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Considerations When Buying New Insoles

Published on February 19th, 2018

If you think about it, the soles of our feet take a lot of wear and tear. They literally support our bodyweight all day every day and absorb the shock that comes with walking on hard surfaces. As we age, the cushioning in our feet naturally becomes thinner, causing pain, fatigue and soreness. Finding the proper insoles for your feet is a crucial step in minimizing pain and building support to get you through your day.

Before investing in a new pair of insoles for your shoes, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Size

While this may seem like an obvious thing to keep in mind, you’d be surprised about the number of people who pick the wrong size insole for their foot. Insoles come in a range of sizes designed to fit certain shoe sizes. Full-length insoles are intended to be just that: full length. But don’t be afraid to trim excess material if it’s not benefitting you. If you buy insoles designed to be ¾ length, don’t trim them in any way.

Placement

It’s often a misperception that insoles should sit on top of the shoe’s existing insoles. But it is most likely that you will need to remove the shoe’s existing insole before you insert your new one. This holds especially true for full-length insoles. If your full-length insoles are thick, they should replace the shoe’s insoles; if they are thin, they may be worn on top of the shoe’s current insoles. However, if your insoles are ¾ length, make sure to wear them on top of the shoes current insoles.

Foot Arch Type

Your foot arch falls into one of three categories: neutral or medium arches, fallen arches or high arches. Insoles are made to help one or more of these foot arch types. Once you identify the type of arch you have, make sure you choose the proper insole for yourself. Be careful! Choosing the wrong insole for your foot type will likely result in additional pain.

Material

Insoles are most likely made of leather, gel, foam or cork, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Generally speaking, foam works the best for extra cushioning, support and pressure relief. Gel works the best for shock absorption while cork works the best for support with a slight layer of cushion. When worn with thin socks, leather works well for cushion.

If you need more tips or advice when picking your next pair of insoles, contact Alpine Foot Specialists; we’re happy to help!

Courtesy of: The Insole Store

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