If you want to talk to Chris Bagwell, grab your hiking boots and head for the trails. You may find him hiking in the Adirondacks or Catskills or anywhere near his home in Vernon, NJ. He and his favorite hiking companion, his Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, Orion, enjoy the outdoors, and for Chris, being in nature is like a form of meditation.
His passion for hiking has taken him from Mexico to Maine and many stops in between. But stopping isn’t part of his vocabulary. When he’s not laying hardwood floors as part of the extensive rehab of his log home, you’ll find him in the hustle and bustle of New York City, where he owns an IT services company that specializes in information technology for the banking sector.
What keeps Chris Bagwell going? He credits his custom orthotics from SOLO Labs. Without custom orthotics, walking would be challenging for this avid hiker and outdoorsman. Born with an abnormality of his foot that involves a missing part of his foot and his 4th and 5th toes, Chris’ feet are two very different sizes. “I would have to buy two separate pairs of shoes to fit each foot size,” noted Chris. Today, he buys one pair of shoes. The orthotic fills in remaining space where a portion of foot and toes are located on the contralateral foot. “The orthotics help with my balance. I consider my orthotics an extension of my foot.”
You’ll find his SOLO Premier custom orthotics in his hiking boots, sneakers, and work boots. For Chris, custom orthotics are a necessity. His orthotic is created through a unique collaboration with Dr. Philip C. Caswell, who prescribed custom orthotics. That began Chris’ quest to create the perfect orthotic for his foot. “We were about 75% of the way to achieving my goal, but I wanted more,” noted Chris. That’s when Dr. Caswell suggested working directly with SOLO Labs. “Dr. Caswell knew that if I could explain it and show SOLO what I wanted, SOLO could create it.”
Chris made the trip to SOLO Labs in Kutztown, PA, for an appointment to custom create and fit an orthotic to meet his needs. SOLO’s technical specialist and manufacturing tech, listened to Chris’ needs and ideas and created a one-of-a-kind solution for him. “The end result was a device that works for my unique needs,” he added.
“I’m fortunate to be born in a time when having this abnormality doesn’t limit my activity level. The orthotic allows me to do what I want to do without any hesitation. It’s an easy solution and considerably more affordable than custom shoes,” said Chris.
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