Course Information

Course Name:

“Navigating New Pathways: Orthotic Tools for Maximizing Therapeutic Outcomes”

Course Description:

Human locomotion is very complicated. To fully understand abnormal gait, we need to fully understand the building blocks of gait and the infinite number of complex movement strategies leading up to adult locomotion. When this development pattern is disrupted by tone, weakness, or other abnormalities, it is important to fully comprehend the cause and effects to properly determine a treatment protocol and properly implement orthotic intervention. This Surestep course begins with an in-depth discussion of normal human gait, discussing gait from 0-3, 3-6 and 6 plus years old. By discussing the importance of each development stage, movement patterns and motor milestones, we can better understand the underlying causes and effects of abnormalities and the escalating deterioration of functional and effective gait. Current treatment protocols and standard of care bracing options and techniques are identified and explained and the innovative Surestep system is introduced.

Course/learner objective:

-Appreciate the complex biomechanical components of human locomotion

-Identify various aspects of normal and abnormal gait

-Assess the functional, mechanical, residual and developmental effects of abnormal gait patterns in children

-Make appropriate recommendations for dynamic orthotic management of the foot and ankle complex as well as trunk stabilization

-Gain a stronger understanding of advanced orthotic intervention

-Gain a firmer grasp of modern treatment advances above the common standard of care

Time Table

10 min - Introduction

5 min - Importance of Orthotist/Therapist Relationship

5 min - Introduction & Explanation of Course

10 min Discussion of Orthotic Objectives, Traditional Approach and New Pathways

10 min 0-3 typical development (growth, skeletal & joint, postural control and gross motor skill)

20 min Deficits in Postural Control 0-3 and Orthotic Interventions

15 min -Muscle Tone—Hypertonia and Hypotonia

30 min Pronation: Its consequences and challenges in the high and low tone population and orthotic intervention in both populations.

30 min - Break for dinner

20 min - 0-3 Gait Development

5 min - 0-3 Rotation (typical vs atypical) and orthotic intervention.

17 min - Explanation of Toe Walking and orthotic intervention in the high and low tone population 0-3

5 min  - Assisted Walking 0-3: discussion of therapeutic objectives and orthotic intervention to help meet those objectives

7 min - Shoe Recommendations for pediatrics

10 min - 4-6 typical development (growth, skeletal & joint, gross motor skills & gait)

18 min - Pronation 4-6 and interventions in the high and low tone population

8 min - Explanation of Crouch Gait and orthotic intervention 4-6 years old

5 min - Poor Postural Control (w-sitting) and orthotic intervention ages 4+

8 min - 6+ typical development (growth, skeletal & joint, advanced gross motor skills & gait)

14 min - Pronation 6+, when to treat and orthotic intervention in the high and low tone population

15 min - Toe-Walking 6+ orthotic intervention

10 min -  Poor Knee Control orthotic intervention 0-6+

18 min- Poor Postural Control Decreased Trunk Control including neuromuscular scolios and orthotic intervention 4-6+

5 min - Conclusion and Success Story 

Speaker: Bernie Veldman, C.O.

Bernie Veldman, Certified Orthotist is currently a practicing orthotist specializing in pediatrics in South Bend, Indiana. He is the owner of Midwest Orthotic Services, an ABC accredited facility and a member of AOPA. Bernie has specialized in pediatrics since he began practicing in the O&P field in 1992 and is responsible for the invention and development of the patented Surestep dynamic stabilizing system. Surestep was developed in 1997 and has been the subject of a study, conducted at the Krannert School of Physical Therapy exploring and proving the functional improvements attainable with this system. This study was published in the Journal of Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology 2004, 46:406-411. Several other studies involving the Surestep System are ongoing.

Speaker: Anne Paré, CO/LO

Anne W Paré, Certified Orthotist is currently a practicing orthotist specializing in pediatrics in Houston, Texas. She is the founder and part owner of Hope Orthotics, an ABC accredited facility and member of AOPA. Anne graduated from University of Texas Southwestern Allied Health Sciences School in 1993 and completed a pediatric internship at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital in Dallas in 1994. She worked as a staff orthotist at The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research in Houston Texas before opening Hope Orthotics. For over 20 years, Anne has specialized in pediatrics, spinal cord and brain injury, working closely with many therapists and healthcare professions to provide superior service and quality care to the Greater Houston area. Anne has been active in both Texas and National Conferences in Orthotics and Prosthetics and has spoken on the subjects of the orthotic management of the pediatric patient on multiple occasions. Anne’s current clinical focus is on improving the quality and efficiency of her patient’s gait through analysis using the GAITrite and ZENO Gait Electronic Walkways and the Protokinetics Movement Analysis Software in conjunction with orthotic intervention.

Speaker: Kimberly Linton, MSPT

Kimberly has now been a licensed Physical Therapist for 25 years, graduating in 1991 with a MSPT from the University of Kansas Medical School. She earned her BS from Valparaiso University in Indiana. After graduation, she work from 1991-1997 at her local hospitals as a rotating therapist, which gained her a vast knowledge of all aspects of physical therapy. In 1996, Kimberly became NDT certified which further expanded her knowledge of neuro developmental techniques and in late ’97 she started working as a Home Health Therapist with Elkhart General Hospital Home Health.
In 2008, Kimberly was approached by Bernie Veldman to help his business inform orthotist and therapists about the many options that are available to them concerning bracing for young patients. She now travels the country to lead Continuing Education Seminars for orthotist and therapist wanting
to learn about the latest medical advances in bracing and learn about the newest product that are being used by both Orthotist and Physical Therapists.
Kimberly also works for the Lewis Cass Intermediate School District since 2005 up to the present, where she is responsible for traveling to almost a dozen Lower Michigan schools where she treats their students with special needs. Her goal is to pursue her DPT and pediatric certification specialist PCS. She currently treats early intervention in the natural environment. Curriculum Vitae attached.

Speaker: Steve Kulifaj, CO/BOCP/LO

Steve Kulifaj, CO, BOCP, LO is a certified and licensed Orthotist/Prosthetist who has over 16 years of clinical experience. With caring consistent focus on pediatrics, Steve was a lead Orthotist for a pediatric specialty team in Minnesota, co-founded a 3 facilty O&P pediatric based practice in Minnesota, and is multi-state recognized for his passion for challenging scoliosis treatment and lower extremity bracing. Steve provided pediatric care in Detroit and Minneapolis Childrens Hospitals, Hennipin County Medical Center’s pediatric specialty clinic, and formed multi-state pediatric teams. Coupling strong business acumen with expansive clinical knowledge, Steve was awarded the position of Chief Executive Officer for an innovative medical company and remains a board member today. A passion for educating and lecturing, marketing and clinical advancement, and sheer commitment to the field of O&P, Steve was carefully chosen as the Director of Education for Surestep.