EquiFit ShouldersBack

Cherubini was inspired to create and sell the ShouldersBack posture support after learning that good posture is essential for every person.

Who is EquiFit?

EquiFit Inc. is a company that produces and sells a wide range of horse products and accessories. The business is located near Boston in a small town named Dedham, Massachusetts. Established in September of 2000, EquiFit is directed by Alexandra Cherubini, who is identified as the president, treasurer, secretary, and director of the firm in a filing with the Massachusetts Secretary of Commonwealth.

At the age of 12, Cherubini began riding and competing as a horse jumper when she was 16. After witnessing her parents operate a successful medical supply company for more than 40 years, she was inspired to start her own firm. She created a line of horse products based on the same principles as human medical devices, such as braces and supports.

Horses’ products include belly protectors and hind ankle boots to anti-bacterial washes and ointments. Their rider line consists of products such as compression braces for the lower back and upper back support like ShouldersBack. The ShouldersBack is available in two styles: the Original ShouldersBack and the Lite.

Equifit has joined the ranks of other firms committed to strengthening the US economy by manufacturing all of their products in the United States, except for their leather collection, which is produced in France.

 

The story of the ShouldersBack line

Cherubini was inspired to create and sell the ShouldersBack posture support after learning that good posture is essential not just while horseback riding but also in day-to-day life. To help train her posture, her instructor required her to jam a stick between her arm and back when she was learning to ride as a youngster. She developed the ShouldersBack as a more comfortable posture training technique than the ones she had to go through when she was first learning to ride.

The ShouldersBack was created by a team of Orthopedists, lending the product some legitimacy.

The product’s name was inspired by the phrase “Shoulders Back,” which is frequently yelled out by riding instructors as a reminder to their pupils to retract their shoulders and assume excellent posture.

You’re probably wondering, “I’m not a horse rider; why do I need a Shouldersback?” This piece of equipment, while initially intended for horseback riding, quickly gained popularity among non-riders who required a trainer that would offer upper body support.

Several people, from musicians to office employees and physical therapists, several weeks later were still buying the ShouldersBack. Perhaps the inconspicuous appearance attracted people searching for a product to improve their posture and was also simple to conceal. After reading numerous other reviews on the internet, it’s easy to see that most purchasers are regular daily folks like office employees, housewives, yoga students, and so on rather than horse riders.

ShoulderBack vs. ShouldersBack Lite

The ShouldersBack and ShouldersBack Lite are both postures support that is patent-pending and intended to be used for about one hour each day to assist you to retrain your muscle memory.

The ShouldersBack’s main structure is a pentagon, with six 1 5/8-inch wide elastic fastening straps running down the body from the top – one from each lower four points and two from the upper-most point. The lower two straps are stitched together around the chest, and the upper four straps in pairs form two shoulder straps when worn. The straps are joined together by hook and loop (Velcro) material.

The manufacturer claims that it’s 50% nylon, 30% elastane, and 20% polyester.

In comparison, the “lite” version’s design and form are virtually identical, except for a few minor variations:

  • The main portion of the lite is constructed from a lightweight and more breathable power mesh fabric than that used in the original. It also makes it more pleasant to wear throughout the warm summer months.
  • The elastic bands that make up the lite version are 1/8″ narrower than those in the original.
  • The lite version weighs 3.45 ounces instead of 4.78 ounces in the original model.

 

How’s it used?

The ShouldersBack is a vest-style garment worn to keep your shoulders back and avoid a head-forward slump. When using this support, there are a few steps that the manufacturer recommends you follow.

1. Attach the left and right shoulder straps using the Velcro fastening system with the tag facing down. You should not be worried at this point about altering the strap length, as we will do so in Step 4.

Connect the shoulder straps
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2. Feed the shoulder straps over your arms just as you would a vest with manufacturers’ labels facing outward. It’s also helpful to use a mirror during this stage to make sure the straps aren’t twisted.

Put on the ShouldersBack just as you would a vest
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3. Attach the two lower straps at the middle of your chest. Around your rib cage is the ideal position for the strap. Tighten the screws firmly but not too hard. Do not over-tighten the support; this may cause discomfort and a bruise on your chest.

Fasten the chest strap
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4. Adjust each shoulder strap by grasping the lower strap with one hand and stretching and fastening the top strap to the lower. The pressure should be sufficient to keep your shoulders back yet not too tight around the armpits. Adjust the tension straps to ensure that they are both comfortable and effective. You may need to try a few times before achieving success. Please make sure the straps are equally tight on both shoulders before wearing them.

Adjust the shoulder straps
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Cost

The original and lite versions are priced at $49.95 each, plus $13.95 for domestic USA delivery. We offer worldwide delivery at a rate of $27.95. That’s the total cost of shipping, which will be delivered to your home:

The shipping cost of $64.00 – $78.00 will vary depending on your location. The pricing is reasonable when compared to similar posture supports on the market.

Will my insurance cover the ShouldersBack?

The ShouldersBack is generally covered by most major medical insurance carriers and Medicare.

EquiFit (through its parent company Alimed Inc.) has HCPCS coding approval under billing code L3650 as of October 2013.

The ShouldersBack is a “shoulder orthosis, the figure of eight design abduction restrainer, prefabricated, includes fitting and adjustment” in the L3650 code class.

What does this information mean for you? Because this equipment has been labeled as durable medical equipment, you should be able to receive full reimbursement from your insurance company. In most instances, your doctor will need to provide you with a prescription for your insurance to cover the cost. Always, first, verify with your insurance company before ordering.

Available sizes & colors

The original and lite versions are available in black or white. The customer is offered a choice of three colors; however, the EquiFit ordering page does not currently offer beige as an option.

To choose the right size, take your chest circumference. A flexible fiberglass tape measure is the ideal tool for this operation. When picking a size, EquiFit recommends the following standards:

Small – Chest circumference of 24″ or less

Medium – Chest circumference of 38″ or less

Large – Chest circumference up to 50″

 

My experience

For this review, I compared both the original and lite versions. Each device was carefully packed inside a silver cardboard tube and sent via UPS. The bundle included the support and clear photographs of how to install it.

The first design I tried was the original. After unboxing the support, I placed it on a table and connected the shoulder straps as directed. I put it on like a vest and fastened the chest strap using a mirror. Then I adjusted the shoulder straps to be comfortable yet firmly squeezed my shoulders down and back. The installation took less than two minutes to complete.

I went through the instructions and wore it for an hour to see whether it was comfortable. My shoulders would naturally fall back when I was calm and my posture was correct. If I slouched, the resistance bands would try to draw my shoulders back into position. It feels like someone has fastened a large rubber band to the tops of your shoulders. When you slouch, it feels like someone is pulling on the bands to pull your shoulder down and back. The tension will not be evident while maintaining a good posture, but you’ll notice a growing degree of stress if you begin to lean forward.

The test – 25 hours, 14 days

I put the original ShouldersBack and the lite to the test for the next two weeks.

I spend roughly 50 hours every week sitting at a computer desk. I spent the majority of this time reclined and slouched in my seat. As a result, my posture has taken a severe hit because I have acquired a severe case of the “tech neck.”

After reading a lot about posture correction, I’ve decided to give this support a try in an attempt to retrain my posture. I’ve tried a variety of supports and training systems in the past, and they’ve all given me varied results. I’m interested to see how the ShouldersBack compares to other items that I’ve used.

I used the ShouldersBack for roughly an hour at work each day. While I was wearing it for at least an hour each morning, I would remove it occasionally throughout the day when my posture deteriorated. I wore it over a thin t-shirt each day and then covered it up with another t-shirt or a button-up shirt the next.

When I put it on, I could tell that it would support my shoulders immovably since it pushed them back.

Using Lite Model

For a week, I started with the basic edition and then switched to the lite model. When I first put it on then, I noticed that the power mesh fabric was significantly cooler than the original version while also being more supportive. I continued to wear it to work each morning and then removed it after an hour, sometimes two, depending on the day.

After the first week, I started to see effects while not wearing support. Surprisingly, after several days of wearing this brace and making a deliberate effort not to slouch when in my chair, I began to notice an improvement in my posture all day. I discovered that by the end of week two, my usual neck and back discomfort while at work had begun to decline. It was clear that the ShouldersBack was assisting me in realigning my posture while also supporting it.

I took it with me to try while participating in a few leisure activities since most of my time with this product was at work. I was curious to discover how it performed during jogging, so this was the first thing I attempted. I wore it while jogging on my home treadmill. I discovered that the assistance was non-restrictive and quite pleasant to use while working out.

I wore it under a polo-style shirt while watching a baseball game the next day. Seats from the Bleacher style without back support always give me lower back discomfort. I maintained my back straight and shoulders back while wearing this brace. My back felt fantastic after, and I had no pain whatsoever.

I enjoyed many other activities, such as cycling, walking, house chores, and watching television. The ShoulderBack was pleasant to wear, non-restrictive, and performed well in all cases.

The Verdict?

The ShouldersBack was effective in most situations. The soft elastic bands provided excellent support without restricting movement.

The tension-relieving design of this posture brace is comparable to another posture support that I enjoy, the Bax-U. Its straightforward style ensures that it will stand the test of time while also limiting the possibility of mechanical failure, which increases its chances of surviving many years.

Because a team of orthopedists created it, it stands out among its competition, which builds its devices without the help of industry experts who understand the concepts of good posture.

I would undoubtedly opt for the lite variant if I had to choose between buying the original or the lite model. To begin with, both are nearly identical in design, but the lighter variant weighs almost 40% less because it is constructed from a breathable mesh.

The lite is an all-season brace that is both comfy and adaptable in extreme heat and cold. Both versions are equally successful and cost $49.95 plus shipping. The Lite version has numerous extra features without sacrificing performance or increasing expense.

From a design point of view, there isn’t much that can be done better. However, I feel that the manufacturer may reduce a significant amount of the useless soft Velcro material. I discovered that the rough “hook” material catches hold of the soft “loop” material at various points when removed and stored, resulting in it becoming I had to untangle the support each morning before attaching it. It’s well-designed in terms of structure, aside from the tangling issue.

Pros Vs. Cons

Pros

  • It’s also very light and comfy.
  • It’s simple to use.
  • Designed with orthopedic in mind
  • It’s easy to conceal.
  • Covered by most insurance
  • Non-restrictive
  • Effective
  • Made in the United States of America
  • Available to people all over the world

Cons

  • Not washable in the washing machine
  • It must be worn over an undershirt.

 

Do You Still Need Help Selecting a Posture Brace?

There are well over 100 different items available on the market right now, including posture supports and resistance trainers, biofeedback clothing, and other equipment. With so many to select from, selecting one that fulfills your needs may be challenging.

I compared the most popular posture braces to create this Posture brace comparison table, based on comfort, efficacy, and innovation criteria.

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