“One of the biggest misconceptions about orthotics is that they are merely an insole. Actually orthotics means bracing from head to toe. That’s important to know because you want to work with a Certified Orthotist who really understands the principles behind bracing and orthotic care.”
What it takes to be a trained orthotist.
Emma Holmes, B.Sc., CO(c)
Strategic Initiatives Manager
An orthotic device can dramatically change a person’s world, allowing them to stand and prepare a meal, join grandchildren in the park, or continue playing sports. For Emma, the desire to enable people to be active participants in their lives drew her to the profession.
Her commitment to improve the lives of others has taken her far and wide. While in university, she worked as a volunteer in the urban slums outside Nairobi, Kenya, providing home visits to children who were often marginalized because of their disabilities. As well, she volunteered in Sri Lanka and India with the International Society for Prosthetics and Orthotics (ISPO). Her dedication has garnered her many honours and awards, including being nominated for “Young Adult Woman of the Year Nominee—Top 40 under 40” by the Kitchener-Waterloo region.
Like many on the Boundless team, Emma is an advocate for the profession, allying with other orthotic and prosthetic professionals who are driven to improve patient care. In particular, she wants to expand the public’s perception of the scope of orthotics, seeing them not just as insoles, but as an entire customized range of head-to-toe braces.
Long-term, Emma has an interest in measuring treatment outcomes—a huge challenge. Because the benefits of orthotic treatment are so varied, differing from patient to patient, it can be difficult to measure treatment effectiveness consistently. By learning how to better measure treatment outcomes, Orthotists can improve their methods and become better advocates for patients.
Emma has an Honours B.Sc. in Kinesiology, as well as a post-graduate diploma in Clinical Methods in Prosthetics & Orthotics from George Brown College. She is currently working on her master’s degree in Rehabilitation Science at McMaster University.