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RE Judy B's question comparing PFT's to Acuflex

Posted by Mike W on 9/16/00 at 17:55 (028403)

Hello Judy,

Good question.

I have read information about Acu-Flex but have not tried it myself so I can only comment on what I have read, what I know about similar products and what the important differences are that people should know about.

My first impression of AF is that it is an improvement to, but much more expensive than similar rubber band type products which cost about $6.00 and are available at most exercise stores. My Physio therapist had me using rubber bands 10 years ago.

AF offers one standard durometer or amount of resistance. All of the other ones offer at least 3 different types. This is important because everyone is different and requires a different level of resistance depending on their individual circumstances.

Because of the nature of rubber the AF user does not have control over the amount of resistance. As you perform an exercise the further you move the resistance increases with the greatest amount at the end of the movement. This is not good. PFT's allow the user the ability to control the amount of resistance at all times.

Plantar fasciitis is a repetitive strain injury and therefore it is my belief that rehabilitation exercises should not be performed like standard muscle building exercises (like say a bicep curl) where you isolate one muscle and then work it till it is fatigued. AF exercises follow this common mistake.

PFT exercises are not like this because the technique always involves isometric contractions of opposing muscles(at first) and takes advantage of a natural process known as muscle facilitation/inhibition. This means that when one muscle (say the big toe flexor muscle) is contracted it's opposing muscle(big toe extensor muscle) is automatically relaxed. Then you contract the relaxed big toe extensor muscle which will automatically relax the big toe flexor muscle. This means that when using the PFT you are always contracting a relaxed muscle and you are working both muscles not just one. You can't do this with the AF because of the physical nature of the rubber bands.

The 7 main pf exercises I have developed isolate the pairs of muscles who's tendons attach to or pass through/around the toe and heel bones which are the ones most commonly associated with PF.

It is my belief that stopping the daily damage caused by loading cold weight bearing muscles is very important to stop the injury cycle and allow the body a chance to heal. Therefore I recommend doing most of the PFT exercises before getting out of bed. I can't see how I could do this with the AF because there is nothing to attach the other end to perform extensor muscles exercises. Which means that you would miss over half of the weight bearing muscles.


I have over 6 years of hands on experience with physical therapy and have a good understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the feet and legs. I had chronic PF myself and developed the PFT and a PF routine that is effective because other treatments were not. That was over 3 years ago and my feet and legs are still excellent and PFT's can be used as a prevetitive tool as well. I have a track record that includes Podiatrists, GP's, Physiotherapists, using my PFT's with their clients with some very good results because they work and compliment other treatments.

RE your question: Is the PFT safely used by someone who has significant atrophy of the foot/leg muscles?

Do a name search on Frank B for one example.

I have worked part time at a brain injury center for over 5 years and have seen some amazing results. One of my clients had not walked in over 5 years. Last fall we had him up on a walker and he was on his tip toes because his calf muscles were so tight. I introduced PFT's to his program and within a month he had one heel all the way down and his bad leg about 1/2 of an inch. I sent one home with one and his progress has been excellent. We did range of motion testing on him this summer and he could do several movements that he was unable to perform before. Another interesting thing was the improvement in his arms.

It is very important to know that with the PFT you have complete control over how much or how little you contract these muscles so you can start very slowly and gradually work up and never should there be any pain.

I do not want to comment on Allen K qualifications but there is no information at his site. If you do a name search you will find lots of information on his problems. Also AF says 'you'll always have us here to back you up with support and info on everything - PHYSICAL AND MENTAL'. What does this mean? How are you qualified to do this???

AF claims to 'cure your feet pain'. I believe improving the strength and flexibliity of foot and leg muscles is a very important part of the 'healing process' not a cure and my PFT's are not the magic bullet or easy way out approach so many are seeking because it takes some effort and consistency.

I have developed a sound PF routine that does improve the strength and flexibility of neglected foot and leg muscles and have help a lot pf sufferers. I also have a simple method and massage tool for dealing with heelspur pain.

AF claims to 'isolate each toe' however if they knew how the muscles of the feet function (not like monkey feet)than they would realise that this is not possible or necessary. For example it is not possible to move your second toe without moving your 3rd, 4th or 5th toes because they are all controlled by two muscles. I could point out other inconsistencies but this is enough.

I hope you heal very soon.

Regards,

Mike Wilmot
Physical Therapist, Principal Personal Foot Trainers, email (email removed)

Re: RE Judy B's question comparing PFT's to Acuflex

Nancy S. on 9/16/00 at 18:36 (028404)

That's funny, because I'm finding Acu-Flex and its manual really wonderful. My physical therapist, who is excellent, also thinks they're terrific and is recommending them to all of her PF and tendonitis patients. I'm experiencing real progress with them. Just for the information of others besides Mike, who has not seen, held, or tried Acu-Flex, it is far, far above and beyond a 'rubber band.' It's on another plane altogether.
I feel that Alan K's posts on this board for nearly the past year demonstrate a great deal of knowledge and wisdom about the body, the mind, pain -- and they sometimes include a delightful subtle wit, no small addition to a pain board. So yes, I too would encourage others to do a search and read them.
Nancy

Re: RE Judy B's question comparing PFT's to Acuflex

Sue s on 9/16/00 at 19:00 (028407)

What kind of training does Alan K have for developing the Acu -flex?
As with all treatments/products that so many of us has tried, not all work for everyone. They may all sound great but do not wouk out for everyone. I do think that anyone who has studied anatomy and physiology does have a greater knowledge and understanding of how the body works. But the average course in A/P doesn't go into the muscles and working of the feet. I sure didn't learn that in my clases for nursing. Therefore, additional studing is required.

Re: misinformation

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:05 (028408)

I sure hope this isn't a return of the aggressive Mike W we all know before. I hope he sees a relation between the recent sales he gets and the several months he has gone without attacking.

I do need to correct the misinformation and hopefully that wil be the end of it.

1) Acu-Flex allows full control of the resistance because you can pull it to a locked position for isometric resistance. The only difference is that you gradually reach isometric resistance while the band pulls tight. This cushions any jerky movements. But the idea that you cannot control the resistance once it is tight is not true.

2) Acu-Flex does exercises pairs of muscles and the pictures clearly show this. Dorsi flexion and plantar flexion of the foot are clearly shown. So are many exercises with many muscle groups in the legs, hips, groin, and pelvis which PFT cannot exercise. The idea that Acu-Flex cannot exercise pairs of muscles is not true.

3) There is information in the manual for Acu-Flex that an help with mental attitude while exercising, and more to come on the website. Mental and physical health are important to the healing process according to the principles of Thai massage upon which Acu-Flex and the website are based. On this count, Mike W actually said something true and did not mislead anyone. We stand by this, and would even say that the primary value of Acu-Flex lies here.

4) Acu-Flex does isolate each toe in an indivdual toe hold. That does not mean that the exercises in the manual tell you to isolate each toe. The isolation is for the big toe only (as in PFT when you put your toe only on the bar), and four other toes only (as in PFT when you put your four toes only on the bar), and sometimes three middle toes. This emphasizes different muscles in the feet. The main advantage of the individual toe holds is that each 'isolation' (maybe the wrong word and my fault, though not the aggression) is sure to engage each toe in the exercise, rather than share a flat bar and get an uneven distribution of the force. So the point is that each toe gets in on it with its own hold. Acu-Flex manual owners can testify to this, and the website clearly shows this as well. Any suggestion otherwise deliberately distorting the language, I guess hoping no one looked at the pictures or can think for themselves.

Finally, before I came out with Acu-Flex I encouraged others to get PFT because it was the only thing available. I would never discourage anyone from using it because I want everyone to be better. With our exercise system, my wife was completely cured of pf, and I was able to achieve almost complete cure, with occasional relapses.

I wish Acu-Flex was as simple as Mike seems to say it is. These days, with Lee slaving away each day hand-making exercise tools for people on heelspurs.com, I often pick up the PFT and marvel, jealously, at how little it takes to to bend a few wires and ship them out. How much time it takes to make it does not have any relation to how effective anything is, of course, but my point is that Acu-Flex is nothing simple. Not only is it labor-intensive to hand make them, but they are based on 12 years of our practice of Thai Buddhism, yoga, and massage. We are here with support and information, and our website will expand its offerings to include a lot of free information on Thai Medicine.

Why knock a good thing?

I hope this is the end of the aggression.


yours,

alan k

Re: The ongoing debate...

wendyn on 9/16/00 at 19:26 (028412)

Thank you both for your thoughtful and detailed comparisons. I think that everyone has the information they need to be able to decide if they want to purchase either product.

Although I really think this information is important...let's not see this degrade eventually into a 'My foot device is better than yours' competition. It will do nothing to help potential purchasers and it will detract from the purpose and nature of the board.

For people who purchase ANY product for PF - it's really important that they post honest feedback about their experiences...this helps everyone else sort out the good from the bad. Even though what works for one person, does not necessarily work for the next.

Alan and Mike - I'm sure that your customers (especially the long term ones here) will be able to provide you with lots of valuable information on how they progress with your devices, their comments, and feedlings...this is valuable information because it can help you see where it's weaknesses may be and where you may want to focus energy for improvements down the road.

Accept that you will get the good feedback with the bad - this is the risk/benefit of using a BB as an open forum for opinions. If you want the positive comments of all the people who like your product...then be just as gracious when people point out what they don't like. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions.

For the record...I don't own either one of these devices - I've never seen either one and I have no opinion about either one of them is better than the other (or any good at all for that matter). I have nothing against either one - I just generally never purchase devices like this, especially over the net. Not a big foot pain shopper I guess.

This board is about a lot more than just two strengthing devices and I think it's important to not lose sight of that.

Re: A new rule?................

JudyS on 9/16/00 at 19:47 (028413)

Given that this kind of discourse has come up regarding Mike and his product before I'm wondering if there could be an unofficial 'rule' introduced.
That is that any one who has produced a product can post here about the benefits of the product but cannot post negatively about another posted product....especially if they haven't even used it!
Part 2 of the 'rule' - posters who have used the product(s) can post re: their opinion of the product, good, bad or otherwise with no fear of public retribution from the product's manufacturer.
For the record, if the Accu Flex had been available, I would have ordered it instead because it appears to be more foot friendly than the rigid PFT's. It appears to mimic the Theraband but with more isolation and control - Nancy, did you ever try Therabands?

Re: misinformation

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:50 (028415)

I forgot there was one more piece of misinformation.

The Acu-Flex manual is very clear about doing extra isometric exercises at the beginning range of motion to make sure the whole range of the muscle is emphasized. This you can only tell by reading the manual, so in this case Mike was not deliberately misleading anyone.

That's it I'm sure

I'm sorry, but if untrue things are said in a long post, then I am going to have to answer them all, otherwise they just hang out there as untruths misleading people.

So hopefully there will be no more long posts and attacks and that will be that.

Of course, the message board space on the webserver hard drive can handle as much of this as necessary, probably, but I understand that it gets noisy if you are someone who can't help reading every post (like me).

This is a little more important than a cat fight-- but I do appreciate, as an actual message board member, that it might look like one. Help for foot pain requires that untruths be answered but I hope as much as anyone that no more assaults will be made.

If Mike does start saying unserious things then I won't answer.

I am really disappointed because I had a surprise to announce to the web board but if I do it now you will think even worse things than you are thinking already. So, later maybe.

alan

Re: A new rule?................

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 19:58 (028416)

I will have available both devices for my patients. What is probaby going to happen is that some and even both devices together will help alot of people. Some people like red and some like blue. The market is always has and always will be the judge, jury and winner with every and any product including Dr. Z . I really do like the entire concept of isometic stretching with opposing muscles. It makes sense, it works. The real issue here is the importance of stretching and it role in healing of plantar fasciitis and the entire human body.

Re: A new rule?................

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 19:59 (028417)

I want to make one correction I mean correct stretching. Stretching is just not stretching it is an art and science.

Re: A new rule?................

Nancy S. on 9/16/00 at 21:27 (028431)

Yes, I tried a Theraband briefly in my PT's office some time ago. I didn't bond with it, and could do pretty much the same things with my trusty silk scarf at home. I was looking for much more than either of these things could help me do, and I found it, thankfully.
Absolutely, posters have a duty to post their opinions when they've used a product, and to be as honest as possible, for the benefit of others. No one thing is going to help everyone, but hearing the pros and cons can only help people in their decisions as to what might be right for them.
Like many people, I've been doing this all along.
I've posted about what has helped me, such as the Johnson & Johnson night splint, Birks, the aircast, and now Acu-Flex.
And I've posted about what has not helped me, such as hard orthotics, heel cups, certain otc inserts.
And I've posted about mixed results with some products, such as certain brands of otc inserts and ankle braces.
I'm sure we will all continue to do this, just as we do with medical and other treatments and such, and I agree that it is a good thing.
Nancy

Re: A new rule?................

Beverly on 9/17/00 at 15:39 (028476)

I think Dr Z. has hit on it. Some people will do better with the PFT and some with Acu-Flex. I am currently using the PFT under my PT's supervision. As many of you know so I won't repeat that story.
I remain interested in how anyone who uses the Acu-Flex progresses.
I tend to be conservative and go for the more 'proven' device, and in this case it is the PFT. But I am very interested in the Acu-Flex. I simply don't want to be among the first of you to try it. I will be extremely interested in how Dr. Z's patients with the Acu-Flex progress.

I suspect that both products have merit and it is a matter of which product a person will consistantly and correctly use.

I don't mind Alan and Mike's debate over their two products. It gives me extra information.

Re: AGGRESSION?

Mike W on 9/17/00 at 19:05 (028485)

Allen,

I was asked a question and I gave my honest opinion. If you felt it was aggression then you should look within.

You either have a poor memory or like to lie. The minute I was listed on this site you attacked my PFT's and to say that you encouraged others to get them is a joke. Among other comments,I recall you telling others to use a broom handle. Is that not agressive or attacking behavior? There are other examples of this on the archives as well.

You have friends on this board who bought my product and sent it to you. Why did you not contact me yourself? Not very honest behavior Allen and friends!

It seems funny that whenever there is a post regarding someone having sucess with my PFT's the follow up posts seem to look for a negative.
I thought we were here to heal, encourage and help people?


RE; 2)I never said AF cannot exercise pairs of muscles. I said that it is not possible for AF or a towel or a rope to simultaneously contract pairs of opposing muscles. This is a very important difference.

Your status has changed on this board and it is only fair that you should follow the same rules as other's who have products for sale on this site. This would include things like your full name qualifications and your affiliation with your product not simply a web address, so folks know who and what you represent.

Finally, I am here because I have a proven product and a routine that has helped heal many PF suffers including myself. If you want to heal yourself you should try using my PFT's and follow the routine.

Regards,

Mike Wilmot


Re: AGGRESSION?

Nancy N on 9/17/00 at 20:41 (028489)

I don't want to accelerate what looks like the beginnings of a bad situation, but for the record, Alan was not the only one who saw the original post as overly negative. I did, but have not commented until now, and so did Judy S. I think her point is an excellent one--product developers/salespeople shoul be able to defend their products on the boards, but should not be allowed to shred someone else's (as the notice above the 'Post message' button says, 'Be nice.'

We are all different, and all of us respond differently to different treatments, so one person's miracle cure could be someone else's disaster. If there were one all-purpose panacea for PF, we (and this board) would not be here.

Re: AGGRESSION?

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/17/00 at 21:06 (028496)

I only have one question . How did you get the PFT to show up in blue when you type the words PFT. I know that Scott put something into the words but I can't get the blue to show up. I know that the blue gives you a link. I bet you can't get up to the level that Duane E and myself had a few months. ago. Boy did he give me some !$##@@%$

Since Scott is going on vacation this week. I am placing myself in charge there is not going to be any fighting on this !@$!%board next week. I realize and understand the anger when you are feeling but when we get into a fight no one on this board wins. So be NICE or I am will send the pf disease back your way. Come on lets have some fun
The market will always tell the story and all products will find their place.

I love the Personal Foot Trainers. You even place it into your golf bag and use it if you feet hurt or your golf swing hurts. I am going to try the accu= flex the next time a patient named David comes in with pf . He can slay Goliath, and cure his pf at the same. time. .

Re: AGGRESSION?

Nancy S. on 9/18/00 at 03:09 (028502)

Mike, plenty of people apparently have tried the PFTs. Some have had success with them, some don't know yet but sound like they remain hopeful, some have not had success with them. This is going to be true of any foot-pain product, as it is true of all things in this imperfect world.
Of course Alan K had to correct wrong things stated about Acu-Flex. In fact it was his duty to do so. But I hope that he does not dignify this second (and aptly titled) post with a response.

As you know, Alan is spelled Alan. Dr. Z., to answer your question, the product has to be spelled correctly to appear in blue as a link (sorry, I know it's not your long suit and usually it doesn't matter!). Acu-Flex has only one 'c' and the hyphen has to be included for it to appear in blue.

Nancy S.
18-year burned-out editor
also insomniac!

Re: AGGRESSION?

alan k on 9/18/00 at 09:20 (028510)

Okay, I have come to the conclusion that everything is not right with you Mike. Let's please not ever discuss anything again on the board.

Let me correct your misleading statements for the last time:

1. I did support PFT and the evidence is there. I never attacked you. I did tell people that they could use a broom handle 'or some other' object as resistance against dorsi flexion, which is true and useful information and does not imply that PFT or Acu-Flex are therefore without merit.

2. No friend from the message board sent me a PFT. There is no conspiracy against you.

3. Anyone can read the rules above the post message button.

Please stop creating false information, especially about things that anyone can see for themselves are not true. Please just stop the whole thing.

I realize I started this in a post where I contrasted the products. I regret this now, and I apologize if it made you upset.

Let's just not mention the other products any more.


thanks,

alan k

Re: my apologies up front.....because...

JudyS on 9/18/00 at 18:01 (028568)

one, I should ignore today's postings re; Mike/Alan, but I've decided not to, two; it was me who started the current discourse, not Mike or Alan and, three; I didn't tell you everything.
When I started reading this Board last spring I was startled to see this very argument between Mike and a few board readers.....I was put off and wondered just what kind of forum this was. The argument seemed to have more to do with attitude than with product(s). I started reading almost on the same day that Nancy was posting a desire to stay away from the board as a result of attacks by Mike. That's why I'm throwing in another two cents here - because there should be no 'attacking'.
I got Mike's product, and, though I posted only part of my experience in order to be diplomatic the fact is that I just plain didn't like the product and a combination of things made me decide to return them. However, you may recall that in my posts I was as fair as I could be in citing my experience AND in encouraging others to check other posts about the product.
In spite of that Mike used this forum to tell me where I 'failed' in both my use of the product and in it's return. He even challenged my mental ability to read his instructions and use the product accordingly. While I don't necessarily think Mike is a mean-spirited person I do think he has no awareness of how his offensive-defensiveness and offensive critique really sound.
What you don't know is that Mike and I continued our sparing via email. In his ensuing email to me, he apologized for 'anything he said that would offend (me)' and then continued on to tell me what I did that was wrong. He even went so far as to tell me what my frame of mind was during the shipping return of his product. At no time has Mike, who used a misleading name and delivery info re: his product, who left no vehicle for communication or problem-solving in his office during his absence, taken ANY responsibility for that shipping problem. Instead, he continued to criticize me and UPS. My reaction to Mike on his second set of negative criticisms of me was to respond in kind. And, like Alan, and Nancy before, I started to think that I would just as soon stay away from this forum. After all, I thought, this forum is supposed to be 'safe' from that kind of aggression - especially on the part of a product manufacturer.
As I've read this current discourse I see one thing - Mike attacking and someone defending. I went back and looked at some of those posts from last spring, and I see Mike attacking both Nancy and Alan .....and at one point I read a statement Alan made about the effectiveness that Mike's product could have - which, by the way, I also said. Alan is factual, not critical, with his statement that Mike is up to his old aggressiveness.
I am a consumer. As such I know several things about Mike and Alan. Mike is a PT but I don't know his professional reputation. After being exposed to his kind of attack, I now question it. Alan is not a PT but I appreciate his experience and his support here. They both have a product. I can say with dead certainty that now, having been exposed to both of their attitudes, Alan would get my business long before Mike would just based on that.
Mike may have been 'invited' to compare his product with the Acu-Flex but he should have stopped with the statement 'I've never used the Acu-Flex'. As a professional, he has no right to attack a product that he's never handled especially in a sensitive forum such as this one.
Yes, I'm steamed. I'm steamed because, as a consumer, I've been manhandled by this manufacturer publicly. I'm steamed because he continues to use attack as his means of communication on this board. Now, perhaps Alan has denigrated Mike's product in the past and perhaps I didn't go back far enough to find it, but the most consistent thing I did find was Mike blasting anyone who dared to question him or his product.
As I said before, if Mike had any professionalism at all, he would have said one thing to me.....'Judy, so sorry for the problems, your refund is in the mail'. If he had, none of the current discourse would have taken place. I would have posted my experience and perhaps someone else (a regular, I hope) would have posted an opposite experience - just as we do with most products. We shouldn't be intimidated about sharing re: products supplied by fellow posters .
Perhaps, in the long run, manufacturers should not be allowed to 'tout' their products here at all and just be satisfied with their slot on Scott's product page. Then we could order and compare to our heart's content. If a producer sees a comparison he doesn't like, he can use this forum to encourage that customer to email him. For example, some of us like Birks, some of us don't.....but there are no Birk reps attacking anyone here! Other manufacturers do what Alan has done, they tell us why their product is a good one, period. really I mean it, period. I'm done! no more word hemmorage.. :)

Re: RE Judy B's question comparing PFT's to Acuflex

Nancy S. on 9/16/00 at 18:36 (028404)

That's funny, because I'm finding Acu-Flex and its manual really wonderful. My physical therapist, who is excellent, also thinks they're terrific and is recommending them to all of her PF and tendonitis patients. I'm experiencing real progress with them. Just for the information of others besides Mike, who has not seen, held, or tried Acu-Flex, it is far, far above and beyond a 'rubber band.' It's on another plane altogether.
I feel that Alan K's posts on this board for nearly the past year demonstrate a great deal of knowledge and wisdom about the body, the mind, pain -- and they sometimes include a delightful subtle wit, no small addition to a pain board. So yes, I too would encourage others to do a search and read them.
Nancy

Re: RE Judy B's question comparing PFT's to Acuflex

Sue s on 9/16/00 at 19:00 (028407)

What kind of training does Alan K have for developing the Acu -flex?
As with all treatments/products that so many of us has tried, not all work for everyone. They may all sound great but do not wouk out for everyone. I do think that anyone who has studied anatomy and physiology does have a greater knowledge and understanding of how the body works. But the average course in A/P doesn't go into the muscles and working of the feet. I sure didn't learn that in my clases for nursing. Therefore, additional studing is required.

Re: misinformation

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:05 (028408)

I sure hope this isn't a return of the aggressive Mike W we all know before. I hope he sees a relation between the recent sales he gets and the several months he has gone without attacking.

I do need to correct the misinformation and hopefully that wil be the end of it.

1) Acu-Flex allows full control of the resistance because you can pull it to a locked position for isometric resistance. The only difference is that you gradually reach isometric resistance while the band pulls tight. This cushions any jerky movements. But the idea that you cannot control the resistance once it is tight is not true.

2) Acu-Flex does exercises pairs of muscles and the pictures clearly show this. Dorsi flexion and plantar flexion of the foot are clearly shown. So are many exercises with many muscle groups in the legs, hips, groin, and pelvis which PFT cannot exercise. The idea that Acu-Flex cannot exercise pairs of muscles is not true.

3) There is information in the manual for Acu-Flex that an help with mental attitude while exercising, and more to come on the website. Mental and physical health are important to the healing process according to the principles of Thai massage upon which Acu-Flex and the website are based. On this count, Mike W actually said something true and did not mislead anyone. We stand by this, and would even say that the primary value of Acu-Flex lies here.

4) Acu-Flex does isolate each toe in an indivdual toe hold. That does not mean that the exercises in the manual tell you to isolate each toe. The isolation is for the big toe only (as in PFT when you put your toe only on the bar), and four other toes only (as in PFT when you put your four toes only on the bar), and sometimes three middle toes. This emphasizes different muscles in the feet. The main advantage of the individual toe holds is that each 'isolation' (maybe the wrong word and my fault, though not the aggression) is sure to engage each toe in the exercise, rather than share a flat bar and get an uneven distribution of the force. So the point is that each toe gets in on it with its own hold. Acu-Flex manual owners can testify to this, and the website clearly shows this as well. Any suggestion otherwise deliberately distorting the language, I guess hoping no one looked at the pictures or can think for themselves.

Finally, before I came out with Acu-Flex I encouraged others to get PFT because it was the only thing available. I would never discourage anyone from using it because I want everyone to be better. With our exercise system, my wife was completely cured of pf, and I was able to achieve almost complete cure, with occasional relapses.

I wish Acu-Flex was as simple as Mike seems to say it is. These days, with Lee slaving away each day hand-making exercise tools for people on heelspurs.com, I often pick up the PFT and marvel, jealously, at how little it takes to to bend a few wires and ship them out. How much time it takes to make it does not have any relation to how effective anything is, of course, but my point is that Acu-Flex is nothing simple. Not only is it labor-intensive to hand make them, but they are based on 12 years of our practice of Thai Buddhism, yoga, and massage. We are here with support and information, and our website will expand its offerings to include a lot of free information on Thai Medicine.

Why knock a good thing?

I hope this is the end of the aggression.


yours,

alan k

Re: The ongoing debate...

wendyn on 9/16/00 at 19:26 (028412)

Thank you both for your thoughtful and detailed comparisons. I think that everyone has the information they need to be able to decide if they want to purchase either product.

Although I really think this information is important...let's not see this degrade eventually into a 'My foot device is better than yours' competition. It will do nothing to help potential purchasers and it will detract from the purpose and nature of the board.

For people who purchase ANY product for PF - it's really important that they post honest feedback about their experiences...this helps everyone else sort out the good from the bad. Even though what works for one person, does not necessarily work for the next.

Alan and Mike - I'm sure that your customers (especially the long term ones here) will be able to provide you with lots of valuable information on how they progress with your devices, their comments, and feedlings...this is valuable information because it can help you see where it's weaknesses may be and where you may want to focus energy for improvements down the road.

Accept that you will get the good feedback with the bad - this is the risk/benefit of using a BB as an open forum for opinions. If you want the positive comments of all the people who like your product...then be just as gracious when people point out what they don't like. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions.

For the record...I don't own either one of these devices - I've never seen either one and I have no opinion about either one of them is better than the other (or any good at all for that matter). I have nothing against either one - I just generally never purchase devices like this, especially over the net. Not a big foot pain shopper I guess.

This board is about a lot more than just two strengthing devices and I think it's important to not lose sight of that.

Re: A new rule?................

JudyS on 9/16/00 at 19:47 (028413)

Given that this kind of discourse has come up regarding Mike and his product before I'm wondering if there could be an unofficial 'rule' introduced.
That is that any one who has produced a product can post here about the benefits of the product but cannot post negatively about another posted product....especially if they haven't even used it!
Part 2 of the 'rule' - posters who have used the product(s) can post re: their opinion of the product, good, bad or otherwise with no fear of public retribution from the product's manufacturer.
For the record, if the Accu Flex had been available, I would have ordered it instead because it appears to be more foot friendly than the rigid PFT's. It appears to mimic the Theraband but with more isolation and control - Nancy, did you ever try Therabands?

Re: misinformation

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:50 (028415)

I forgot there was one more piece of misinformation.

The Acu-Flex manual is very clear about doing extra isometric exercises at the beginning range of motion to make sure the whole range of the muscle is emphasized. This you can only tell by reading the manual, so in this case Mike was not deliberately misleading anyone.

That's it I'm sure

I'm sorry, but if untrue things are said in a long post, then I am going to have to answer them all, otherwise they just hang out there as untruths misleading people.

So hopefully there will be no more long posts and attacks and that will be that.

Of course, the message board space on the webserver hard drive can handle as much of this as necessary, probably, but I understand that it gets noisy if you are someone who can't help reading every post (like me).

This is a little more important than a cat fight-- but I do appreciate, as an actual message board member, that it might look like one. Help for foot pain requires that untruths be answered but I hope as much as anyone that no more assaults will be made.

If Mike does start saying unserious things then I won't answer.

I am really disappointed because I had a surprise to announce to the web board but if I do it now you will think even worse things than you are thinking already. So, later maybe.

alan

Re: A new rule?................

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 19:58 (028416)

I will have available both devices for my patients. What is probaby going to happen is that some and even both devices together will help alot of people. Some people like red and some like blue. The market is always has and always will be the judge, jury and winner with every and any product including Dr. Z . I really do like the entire concept of isometic stretching with opposing muscles. It makes sense, it works. The real issue here is the importance of stretching and it role in healing of plantar fasciitis and the entire human body.

Re: A new rule?................

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 19:59 (028417)

I want to make one correction I mean correct stretching. Stretching is just not stretching it is an art and science.

Re: A new rule?................

Nancy S. on 9/16/00 at 21:27 (028431)

Yes, I tried a Theraband briefly in my PT's office some time ago. I didn't bond with it, and could do pretty much the same things with my trusty silk scarf at home. I was looking for much more than either of these things could help me do, and I found it, thankfully.
Absolutely, posters have a duty to post their opinions when they've used a product, and to be as honest as possible, for the benefit of others. No one thing is going to help everyone, but hearing the pros and cons can only help people in their decisions as to what might be right for them.
Like many people, I've been doing this all along.
I've posted about what has helped me, such as the Johnson & Johnson night splint, Birks, the aircast, and now Acu-Flex.
And I've posted about what has not helped me, such as hard orthotics, heel cups, certain otc inserts.
And I've posted about mixed results with some products, such as certain brands of otc inserts and ankle braces.
I'm sure we will all continue to do this, just as we do with medical and other treatments and such, and I agree that it is a good thing.
Nancy

Re: A new rule?................

Beverly on 9/17/00 at 15:39 (028476)

I think Dr Z. has hit on it. Some people will do better with the PFT and some with Acu-Flex. I am currently using the PFT under my PT's supervision. As many of you know so I won't repeat that story.
I remain interested in how anyone who uses the Acu-Flex progresses.
I tend to be conservative and go for the more 'proven' device, and in this case it is the PFT. But I am very interested in the Acu-Flex. I simply don't want to be among the first of you to try it. I will be extremely interested in how Dr. Z's patients with the Acu-Flex progress.

I suspect that both products have merit and it is a matter of which product a person will consistantly and correctly use.

I don't mind Alan and Mike's debate over their two products. It gives me extra information.

Re: AGGRESSION?

Mike W on 9/17/00 at 19:05 (028485)

Allen,

I was asked a question and I gave my honest opinion. If you felt it was aggression then you should look within.

You either have a poor memory or like to lie. The minute I was listed on this site you attacked my PFT's and to say that you encouraged others to get them is a joke. Among other comments,I recall you telling others to use a broom handle. Is that not agressive or attacking behavior? There are other examples of this on the archives as well.

You have friends on this board who bought my product and sent it to you. Why did you not contact me yourself? Not very honest behavior Allen and friends!

It seems funny that whenever there is a post regarding someone having sucess with my PFT's the follow up posts seem to look for a negative.
I thought we were here to heal, encourage and help people?


RE; 2)I never said AF cannot exercise pairs of muscles. I said that it is not possible for AF or a towel or a rope to simultaneously contract pairs of opposing muscles. This is a very important difference.

Your status has changed on this board and it is only fair that you should follow the same rules as other's who have products for sale on this site. This would include things like your full name qualifications and your affiliation with your product not simply a web address, so folks know who and what you represent.

Finally, I am here because I have a proven product and a routine that has helped heal many PF suffers including myself. If you want to heal yourself you should try using my PFT's and follow the routine.

Regards,

Mike Wilmot


Re: AGGRESSION?

Nancy N on 9/17/00 at 20:41 (028489)

I don't want to accelerate what looks like the beginnings of a bad situation, but for the record, Alan was not the only one who saw the original post as overly negative. I did, but have not commented until now, and so did Judy S. I think her point is an excellent one--product developers/salespeople shoul be able to defend their products on the boards, but should not be allowed to shred someone else's (as the notice above the 'Post message' button says, 'Be nice.'

We are all different, and all of us respond differently to different treatments, so one person's miracle cure could be someone else's disaster. If there were one all-purpose panacea for PF, we (and this board) would not be here.

Re: AGGRESSION?

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/17/00 at 21:06 (028496)

I only have one question . How did you get the PFT to show up in blue when you type the words PFT. I know that Scott put something into the words but I can't get the blue to show up. I know that the blue gives you a link. I bet you can't get up to the level that Duane E and myself had a few months. ago. Boy did he give me some !$##@@%$

Since Scott is going on vacation this week. I am placing myself in charge there is not going to be any fighting on this !@$!%board next week. I realize and understand the anger when you are feeling but when we get into a fight no one on this board wins. So be NICE or I am will send the pf disease back your way. Come on lets have some fun
The market will always tell the story and all products will find their place.

I love the Personal Foot Trainers. You even place it into your golf bag and use it if you feet hurt or your golf swing hurts. I am going to try the accu= flex the next time a patient named David comes in with pf . He can slay Goliath, and cure his pf at the same. time. .

Re: AGGRESSION?

Nancy S. on 9/18/00 at 03:09 (028502)

Mike, plenty of people apparently have tried the PFTs. Some have had success with them, some don't know yet but sound like they remain hopeful, some have not had success with them. This is going to be true of any foot-pain product, as it is true of all things in this imperfect world.
Of course Alan K had to correct wrong things stated about Acu-Flex. In fact it was his duty to do so. But I hope that he does not dignify this second (and aptly titled) post with a response.

As you know, Alan is spelled Alan. Dr. Z., to answer your question, the product has to be spelled correctly to appear in blue as a link (sorry, I know it's not your long suit and usually it doesn't matter!). Acu-Flex has only one 'c' and the hyphen has to be included for it to appear in blue.

Nancy S.
18-year burned-out editor
also insomniac!

Re: AGGRESSION?

alan k on 9/18/00 at 09:20 (028510)

Okay, I have come to the conclusion that everything is not right with you Mike. Let's please not ever discuss anything again on the board.

Let me correct your misleading statements for the last time:

1. I did support PFT and the evidence is there. I never attacked you. I did tell people that they could use a broom handle 'or some other' object as resistance against dorsi flexion, which is true and useful information and does not imply that PFT or Acu-Flex are therefore without merit.

2. No friend from the message board sent me a PFT. There is no conspiracy against you.

3. Anyone can read the rules above the post message button.

Please stop creating false information, especially about things that anyone can see for themselves are not true. Please just stop the whole thing.

I realize I started this in a post where I contrasted the products. I regret this now, and I apologize if it made you upset.

Let's just not mention the other products any more.


thanks,

alan k

Re: my apologies up front.....because...

JudyS on 9/18/00 at 18:01 (028568)

one, I should ignore today's postings re; Mike/Alan, but I've decided not to, two; it was me who started the current discourse, not Mike or Alan and, three; I didn't tell you everything.
When I started reading this Board last spring I was startled to see this very argument between Mike and a few board readers.....I was put off and wondered just what kind of forum this was. The argument seemed to have more to do with attitude than with product(s). I started reading almost on the same day that Nancy was posting a desire to stay away from the board as a result of attacks by Mike. That's why I'm throwing in another two cents here - because there should be no 'attacking'.
I got Mike's product, and, though I posted only part of my experience in order to be diplomatic the fact is that I just plain didn't like the product and a combination of things made me decide to return them. However, you may recall that in my posts I was as fair as I could be in citing my experience AND in encouraging others to check other posts about the product.
In spite of that Mike used this forum to tell me where I 'failed' in both my use of the product and in it's return. He even challenged my mental ability to read his instructions and use the product accordingly. While I don't necessarily think Mike is a mean-spirited person I do think he has no awareness of how his offensive-defensiveness and offensive critique really sound.
What you don't know is that Mike and I continued our sparing via email. In his ensuing email to me, he apologized for 'anything he said that would offend (me)' and then continued on to tell me what I did that was wrong. He even went so far as to tell me what my frame of mind was during the shipping return of his product. At no time has Mike, who used a misleading name and delivery info re: his product, who left no vehicle for communication or problem-solving in his office during his absence, taken ANY responsibility for that shipping problem. Instead, he continued to criticize me and UPS. My reaction to Mike on his second set of negative criticisms of me was to respond in kind. And, like Alan, and Nancy before, I started to think that I would just as soon stay away from this forum. After all, I thought, this forum is supposed to be 'safe' from that kind of aggression - especially on the part of a product manufacturer.
As I've read this current discourse I see one thing - Mike attacking and someone defending. I went back and looked at some of those posts from last spring, and I see Mike attacking both Nancy and Alan .....and at one point I read a statement Alan made about the effectiveness that Mike's product could have - which, by the way, I also said. Alan is factual, not critical, with his statement that Mike is up to his old aggressiveness.
I am a consumer. As such I know several things about Mike and Alan. Mike is a PT but I don't know his professional reputation. After being exposed to his kind of attack, I now question it. Alan is not a PT but I appreciate his experience and his support here. They both have a product. I can say with dead certainty that now, having been exposed to both of their attitudes, Alan would get my business long before Mike would just based on that.
Mike may have been 'invited' to compare his product with the Acu-Flex but he should have stopped with the statement 'I've never used the Acu-Flex'. As a professional, he has no right to attack a product that he's never handled especially in a sensitive forum such as this one.
Yes, I'm steamed. I'm steamed because, as a consumer, I've been manhandled by this manufacturer publicly. I'm steamed because he continues to use attack as his means of communication on this board. Now, perhaps Alan has denigrated Mike's product in the past and perhaps I didn't go back far enough to find it, but the most consistent thing I did find was Mike blasting anyone who dared to question him or his product.
As I said before, if Mike had any professionalism at all, he would have said one thing to me.....'Judy, so sorry for the problems, your refund is in the mail'. If he had, none of the current discourse would have taken place. I would have posted my experience and perhaps someone else (a regular, I hope) would have posted an opposite experience - just as we do with most products. We shouldn't be intimidated about sharing re: products supplied by fellow posters .
Perhaps, in the long run, manufacturers should not be allowed to 'tout' their products here at all and just be satisfied with their slot on Scott's product page. Then we could order and compare to our heart's content. If a producer sees a comparison he doesn't like, he can use this forum to encourage that customer to email him. For example, some of us like Birks, some of us don't.....but there are no Birk reps attacking anyone here! Other manufacturers do what Alan has done, they tell us why their product is a good one, period. really I mean it, period. I'm done! no more word hemmorage.. :)