The Society of Shoe fitters and the Healthy Footwear guide held their first ever joint conference at The University of Northampton on Monday 19th September 2016. The event attracted approximately 80 delegates and considered the importance of shoe fit. Recent research was presented which supported the need for shoe fitting, provided guidance to inform the shoe fitting process and to offer some insights into developmental work in the footwear industry. Additionally, presentations were given from expert shoe fitters based on their experiences in the industry to show why professional shoe fitting is so important for the health of the Nation. The conference was relevant to shoe fitters, clinicians working with footwear and those undertaking research on footwear and shoe fit. The conference was generously supported by the University of Northampton and the University of Salford. The conference was opened by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Northampton Professor Nick Petford and there were concluding remarks from Dr Steve O’Brien, Dean of the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, The University of Northampton.
The programme summary can be found below;
Welcome and Introduction (Professor Wesley Vernon OBE, President, the Society of Shoe Fitters)
“If the Shoe Fits: A footwear choice toolkit”. Keynote Lecture (Professor Victoria Robinson, Director of Learning & Teaching / Professor of Sociology, York University)
“The importance of Fitting Adults Footwear” (Gwenda Carter, Orthopaedic Footwear Consultant [retired], Council Member, the Society of Shoe Fitters)
“The work of the Society of Shoe Fitters” (Laura West, Secretary, the Society of Shoe Fitters & Tanya Marriott, Council Member, the Society of Shoe Fitters)
“The Healthy Footwear Guide Scheme” (Assoc. Professor Mike Curran, the University of Northampton, Chair, the Healthy Footwear Guide Scheme)
Orthotics: “Myth busting!” (Veronica Newton, Lecturer, the University of Salford)
“Faced with Orthotics that don’t fit” (Rosemary Gray, Council of the Society of Shoe Fitters)
New technology in footwear design (Professor Chris Nester, the University of Salford)
“Leather as a footwear material” (Rachel Garwood, Director of the Institute for Creative Leather Technologies [ICLT])
“Footwear: A fitting design” (Chris Hill, Senior Lecturer in Footwear and Accessories, the University of Northampton)
“What kind of animal is a Faux?” (Amanda Michel, Director of Leather Wise Ltd)
Footwear in diagnosis: The use of wear features of shoes” (Professor Wesley Vernon OBE, President, the Society of Shoe Fitters)
There was also a trade exhibition supported by the following;
Shoe Med, DB Footwear, Pedag,The Cordwainer, Hotters, Ecco, Treflex and Cosyfeet
Dr Mike Curran Chair of the HFG stated that the feedback from the day was excellent and it was hoped to have further events held with the Society of Shoe fitters.
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