(207) 885-0414 | faq@insightfulproducts.com
The Insightful Products logo with the tagline, "We Help People Walk"


General Q&A

What is your return policy?

RETURN POLICY: In the United States, you have 30 days from the date you receive your Step-Smart Brace to return it for a full refund. All other products are non-returnable. NO INTERNATIONAL RETURNS. If you’d like to return your product, please call 207-885-0414 or email sales@insightfulproducts.com for a return authorization number. RETURNS WILL NOT BE PROCESSED WITHOUT THIS NUMBER. Your returned product MUST BE SHIPPED WITHIN 30 DAYS. Thank you!

Do you refund shipping costs?

No, we do not refund shipping costs.

What shipping method do you use?

We use USPS priority mail. It takes about 1-3 business days in the US. If you are an international customer, we use DHL Worldwide Express as your shipping method.

Do you ship internationally?

Yes, we do ship internationally.

Overnight Shipping:

If you order a product for overnight shipment on a weekend or after 3pm, your order will not go out overnight until we receive the order during normal business hours.

The Step Smart Optional Strapless Brace, side view

Step-Smart Brace Q&A

Q: Why does the Velcro on the I-strap of my brace seem like it’s not holding as well as it originally did?

We have identified an issue with the Velcro used on the I-strap of many versions of the Step-Smart Brace that were manufactured and sold beginning in January 2023. Luckily, a solution has been determined to be an easy-to-install strip of adhesive back loop that we can send to you, along with step-by-step visual instructions, to help you apply it at home.

OR, if you would like the entire strap replaced, there are two options for that.

1) You can send your brace to us, and we’ll be happy to replace the strap and ship it back at no charge.

2) If you are more mechanically inclined, we can send you a new I-strap and rivet for you to make the switch yourself.  Your local shoe repair shop can also manage this.

If you purchased your brace during the period of January 2023-January 2024, please contact us via email at sales@insightfulproducts.com or call 207-885-0414 to discuss the option that works best for you.

Thank you for your understanding.

How do I determine what size brace I need?

We have small/medium and large/x-large, which is determined by your shoe size and the width of your heel. We also offer an x-small and an xx-large for an additional charge.

Does insurance cover the brace?

Most insurance companies do cover the cost or partial cost of the brace. However, we don’t handle insurance claims here. You will need to see either a Podiatrist or an Orthotist and get a prescription for the “Step-Smart Brace and no substitutions”. We suggest contacting your insurance provider for further information and to confirm requirements and eligibility for reimbursement.

Is there a warranty on the brace?

There is a 90-day warranty on breakage.

What material is the brace made of?

The Step Smart brace is created with a hard Polypro plastic.

Will the brace allow walking up on the ball of my foot (e.g. heal to toe)?

The Step-Smart does allow for a natural gait pattern of heel strike followed by the rest of the foot. Our 3/4 length foot plate allows the front of the foot to bend as you walk.

The I-Strap Fix for the Step-Smart Brace 2023 Model

How to Choose the Correct Step-Smart Brace for You

The Bilateral Step-Smart Brace with calf strap and I-Strap
Can I drive while wearing a Step-Smart brace?

To find out if driving in any brace is an option for you, we suggest you consult with your medical provider. The brace structure and motion allows ankle motion both up and down. The Step-Smart brace does not lock the ankle as others do. The brace was designed with a 3/4 foot plate that ends at the ball of the foot to maintain the motion of rolling forward onto the front of your foot while you walk. That motion is essential in navigating up or down inclines. The open toes also maintains feeling regarding pressure placed in that area.

What are the little rubber things in the back of the brace?

The little rubber things are called bumpers or compression components. They are for shock absorption and help dictate the lift of your toes.

How do I know which color bumper to use?

You get a set of each color. Black is the hardest. Amber is medium and green is the softest. You will receive instructions on which bumpers to start with and then it becomes your personal preference. You will need to experiment with the bumpers — try them out to see if they give you enough lift and control when your foot is coming down. You will want to use the lowest level that gives you comfortable control. If you are using two different colors, the stronger bumper is installed in the outside slot.

What is the piece of black plastic that comes in the compression component kit?

That piece of plastic is the long tensor included in your kit in case you need to change out one of the tensors. You may need to change out the tensors to adjust the alignment of the brace.

How do I change my tensors?

We have two videos that will show you how to change your tensors. They are below .

Are there any stores in my area where I can go see the brace and try it on before I buy it?

We don’t sell our braces in stores. You can go online to our website to purchase the brace. If you are in the US, then you have 30 days to return it.

compression kits for the Step-Smart brace, durometer 45, 60, 80, bumpers for the step-smart
Bumpers/Compression Components
A pair of tensors for the Step-Smart brace
Even Tensors
Where can I buy the accessories for my brace(s)? Straps, bumpers, tensors etc.?

Visit our online store.

Do I need to buy a package?

You do not need the package. The Step-Smart Brace comes with everything you need to get started.

You can purchase extra parts and/or add-ons individually, however, the package offers extra parts and accessories which can save you money overall.

What is the top cover?

The top cover is a black pacific leather calf skin pad that adds extra comfort on the foot plate. The brace works just as well without it.

What shoes work best with Step-Smart?

There are many different shoes you can wear with the Step-Smart brace. Watch our video to see the variety!

What is the Cuffed Calf Section?

The Cuffed Calf Section is an alternative to the standard calf section. It is approximately 2 inches higher than the standard calf section. It cups around your calf limiting the side-to-side movement and distributing the pressure across a wider surface area. There is no OVERNIGHT option for the cuffed calf as it requires an additional 2 to 3 days to manufacture.

Does the Step-Smart provide ankle support?


Will I receive instructions with my brace?


How can I get a custom brace?

You need to visit a Podiatrist and have a cast made of your foot. The practitioner would then send the cast to us for fabrication. Once your clinician receives the finished product, they will have you return for an assessment of the fit and functionality of the brace.

Foot Funnel® Q&A

Does the Foot Funnel work with shoes that have standard or elastic laces?

Yes, the Foot Funnel works great with any lace type shoe. You need not untie the laces. The Foot Funnel does not go all the way to the bottom of the shoe; it simply rests on the very top of the back of the shoe. It is made of a slippery plastic material so your foot will slide right into place in the shoe. When you pull the long string attached to the Foot Funnel, it easily comes off the top of the shoe, leaving your foot snugly in the shoe.

Does the Foot Funnel work with hi-top Nikes?

Yes. The Foot Funnel works with many high-top sneakers so long as they’re ankle high. It does not work with hiking boots that come up above the ankle because the side walls are typically too thick and too tall.

Is the Foot Funnel for children?

The Foot Funnel was NOT designed for pediatric (small child) use. That said, we have customers that use heavy duty scissors to trim our Funnel smaller. They say that it can be made to work well with smaller sizes. We do not directly support pediatric use or modifications to the Funnel.

Does the Foot Funnel work if the user cannot physically lift their leg?

Likely yes. The Foot Funnel is often used from a seated position. Once in position the heal slides easily into the shoe. An ‘aim and shoot’ or ‘drop’ approach works with a little practice. You need to be able to move your leg and foot enough to put your foot into the shoe while the shoe is on the floor. The Foot Funnel maintains the rigidity of the heel and helps to guide the foot into the shoe. It has a cord to pull to remove the Foot Funnel without bending once the shoe is on.

Masted Knee Brace Q&A

Does the Masted Knee Brace work if the user cannot physically lift their leg?

No. We designed the Masted Knee Brace primarily to stop distal migration (where the brace slides down the leg). Slippage is a common issue with knee braces even when wearing one correctly. Too many knee braces just will not stay put which impacts compliance and effectiveness. Because our Masted Knee Brace anchors all the way to the foot, distal migration is eliminated. In fact, most users of this brace don’t have drop foot. However, because the Masted Knee Brace anchors to a foot plate, it can be configured with an optional integrated Step-Smart for those who do have Drop Foot.

The masted knee brace from Insightful Products, shown with knee bending