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Tips for choosing the right carbon/glass fiber orthotic - flat turf toe plates

Part 1 of 6

Flat Turf Toe Plate

carbon-fiber-orthotics We get a lot of questions at the shop regarding how to select the correct carbon fiber (also called carbon graphite) or glass fiber orthotics. Let's see if we can't have a conversation that'd help you to choose the best carbon fiber or glass fiber insert.

Let's start the conversation with the flat carbon fiber turf toe plate.  A turf toe plate is an oddly shaped insert that has an exteflat turf toe platension that protrudes beneath the great toe joint.  This extension, called a Morton's extension, is designed to limit the range of motion of the great toe joint.  Why would we want to limit the range of motion of the great to joint?  The two most common reasons are injuries to the joint and arthritis of the joint.  The most common injury to the great to joint is called turf toe.  Turf toe describes an injury, most commonly a sports injury, to the structures that surround the great toe joint and enable the normal range of motion of the joint.  Arthritis of the joint, often called hallux limitus or hallux rigidus, causes significant pain in the great toe joint.  In both cases, the use of a rigid turf toe plate with a Morton's extension is simply used to splint or limit the range of motion of the joint.

So why the flat turf toe plate?  Here are several reasons to choose the flat turf toe plate over the other carbon fiber devices:

  • It's thin - the flat plate is very thin.  It's by far the best choice for dress shoes or when the insert is to be worn under another insert or Rx orthotic.
  • It's rigid - carbon fiber is one of the thinnest yet stiffest materials used in the medical industry.
  • It's durable - the flat plate is rugged and reliable.

Why wouldn't I choose the flat turf toe plat?

  • It's flat - in has no contoured arch as seen with the molded turf toe orthotic.
  • It's hard - it's hard on purpose.  Plan on putting another insert or cushion on top of the flat turf toe plate.

What can I do while in a flat turf toe plate?

  • Work - no limitations at work.  you can be as active as necessary.  The flat turf toe plate will easily fit into any work shoe.
  • Sports - no limitations.  You can run, jump and play multi-directional sports such as soccer or basketball.  You could even swim with them.  We have customers who wear them in triathlons for biking, swimming and running.

Versatile and thin.  The flat turf toe plate is a great choice for almost all activities.  Just remember, if you're looking for an arch, you'll need to add one on top of the flat turf toe plate or purchase the molded turf toe plate.

Next up - molded turf toe plates.


Dr. Jeffrey Oster

Jeffrey A. Oster, DPM
Medical Advisor

Updated 12/27/19

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