The XGAMES is still rolling full steam on their world tour! That gives well ALINEd athletes more opportunities to show their stuff, develop new tricks, and keep bending the laws of physics on a global stage. ALINE has managed to grab quite a few top spots over the years, but this year we have really been killin’ it. Check these results from the games that just ended a day ago – and don’t forget to take a look at the incredible history making moves by ALINEd Skateboarder, Jake Brown who CRUSHED the competition by landing the first ever Ollie720 in Big Skate Air:
So once again, a huge congratulations to all of the competitors! This list of amazing accomplishments continues to prove that when you perform in proper ALINEment, you can achieve your competitive goals – worldwide.
Years ago, when Co-Founder and extreme sport enthusiast Gordon Hay, was designing some of the first ALINE prototypes (using scrap plastic and bar napkins) he had one goal in mind: for extreme athletes to be able to “Go hard and land soft.” Athletes want to perform better to become the best at what they do, and after years of experience and product development, we are proud to have mastered a high-tech product that so many have found essential to their training and performance. It means so much to us when we hear our professional athletes gloating about how ALINE has helped them train harder, train longer, and achieve their professional goals…but what is more rewarding than a compliment…?
…That’s easy: the hardware.
ALINE would like to congratulate all of the X Games Tignes competitors, and give a special shout to those competing in perfect ALINEment. ALINEd athletes took 5 out of 8 Gold Medals and a total of 13 out of 24 podium spots overall! See below for the full list of ALINE X Games Royalty…
Men’s Ski Superpipe:
- Gold – Torrin Yater-Wallace (USA)
- Silver – David Wise (USA)
- Bronze – Kevin Rolland (FRA)
Men’s Ski Slopestyle:
- Silver – Jossi Wells (NZL)
Men’s SNB Superpipe:
- Gold – Louis Vito (USA)
Men’s SNB Slopestyle:
- Gold – Sebastian Toutant (CAN)
Women’s Ski Superpipe:
- Bronze – Maddie Bowman (USA)
Women’s Ski Slopestyle:
- Gold – Kaya Turski (CAN)
Women’s SNB Superpipe:
- Silver – Elena Hight (USA)
- Bronze – Arielle Gold (USA)
Women’s SNB Slopestyle:
- Gold – Silje Norendal (NOR)
- Silver – Jamie Anderson (USA)
- Bronze – Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas (NOR)
Hopefully our winter success will carry over to the Summer X Games in just a few months! If you want access to the same products as the pro’s, check out http://www.aline.com to find a dealer near you.
Many times, consumers purchase footwear based on style and popularity of shoe brand rather than with the thought of foot health in mind. ALINE Systems sells products designed to assist in correcting the damage that results from years of wearing shoes that may look good enough in the fashion magazines, but lead to long term foot problems from forcing the 26 bones in each foot out of alignment. ALINE insoles, available for purchase on Aline.Com, gently permit feet, ankles and lower legs to realign themselves naturally the more an individual wears the specially made shoe inserts.
Made with ALINE’s patented Bilateral Foot Alignment System technology, these insoles boast a construction of lycra, nylon and coolmax, a fabric created for athletes that keeps moisture away from the body and closer to the outer air for quick evaporation. Athletes of all types regularly use and swear by the insoles and socks sold by the Massachusetts based company that offers easy purchasing on their website, Aline.Com. Championship golfers and skiers use these products, as do motocross racers, joggers, snowboarders and hikers.
The need for foot health, rejuvenation and comfort, however, extend beyond the world of competition and sports and even regular, everyday men and women can find benefit in inserting the insoles into their shoes for everyday activities. Especially those needing to stand on their feet for extended periods of time. The American Podiatric Medical Association states that millions of Americans suffer foot problems from the shoes they wear, quite a large market of people for ALINE’s founders Derek Carroll, Keith Orr and Gordon Hay to target their products and online presence, at Aline.Com, to.
The number of Americans affected by joint pain and injury are increasing by the day. According to a recent Boston Globe article, “surgeons are replacing 320,000 hips and more than 670,000 knees each year, according to the federal government’s latest count, and the numbers are expected to mushroom over the next two decades.” These injuries are not just affecting runners and athletes, they are affecting anyone who walks. Researchers and scientists are seeing the same stresses affecting athletes on non-athletes. Abnormal walking alone, bowlegged walkers for example, can lead to arthritis or worse problems, like hip and knee replacements.
As the number of surgeries grows every day, so does the research for ways to prevent them. One word that keeps repeating in nationwide research is, alignment. Alignment seems to be the answer to injury prevention and to a healthy recovery.
ALINE’s patented products were developed to fix this problem. ALINE restores your arches by allowing your body to naturally align itself. ALINE has broken the mold of insole design by creating an engineered suspension system for your feet. This custom product can be adjusted to fit everyone’s different alignment needs and issues.
The ALINE system was created by foot specialist Gordon Hay, business developer Derek Carroll, and engineer Keith Orr. “It’s amazing to me that we spend so many billions of dollars on sports equipment and footwear and we remain ignorant of our own unique biomechanics, which are more important than any piece of gear,” said Carroll. “A few millimeters of misalignment can lead to a huge loss of performance and a whole range of biomechanical-related health problems… Why not fix it at the source?”
And fix at the source they did. After the products launch in 2006, ALINE has world class athletes wearing their product, from Winter Olympic gold medalists to PGA Tour Professionals to the NFL. This product is on some important feet. For a full list of athletes using ALINE, to learn more about the product, or the importance of proper alignment, check out the company website at www.aline.com.
Golf Fitness Magazine Advisory Team Member
President Body Balance for Performance
You may have not heard much about it, but the foot is one of the most critical areas of the body for the golf swing and player performance. You walk 4 miles carrying your golf bag. Your foot supports you for every step. You make a golf swing. Your foot supports that and offers stability so you can push off and generate power. Yet most of us have little awareness about how important our feet are, and often times, even less concern towards the importance of how the shoe affects the cause and purpose of what our feet are designed to do. The problem golfers face, is the simple fact that many golf shoes of the past (and current) are usually too rigid or too soft to help the foot work correctly. Most consumers are happy picking out something stylish with the perception that good cushion is most important for comfort and function. In reality, a golf shoe that promotes neutral foot position and allows the foot to bend correctly, are the most critical elements of support for the foot and most importantly, your golf performance.
Golf shoe technology is beginning to catch up with these important principals and there are methods for choosing shoes that will get you close to something that promotes proper function for your feet, but in the end, most shoes, golf shoes included, do not provide the needed support and neutral foot correction that the majority of us need. This is where the use of orthotics or shoe inserts can get your shoes and feet working to promote a healthier and improved golf game.
Orthotics are simple devices that are insert in the shoe that either makes the shoe accommodate to the foot, or when possible correct the foot alignment challenges that the many of us have. The most common challenges are fallen arches or more commonly know as flat feet. In my years in the golf fitness and healthcare industries, I have seen all kinds of feet, but certainly flat feet are most common. This is usually caused by the heel tipping into what is called Valgus. Valgus is when the top of the heel tips toward the midline, and the bottom of the heel migrates away from the midline. It is like the angle in most knees. (See image 1).
Image of the Ankle and Heel in Valgus (rear view)
This valgus moVement of the heel causes the front of the foot, the forefoot, to collapse toward the ground. This causes lengthening and widening of the foot. The lay term for collapse of the arch is called “splat” and the widening and angulation of the forefoot is splay. As splat and splay increase we see significant biomechanical changes in the foot. This puts huge tension on the structures of bottom of the foot. We also see loss of rigidity in the foot and as a result a loss of spring in the foot.
We commonly see plantar fasciitis, or pain at the front of the heel that hurts first thing in the morning or with walking. We can also see alterations in gait pattern that puts excessive strain on the knee, hip and lower back. If left out of check long enough we begin to see permanent deformity in the foot, over stretching of ligament, muscles and fascia, change in shape of the bones of the foot, and complete loss of arch. Once this happens, custom shoes are the only option. We can prevent this all with good inserts and good foot and ankle mobility.
But how is this rElevant to your golf? When we have a collapsed arch with heel valgus, the foot becomes unstable on the ground. We have seen extreme cases where the arch collapses and even reverses so we have a convex foot. It is rare, but it happens. Somewhere between there and a normal foot, we have most all foot disorders. We begin to compensate for that lack of stability by the calf muscles and thigh muscles overworking and getting tight. This also puts a great deal of strain on the inner aspect of the knee, and the can prevent rotation of the hip. No rotation in the hip is a killer of the correct body movement for the golf swing. With no hip rotation, you will be swaying or sliding in your swing. This is one of the most common issues golfers have and completely prevents consistent striking of the golf ball.
For many of us there is a way around all of this with the use of orthotic shoe inserts. At Body Balance for Performance we use an orthotic that is prefabricated and allows us to modify the angle of the heel to correct the biomechanics of the foot, knee ankle and hip. We have used it in all kinds of shoes, including golf shoes. The shoe insert I prefer is called ALINE. It is fitted to the client in a way that will correct the fallen arch and heel position. A word of caution though, if you have a rigid foot or inverted arch (see a qualified healthcare practitioner to find out if that is the case) this technology can make your foot hurt more because a rigid foot has no mobility and cannot be corrected mechanically with an insert. A simple assessment of the foot can tell you if ALINEs can help your feet.
One of the reasons I like to use ALINE with our clients is that it has a unique technology that makes it work. The BFAST technology is a suspension system for your feet. The patented ribs called RibTech flex and rebound to support and ALINE you during the most critical and explosive movements of your golf swing. Basically what this device does is restore the foot’s natural transitioning functions to maximize the foot’s power and reduce injuries in almost any shoe.
The end analysis is this. Get your foot examined by an expert who understands your sport and your body. Make sure that person looks at the foot, and if possible get an insert in your shoe that helps to correct the foot mechanically. The reward will be better golf and happy feet.
David Ostrow is the CEO of Body Balance for Performance and a GFM Advisory Team Member, for more information about feet in golf and ALINE technology from David, log onto www.golffitnessmagazine.com/advisoryteam.
Today the Bentley3 staff had the pleasure of getting fit for the new and improved ALINE Insoles (www.aline.com) by one of the ALINE representatives. We have been working with ALINE since early 2000 and were very excited to see the new design (see picture above), as well as get fit for new insoles. Whenever you need new clubs, more strength, or help dealing with first tee jitters, it is always best to get screened by an expert.
The ankle, knee, or hip pain you may be experiencing could be because your joints are out of alignment, starting down at your feet. If your feet are excessively pronating or supinating, your capacity for power instantly diminishes.
Look at the before and after picture above of my wife, Marni. The before picture on the left tells us that her left foot is excessively pronating, as her foot and ankle are grinding up against the the inside bar. The after picture on the right shows us that simply by introducing an ALINE insole her foot became neutrally aligned again. If she wears this ALINE insole everyday, her foot will slowly become neutrally aligned; another success story for ALINE.
A stable foot is a neutral foot. ALINE’s laser fitting system informs us whether your foot is neutral aligned or not. If it is not, supporting clips can be placed on the bottom of the sole. ALINE has reported that its athletes, who range from PGA Tour golfers to X-Gamers, have altered their foot structures completely back to neutral, simply by wearing their insoles everyday over the course of 6 months to a year. That’s game and life changing. No pain, and back to normal.
Barefoot or Running Shoes, Which is Better?
Running barefoot is the new rage. When we run or train barefoot, we get instant information from the ground back to our brain. If running or walking mechanics are off, we feel it instantly and can make quick, subtle corrections. Running barefoot is a great biofeedback tool, but since your foot is very exposed to the environment, cuts and bruises are inevitable. Running barefoot on pavement, something your feet were not designed for, also often destroys long distance runners foot structures over time.
In a traditional running or golf shoe however, our feet often sit on a pillow of ignorance. Our foot ankle, and knee alignment could be out of whack, or functionally misaligned, but we never realize that they are until we end up with a debilitating injury, something that could have easily been prevented if we had been screened by an ALINE expert. In either case, with a shoe or shoeless, both have their advantages and disadvantages.
The new ALINE insoles are the best of both worlds.
Via www.aline.com, “Luckily there is now a perfect middle ground between going barefoot and wearing unhealthy, performance-robbing, footwear: ALINE’s patented BFAST technology. ALINE’s BFAST design places the foot into a barefoot position inside your shoes; ALINEs raise the heel slightly to shift weight to your forefoot, as if you aren’t wearing flat shoes. And, through its patented suspension zones, ALINE allows key bones in the foot to move properly…as they do when you walk barefoot. In other words, ALINE’s BFAST technology creates a natural interface within your footwear… regardless of sport or activity. This “Barefoot in Shoes™” position puts the foot in control of the footwear and the body. ALINEs enable the foot’s arches to naturally reshape, allowing the foot, ankle and knee to align. A properly aligned foot and leg reduces injuries and improves your performance. That’s why you owe it to yourself to find out what ALINE can do for you!”
“The thing I love most about ALINE’s is the insole suspension system, which enables golfers the opportunity for maximum power transfer in every shot. It is as if you have a mini trampoline in each of your shoes. The harder you press against the skin of a trampoline, the higher you will jump. The same is true in golf; the greater the magnitude of your ground force vector, the more power will be unleashed into the ball via the clubhead at impact. Educating your feet is your first assignment in creating maximum velocity of the clubhead at impact.”
Regardless of physical activity, power emerges from the ground up. If your feet aren’t positioned in an anatomically neutral position, you’re diminishing your potential for power, before you even begin to swing the club. You can’t push firmly against the ground if your feet are positioned at a crooked angle. Neutral feet are requirements for obtaining maximum velocity.
We like fitting our golfers in ALINE insoles to eliminate any current or future injury, but also to promote joint alignment. When joints are aligned, it becomes infinitely easier to create and retain efficient power, while avoiding injury.
ALINE insoles have energized the swings of PGA Tour professionals such as Retief Goosen, Kevin Na, Bo Van Pelt, Rory Sabbatini, DJ Trahan and many more. ALINE is also used by World Long Drive Champions, Players on the Champions Tour, Futures Tour, NCAA Division 1 collegiate athletes.
In a recent ESPN survey reported on barefootrunner.com, more than 1 in 3 Americans said that they’d be willing to try running barefoot. This attitude is part of growing awareness that shoes simply aren’t making our feet healthier, or our performance better. And a more recent study finds that many running shoes cause more joint strain than high heels. But let’s face, we all need to wear shoes, at least sometimes!
ALINE is the only insole product that places the foot into a barefoot-like position inside of shoes. There is growing evidence that going barefoot is beneficial for long term foot health and correct biomechanics. Humans evolved to run and walk on natural surfaces for millions of years. In just the past few hundred years, though, we have been forced to walk on hard floors, concrete and asphalt…not to mention wedging our feet into ski boots, cycle shoes, and workboots. We pound for miles in running shoes. We wear rigid cleats for soccer and football. We wear hard shoes with spikes to hit a golf ball further. We strap on power-levers (also known as “skis”) and put our feet in plastic shells for winter fun. All of these are foot destroyers…if the foot is left to fend for its self under these stresses.
Proper foot function is critical to sports (and life) performance. If your foot cannot move as it evolved to move, you can’t perform up to your potential. The foot is your foundation, your connection to the ground. For years, the answer for foot performance was to cushion it with foam, effectively placing your foundation on a pillow. The other approach was to wear footwear too small and crush or tape the foot to stop excess motion. This mentality treats the foot like a mechanical device that can be locked down to stop motion. This crushing of the foot also locks the foot muscles and lower leg function, often causing pain and long term injuries. When immobilized by shoes or tape, the foot can’t adjust, balance, and align your body for maximum power transfer to the legs.
Luckily there is now a perfect middle ground between going barefoot and wearing unhealthy, performance-robbing, footwear: ALINE’s patented BFAST technology. ALINE’s BFAST design places the foot into a barefoot position inside your shoes; ALINEs raise the heel slightly to shift weight to your forefoot, as if you aren’t wearing flat shoes. And, through its patented suspension zones, ALINE allows key bones in the foot to move properly…as they do when you walk barefoot. In other words, ALINE’s BFAST technology creates a natural interface within your footwear… regardless of sport or activity. This “Barefoot in Shoes™” position puts the foot in control of the footwear and the body. ALINEs enable the foot’s arches to naturally reshape, allowing the foot, ankle and knee to align themselves. A properly aligned foot and leg reduces injuries and improves your performance. That’s why you owe it to yourself to find out what ALINE can do for you!
In a popular New York Times Magazine article this year, Adam Sternbergh makes the claim that “You Walk Wrong” It’s a fascinating article that we highly recommend. Sternbergh explains and sheds some light on the biomechanical issues that ALINE holds dear.
But there is a problem… Mr. Sternbergh, like many well-intentioned barefoot advocates, fails to notice the 500 lb. Sasquatch in the room: its name is PAVEMENT.
Feet have been evolving for 4-5 million years and are wonders of biomechanical engineering. They are well-suited for moving over the variable, natural terrain that humans encountered for 99.9999% of their evolution.
Start pounding those same feet on hard, flat asphalt (or marble, tile, concrete, wood, you name it), and they break down quickly. Most shoes only add to the problem, for the reasons discussed by Sternbergh. And just for kicks, throw in an adult foot that’s been severely compromised by years of abuse and is now expected to go run barefoot… on pavement. Disaster.
We started ALINE based on many decades of combined experience in sports and biomechanics, and we understand foot function better than most. What most people don’t realize is that the bottom of your foot is constantly in motion, conforming to natural terrain and aligning the body with every step. That action just doesn’t work well on pavement, and it’s disabled by most shoes.
ALINE’s goal is to provide an interface that allows the foot to move in a natural way, especially on the hard, flat surfaces where we live, work and play. First off, your ankle and knee alignment improves dramatically as soon as you stand on an ALINE. And once you start moving, ALINE’s BFAST suspension lets your foot move naturally no matter what terrain you’re on. In other words, you get barefoot function IN your shoes…all of the positive benefits, none of the negative.
Want proof? OK. ALINE athletes (who we don’t pay to wear our insoles!) have won over a dozen X-Games medals in various sports, three PGA Tour events, several mountain biking national championships, and much more. More importantly, we get love letters daily from average people who can’t thank us enough.
The bottom line? The shoe problems that lead people to go barefoot are very real. But for modern feet in the modern world, ALINE is just better than barefoot.