Those who suffer from rheumatism usually lose the joy of movement or even actively avoid it because of the pain caused by soft tissue and/or joint pain and fear of additional pain.

It is important that rheumatism sufferers exercise moderately but regularly. kybun can help you rediscover the joy of movement. Thanks to the soft, elastic material of the kybun shoe sole or the mat, the impact from hard floors is absorbed and pain decreases. This makes it possible to walk longer distances, thus training the body gently.


Rheumatism is a term that denotes complaints of the musculoskeletal system involving flowing, tearing, radiating pain that is often accompanied by functional impairment.  Rheumatism is a non-specific term that covers a broad range of conditions.

What many rheumatic disorders have in common is that they cause a disruption of the immune system, prompting the body to attack its own structures, such as the synovial  membrane (in the case of rheumatoid arthritis). So-called auto-immune diseases can occur both in the form of connective tissue disease and as systemic diseases that not only     affect a single organ or area of the body – similar tissue in many different organs become the target of the immune system.

Contrary to popular belief, rheumatism is by no means a disease that only affects the elderly. Even young adults and children are affected by rheumatic disorders. Osteoarthritis (joint disorders due to wear) usually appears late in life, while the inflammatory form (arthritis) typically develops between the ages of 30 and 50.

The location of the complaint is a first indication that can help those affected:

  • Bones: Rheumatism of the joint and/or bones, particularly osteoarthritis.
  • Muscles and connected tissue: Soft tissue rheumatism, particularly myalgia, organ functions: Metabolic disorders
  • Collagens: Connective tissue rheumatism, particularly collagen disease

Main groups:

  • Inflammatory rheumatic diseases (auto-immune):
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (chronic polyarthritis)
  • Ankylosing spondylitis (Bechterew’s disease)
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
  • Collagen diseases (connective tissue disorders) and vasculitis (inflammatory blood vessel disorders) such as
    Lupus erythematosus, scleroderma
  • Degenerative (‘wear-related’) rheumatic disorders:
  • Metabolic disorders associated with rheumatic complaints, such as:
    Gout and other crystal arthropathies, osteoporosis
  • Rheumatic disorders of the soft tissue (pain in the musculature and tendons), such as polymyalgia rheumatica, polymyositis


The causes of immune system malfunction are still unknown. In some cases, hereditary and gender-specific increases in onset frequency have been established, and many affected individuals of certain rheumatic disorders have been shown to have characteristic genetic markers. These two tendencies indicate that a certain influence is exerted by genetic factors. It has also been shown that smoking even a few cigarettes each day can double the risk of rheumatism. Women who have smoked for years are especially at risk of developing rheumatic disorders.

Long-term consequences

As a result of chronic inflammation, individuals affected by joint-related forms of the disease suffer joint pain, swelling or effusions; long-term effects include joint deterioration, malpositioning and loss of function. Severe and often life-threatening complications caused by chronic inflammation in a wide range of organ structures result especially frequently in disorders of the collagen and vasculitis groups.

The course of the disorder and the response to therapy can be vastly different from patient to patient, even with identical diagnoses. And the distinction between the various rheumatic disorders is often very fluid. However, it is generally apparent that rheumatism patients are increasingly able to remain in work longer, which, of course, indicates an improvement in therapy over the last few years.

Conventional therapy

Every therapy is preceded by a qualified differential diagnosis which elucidates the cause of disorder on the basis of typical manifestations. The therapy is then tailored to the relevant symptoms, a general plan is developed or an existing one gradually updated.

The effective therapies for rheumatic disorders are almost all medicinal. Changes in lifestyle and nutrition, in particular, have a supporting effect at best. Surgical interventions such as synovectomies and reconstructive surgery to replace joints do not usually deal with the cause of the disease, but do at least reduce the effects.

For the majority of rheumatic disorders, physiotherapy and physical therapy both represent necessary supportive therapeutic measures. They reduce long-term pain and impairment in many cases. Cold therapy in particular can have an anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effect.

The kybun principle of operation – being proactive

  • The kybun shoe trains the body during the ‘attack-free’ phase and relieves the body during ‘attacks’ of rheumatism.
  • The soft, elastic sole dampens the impact from hard surfaces. This is very pleasant, particularly for soft tissue and/or joint pain, and allows the affected individual to walk longer distances and stand for longer periods.
  • Walking in the kybun shoe activates the core stabilising foot musculature and improves foot mobility. This improves stability and balance, and gently loads the higher joints (knees, hips, back etc.).
  • The improved mobility and strength in the feet and in the joints above them protects the joints from rapid deterioration, helps relieve inflamed areas and supports regeneration.

Initial reactions

Specific initial reactions with rheumatism: Since rheumatic pain is relapsing-remitting, it is difficult to find the correct dosage right away. The duration of wear (training intensity) should be adapted to the user’s condition each day. It may happen that the user walks in the kybun shoe/stands on the kybun mat for too long at a time and that the complaints intensify as a result. Try to avoid this by following the ‘Application tips’ and contact your kybun dealer if you have any questions or doubts.


Click here for the general initial reactions experienced by kybun mat and kybun shoe beginners: Initial reactions

kybun exercises

For information about the special kybun shoe exercises or the basic kybun mat exercises, please click here: kybun exercises

Application tips

  • Since rheumatic pain is relapsing-remitting, kybun shoe training should always be adapted to the user’s condition each day. It is important that the affected individual finds out over time how much kybun training is helpful and when it is time for a break in order to avoid increased pain afterwards. On some days, it may well be that only short and gentle kybun shoe training is required (or even skipping a day), while walking longer distances in the kybun shoe may be possible on other days.

    There should never be increased pain after kybun shoe training/walking (dosage!) in order to effectively alleviate rheumatic disorders!
    This is of particular importance with all inflammatory diseases! With regular walking in the kybun shoe, the body will adjust over time (stronger muscular and connective tissue, more stable joints). Complaints/initial reactions will occur less quickly and frequently.

    More helpful tips:

  • If you feel pain in the kybun shoe or on the kybun mat, or if your existing pain gets worse, this may be due to various reasons (e.g. an unfamiliar, more upright posture, tense muscles, movements that are unfamiliar for the body).
  • We advise you to perform the kybun exercises regularly every now and again. They loosen the muscles and straighten the body. This relieves strain on the joints. As a result, pain should decrease after a few hours or days.
    Choose the kybun exercises that are good for you! Some customers prefer easier movements while others find the more intensive exercises helpful; this is highly individual.
  • Choose a kybun shoe with a lower rebound effect. It provides you with greater midfoot stability. Ask your kybun dealer to show you the various models.
  • If you feel unstable wearing the kybun shoe or are looking for an additional training device to use at home, the kybun mat is the ideal alternative. You can strengthen the foot, leg and back musculature at home on the soft, elastic springy mat. You can hold on to a fixed object if you feel unstable. The kybun mat is also available in a choice of different thicknesses (the thicker, the more intensive the training). Ask your local kybun dealer for advice.
  • If you get very fatigued in spite of the kybun exercises, or if you feel pain or in case of lateral/medial rolling of the ankle joint on the kybun sole, we advise you to take a short kybun shoe/kybun mat break until the symptoms go away.
  • Be sure to maintain an upright posture, avoid taking excessively long steps and keep your gaze forward (do not look at the floor). You should walk straight on the kybun shoe sole and correct any lateral/medial rolling of the ankle joint!

Opinions/customer testimonials

I have been a polyarthritis and soft tissue rheumatism patient for many years and have had quite a few attempts with orthopedically converted shoes and insoles that never quite fit properly, despite repeated modifications. Walking for any length of time caused me severe pain. As a dog owner and passionate hiker, I depend on being able to walk effectively. A colleague of mine first introduced me to the kybun shoe. Since then, I have been enjoying my dog walking without pain. At one point, I had to go back to orthopaedic shoes because I also had a hallux and a hammertoe. Very quickly I started to experience pain in the affected foot, knee issues and lower back problems. I immediately switched back to the kybun shoe and now I can walk pain-free again. Longer hikes are also possible and that includes walking downhill!