Helpful or hype? Magnetic insoles for back and foot pain

Dec 16, 2019 | 3 comments

“Chiropractors won’t solve your problem,” says MagniSole.

The problem is back pain, which experts say as much as 80 percent of the population will experience at some point in their lives. (Thanks, experts!)

And the solution, according to MagniSole, is MagniSole — specifically, the company’s magnetic insoles, which it claims not only relieve back pain, but foot and body pain to boot, in addition to reducing stress and increasing blood flow and circulation in the feet of users.

How does MagniSole back up its claims, you ask? The company says its magnetic insoles use the techniques of “5,000 year old ancient Chinese acupressure” to stimulate more than 175 acupressure points, providing “targeted relief throughout the body.”

Yet MagniSole does not link to or cite any supporting studies and the only source on the webpage is a back pain fact sheet from — wait for it — the American Chiropractic Association.

Meanwhile, a 2005 study that is all of the things you would want a study to be — that is, randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled — found that magnetic insoles did not effectively relieve foot pain among study participants. The study also pointed to a placebo effect — participants who strongly believed in magnets reported pain relief even if they were given false magnets to wear.

Unsubstantiated health claims aren’t the only issue with MagniSole. There’s more afoot:

  • On the webpage, the company offers a “30-day satisfacstion [sic] guarantee.” However, according to the terms of the “guarantee,” MagniSole charges a restocking fee of 15 percent and the company doesn’t pay for return shipping.
  • MagniSole claims in an FAQ that it is registered with the BBB and has an A-plus rating with the organization. However, not only is the company not accredited by the BBB, but as of this writing, it has an F rating and its only review is one-star.
  • While MagniSole charges around $70 for a pair of its magnetic insoles on the webpage, a pair is available for purchase from MagniSole on Amazon for only $44.
  • This guy pictured on the webpage isn’t actually wearing the company’s magnetic insoles. It’s a stock image. His real name? Sports man stretching outside.

To learn more about’s coverage of medical devices, click here.

Susan Burke March

Blue Box

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