More than just shoe inserts, James’ orthotics can assist with retraining gait, off-loading arthritic joints, reducing back pain, and improving your golf-swing (actual results may vary).

James Pierini has been an Orthotist for 13 years and has worked around the Dandenongs for many of them, providing upper and lower limb orthotics, compression garments, and fracture management to William Angliss Hospital and Hills Physiotherapy Clinic in Emerald. He initially came our attention due to the production of high quality custom foot orthotics, which had greater sophistication and adaptability to specific foot/gait problems than we’d seen in other fabricators. Given that we often diagnose injuries as having primarily biomechanical causes, it is essential to have an association with someone skilled enough to create comfortable, effective and well manufactured support devices for these injuries.


In 2014, James became one of only two (at time of writing) orthotists in Australia to use the CAD/CAM software to assist in the assessment, prescription, and manufacture of custome foot orthotics. This is a system involving laser scanning of the foot at rest and with desirable biomechanical correction, providing an exact digital profile of the foot. This is used then to mill, with high precision, an orthotic that fits and supports from the flattest arch to the highest, claw toes to bunions, plantar spurs to corns. Sections can be marked from clinical assessment to allow for inclusion of softer foam or gel cushioning systems, or carbon fibre plates for stiffening/supporting. Once the device is fabricated the patient is then offered a number of review consultations (included in initial fee) to assess effectiveness, modify profile, grind, glue or massage into perfection.

The only negative thing we can say about James is that, if given the chance, he will cover your orthotics with the colours of his favourite football team!

During initial assessment, the most common footwear of the individual is taken into account. Full length support may not fit fashion or casual footwear, and so the final shape of the product will reflect this, whether ¾ length, slim fit or contoured. The precision of the CAD system allows for reduction of thickness or angle by millimetre and degree, allowing full heel to mid foot support, with metatarsal dome inclusion, but minimal bulk under the forefoot (if desired). If the existing footwear is part of the problem then education on more appropriate purchase, or supply of better quality and orthotic-ready footwear is available on-site.

Far from having a foot fetish, James is equally talented in creation of custom thermoplastic support for wrist and finger injury, and uses state-of-the-art heat moldable braces for wrist fracture. These are water-proof and removable (under medical direction) providing flexibility and functionality. This assists in skin or wound care, allows showering and swimming/hydrotherapy, and represents the future of fracture management when compared with plaster casting. He can supply and fit the highest quality, and best value braces for wrist, elbow, knee and ankle support and keeps many sizes in stock. The markets for braces and supports are colossal and overwhelming to those with no experience, and so selection of a brace with good quality, value and comfort can be a frustrating and expensive process. Professional guidance and fitting of these products ensures satisfaction and effectiveness, saving time and money.

As it is with braces, so it is true with compression garments that professional fit and comfort are paramount for the product to be successful. An ankle brace provides no support in a sports bag, and a compression garment can’t reduce swelling if it stays in a drawer because it hurts or chafes. With chronic swelling like lymphoedema, compression garments can mean the difference between good self-esteem and hermit-style living, and improve the health of the skin and tissues in the effected limb. In tandem with a trained Lymphoedema massage practitioner (Joanne Slater/Sandra Rusin/Tanya Ide all have this training), a custom pressure garment can be life-changing.

The only negative thing we can say about James is that, if given the chance, he will cover your orthotics with the colours of his favourite football team!

To learn more about what an orthotist can do for you, visit Better Health.