5 top insoles for YOU!
5 practical tips for selecting the right insoles:
Insoles or other inserts are a great way to add support and cushioning to almost any footwear. They’re easy to use, inexpensive, and available at many Podiatrists.
To get the most out of your purchase keep the following info in mind when selecting a pair. Also remember that wearing ill-fitting or inappropriate inserts may be worse than wearing none at all.
- Insole sizes are usually noted using a shoe-size range. ”Women’s Size 7-9” is a perfect example. These are known as “Trim-to-fit” insoles. Any excess material is carefully trimmed away after purchase. Ideally, this results in a perfect fit which helps the insoles deliver maximum results. Yet what if you’re in between sizes, for example a “Women’s 9 ½?” In this case it’s best to buy the next size up. 3/4 inserts give a range of shoe-sizes as well. This refers to the sizes in which they can be used comfortably. Typically, 3/4 inserts aren’t meant to be trimmed or altered in any way. Also remember that different footwear manufacturers sometimes use slightly different sizing systems. For this reason, many people stick with a favorite brand once they’ve found what works. When in doubt ask your podiatrist for recommendations.
- Placement: installing your new insoles might not be as simple as just plopping them in. Most full-length insoles are designed to totally replace any existing insoles. Put differently, you usually won’t be wearing two pairs of full-length insoles as the same time. This isn’t always true, however. Certain pairs of very thin full-length inserts are meant to be worn on top of your current inserts. It’s always best to consult the instructions included. Furthermore, they’ll tell you if these inserts should be installed above or below the existing insoles. 3/4 insoles, on the other hand, are often designed to be worn with other insoles at the same time. This provides a very high level of support. They are typically placed on top of any existing insoles.
- in general, feet have 3 basic types or kinds of arches. The first is the neutral or medium type. This is the most common, and can be thought of as “normal” arches. The second is low arches. This condition is often described as flat feet or fallen arches. People with low arches are predisposed to many common foot conditions, including plantar fasciitis. They can often benefit greatly from the support and cushioning insoles provide. Not surprisingly, the third category is high arches. This is less common, yet also frequently causes foot problems. Also note that wearing inserts that don’t match your arch type is always a bad idea. This can be extremely painful, and can aggravate existing foot problems.
Insert foot-bed type:
- as with arch-type, this factor influences which type of insole a person requires. There are 4 basic types. The first is known as rigid orthotic arch support. Much as it sounds, this type of insert will be hard, inflexible, and offers the most support. The second is the semi-rigid orthotic arch support. This style gives a good balance between support and comfort. Many popular orthotic inserts fall under this classification. The third is known as cushioned arch support. As you might guess, this type offers maximum shock absorption. The fourth type is called a flat cushion. They provide no arch support whatsoever. You must consider your arch-type and activity level when selecting a foot-bed type. As before, your podiatrist is an excellent resource if you have any questions.
- 4 basic substances are used to craft the majority of commercially available 5 top insoles. Leather and cork are traditional materials and have been used to create insoles for centuries. As a material, leather can provide high levels of support. It wears well, and is regarded as having a good “feel.” Cork, on the other hand, imparts both support and a natural cushioning effect. Foam is a newer, synthetic material type. It comes in many forms and consistencies, and offers variable levels of support. Generally speaking, foam is the most versatile insole material. Finally, synthetic gel materials give a cushioning effect. They offer the highest levels of shock absorption of all the basic material types.