Husband, wife alumni team launch clinic along marathon route

Husband, wife alumni team launch clinic along marathon route

By Chris Brook

When Eric Schuster was young, one of the last things he expected to become well-versed in was the science of feet. Now, it’s his area of expertise.

Schuster and his wife Elizabeth, both Northeastern alumni, opened a second branch of their foot clinic, Boston Pedorthic, Monday in Brighton, coinciding with the big event of the day. Located at 1929 Commonwealth Ave., the 21.5-mile mark on the Boston Marathon route just after Heartbreak Hill, the facility catered to the race’s athletes and spectators alike by making shoe modifications and custom-fit insoles and offering advice on all things feet.

Eric Schuster, who graduated from Northeastern in 1985 with a master’s in technical and professional writing, founded the company with his wife in March 2003.

He was motivated to start Boston Pedorthic while working in the back rooms of medical offices in the mid-1990s. He later became certified in pedorthics in 2000.

Alongside Elizabeth and fellow practitioners Robert Elferink and Winthrop Cottrell, Schuster uses Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing to model and manufacture custom-fit insoles. Schuster insists that if analyzed and treated, it’s easy to improve footwear conditions for enhanced comfort.

“I saw a need among people for this kind of attention with shoes,” Schuster said. “So here we furnish people with appropriate shoes and modifications to shoes.”

Featuring an extensive shoe inventory and an athletic clinic, the Brighton store is the group’s second office (its flagship center is located in Woburn).

While the pedorthists cheered on patients during Monday’s marathon, Schuster said the day was a celebration for all.

“We’re just celebrating with everyone else,” Schuster said. “We have a number of runners who are equipped with our work in the race [but] we’re open for greeting and meeting people who come across the threshold. We’re just happy to be here.”

In addition to the Brighton store, Boston Pedorthic is in the process of rolling out a joint venture with FitCorp in the Prudential Center. Hoping to develop an “in-house presence,” the foot care company aims to provide regular gym-going members with custom inserts and pedorthic assessment.

Currently working with an in-house staff of only seven, Boston Pedorthic hopes to develop relationships with insurance companies and eventually expand across metro Boston, Schuster said.

“There’s a lot of demand,” he said. “It’s laborious and time consuming.

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