flattening of the foot's arch when standing or when the foot hits the ground when walking. Samurai Insoles addresses this issue with a different approach, says Dr. Lembo.
"Many orthotics aim to control overpronation, but they usually restrict it WAY too much. Your foot needs normal pronation for shock absorption. So when it's restricted too much, it's really uncomfortable for your feet, as well as your knees and back. On top of that, people with really flexible fat feet like mine often can't tolerate that type of device."
What makes Samurai Insoles different is a piece of technology that isn't apparent at first, making them deceptively simple looking.
"We use a unique orthotic shell and we've tucked it away in a comfy padded envelope of material. It's really our secret weapon. Our orthotic shell decelerates overpronation, instead of blocking it. So, it flexes and springs back as you're walking. It's like having a spotter for a weight lifter, just enough comfortable support for your foot to get the job done."
It turns out, Dr. Lembo is no stranger to foot discomfort. Before he became a podiatrist, he dealt with this issue himself.
"I stlll remember what it felt like to be confused and overwhelmed by all the choices out there. That's a lousy feeling. You're just spending and spending, trying to find the right thing, but it always seems just out of reach," he says.
"One of the greatest things about designing Samurai Insoles is that now I get to use them too. And my parents. And many of my relatives. Did I mention fat feet are hereditary? We're a flat-footed family for sure!"
Read more about Samurai Insoles here!