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Are Insoles Worth It?

by MASS4D® Insoles June 24, 2018

Insoles, are supportive devices for the feet that are available in different sizes and designs. These are often purchased for treating common conditions such as plantar fasciitis and bunions that cause pain in the feet.

They’re designed to match the shape and length of your foot and can be easily fitted into most types of footwear, including your favourite pair of shoes.

A big advantage of wearing insoles is that they are able to promote healthy movement patterns while improving overall posture alignment.

This is why foot insoles are frequently used by athletes as a way of enhancing their performance and protecting themselves from injuries during a game. However, not every insole will be capable of supporting the foot effectively.

 
Foot Conditions
The right pair of orthotics can help treat a number of foot conditions.


It is important to note that foot conditions can be the result of a bad foot posture. So, while you may not currently experience any issues with your flat arches, it is still necessary to get them treated.

Different types of insoles – are they good or bad? 


You’ll find all kinds of insoles in the market – gel insoles, arch supports, leather insoles, foam-based insoles, etc.

If you’re trying to decide on which ones to purchase for your feet, it would help to know a little more about the features of a good insole material and why most other insoles lack the capability of delivering optimal support to the feet.

Shell-based Insoles: There are many benefits of using shell-based insoles. Firstly, these have the ability to make contact with your entire foot without collapsing. This means, your feet are fully supported throughout movement to minimise your chances of injury. With superior supportive properties, the drawbacks of most insole materials can easily be compensated with the use of a plastic polymer shell. Such a shell can be customised to suit your bodyweight, making sure your insole allows for free foot movement with extra comfort and support.

Cushion Foam: The two main types of insoles found in this category are – EVA foam and memory foam. If you opt for a low-density EVA foam insole, then your insole will have a higher chance of collapsing. This means, your insole will not be able to sufficiently carry the weight of your body during movement. But as the name suggests, a cushion foam insole is designed to cushion your feet by maximising shock absorption each time you take a step. Try choosing a high-density EVA insole to see better results.

Collapse No Collapse Insoles

Memory Foam: These insoles are made from a material called memory foam that easily conforms to the shape of your foot. This means, while your foot will be supported, it will still be in its incorrect posture. Since memory foam has a tendency to retain body heat, you’ll find your feet feeling rather sweaty after a while. This can make it difficult for you to move faster while wearing these insoles. Moreover, while they’re new, memory foam insoles are known to release an odour which can make them unpleasant to wear.

Gel: Such insoles are often made of a lightweight material combined with a liquid gel layer to cushion the feet. Gel insoles are a good alternative to rigid insoles that are uncomfortable to wear. However, these insoles do not offer much arch support which makes them unsuitable for treating collapsed arches. Some of it has to do with the flat design of the insole which is not able to lift the arch up to its desired level. They can also feel slippery because of the smooth gel filling that can slow you down while walking. Since the gel material is liquid, it acts more like a water balloon, shifting and moving according to pressure.

Air: There are some insoles that contain pressurised air bubbles in the heel and arch which help to provide extra comfort to the feet. Most air insoles contain added features such as moisture-free top covers that help to keep these insoles light and airy. They also last longer than most insoles, making them ideal for use in sports. As compared to other insoles, you’ll find your air insoles thicker and more expensive. The thick design of the insoles can make them uncomfortable to wear because of the added weight in your shoes.

Leather: Leather is a material that can offer some advantages in the manufacturing of insoles. Since they’re made from a natural substance, leather insoles are more breathable and easier to adapt to over time. Besides this, it is simpler to clean and maintain leather insoles as compared to the others. They are more cushioned but less supportive than most insoles. One of the main drawbacks of using leather insoles is that they’re often bulky and cannot be used with dress shoes. So they’re typically ideal for work boots and formal shoes.


Foot Pain Relief, Injury Prevention, Better Posture and Sports Performance in One Insole     know more



Graphite: Graphite is often preferred for making insoles – since it is both leaner and lighter. This can be especially useful for athletes who don’t want the weight of their insoles slowing them down during a match. While highly durable, graphite insoles are typically more expensive than other materials in the market. The stiffness of the material cannot be suitable for treating sensitive foot conditions such as diabetic feet that require personalised care and attention. The same is true if you're looking for a flexible material to promote optimal toe movement in a condition like bunion.

Benefits of good insoles 


Besides being a cost-effective method of minimising foot pain, wearing foot insoles is a good way of preventing common foot and lower body conditions from developing in the future.

As your foot posture improves, you will begin to notice visual changes in your body posture and walking patterns; with your feet properly supported by insoles, they will move the way they’re supposed to, helping improve movement of the whole body as well.

This helps in reducing your chances of developing foot and body conditions, saving you months (or possibly years) of having to spend on medical services and fees.

As compared to other therapeutic devices available in the market, insoles represent a relatively easy solution to some common health complaints such as low back pain or knee pain, especially if they’re caused by foot posture problems.

Most ready-to-wear insoles will need replacement after six months, but you can extend the life of your insoles by using them responsibly and handling them with care.

Are your insoles worth it? 


If you’ve recently purchased insoles and are wondering if you’ve made the right decision, you can go through the following checklist to make sure you’ve bought the right pair for your feet.

Calibration

– Do they fit you well There’s no point in wearing insoles that are either too big or too small for your feet. Your whole foot needs to be supported by the insole otherwise it’s not going to be effective. Please note that you can trim the length of your ready-to-wear insole so it fits snugly in your shoes.

– Are they too flexible or rigid? Your insoles should not restrict your foot movement to the point where your feet start feeling uncomfortable. Neither should they allow more movement than necessary for treatment. The right pair of insoles will fully support your feet without placing too much restriction on their movement.

– Are they right for your condition? Remember, your insole should be able to treat your foot condition. For example, flat arches can be easily treated with ready-to-wear insoles, but not every such insole will have the features that are necessary for treating flat feet. It is better to go prepared while shopping for insoles as you’ll find many types of insoles in the market.

– Do they have a strong arch? Your insole should feature a well-defined, sturdy arch for support. Flat insoles are incapable of stabilising flat arches because of their inability to hold the arch up as you move. Moreover, the flat design of such insoles fails to optimise arch function which is necessary for achieving proper foot movement.

– Is the material right for your feet? This is an important consideration for people with diabetic feet; the sensitive nature of the condition makes it compulsory for the orthotic to be soft on the feet. This is why extra cushioning is often included in insoles for diabetic feet, helping protect the feet from blisters or wounds that risk turning into infections or ulcers later.

The right insoles are worth it 


The best pair of insoles in your shoes can make a huge difference to your feet, helping you recover from common conditions and preventing them as well. This is why it is necessary to double-check that your insoles are worth the purchase.

Once you purchase insoles that are perfect for your feet, you’ll be able to walk better with every step as your feet will feel properly supported. This way, insoles are a wise investment for maintaining the health of your feet, helping you stay on your feet for long.


Foot Pain Relief, Injury Prevention, Better Posture and Sports Performance in One Insole     know more


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