If you regularly go running, or suffer from foot pain because of a lack of correct foot support, it is important you look to find adequate support for your feet in order to avoid any pain progressing further. The right footwear is important, but extra support is often needed, which is where insoles come in. Insoles provide extra support for your feet and they come in many different materials, shapes and sizes. The difficult part is selecting the correct insoles for your foot type.
Different Types of Insoles
Arch Support Insoles
Arch support insoles are designed to support the arch of your foot. These types of insoles are particularly important if you have extremely high arches, or flat feet. They can be bought to fit your exact foot shape, and custom made arch support insoles do tend to be the most effective. However, when they are custom made they can be quite expensive compared to generic arch supports which do mould to your foot shape eventually. Arch support insoles are important because they prevent issues like inflammation, foot tension and arch pressure.
Orthotics are products we place inside the shoe in order to help us restore proper foot function. Proper foot function is necessary in order to prevent issues like knee pain, back pain and heel pain. When we don’t walk properly our arches can drop and our feet can move in such a way that the position of the legs and feet are altered negatively. Orthotic insoles correct these issues and realign the feet and ankles so they are in a natural and neutral position. This restores foot function and enables us to avoid or alleviate back, hip, knee, foot and ankle issues.
Gel insoles are extremely lightweight and are easily placed inside any type of shoe. They are often used by people who wear high heels a lot as they can be placed on the part of the shoe where the pad of the foot is placed, and make the pressure of wearing a high heel more comfortable to take. If you wear high heels a lot and find it painful, these are a great option fo you. Gel insoles support your entire foot and prevent excess pressure from causing you pain.
How to Choose the Right Insoles
Understand the Purpose of Insoles
The first thing you need to do is understand the purpose of insoles before you choose the right types for your feet. By understanding what an insole is designed to do, and the type of foot or problem it is designed for, you are then better able to make the best decision about your insoles. Don’t be afraid to read forums and social media to find people with similar foot issues to you and find out what type of insoles they recommend.
Stick with the Priorities
Don’t try and get an insole that does it all, try to focus on an insole that alleviates your own personal foot issues. Consider your arch type – is it high or flat? Consider the type of footwear you tend to wear – do you wear heels? Do you wear shoes that are extra wide fit? And consider the main use for your insoles. Are you a runner? Are the insoles going to be mainly used in your running trainers? You should focus on the main issues you suffer from rather than buying insoles that are claiming to ‘do it all’.
Don’t Wear them if they don’t Feel Good
Insoles should not cause additional foot problems, so if the insoles you have purchased do not feel comfortable they are not right for you.
Expect them to Offer Relief
Your insoles may well be incorrect for you, in which case the condition you are seeking relief from should worsen, in which case you should stop using the insoles straight away. If the insoles are correct you should feel relief from the conditions you are trying to improve. The insoles may not ‘cure’ the conditions you suffer from, but they should help you cope with them on a day to day basis.
These are just a few useful tips to help you use the right insoles. Remember, the more information you have, the more able you are to choose the right insoles for you.