roccamore in Politiken!
Exciting news! roccamore got featured in a Danish newspaper Politiken and here’s its English version summary. To read the full article in Danish, see the link at the end of the page.
Is it possible, that women don’t have to suffer for beauty when walking in their gorgeous high heels? Frederikke Schmidt thought that there simply has to be a way, while she was working at her office for a major Italian design houses. So that’s how it all started – she decided to create and construct the world’s first shoes with built-in arch support, heel cups and 6mm cushioning latex sole.
Two years later, the first samples of stilettos with orthopedic sole reached the buyers’ feet.
Frederikke’s shoes also got scientifically validated as the most comfortable heels ever. A Hvidovre Hospital research shows that roccamore stilettos, which Frederikke and an orthopedist developed together, reduce pressure on your forefoot by 26% and arch by 44%, when compared with other high heels without the special design and sole in them.
“They can relieve the pressure off the foot around 20-25%, which shows that they’re much better for your feet than others”
Jeanette Penny, a researcher testing roccamore shoes, said that “It’s never healthy for your feet to walk in high heels, but as a doctor, I do recommend roccamore. They’re more comfortable to walk in than the standard ones. They can relieve the pressure off the foot around 20-25%, which shows that they’re much better for your feet than others,” says Penny, who is an orthopedic surgeon at Hvidovre Hospital’s orthopedic department.
Recently, there has been an increasing trend here in Denmark to produce high heels, which would make women feel more comfortable. Most of the producers use a cushioned sole, but none of them have built a compression pad – a small cushion which lifts the forefoot up, like in roccamore shoes.
The forefoot makes the difference
To find out whether roccamore heels really work, a group of 22 women was selected. These women wore two types of shoes for three days each, taking approximately 4500-5000 steps per day, in both sneakers and roccamore stilettos. Each day, they assessed how comfortable they feel in them – and the result was surprising. Even though there are not more comfortable than a sneakers, women participating in this study confirmed that roccamore shoes were very comfortable. Penny confirmed that “of course if you walk in them for the whole day, the effect of the special sole can’t be as great as in sneakers, but still, the level of comfort you’ll feel by the end of the day is great.”
“When placing a compression pad under the forefoot you get a greater pressure at the arch of the foot, so that none of the foot’s parts are suffering from too much pressure”
Additionally, 22 women went on the hospital treadmill wearing roccamore shoes, while the doctor was measuring the impact of pressure on the foot. Penny explained, that the point of such an experiment is to find out if the pressure is channeled evenly from the foot’s pressure point throughout the rest of the foot. “When placing a compression pad under the forefoot you get a greater pressure at the arch of the foot, so that none of the foot’s parts are suffering from too much pressure,” explains Penny.
Stilettos are not built for feet
What initially made Frederikke Schmidt think of creating comfortable high heels was the daily struggle she experienced while walking in her heels on Italian cobblestone streets. “In this industry, you walk in your beautiful, handcrafted heels every day. However, they are not made for walking – they’re rather made for you to stand in them and look pretty. In general, stilettos all have a flat insole, but our feet are all made of round shapes” says Schmidt.
When Schmidt met an orthopedic shoemaker Kenneth Elsgaard back in Copenhagen she decided that together they can find out how to make heels which will make the foot walk as anatomically correct as possible. After endless tests and adjustments, she finally created a sole she was happy with. The moment she put her first pair of roccamore on and took them out, her circle of friends’ immediate interest showed how high of a demand there really was for such shoes. That was when everything really kicked off.
In 2015, the first batch of handmade shoes with special orthopedic sole came out to the light of the world and headed straight to customers who supported Frederikke and her idea on Kickstarter. “After I Skyped with all 326 of my Kickstarter supporters who bought the shoes, I gathered a lot of ideas on possible comfort and design improvements. Even though my stilettos are now as good as they can only be, I see there’s still room for improvement,” says Schmidt.
No one is aware of the dangers of stilettos
“No one has proven with a high level of certainty how unhealthy stilettos really are for you,” says Penny. The consequences of walking in bad stilettos are hard to measure, but there are a few studies which show the sides effects of wearing such shoes, such as pain in the feet, bunions, increased risk of varicose veins, collective damage of the connective tissues holding together the fat that protects the foot pad and other deformations on toes.
Every other woman walks in high heels
There’s no Danish survey showing how many women walk in high heels and how often, but a study conducted by American Pediatrics Orthopedics shows that 49% of the American women wear high heels. “Women all around the world are simply walking in high heels daily, so this is not about promoting any brand – it’s simply about trying to find out a way how to make them feel more comfortable and keep healthy feet” says Penny.
Some think that 2000 Danish Kroner per pair of shoes is an extremely high price and beyond their financial reach, but it’s a price which reflects the uniqueness of design and the insole as well as the fact that they’re handmade.
Is it possible to achieve a similar effect with a classic stiletto, by inserting a compression pad inside of the shoe? “This has not been tested but it could give us some improvement in comfort as well,” says Penny. She also confesses that as a doctor, she can’t recommend anyone to walk in stilettos, but she, just like us, can’t resist them, and even though most of the time at work she wears crocs, she owns ten pairs of stilettos, including a 12cm pair of Prada’s. “They are uncomfortable to wear, so I use them only a few days during the month. Most of us like to wear beautiful shoes, so it really just boils down to lowering the risk of damaging our feet to a possible minimum,” says Penny.