Testimonial: Susan Rogers
I suffer with a disability known as "dropped foot" (also called "foot drop"). This is a result of a ruptured disc in my lower back, which has since been removed, but has left me with some lasting nerve and muscle damage, the worst of it being "dropped foot" on my left side.
I cannot lift my weight with my left foot at all and must concentrate on every single step I take.
I walk with a limp and cannot run, jump, skip, or dance. Sometimes I stagger because I cannot support myself with my left foot. And because I also can't lower my body weight on the left foot, my whole left side takes an extra jolt every time I put that foot down when I'm walking.
It is jarring and painful and adversely affects everything from heel to ankle, knee, hip, and lower back. Chronic pain becomes a constant companion, and walking becomes an activity I want to do as little as possible, to avoid the pain. When I do walk, I must focus on each step to try to lessen the pain. I cannot walk along absent-mindedly, like most people do, or I will come down harder on the left side. Even with concentration, I could not avoid the limp and some pain, and after 10 years of this, I had developed a chronic pain in my left hip that kept me awake at night.
I would buy good running shoes, the ones with the most cushioning in the heel that I could find, and wear them until the cushion in the left shoe was mashed down from the pounding it had taken. The shoes would last two months at the most. I also own every gel and cushion insole out there.
Several weeks ago, my husband saw a colleague wearing [Z-CoiL® footwear] and asked her about them. She explained that she was wearing them because of knee and back pain and she said they helped her. He wondered if they would help me.
I contacted a dealer 29 miles away and he called headquarters in Albuquerque to inquire about any other people with drop foot who had been helped. I was encouraged when I learned that one gentleman with drop foot had great results. This encouragement was enough to get me beyond the negative Good Housekeeping review I had seen that was not very scientific or helpful.
I decided to make the trek to the nearest Z-CoiL® store and check out the footwear. They initially felt bouncy and a little strange, but very comfortable, and much to my surprise, I didn't feel like I was going to topple off of them. I took a pair home and wore them for four hours that evening. I told my husband at one point that I was torn between literally crying for joy and shouting from the rooftops because of the difference these shoes made for me in every step I took. I could feel leg muscles being used in my left leg that hadn't been worked in a decade. I was loath to take the shoes off at bedtime.
Usually it was pain that kept me tossing and turning through the night, but this night it was excitement over my new shoes. I was NOT in pain and I truly felt like I had been given a new lease on life. I decided that I would buy more styles of [Z-CoiL® footwear] and I would live in them.
My husband and I attended a semi-dressy event and I wore my white Freedom 2000s. My husband waited for me to get into the car, watching me come down the front steps of our house. When I got in the car he exclaimed, "You NEVER come down stairs like that!" Since I became disabled I have always come down stairs slowly and carefully, holding on to the banister on one side, or both sides if two are available. In my [Z-CoiL® shoes], which both increase my stability and significantly reduce the impact of stepping down, I was actually able to go "bouncing" rapidly down those few front steps without hesitation or even holding on to both banisters!
No, these shoes are not a cure for foot drop; I still cannot run, jump, skip, or dance, even when wearing them - but what I CAN do is walk with a barely perceptible (if even noticeable at all) limp. I can walk with surprisingly more balance, including on uneven surfaces like gravel. Most importantly, I can walk with FAR less pain, which means that I can walk more, even somewhat faster, and be on my feet longer. And once I really got used to the shoes, which takes surprisingly little time, I found I could actually walk comfortably without mentally focusing on every step, which for me is an amazing and wonderful thing. These shoes actually work with the way those of us with foot drop are forced to walk anyway, which is heel first.
From my experience as a person with foot drop, I can highly recommend [Z-CoiL® shoes] to anyone with dropped foot, and would be very surprised if they didn't make a significant difference in the quality of their health and life. I advise that a person be professionally fitted by a trained, authorized Z-CoiL® distributor to make sure the footwear and coil strength are properly adjusted for the individual's needs.
My [Z-CoiL® footwear] make such a difference that, because I can actually walk without so much effort, and with the pain factor reduced to virtually nil, I wear no other kinds of shoes. They're on my feet from the time I get up until the time I go to bed. I own three pair so far, and intend to buy more. (And hope to see more styles come out!)
Comments added April 8, 2005: I went bowling the other day - and after wearing nothing on my feet during my waking hours but Z-Coil® shoes for four straight weeks, walking in bowling shoes was a reminder of just how much difference my Z-CoiL® footwear makes. Gone was the spring in my step (no pun intended) and I felt hobbled again, limping and shuffling towards the line where I would just stop and throw the ball without the forward momentum that most bowlers have. I know that other people there must have noticed, but that didn't bother me as much as feeling like a cripple again, like I was walking on a wooden foot and struggling with every step. Believe it or not, I had actually forgotten just how disabled I am when I'm not wearing Z-CoiL® shoes.
Press Release: A Simple Footwear Concept is Changing Lives for Thousands of People in Pain