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Title:
THERAPEUTIC INSOLES AND FOOTWEAR
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/044954
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Disclosed are insoles and footwear having embedded pods elevated above a top surface of the insole to provide pressure to certain areas of a user's foot and to help provide pressure and stimulation to fascia to help restore or relieve foot pain, plantar fasciitis, metatarsal pain, heel spurs, neuromas, pinched nerve and aching feet. The pods can be arranged according to anatomical structures of the foot (e.g., based on common locations of plantar fasciitis or sciatica conditions and/or symptoms) and/or according to a theory of reflexology or other therapeutic theory.

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Inventors:
RINI, Monique (32 Fairfield Road, East Brunswick, NJ, 08816, US)
Application Number:
US2017/049220
Publication Date:
March 08, 2018
Filing Date:
August 29, 2017
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
RINI, Monique (32 Fairfield Road, East Brunswick, NJ, 08816, US)
International Classes:
A43B17/00; A43B3/24; A43B7/14
Foreign References:
US20150020414A12015-01-22
US20150068059A12015-03-12
US5551173A1996-09-03
US20160198794A12016-07-14
GB2526192A2015-11-18
RU2408241C22011-01-10
RU2124303C11999-01-10
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
AYCOCK, Stephen, W. (Cygnet IP Law, P.A.5902 Pier Place D, Lakeland FL, 33813, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

What is claimed is:

1. A footwear system comprising:

a footwear body having a sole disposed on a bottom of the footwear body, a plurality of apertures disposed on a surface opposite the sole, one or more straps joined to a toe portion of the footwear body and extending from the toe portion rearward toward a heel portion of the footwear body; and

one or more removable insoles, each insole having a plurality of protruding members that extend from a bottom of the insole downward toward the apertures when the insole is installed in the footwear body,

wherein the plurality of protruding members correspond to the plurality of apertures,

wherein each protruding member has a first perimeter defined by an outer edge of an interface where each protruding member is joined to the bottom of the insole, and a second perimeter defined by an outer edge of a distal end of each protruding member, wherein the first perimeter is smaller than the second perimeter, and

wherein each of the apertures is configured to receive and engage a corresponding protrusion through interference fit.

2. The footwear system of claim 1, wherein the plurality of removable insoles includes a first insole having a toe ridge, an arch support and a heel cup.

3. The footwear system of claim 2, wherein the plurality of removable insoles includes a second insole having a plurality of pods extending from the second insole in an upward direction, wherein the plurality of pods include a first group of pods disposed in the heel cup of the second insole, and a second group of pods disposed on the arch support of the second insole, and wherein the first group of pods and the second group of pods are arranged on the second insole to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis.

4. The footwear system of claim 2, wherein the plurality of removable insoles includes a third insole having a plurality of pods extending from the third insole in an upward direction, wherein the plurality of pods include a first group of pods disposed on the arch support, and a second group of pods disposed on a big toe section of the third insole.

5. The footwear system of claim 1, wherein each insole includes a big toe support section and a support section for toes other than the big toe, and a recessed portion disposed between the big toe support section and the support section for toes other than the big toe.

6. The footwear system of claim 2, wherein the plurality of apertures includes a first aperture and a second aperture, wherein the plurality of protruding members include a first protruding member and a second protruding member, wherein the first aperture corresponds to the first protruding member and the second aperture corresponds to the second protruding member, and wherein the first aperture is disposed in an area adjacent a front portion of the arch support and toe support section, and the second aperture is disposed in an area adjacent to the heel cup and a rear portion of the arch support.

7. An insole comprising:

an insole body portion; and

a plurality of receptacles, wherein each receptacle is configured to receive and retain a pod, and wherein the plurality of receptacles includes one or more groups of receptacles arranged to retain a plurality of pods in positions to apply pressure on corresponding areas of a foot of a wearer.

8. The insole of claim 7, wherein one or more of the plurality of receptacles includes a receptacle that has a first opening on a top surface of the insole body portion, a second opening on a bottom surface of the insole body portion, and a hollow section connecting the first opening and the second opening, and wherein the first opening is smaller than the second opening.

9. The insole of claim 8, further comprising one or more pods, each pod having a first member and a second member, wherein the first member is configured to be positioned on the top surface of the insole body and includes a receptacle, and wherein the second member is configured to be positioned on the bottom surface of the insole body portion and wherein the second member includes a protrusion that is configured to extend upward from the second opening through the hollow section and engage the receptacle of the first member of the pod.

10. The insole of claim 7, wherein one or more of the plurality of receptacles includes a receptacle that has a first opening on a top surface of the insole body portion and a hole extending partially into the insole body portion, and wherein the hole is configured to retain a protrusion from a bottom of a pod.

11. The insole of claim 10, further comprising one or more pods, each pod having an upper surface configured to apply pressure to a foot of a wearer when the insole in placed into a shoe worn by the wearer, and a protrusion extending from a bottom of the pod, wherein the protrusion is configured to engage the hole of one of the receptacles in the insole body portion.

12. The insole of claim 10, wherein the one or more groups of receptacles includes a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis symptoms.

13. The insole of claim 10, wherein the one or more groups of receptacles includes a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief for sciatica by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with sciatica symptoms.

14. The insole of claim 10, wherein the one or more groups of receptacles includes a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief to a symptom according to a reflexology theory by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with a part of the body associated with the symptom.

15. An insole comprising:

an insole body portion having a bottom surface configured to be placed adjacent to a midsole of a shoe, and a top surface configured to be adjacent to a foot of a wearer when the insole is worn by the wearer; and

one or more pods embedded into the insole body portion, wherein each pod extends upward from the top surface of the insole body portion, and wherein each pod extends beyond a plane defined by the top surface of the insole body portion.

16. The insole of claim 15, wherein the one or more pods includes a group of pods arranged to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis symptoms.

17. The insole of claim 15, wherein the one or more pods includes a group of pods arranged to provide relief for sciatica by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with sciatica symptoms.

18. The insole of claim 15, wherein the one or more pods includes a group of pods arranged to provide relief to a symptom according to a reflexology theory by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with a part of the body associated with the symptom.

19. The insole of claim 15, further comprising a padding layer disposed on top of the top surface of the insole body portion and covering at least a portion of the pods, wherein the padding layer includes a gel material.

20. The insole of claim 19, further comprising an ankle extension that extends upward from a heel area of the insole body.

Description:
THERAPEUTIC INSOLES AND FOOTWEAR

RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims the benefit of U.S. Application No. 62/380,485, entitled "Footpad Insert," and filed on August 29, 2016, and U.S. Application No. 62/424,519, entitled "Footpad Insert," and filed on November 20, 2016, both of which are

incorporated herein by reference in their entirety for all purposes.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Plantar fasciitis results in about 1 million patient visits per year to medical professionals. Treatment of plantar fasciitis is estimated to cost between $192 and $376 million dollars annually for treatments such as injections, surgeries, steroids and physical therapy. Average recovery time for plantar fasciitis can be as long as 6 weeks.

Reoccurrence of plantar fasciitis is not uncommon. There are also likely a large number of unreported cases of plantar fasciitis and/or related conditions for which afflicted people seek over the counter treatments such as new shoes, shoe inserts, massage therapy and other stretching aids or tools used for comfort and treatment.

[0003] The plantar fascia is a thick band of ligament located at the bottom of the foot that contributes to supporting the arch of the foot. There are many factors that can cause the arch to fall, and some may lead to formation of scar tissue at the bottom of the heel. Pain in and around the heel is a common complaint and the heel area tends to be a source of pain. Chronic scar tissue may not respond to conventional treatments or modalities. [0004] Plantar fasciitis can include degeneration and localized inflammation of the proximal fascia (the part closest to the heel). Plantar fasciitis is bilateral (in both feet) in up to a 1/3 of cases, and about 10% of plantar fasciitis cases may be a result of running injuries. Unfortunately, if not treated right plantar fasciitis can last for months or years, and can be a debilitating condition.

[0005] Fasciitis can occur when the fascia is overloaded from tight calves or Achilles tendons, a sudden increase in activity or training, poor footwear (e.g., worn or over- flexible running shoes), a hard training surface, an arch being too high or too low, and/or a weight increase.

[0006] This overload can produce excessive stress on the fascia, which can result in a number of small tears in the fascia tissue. The tears can cause the body to go into a protective mode and start an inflammatory healing reaction, which can make the fascia thicker, less flexible, more sensitive, and painful. If plantar fasciitis is not treated properly, an afflicted person can get stuck in a chronic inflammatory phase, which can be frustrating and painful.

[0007] Shoe inserts are widely available devices that are useful can also be specifically designed orthotic devices used to relieve painful conditions, such as corns, calluses, metatarsal conditions, or other painful conditions of the foot. Over-the-counter shoe inserts are relatively inexpensive but can provide limited relief of many conditions. It is important to note that there are few, if any readily available devices specifically to address this condition of plantar fasciitis. Specially designed orthotics can provide more relief, but are expensive and inconvenient to replace. [0008] Other foot wearing items that support or aid in plantar fasciitis are as one unit, attached to footwear. It is not easily transported into other footwear. You are very limited to when and where you can wear them. There are other concepts such as foot wraps or compression wear that can be uncomfortable and or expose strapping, wrapping or Velcro, which may not be acceptable to users due to aesthetic and/or dress code considerations.

[0009] Accordingly, there remains a need in the art for footpad inserts/insoles that are relatively inexpensive, widely available, provide relief for a wide range of painful and/or damaging foot conditions, and that easily provide therapeutic benefits to a wide range of users with a wide range of conditions affecting the foot. The present invention meets this need.

[0010] Some implementations were conceived in light of the above-mentioned problems and limitations.

SUMMARY

[0011] Plantar- Fasciitis is a tough layer of connective tissue that supports the arch and runs from the heel to the ball of the foot. The plantar footpad has weight bearing, solid pods embedded to create maximum resistance and pressure while standing or walking. The results can include trigger point therapy and plantar fasciitis benefits such as helping break up the soft connective tissue in the foot, which can help promote blood flow to the area, aiding, restoring and rebuilding the fascia in the foot. The embedded pods can be arranged and configured in the insole to trigger the areas where plantar fasciitis conditions or symptoms are prevalent. The embedded pods can range in size, shape, diameter, height and composition, depending on placement and configuration as well as depth and material of footpad. Insoles in accordance with some implementations can be inserted into other footwear of choice and can be used as frequently as needed. Insoles and footwear can include one or more weight bearing, spherical embedded pods that provide pressure on the trigger points as a user walks or stands. The pods can help stimulate areas associated with problematic foot issues such as plantar fasciitis. Because the spherical (or semi- spherical) pods are embedded in and through the insoles and footwear, the pods provide pressure to trigger points as well as breaking through fascia to promote blood flow to aid in restoring the fascia in the foot.

[0012] Some implementations can include a footwear system comprising a footwear body having a sole disposed on a bottom of the footwear body, a plurality of apertures disposed on a surface opposite the sole, one or more straps joined to a toe portion of the footwear body and extending from the toe portion rearward toward a heel portion of the footwear body. The footwear system can also include one or more removable insoles, each insole having a plurality of protruding members that extend from a bottom of the insole downward toward the apertures when the insole is installed in the footwear body. The plurality of protruding members correspond to the plurality of apertures and each protruding member has a first perimeter defined by an outer edge of an interface where each protruding member is joined to the bottom of the insole, and a second perimeter defined by an outer edge of a distal end of each protruding member. In some

implementations, the first perimeter is smaller than the second perimeter, and each of the apertures is configured to receive and engage a corresponding protrusion through interference fit. [0013] In some implementations, the plurality of removable insoles includes a first insole having a toe ridge, an arch support and a heel cup. The plurality of removable insoles can include a second insole having a plurality of pods extending from the second insole in an upward direction, wherein the plurality of pods include a first group of pods disposed in the heel cup of the second insole, and a second group of pods disposed on the arch support of the second insole, and wherein the first group of pods and the second group of pods are arranged on the second insole to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis.

[0014] The plurality of removable insoles can include a third insole having a plurality of pods extending from the third insole in an upward direction, wherein the plurality of pods include a first group of pods disposed on the arch support, and a second group of pods disposed on a big toe section of the third insole.

[0015] Each insole can include a big toe support section and a support section for toes other than the big toe, and a recessed portion disposed between the big toe support section and the support section for toes other than the big toe.

[0016] The plurality of apertures can include a first aperture and a second aperture, wherein the plurality of protruding members include a first protruding member and a second protruding member, wherein the first aperture corresponds to the first protruding member and the second aperture corresponds to the second protruding member, and wherein the first aperture is disposed in an area adjacent a front portion of the arch support and toe support section, and the second aperture is disposed in an area adjacent to the heel cup and a rear portion of the arch support. [0017] Some implementations can include an insole comprising an insole body portion, and a plurality of receptacles, wherein each receptacle is configured to receive and retain a pod, and wherein the plurality of receptacles includes one or more groups of receptacles arranged to retain a plurality of pods in positions to apply pressure on corresponding areas of a foot of a wearer. One or more of the plurality of receptacles can include a receptacle that has a first opening on a top surface of the insole body portion, a second opening on a bottom surface of the insole body portion, and a hollow section connecting the first opening and the second opening, and wherein the first opening is smaller than the second opening.

[0018] In some implementations, the insole can further comprise one or more pods, each pod having a first member and a second member, wherein the first member is configured to be positioned on the top surface of the insole body and includes a receptacle, and wherein the second member is configured to be positioned on the bottom surface of the insole body portion and wherein the second member includes a protrusion that is configured to extend upward from the second opening through the hollow section and engage the receptacle of the first member of the pod.

[0019] One or more of the plurality of receptacles can include a receptacle that has a first opening on a top surface of the insole body portion and a hole extending partially into the insole body portion, and wherein the hole is configured to retain a protrusion from a bottom of a pod. In some implementations, the insole can further comprise one or more pods, each pod having an upper surface configured to apply pressure to a foot of a wearer when the insole in placed into a shoe worn by the wearer, and a protrusion extending from a bottom of the pod, wherein the protrusion is configured to engage the hole of one of the receptacles in the insole body portion.

[0020] The one or more groups of receptacles can include a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis symptoms. The one or more groups of receptacles can include a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief for sciatica by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with sciatica symptoms.

[0021] The one or more groups of receptacles can include a group of receptacles arranged to provide relief of a symptom according to a reflexology theory by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with a part of the body associated with the symptom.

[0022] Some implementations can include an insole comprising an insole body portion having a bottom surface configured to be placed adjacent to a midsole of a shoe, and a top surface configured to be adjacent to a foot of a wearer when the insole is worn by the wearer, and one or more pods embedded into the insole body portion, wherein each pod extends upward from the top surface of the insole body portion, and wherein each pod extends beyond a plane defined by the top surface of the insole body portion.

[0023] The one or more pods can include a group of pods arranged to provide relief for plantar fasciitis by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with plantar fasciitis symptoms. The one or more pods can include a group of pods arranged to provide relief for sciatica by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with sciatica symptoms. [0024] The one or more pods can include a group of pods arranged to provide relief to a symptom according to a reflexology theory by providing pressure to areas of a foot of a wearer associated with a part of the body associated with the symptom. In some implementations, the insole can further comprise a padding layer disposed on top of the top surface of the insole body portion and covering at least a portion of the pods. The padding layer can include a gel material. The insole can also include an ankle extension that extends upward from a heel area of the insole body

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0025] FIG. 1 is a diagram of an example insole having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for a casual user in accordance with some implementations.

[0026] FIG. 2 is a diagram of an example insole having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for a casual user in accordance with some implementations.

[0027] FIG. 3 is a diagram of an example insole having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for an active user in accordance with some implementations.

[0028] FIG. 4 is a diagram of an example insole having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for an active user in accordance with some implementations. [0029] FIG. 5 is a diagram of a side cut away view of an example insole having a plurality of semi-spherical pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations.

[0030] FIG. 6 is a diagram of a side cut away view of an example insole having a plurality of spherical pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations.

[0031] FIG. 7 is a diagram of a side view of an example insole having an arch support and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations.

[0032] FIGS. 8-10 are diagrams of another example insole having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations.

[0033] FIGS. 11 and 12 are diagrams of example insoles having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of diabetes according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations.

[0034] FIGS. 13 and 14 are diagrams of example insoles having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of sciatica according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations.

[0035] FIGS. 15 and 16 are diagrams of example insoles having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of stress and/or sleeplessness according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some

implementations . [0036] FIGS. 17 and 18 are diagrams of example insoles having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help support weight loss according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations.

[0037] FIGS. 19 and 20 are diagrams of example insoles having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help support general wellness according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations.

[0038] FIG. 21 is a diagram of example insoles having a plurality of receptacles to permit user configurable pod arrangements in accordance with some implementations.

[0039] FIG. 22 is a side view of an example insole a plurality of receptacles to permit user configurable pod arrangements in accordance with some implementations.

[0040] FIG. 23 is a chart showing example configurations of the user configurable pod arrangements in accordance with some implementations.

[0041] FIGS. 24-26 are diagrams of a footwear system having interchangeable insoles in accordance with some implementations.

[0042] FIG. 27 is a diagram of an example shoe having a split to design in accordance with some implementations.

[0043] FIGS. 28A-28D are diagrams of an example insole having an ankle extension in accordance with some implementations.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0044] It will be appreciated that while the various example implementations may be described in terms of an insole and/or footwear, the insoles can be integrated with footwear and the insoles of the footwear examples could be made as standalone insoles that can be inserted into various types of shoes.

[0045] The plantar fascia is a tough layer of connective tissue that supports the arch and runs from the heel of the foot to the ball of the foot. Some implementations of the disclosed insoles and footwear can include weight bearing, solid pods (e.g., round protrusions) embedded within the insoles and footwear to create resistance and pressure while standing or walking. The pressure results in trigger point therapy and, for plantar fasciitis benefits, the focused pressure from the pods can help break up the soft connective tissue in the foot, which can help promote blood flow to the area, helping to aid, restore and rebuild the fascia in the foot. The embedded pods can be arranged and configured in the insoles and footwear to trigger areas where plantar fasciitis may be most prevalent. The embedded pods can vary in size, shape, diameter, height and composition, depending on placement and configuration as well as depth and material of footpad. Insoles according to the disclosed subject matter can be inserted into other footwear of a user's choice and can be used as frequently as needed. In some

implementations, insoles and footwear can include weight bearing, spherical embedded pods (e.g., having diameters of about 10mm, 12mm, or 14 mm, or other suitable dimensions) that apply pressure on trigger points as a user walks or stands. The insoles and footwear with pods can help stimulate areas associated with problematic foot issues such as plantar fasciitis. Because the spherical (e.g., marble like) or semi- spherical pods can be embedded in and through the insoles and footwear to provide resistance to maintain the trigger points as well as breaking through fascia creating blood flow to aid in restoring the fascia in the foot. [0046] Some implementations include insoles and footwear having a variety of useful properties. The insoles and footwear can provide particular therapeutic benefits to specific areas of the foot. This may be accomplished through the specific combination of multiple pod components that function together to modulate localized areas of foot pressure. Moreover, this combination of components can provide insoles and footwear that are easily customizable by the user to fit not only the specific needs of the user but also the changing needs of the user.

[0047] Accordingly, in one aspect, some implementations can include a removable insole configured for placement in a shoe between the shoe sole and the foot of a user, when the shoe is worn.

[0048] The insoles and footwear can be used in conjunction with an existing shoe insole or even in addition to another shoe insert. In some implementations, the insoles can be used to replace an existing shoe insole or an existing shoe insert. In some

implementations, the insoles may work particularly well when the insoles are the only insert present to modulate pressure between the foot of the user and the permanent shoe sole (e.g., the midsole or a non-removable insole). Additionally, some implementations may be integrated directly into a shoe or footwear product, such as a conventional closed toe shoe, a sandal or a flip-flop.

[0049] The insoles and footwear may comprise of a combination of materials. For example, the insoles and footwear may include a first material that is at least partially covered or enclosed by a second material. In other embodiments, the insoles and footwear may comprise multiple layers as well as a single layer. The insoles and footwear may comprise a gel material and a covering material that completely surrounds and encloses the gel material. In some embodiments, the covering material can be a thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) material. For example, the insoles and footwear may include a gel that is comprised of a urethane gel coated with a thin film, such as a TPU film, silicone film, or other thermoplastic film. Some implementations can be made fully or partially from an ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) based chemical composite.

[0050] For example, the gel material could be partially surrounded by a covering material such that different portions of the insoles and footwear interact differently with the shoe. In this instance, the covered portions of the insoles and footwear can resist adhering to other surrounding materials due to surface interactions such as by minimizing surface tension or friction.

[0051] In some implementations, the pods, insoles and/or footwear may be instrumented with force sensors (or other sensors) and associated electronics (e.g., power source (battery, kinetic power generator, etc.), microcontroller, flash memory, wired or wireless data communication interface, etc.) to measure forces in one or more locations to help measure the efficacy of the treatment provided by the insoles and footwear, and store data corresponding to the measured forces or other sensed parameters (e.g., number of steps, speed of steps, impact of steps, etc.).

[0052] The dimensions of the insoles and footwear may vary depending upon the shape of the pad, the location of the pad relative to other pads, the location of the pad relative to an anatomical part of the foot, and the overall size of the insoles and footwear.

[0053] In some implementations, the insoles and footwear can include multiple layers and can be formed using, for example, a single material injection or a "double shot" molding process. In this regard, a first layer or skin of a moderator sheet (e.g., TPU material or the like) may be placed into a mold and a first shot of polymeric material (e.g., thermoset or thermoplastic polyurethane or similar materials of various durometers) may be placed on the skin and the mold closed to cure the first shot and form a first layer of polymeric material on the skin. The mold may then be opened and a second shot of polymeric material (e.g., thermoset or thermoplastic urethane) may be placed on the skin and the first layer of polymeric material. The mold is then closed to cure the second shot and form the second layer of polymeric material. The first and second layers formed on the skin may have different material properties from one another, such as different stiffness and/or elasticity. For example, the first layer formed on the skin may be stiffer than the second layer formed on the skin. Foamed materials tend to resist full

deformation of the layer.

[0054] The insoles and footwear can include formed pressure pods, especially in combination with the series of pods. These pods may be of various geometric

configurations from simple semi spheres to semi oblique spheroids, and may have transfer functions describing natural curvature, such as the Fibonacci spiral segments. As well, these pods may be either active or static wherein the active members may be spring loaded with elements that compress and then expand swiftly to cause a massaging element. Additionally, the insoles and footwear may contain radio frequency emitting elements, heat, infrared heat, vibration, cooling elements, plant-derived essential oils and/or dried plant products applied to or constructed within the insoles and footwear, flip- flop, footwear and or footwear components to deliver the comfort, disinfectant and/or therapeutic benefits of aromatherapy through direct contact with the wearer's feet with the volatile components of the plant derived oils and/or plant products. For instance, a flip- flop or sandal may have an aromatherapy component built in which distributes out of perforations strategically placed on the flip-flop. The flip flop may also have larger perforations, aesthetically pleasing to allow pass-through of sand and water to make it easier to walk.

[0055] The insoles and footwear with pods may contain a rivet, fastening, crimping or snap system and the like. This system may also apply to a flip-flop, permanent foot bed, sole and the like.

[0056] Some implementations provide an ability to distribute pressures on the foot by both applying beneficial pressure and simultaneously modulating that pressure. This provides a unique system for providing foot therapies through the use of insoles and footwear.

[0057] The insoles and footwear may be formed of materials and/or configured to reduce noise during use. In this regard, the insoles and footwear may be texturized to reduce if not eliminate noises while a user is wearing the insert. For example, the insoles and footwear may be texturized in specific areas in order to reduce frictional noise or squeaking between the insert and the interior of the insoles and footwear. The insoles and footwear may be texturized using a micro finish (e.g., ridges and indentations) or mat finish. For instance, portions of the insoles that are expected to interface with the shoe could be texturized, such as the sidewall surfaces of the insole (i.e., those between the major opposing surfaces of the insole), which could include those surfaces in the region of the arch, heel cup, and/or other outer edges of the insole. The insole could be texturized using other techniques such as by adding an additional layer of fabric or other material or adding a lubricant such as silicone. [0058] Smaller pods may provide more intense pressure while the larger pods may provide a gentler pressure. Natural shape and dimensions allow the user to apply weight - bearing pressure for as long as required to achieve relief and/or restorative effects. The design and accurately placed therapy pods create weight bearing pressure to the appropriate points in a user's foot to accomplish the required or desired therapy such as: trigger point therapy, myofascia release, reflexology, Shiatsu, Thai massage and a host of other modalities to promote healing for common complaints such as plantar fasciitis, heel pain, foot arch pain, generalized complaints that may correspond to certain reflex points in the feet.

[0059] Some implementations can include insoles and footwear with embedded, elevated pods to stimulate and sustain trigger points while helping to tenderize and break up scar tissue by penetrating deep into the fascia to restore or relieve foot pain, plantar fasciitis, metatarsal pain, heel spurs, neuromas, pinched nerves and aching feet.

[0060] Some implementations can include conventional footwear features associated with sandals and other common types of footwear. The insoles and footwear can include a pair (e.g., left and right footwear) with conventional features including soles and latching straps for securing a shoe to a user's foot. Yet still another object of the present invention is to provide improved traction means on slippery surfaces via a tread surface along a bottom surface of the footwear.

[0061] The pods are preferably positioned in the insoles and footwear to correspond to anatomical portions of the foot where pressure points are likely to occur or where foot diseases or conditions related to pressure may occur. In some embodiments, at least a portion of the pods can be positioned in an area of the footpad insert/insole corresponding to plantar fasciitis, trigger point therapy or many other modalities used for common foot complaints.

[0062] Some implementations can include a footpad insert/insole that can provide therapeutic benefit to a user by modulating pressure applied to the foot of a user. The insoles and footwear make use of a combination of removable foot inserts to beneficially alter pressure in the localized area of the feet to activate reflex or trigger points that correspond to the anatomy of the body or to the foot itself.

[0063] The insoles and footwear may further comprise a cushioning layer. Such layer may have a variety of sizes covering all or a part of the overall area of the insert. In particular, the cushioning layer may be positioned to separate at least a portion of the pods from the foot of the user. The cushioning layer may be made of a variety of materials, such as polyurethane foam as well s a mixture of materials to attain the desired durometers (or hardness).

[0064] The beneficial pressure abilities of the insoles and footwear can particularly be related to the pressure of the pods and the properties thereof that allow for distribution of pressure between the foot user and the pods, which can comprise a thermoplastic polyurethane material and the like or any other moldable composition available.

[0065] Listed below are three costly restorative therapy treatments recommended for plantar fasciitis. These treatments may offer the same result as the disclosed insoles and footwear by helping increase blood flow to the injured area, which can help naturally restore the soft tissue. [0066] Amniotic cell treatment delivered through a needle can cost up to $1000 per treatment it is believed that the umbilical cord matrix increases the blood flow response by delivering healthy cells to the area. Blood flow naturally restores the soft tissue.

[0067] Shockwave therapy gradually increased the blood flow supply to area by tenderizing the fascia and breaking up scar tissue.

[0068] Radio frequency penetrates the deepest causing the most aggressive blood flow to the area and may be the only conventional restorative treatment that penetrates deep into the fascia layer. This really targets the area and helps generate healthy cells for soft tissue to regenerate itself, essentially sending a red flag up for the body to come heal itself.

[0069] The design of the disclosed pods can trigger a response in a patient's body similar to the response from PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) therapy. PRP therapy uses a process in which blood of a patient is extracted, spun it and the blood cells are separated from the plasma. The plasma carries a concentrated amount of vital nutrients that is thought to accelerate the healing and regeneration of soft tissue (fascia).

[0070] In a professional setting, plasma is extracted and delivered via injection to the plantar fascia. PRP injections can cost about $2500 each, and may not be covered under insurance. Further, PRP therapy is invasive and aggressive.

[0071] The disclosed pod insoles and footwear therapy creates surface resistance to tenderize the fascia and break up fascia adhesions to signal the body to send blood flow to the injured area. This approach using the disclosed insoles and footwear is natural and very comparable to PRP in that pod therapy using disclosed insoles and footwear can promote sustainable, consistent blood flow to the injured fascia. While an injection may work within a few days, a patient must account for down time associated with PRP. The disclosed insoles and footwear may also take extended days to help promote a similar amount of nutrients as PRP without the down time of PRP. Therapy using insoles and footwear having pods as disclosed herein can offer an advantage of a non-invasive therapy for literally a fraction of the price of PRP (and the other therapies mentioned above).

[0072] The removable insoles and footwear provide a single solution, designed for restorative therapy, allowing a user to treat and rehabilitate herself/himself. Some implementations if the insoles and footwear can both tenderize the scar tissue and penetrate deep down to the fascia layer to help promote blood flow to help restore the fascia back to a healthy, mobile state. The weight bearing pods penetrate deep into the fascia for a restorative experience combined with reflexology and trigger point therapy.

[0073] Various configurations, placement, height, width, material, durometer, overlays, shape, hollowing, solid or semi-solid composition of pods reflects the particular functionality of the insoles and footwear, for instance, different configurations may impact various common conditions such as plantar fasciitis or by stimulating the appropriate reflex zones or pressure points of the foot may impact sleep problems by such stimulation the following points: pineal - secretes melatonin and controls sleep, head/brain - induces clarity and positive thinking, thyroid - normalizes melatonin, pituitary- master gland-balances hormones, neck/shoulder -releases tension, chest/lung- calms breathing.

[0074] Another configuration example can be a weight loss footpad insert/insole with the pods appropriately placed that stimulate the following points: stomach/pancreas- stimulation of these points allows the body to absorb more nutrients, spleen- reduces hunger, gallbladder- stores bile, bile emulsifies fats, endocrine glands-promotes hormone balance and regulates appetite, diaphragm line- all sleep and relaxation. There are many configurations to combat the most common complaints and or customized configuration to address a particular condition or multiple conditions in one footpad. There can also be a very standard configuration which may correspond to all the major reflex points in the foot to impact an overall, generalized state of well being.

[0075] The pods on the disclosed insoles and footwear can help to loosen up the fascia (connective tissue), increase blood flow, promote restoration of soft tissue, massage the muscles, mobilize the bones, increase lymphatic circulation and as a bonus it increases foot flexibility.

[0076] Reflexology theory corresponds to a particular area upon one's foot linked to various points and organs therein the body such as kidneys, liver, skeletal joints, and the like, as defined thereby conventional reflexology diagrams. Thus, as a user walks using the insoles and footwear, they may experience massaging, relaxation, and an overall body wellness.

[0077] According to reflexology theory, the application of direct pressure to the reflex- zones or pressure points in the feet, promotes a healing response (or reflex) in the corresponding anatomy. According to reflexology theory, every part of the anatomy is connected to the foot and is represented by a reflex-zone located on a specific part of the foot. By accurately applying pressure to these specific areas, the relevant part of the foot and/or body is stimulated or affected.

[0078] The concept of reflexology involves the relief of stress in various parts of the human body by vigorous stimulation of specific areas located on the sole of the foot. For example, the area of the big toe is associated with relieving sinus problems. The area at the ball of the foot is associated with stomach disorders. Each specific area of the sole of the foot is connected to a different organ of the body according to those who practice reflexology. Conventional footpad inserts do not give an adequately deep tissue massage to all the specific reflexology points of the sole of a user's foot. The disclosed insoles and footwear can provide relief to other body parts through the concept of reflexology.

[0079] The left foot corresponds to the left side of the body and all organs, valves, etc. found there. The right foot corresponds to the right side of the body and all organs found there. For example, the liver is on the right side of the body, and therefore the

corresponding reflex area is on the right foot. The pods are positioned to correspond to areas of the foot that are linked to various points and organs in the human body such as kidneys, liver, skeletal joints, and the like. Thus, as the user walks, they experience a trigger point massaging effect resulting in increased relaxation, and overall body wellness. This design may be incorporated into various styles of footwear including sandals, shoes, boots, and the like.

[0080] The footpad can be configured in many ways depending on the therapy being used and how aggressively it will break through fascia. Smaller pods provide different pressure than larger pods. A combination of different sizes will also result in different pressure and therapy. Someone who walks under 5 miles a day may choose insoles and footwear with a less aggressive configuration and maximum pressure on trigger points and fascia breakup. Weight of the user can also be a factor. Someone who walks more than 5 miles a day may consider insoles and footwear with a less aggressive configuration since pods apply continuous pressure on trigger points as well as fascia ruptures. There can be variations of the insole material and embedded pod configuration to create insoles and footwear for broader foot therapies such as Shiatsu or reflexology. The footpad can also be customized for isolated issues such as someone who is diabetic or has sensitive feet. The embedded pods can be any size, shape or composition and can have any placement configuration for a multitude of health and or foot benefits. In some implementations, the insoles can include any material and or combination of pods with a variety of arch supports as well as an extended food pad around lower ankle, creating support with or without pods in the lower ankle and upper heel. Strategic pod

configurations can result in trigger point therapy in foot to relieve a host of issues such as heel spurs, circulation, and anything else related to foot health or the repair and rebuild of fascia. The pods break through fascia in the foot, increasing blood flow to the area, creating an environment for repairing and rebuilding the fascia. Insoles and footwear can also include metals or magnets for other therapeutic values. The pods help relax tense muscles while applying pain relieving trigger point therapy to points along the foot, to promote blood flow, energy levels and maximize healing so that a user's feet can perform better.

[0081] The human foot contains 26 bones, 19 muscles and more than 100 ligaments. The foot also contains hundreds of nerves and blood vessels. According to the Chinese medicine, there are more than 60 reflex points, which correspond directly with other pails of the body. With the proper configurations and placement of embedded pods, most, if not all of these reflex points can be stimulated while walking or standing. The insole concept can also apply to a flat variation on a foam flip flop with pods embedded into flip flop. This can change the way flip flops are used, where the flip flops provide therapeutic properties and yet still remain stylish. The insoles and footwear can have a variation with pods embedded directly into the sole of the footwear, as a permanent feature, providing the same design and benefit as the insole.

[0082] The term pods refers to a footpad insert/insole, flip flop, foot bed, sole or permanent structure of any footwear that consists of a protrusion or knob embedded or not embedded at a full depth, partial depth or sitting flat on surface. The pods can be elevated above footpad/insole surface to allow for both resistance and continuous stimulation. While the pods stimulate pressure points, the pods can also help tenderize and or break up fascia in the foot area, where various forms of fasciitis are relevant. Blood flow will be established by penetrating the layer between the skin and muscle. When the fascia in foot is manipulated it helps to create flexibility, allowing foot to become pliable. The pods will break through soft tissue and restore and strengthen fascia in the foot.

[0083] Fascia restriction may result in pain or restriction of movement as well as weaker muscles, decreased circulation of fluids leading to high blood pressure, lower immune function and hormone imbalance, affecting our ability to withstand stress and perform daily activities. The disclosed insoles and footwear having pods, hydrates the soft tissue of the fascia by flooding it with oxygenated blood and fluid.

[0084] As mentioned above, the human foot contains 26 bones, 19 muscles and more than 100 ligaments. The foot also contains hundreds of nerves and blood vessels.

According to the Chinese medicine, there are more than 60 reflex points, which correspond directly with other parts of the body. With the proper configurations and placement of embedded pods, most, if not all of these reflex points can be stimulated while walking or standing. The insoles and footwear concept can also apply to a flat variation on a conventional foam flip flop with pods embedded into the flip-flop. This can change the way flip flops are used and the flip flops can still remain stylish. The flip- flop can be made of any material to achieve the outcome of desired results. The insoles and footwear can have a variation with pods embedded directly into the sole of the footwear, as a permanent feature, providing the same design and benefit as the footpad insert/insole, flip-flop or foot bed. In addition, the foot pad insert/insole may contain proper arch design to provide foot alignment and balances to impact areas for shock absorption, reduced foot fatigue, and potential of increased footwear life. Some foot pad insert/insole elements may also consist of a foam top piece that absorbs and wicks away moisture, cork and EVA construction to provide flexibility and absorb impact shock, an anti-slip bottom coat increases durability and protects for longevity of foot bed life, raised side flanges to aid in controlling foot movement and stability, a deep heel cup to provide natural cushioning, shock absorption, and protects the heel bone for foot pain relief.

[0085] The inventive footpad insert/insole, flip-flop or permanent integration directly into the shoe product with pods can also consist of any material, combination of materials, compositions and the like until desired comfort and effectiveness has been satisfied. An example may be the ultralight, ultraflexible Ethylene- Vinyl Acetate (EVA) material that keeps the user light on their feet throughout your day. EVA's nano- molecular structure also provides an effect of smoothness and gives a consistently comfortable fit. Another example may be foam, memory foam, carbon fiber memory foam and the like. [0086] Footpad inserts/insoles can come in standardized sizes, which allow for customization. A user may need to trim them to fit into the shoe or footwear of choice.

[0087] The plantar fasciitis insoles and footwear with pods standard size allow for proper therapy because the plantar fascia runs the length of the foot bed from heel to toe.

[0088] To customize insoles and footwear, trim the footpad inserts/insoles using a pair of scissors sharp enough to cut through dense cardboard. Cut the excess material around the toes and instep areas, as clipping these areas is less likely to disfigure the shape of the footpad insert/insole. Once the footpad insert/insoles are trimmed, they should fit properly into your shoes. You can also trace around the original footpad insert/insole of the footwear you will be replacing to get an outline to cut along, although this method may make the new footpad insert/insole slightly bigger than necessary, you can revert to a foot outline for a more custom fit.

[0089] FIGS. 1 and 2 are diagrams of an example insole 100 having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged on an insole body portion 102 to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for a casual user in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods includes a group of pods 112 arranged and disposed near a heel area to provide pressure near the location of the heel area connections of the lateral plantar fascia 110, the plantar aponeurosis 106, and the medial plantar fascia 108.

[0090] FIGS. 3 and 4 are diagrams of another example insole 300 having a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis for an active user in accordance with some implementations. In the example insole 300, the pods are more distributed along the fascia than the version shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The insole 300 has pods arranged to provide pressure and support to the lateral plantar fascia 110, the plantar aponeurosis 106, and the medial plantar fascia 108.

[0091] FIG. 5 is a diagram of a side cut away view of an example insole having a body portion 102 and a plurality of semi- spherical pods 104 constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some

implementations. FIG. 6 is a diagram of a side cut away view of an example insole having a body portion 104 and a plurality of spherical pods 602, 604 constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations. FIG. 7 is a diagram of a side view of an example insole having an arch support 702 and a plurality of pods 704 constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations.

[0092] FIGS. 8-10 are diagrams of another example insole 800 having a body portion 802 a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods includes a first medial plantar fascia pod 804 and a second medial plantar fascia pod 806 to provide pressure to the medial plantar fascia of a user. The plurality of pods can include a first group of heel pods 808 and a second group of heel pods 810. The first group of heel pods can include three pods with one 12mm and two 10mm diameter pods. The first group of heel pods 808 can also include four pods with one 12mm and three 10mm diameter pods. The second group of heel pods can include two pods, a 10mm diameter pod and a 12mm diameter pod. The plurality of pods can also include a pod 812 (e.g., a 10mm diameter pod) arranged to provide pressure in an area near the plantar aponeurosis and the toe end of the lateral plantar fascia. The plurality of pods can also include a pod 814 (e.g., a 10mm diameter pod) arranged to provide pressure to a toe end area of the plantar aponeurosis. The numbering of the diagram of FIG. 9 corresponds to the numbering of the diagram of FIG. 8, with the difference being that the reference numbers of FIG. 9 start with a 9. FIG. 10 is a side view of the insole shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, showing the groups of heel pods 1004 and the body portion 1002.

[0093] The pods mentioned above regard FIGS. 8-10, or elsewhere herein, can have different dimensions. For example each pod can be one of the following: a) diameter of about 14mm and extending about 10.5mm beyond a top surface of the body portion (e.g., 802); b) diameter of about 12mm and extending about 9mm beyond a top surface of the body portion (e.g., 802); or c) diameter of about 10mm and extending about 7.5mm beyond a top surface of the body portion (e.g., 802). It will be appreciated that the dimensions presented herein are examples for illustration purposes and that other dimensions for pods, insoles and footwear can be used. For example, insoles and footwear for children can have pods that are smaller than those used for adult insoles and footwear. In some implementations, the pods for reflexology may be in the range of about 8 mm - 10 mm, where these may have a pod height of about 2.5 mm - 4 mm extending above the top surface of the insole. The pods height may be determined based on the level of therapy of the insoles and footwear. For example, level 1 insoles and footwear for light to intermediate use, and level 2 insoles and footwear for intermediate to advanced use. The dimensions for pods can be adjusted based on partial or complete embedding and may account for shrinkage around the rim of the pods

[0094] In some implementations, pods in insoles and footwear configured and arranged for plantar fasciitis therapy can have diameters ranging from about 10 mm - 16 mm, where the heights of the pods extend about 5.5 mm - 9.5 mm above the top surface of the insole.

[0095] FIGS. 11 and 12 are diagrams of example insoles having a body portion 1202 and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of diabetes according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods can include a heel area pod 1204, a group of midfoot pods 1206, a first big toe pod 1208 and a second big toe pod 1210. The insole body portion 1202 may have a thickness (as shown at 1214) of about 14mm.

[0096] FIGS. 13 and 14 are diagrams of example insoles 1300 including a right foot insole 1302 and a left foot insole 1304. Each insole having a body portion 1306 and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of sciatica according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods can include a first pod 1308 located near the heel on an inside of the foot, a second pod 1310 located near the heel on an outside of the foot, and a third pod 1312 located near an outside of the foot near a metatarsal region.

[0097] FIGS. 15 and 16 are diagrams of example insoles having 1500 having a right insole 1502 and a left insole 1504, each insole having a body portion 1506/1602 and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help treat and/or relieve symptoms of stress and/or sleeplessness according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods include a first pod 1508/1608 disposed where the big toe will rest, a second pod 1510/1606 disposed where the big toe will rest, a third pod 1512 disposed near where the ball of the foot will rest on the insoles, a fourth pod 1514/1604 located in an arch area, a fifth pod 1516 disposed in a central part of the metatarsal area, and a sixth pod 1518 disposed on an outside metatarsal area. The body portion has a thickness (1612) of about 14 mm, the pods can extend from a top surface of the body portion about 4 mm (as shown at 1610).

[0098] FIGS. 17 and 18 are diagrams of example insoles 1700 including a right insole 1702 and a left insole 1704, each insole having a body portion 1706 and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help support weight loss according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods can include a first pod 1708 disposed in a big toe area of the insoles, a second pod 1710 disposed in a big toe area of the insoles, a third pod 1712 disposed in a ball of the foot area of the insoles, a fourth pod 1714 and a fifth pod 1716 both disposed in an arch area of the insoles, a sixth pod 1720 disposed in a central metatarsal area of the insoles, and a seventh pod 1718 disposed in an outside mid foot area of the insoles. The body portion 1706/1802 can have a thickness of about 14mm (as shown at 1812) and the pods can extend above a top surface of the body portion by about 4mm (1810).

[0099] FIGS. 19 and 20 are diagrams of example insoles 1900/2000 including a right foot insole 1901 and a left foot insole 1904, each insole having a body portion 1906/2002 and a plurality of pods constructed and arranged to help support general wellness according to a theory of reflexology in accordance with some implementations. The plurality of pods can include first and second pods 1908 (2008, 2010) disposed in a big tore area of the insoles, a first group of pods (1912, 1914, and 1924)/2006 disposed in a ball of the foot area of the insoles, a second group of pods (196-1920) disposed in an arch area of the insoles, and a pod 1922/2004 disposed in an outside midfoot area of the insoles. The body portion 2002 can have a thickness of about 14mm (as shown at 2012) and the pods can extend beyond a top surface of the body portion by about 4mm (2014).

[0100] FIG. 21 is a diagram of example insoles 2100 including a left insole body portion 2110 having a plurality of receptacles 2102 to permit user configurable pod

arrangements, and a right body portion 2112 having a plurality of receptacles 2104 to permit user configurable pod arrangements. The body portions (2110, 2112) can be trimmed by a user to accommodate various foot or shoe sizes and guidelines 2103 can be provided to aid the user in trimming the insoles.

[0101] FIG. 22 is a side view of an example insole 2200 having a plurality of receptacles to permit user configurable pod arrangements in accordance with some implementations. A first type of pod 2201 can be inserted into a corresponding receptacle 2203 that is configured to receive and engage a protrusion 2202 of the first type of pod 2201. The insole body portion can have a thickness of about 14mm.

[0102] A second type of pod can include a first portion 2202 and a second portion 2205, which are configured to be inserted into a second type of receptacle 2207. The second type of receptacle includes a receptacle that has a first opening on a top surface of the insole body portion, a second opening on a bottom surface of the insole body portion, and a hollow section connecting the first opening and the second opening, and wherein the first opening is smaller than the second opening.

[0103] The second pod type can include a first member (2206) and a second member (2205), wherein the first member is configured to be positioned on the top surface of the insole body and includes a receptacle, and wherein the second member is configured to be positioned on the bottom surface of the insole body portion and wherein the second member includes a protrusion that is configured to extend upward from the second opening through the hollow section and engage the receptacle of the first member of the pod.

[0104] FIG. 23 is a chart showing example configurations of the user configurable pod arrangements in accordance with some implementations. The footwear can include interchangeable insoles (e.g., 2403, 2501, and 2603) in accordance with some implementations. The footwear can also include a footwear body (e.g., 2402, 2602) having a sole 2508 disposed on a bottom of the footwear body, a plurality of apertures (e.g., 2408, 2409, 2509, 2510, 2609, and 2610) disposed on a surface opposite the sole, one or more straps (e.g., 2400, 2600) joined to a toe portion of the footwear body and extending from the toe portion rearward toward a heel portion of the footwear body. The chart in FIG 23 includes numbers in the button chart that correspond to the receptacle locations as shown in FIG. 21. These locations also correlate to a theory of reflexology in which the location number correspond to body parts as follows:

1 - Pineal gland

2 - pituitary gland

3 - parathyroid gland

4 - Thymus gland

5 - Thyroid gland

6 - Heart

7 - Diaphragm

8 - Stomach

9 - Adrenals 10 - Pancreas

11 - Kidneys

12 - Liver

13 - Gall bladder

14 - Spleen

15 - Small Intestine

16 - Shoulders

[0105] Each removable insole (e.g., 2501) can include a plurality of protruding members (e.g., 2504, 2502) that extend from a bottom of the insole downward toward the apertures when the insole is installed in the footwear body wherein the plurality of protruding members correspond to the plurality of apertures (as shown by the dashed lines 2507). Each protruding member can have a first perimeter defined by an outer edge of an interface where each protruding member is joined to the bottom of the insole, and a second perimeter defined by an outer edge of a distal end of each protruding member wherein the first perimeter is smaller than the second perimeter, and where each of the apertures is configured to receive and engage a corresponding protrusion through interference fit (as shown in FIG. 25, which is a cross sectional view taken along line A 2407 of FIG. 24). The straps can also include pods on an inside surface of the strap (e.g., 2401, 2506, 2601)and arranged and configured so that the pods on an inside surface of the strap contact a top of a user's feet when the footwear is worn.

[0106] FIG. 27 is a diagram of an example shoe 2702 having a divider 2704 that extend from the bottom of the shoe to the top of the shoe and is configured to be located between the big toe and the other toes of a user when the shoe 2702 is worn. An insole can also include a divider similar to 2704 that can include a recessed portion that extends between a big toe area and the area of the other toes and can include a vertical portion that extends upward from the top surface of the insole in a direction of the top of a shoe when the insole is inserted into a shoe.

[0107] FIGS. 28A-28D are diagrams of an ankle extension insole 2800 having an insole body portion 2802 and an ankle extension 2808. The ankle extension insole 2800 also includes a plurality of pods 2804 on the insole and a plurality of pods 2806 disposed on the ankle extension 2808. In some implementations, the ankle extension insole 2800 may not have pods disposed on the ankle extension 2808.

[0108] Any dimensions shown in the drawings or mentioned herein are for illustration purposes only. It will be appreciated that an embodiment or implementation could include other suitable dimensions.

[0109] It is, therefore, apparent that there is provided, in accordance with the various embodiments disclosed herein insoles and footwear having a plurality of pods arranged and configured to provide therapy to a foot or feet of a user.

[0110] While the disclosed subject matter has been described in conjunction with a number of embodiments, it is evident that many alternatives, modifications and variations would be, or are, apparent to those of ordinary skill in the applicable arts. Accordingly, Applicant intends to embrace all such alternatives, modifications, equivalents and variations that are within the spirit and scope of the disclosed subject matter.