Welcome to the Podiatry Arena forums

You are currently viewing our podiatry forum as a guest which gives you limited access to view all podiatry discussions and access our other features. By joining our free global community of Podiatrists and other interested foot health care professionals you will have access to post podiatry topics (answer and ask questions), communicate privately with other members, upload content, view attachments, receive a weekly email update of new discussions, access other special features. Registered users do not get displayed the advertisements in posted messages. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our global Podiatry community today!

  1. Everything that you are ever going to want to know about running shoes: Running Shoes Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Have you considered the Critical Thinking and Skeptical Boot Camp, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Have you considered the Clinical Biomechanics Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Have you considered the Clinical Biomechanics Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
Dismiss Notice
Have you liked us on Facebook to get our updates? Please do. Click here for our Facebook page.
Dismiss Notice
Do you get the weekly newsletter that Podiatry Arena sends out to update everybody? If not, click here to organise this.

Applied kinesiology and foot orthotics: True or scam?

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by Kahuna, May 5, 2009.

  1. Kahuna

    Kahuna Active Member

    Members do not see these Ads. Sign Up.
    Re: Leg length discrepency how do you measure clincally?

    Interestingly, the owner of an orthotic lab here in the UK is doing a PhD in LLD.

    He has absorbed a practise from kinesiology (yes, it's true!) where you get your patient to stand with different heel raise levels under the short limb and "press" on their out-stretched arm. At the point they can resist the operator's downward pressing the strongest, they are considered to be standing on the best heel raise (or sole raise) for them !!!

    Interesting thing is though, that while he has brought this in from kinesiology, an orthopaedic lower limb surgeon I work with, suggested that it may simply be that our upper body and torso is strongest when our sacral base is level. (ie, back to the ASIS/PSIS exam for a LLD)

    Maybe something for you to critique Charlotte in your MSc
  2. Re: Leg length discrepency how do you measure clincally?


    What about the good old ideomotor effect?! Tested and repeatable (very). Be interesting to see the methodology but I wonder how this very very powerful effect has been eliminated from the methodology?!

    The ideomotor effect, for them as don't know, is the mechanism for subconscious movement. These are movements which happen below the level of awareness and the subject is not aware they are making them. The classical experiment is the Ouija board wherein people can honestly believe that the glass is moving under its own power and not being pushed by them.

    An experiment was carried out wherein a Ouija was used but the tester had placed a thin glass disk atop the glass so the fingers rested on this. Who can guess what moved, the glass or the disk?:rolleyes:

    The effect is also easily reproducible under hypnosis and is often used by hypnotists who believe the "special state" model to "prove" their position. Again, it has been shown that appropriately motivated individuals can achieve all of the phenomena without recourse to hypnosis. :eek:

    Pendulum dowsing is another example. With a modestly suggestable subject you can cause a pendulum held by them to swing in a line or a circle as you suggest to them that it should be so. However many a pregnant mother will do this to try to derive the gender of her child and beleive that it happens because her body "knows" what it is carrying. *

    As Occam points out "Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate". One should look first to the known and established reasons for the changes in muscle power (ideomotor) before seeking the esoteric! Standardise the strength of the pull, eliminate the patients, and the clinicians knowledge of what wedges are where (double blind) and test for repeatability and we may have an area of interest! Perhaps that is what he is doing.

    Skeptical Bob

    * my wife, to my considerable frustration (which i'm sure is why she did it), did this both times she was pregnant. It worked precisely half the time :rolleyes:.
  3. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

  4. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    Does anyone actually know the name of this test? Better, yet anyone seen a video on Youtube of it (I can't find one).
  5. Stanley

    Stanley Well-Known Member

    Re: Leg length discrepency how do you measure clincally?

    For those that have not taken any course work in applied kinesiology taught by certified instructors, the test described above is not taught. The main reason is that the muscle test is used on one muscle, not a group of muscles.


  6. DaVinci

    DaVinci Well-Known Member

    I did some digging around on this and found this from PM News:

  7. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    Have a look at this for some snake oil:

    Last edited: Sep 22, 2016
  8. This morning I watched this and then went to test it out on the other half. I didn't tell her what it was about, I just performed the tests as described. I asked her to hold out her arm and say "I am a women"; test= strong. Then I asked her to say "I am a man"; test = strong. I told her she's a hermaphrodite and got a slap. Can I sue these charlatans?

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2016
  9. Simon and Craig:

    I watched the video and of course it initially seems like hocus pocus. However, on further reflection, I don't see why this sort of change in apparent muscle strength with different types of central nervous system (CNS) "mental imaging" should necessarily be considered "snake oil" without further investigation.

    Even when individuals are asked to sustain a maximal volitional contraction of a muscle group,we know that the CNS does not fully recruit all the available motor units (motor unit = motoneuron + all its axonal branches + all muscle fibers contacted by those branches) at any one time. They are discharged in various orders, generally from small to larger motor units, with significant inhibition of motor units from the CNS also.

    We also know that some individuals, when confronted with life and death situations are able to perform what seem like superhuman feats, called "hysterical strength". Feats of hysterical strength are thought to be due to the CNS reducing any inhibitory input to the muscles and recruiting all the available motor units at the same time, all to generate these remarkable external forces that may allow, for example, a mother to lift an automobile off of her child.

    Weight lifting or throwing athletes also sometimes have remarkable days where they can lift more or throw significantly farther than on other days, creating personal records or even world records, which may also be reasonably explained by the CNS optimizing their motor unit recruitment patterns so that they can maximize their physical performance as may be suggested by the following research paper.

    Therefore, because of these facts, I would not readily assume that distraction of the CNS with different thought processes or "mental images" does not change the external forces generated by maximal volitional contractions such as in the video shown above. Of course, if you wanted to perform this experiment correctly, a force gauge would be need to be used to quantify the force generated by the muscles using different mental images in the subject to see the percentage change in force and whether this is a consistent observation, or just a random isolated observation that is being video-taped for promotion of some other product.

    Sounds like a job for ..........the Podiatry Arena Myth Busters!!:drinks

    (By the way, good to see some CNS-muscle physiology stuff here. Don't assume this subject is not extremely important as I have found that most podiatrists have very little knowledge of this subject.)
    Last edited: May 24, 2009
  10. Stanley

    Stanley Well-Known Member

    Here is a reference I think you will find helpful. Please note the discussion of the test seen in the video.


    Also on the video, even if the test of a group of muscles was valid, look at the speed of the test. A proper test would have a slowly increasing force, not a quick force that would not give time for the muscle units to summate.


  11. Deborah Ferguson

    Deborah Ferguson Active Member

    Hi All
    I have very little experience or knowledge of AK except from one patient who made almost weekly visits to her kinesiologist. She was frequently told that she lacked a variety of either vitamins, minerals or both or was allergic to all manner of things! and returned from said appointment with a large bag of pills at 30 or 40 quid a throw.
    60 foot long anaconda oil methinks
  12. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    I followed up on one of the books promoted in the video:
    Power vs. Force: The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior by David R. Hawkins
    At amazon.com, it has 167 5star reviews and 25 1star review. Here are come quotes from the 1* reviews:
    And this gem:
  13. Stanley

    Stanley Well-Known Member

    Obviously, David Hawkins, and the rest of the charlatans do not know Applied Kinesiology. Anyone that has taken any course work by an approved instructor by the International College of Applied Kinesiology, would know that the type and manner of testing and what it is supposed to show is not in accordance with anything that is formally taught. Geroge Goodheart was concerned about his discipline getting hijacked by the know nothings, so he established the International College of Applied Kinesiology to prevent this from happening.
    I can only liken this to what I see with orthoses. Imagine that there is a shoe store salesman who gets taught by a massage therapist who learned foot biomechanics by working in an office of a chiropractor. Imaagine this same fellow is selling arch supports and is using a theory he developed to substantiate what he is doing. I am sure that what is spewed is not going to resemble the intellectual discussions on this list serve. In fact, if he tried to post some of his wacky theories on an orthopedic listserve, they would have a field day tearing down the whole profession of podiatric medicine. What does this shoe store salesman have to do with podiatry? The same as the charlatans that talk about using an improper test performed imporperly to tell if the person is doing something good for the universe-absolutely nothing.

  14. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Thanks Stanley. I actually find this kind of stuff fun! The fanaticism that so many pursue a cause (whether it being the loony left politics; the above version of 'applied kinesiology'; running barefoot; root biomechanics; religion etc). The parallels between them all are uncanny; the nature of the arguments they use; what they think 'science' actually is; the way they handle contradictory evidence; the illogical baffling arguments; the way they respond to criticisms; etc are all the same! It make it fun to bait them!

    The best part is when they get backed into a corner the hate mail campaigns they run and even death threats they make! (ever watch Bill O'Reilly on Fox? Even though he is on the right; the best part of his show is at the end when he reads out his hate mail from the loonie left! He is cleverly making the left look really stupid by reading the threats he gets, and thereby strengthening his argument!)
    Last edited: May 31, 2009
  15. Ian Linane

    Ian Linane Well-Known Member

    OMG - I was a religious minister for many years :dizzy:, I do comp' medicine and use acupuncture point to treat emotional distress :empathy:. I guess now it is confirmed that I have really lost the plot :boohoo:

    Actually Craig I would agree that it is not the fervor, nor the passion that is ever the problem but the peculiar trait we can all possess towards an unquestioning fanaticism in any area: Religion, medicine, skepticism, science, dismissiveness.

    Equally I'd agree with Stanley that it is often the way others take an approach, market it and do the approach poorly that can so often undermine that which may be good in a thing.

    I guess I've been exposed educationally to much religious and spiritual thinking and practice, absorbed and studied the more esoteric comp' med approaches to good benefit and been exposed educationally to a more scientific approach and been able to re-evaluate much of life's experience and education from that perspective as well.

    None the wiser of course, but an interesting journey. :cool:

  16. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Not 100% connected to this thread, but couldn't find a better one to add this post to, and not convinced it was worthy of its own new thread. [It smells like applied kinesiology to me, but if not then Admin please feel free to move to another thread.]

    Topic of discussion: The Power Balance bracelet.

    Came across this a while ago as quite a few of my sports patients were wearing them (particularly the golfers) and anecdotally reporting that they noticed huge differences in their performance. The bracelets are described as "performance technology that uses holograms embedded with frequencies that react positively with your body’s natural energy field". Sounded like BS to me but a quick look on their website and it seems some big name sports stars (Shaq to name the biggest) subscribe to them. Placebo effect? Lucky charm effect? Does it matter?

    Heres the UK website: http://www.powerbalanceuk.com/

    And if you're still not convinced then surely there's no arguing with this science:

    So mine was delivered middle of last week.

    Haven't played golf (or any sport) with it yet, but was dicking around with it in my hotel room with a couple of mates whilst at the SCP conference the last few days. We performed the tests as shown in the above you tube clip. Sceptical is an understatement. Just in the process of trying to come up with a decent way to do these tests with the subject a bit more 'blinded'.

    Anyone common across this? Any personal experience of it? Thoughts?

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2016
  17. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    The simple question I have to anyone who claims that these power bands do what they say-
    Where is the study to demonstrate it?
    The 'test' they do would be soooooo easy to turn into a double blind random trial, why hasn't it been done and published?
    Until I see this... What a crock of s___! Should be called placebo bands...
    I am sure this will be one day used as a demonstration of clever marketing. What do they sell for? About $60? What would they cost to make? About 50c? If that...
  18. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    From Australia's 'Choice' magazine- the publication of the Australian Consumer's Association...
    Power Balance bands - which claim to increase an athlete's performance through increasing the natural energy flow - is simply just a rubber band bracelet with a plastic hologram, Choice said.

    Choice said the bracelet, which is "endorsed by sporting pros" and sells "for a mere $60 alongside claims it somehow makes you stronger, more poised and just better. The band was tested at Choice under controlled lab conditions, which showed it did little else than empty purchasers' wallets".
    It has picked up a "shonky" award for poor and misleading advertising
  19. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Hey Craig,

    Any more details on the methodology employed during these 'controlled lab conditions'?


  20. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    I will follow up as I am actually a subscriber, but I only saw this in part of a newspaper article.
    I would expect a little more rigorous methodology than in the video above...
  21. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member


    Also this...
  22. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Thaks Craig - that's a nice study. I was in the process of designing one myself but was going to use a different band for the control (like a Livestrong or Help for Heroes one). Didn't think about just removing the hologram...

    Another one I'm dabbling with is a similar methodology but with a jacket they put on which either has the powerband in the pocket or not (they say you don't need to wear it; just need to 'have it on your person' for it to work!)

    On an anecdotal note, I spoke to a guy at my golf club recently who wears one. He is a retired engineer, so has a very logical mind and perhaps unsurprisingly likes to know how everything works. (The kind of kid who dismantled and put back together his VHS player I imagine). Anyway, he swears since wearing this band his golf game has transformed - he has won several monthly medals and cut his handicap by 6 shots. When I hinted at the placebo effect he winked at me and said "I'll take it"
  23. Seems odd to have to carry out a study into the blindingly obvious!!
  24. efuller

    efuller MVP

    Doh! I was going to start to put holograms on my patients orthotics. Everyone knows that holograms work better when closer to the ground.

  25. Clifton Bradeley

    Clifton Bradeley Active Member

    Hi Craig, Kevin and all,

    AK might be an interesting read for those interested, or a fun trick to play on a mate at a party after a few beers, however for some reason I appear to be lab owning PhD researcher mentioned at the start of this thread, which is the only true bit. But for some reason the originator of this thread has me down as assessing all my patients with AK. I remember a very long time ago having fun with it for a couple of hours with a visiting podiatrist to our lab, which he introduced me to, however sadly folks I am not a believer. For me I'm afraid it's all about off-loading ascending and descending forces from painful areas, created by displacement of the COM due to leg length inequality. Nothing as exciting as AK etc However, I would be delighted to show the originator of this thread what we do and share a coffee. You can even have your own mug :)

  26. Hologram mug? ;)
  27. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Powerbalance band update....

    A patient of mine invited me to his golf course in Essex today. What a perfect opportunity for me to wear my new fancy wrist band I thought. (Not so much a RCT as a field test). This was my first outing for almost a fortnight due to a minor lumbar spine issue. And...

    I shot a personal best.
    Beat my previous PB by 3 strokes.
    Handicap dropped.
    And then I met Clive Allen in the changing rooms* (this a big deal for a Tottenham Hotspur fan).

    Do I believe in Applied Kinesiology or in the 'science' behind the Power Balance band? No. I'm with you guys - it's probably a load of cobblers. Will I be wearing it when I play again on Saturday? Hell yeah.

    *I'm willing to concede this may have had nothing to do with the Power Balance band.
  28. Griff

    Griff Moderator

  29. Ian:

    If you removed your Power Balance band from around your putter and put it on your wrist, you would note even more improvements.:rolleyes::cool::drinks
  30. Griff

    Griff Moderator


    The way I putted today couldn't have been much worse if someone had catapulted the band directly into my eyeballs.
  31. David Wedemeyer

    David Wedemeyer Well-Known Member

    I've never been very adept at golf but I do rub Enzyte™[​IMG] on my Power Balance bracelet before hitting the nightclubs. I find it balances me, even with all of that pulling and tugging in a crowded room of strangers...muscle testing to follow....;)
  32. My understanding is that if you rub a little of that Enzyte on your putter every night, you probably won't need that Power Balance band any more.

    Maybe this is the same stiffness concept that Mike Weber and Simon have been going on about for the past six months?:eek:;):D
  33. Ah, the well know energon entropy effect. It tails off over time.

    Can I interest you in buying some of my magic beans? Get you right back on your game they will! ;)
  34. Only if you can "magic the beans" in the same manner in which Gareth Hunt used to.
  35. footfan

    footfan Active Member

    I have a very similar product called a Breo Roam watch - http://www.breo.com/item/RoamWatchYellow_195_0_2209_1.html it was recommended to me by a fellow pod due to its low cost and durability but when it came in the post the packaging was making big claims such as
    "A naturally occurring mineral, tourmaline is widely used as a semi-precious gemstone and is responsible for many beneficial health effects including: - Increased concentration - Natural detoxification of the body - Improved sleep, relaxation and meditation - Improved vitality and mood " i just like the watch but now they are mking headphones and claiming they do the same thing .

  36. footfan

    footfan Active Member

    UPDATE: they have since i first recieved my watch in February 2010 removed claims on thier website about the headphones, the watch claims still stand.
  37. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

  38. Sounds like Brian Rothbart to me.

  39. David Wedemeyer

    David Wedemeyer Well-Known Member

    I had the most unusual experience just this week with AK in my office. A trade office that represents Korean business owners contacted us recently and asked if the owner of a new insole product could come to my office and show me the product and bring us lunch. I'm always game for a gratis lunch so I accepted.

    The insole was fashioned in a manner where the arch support could be adjusted longitudinally along the insole for comfort. The businessman had me stand on the devices and then began muscle testing me as they do in AK. He had me hold my bent arms out in front of my body and clasp my fingers together and them applied a force downward and repeated this off of the insoles.

    I didn't have the heart to ask the interpreter what relevance this had to the properties of the insole and given that the box made claims that the metal piece in the adjustable medial arch support "improves the circulation", I just smiled and nodded.

    They forgot to bring lunch btw :)

Share This Page