Florsheim is doing it. Dr. Scholls is doing it. Seems like the magnetic insole bandwagon is growing every day. But will magnets in your shoes really relieve tired feet and foot pain?
A Brief History of MagnetsUse of magnets in medicine and wellness dates back to physician and alchemist Paracelsus (1493-1543) who used magnets to draw disease away from the body. Franz Anton Mesmer, who popularized hypnotism, also had a magnetic healing salon. Both of these practitioners understood that the mind and attitude of the ill person and belief in the treatment led to the most success, in other words, the placebo effect.
Medical magnets were big business in the late 1800's as "the king of the magnetic quacks" Dr. C.J. Thacher had a mail-order catalog packed with magnetic garments to wear over whatever part of your body ailed you.
Multi-Level Marketing Revives MagnetsWhile magnets fell out of favor in the 20th Century, a big comeback was made as several Japanese firms began producing and popularizing medical magnets again in the 1990's. Some companies such as Nikken spread them through a multilevel marketing scheme. Ferrite and rare-earth magnets can be manufactured in thin disks which can be easily applied to the body and configured in any sort of wraps, pads, or cushions.
With 80 pros on the PGA Tour using magnets, and friends and family selling them as well as respectable companies such as Dr. Scholls and Florsheim advertising magnetic products, magnets are looking, er, attractive...
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