Choosing new insoles can be a daunting experience based on the great variety offered on the market. Unlike other goods, however, the difference here is not only in the color, design, trade name or price of the product but rather in the functions it has.
There are many reasons why we need a pair of new insoles and respectively there are several products that can meet our needs. If we are shopping for insoles for the first time, we can ask friends for some recommendations or look through the reviews of other users in order to select those that best match our needs.
The comfort of our shoes defines our activity throughout the day and the position of our body. Wearing uncomfortable shoes may result in many problems and changes in the posture. Quite often the solution can be inserting insoles that can change the overall feeling and give us greater support.
It is important, however, to know the difference between the various types of insoles and to choose wisely those that will improve our condition. The guide below aims to give you some insights and directions on what you should be looking for when shopping for insoles.
Main reasons to buy new insoles
There can be a great variety of reasons to buy new insoles. The main ones include:
- Replacing worn-out insoles that came with your shoes
Quite often our shoes are in perfect condition except for the insoles who may wear out quite easily. If you find the shoes comfortable, there is no need to throw them away because of this inconvenience. You simply need to buy a pair of new insoles that will prolong the life of your favorite shoes and can have some positive effects on your feet as well.
- Providing better comfort during sport activities
If you like to exercise and do sports such as running, playing tennis, basketball and the like, you know that there is greater pressure on your feet and legs and you need to take proper care of them. Wearing knee braces while running or working out gives additional support to your knees, while the right insoles will relieve your pain and provide support of the arch and ankle.
- Preventing foot pain as a result of having to spend many hours standing
There are many professions that require spending the whole working day standing. In such cases, you feel pain and discomfort in your feet and a good insole can help you get rid of the unpleasant feeling.
- Seeking pain relief from a certain condition
There are different health conditions that can increase the need for wearing specific insoles. Plantar fasciitis and foot arch pain, over-pronation, supination or under-pronation, diabetes and/or arthritis are some of the most common conditions that lead to pain, stiffness or tingling in feet. To get relief from a certain condition, you need to find the specific insole that will help you reduce or eliminate the symptoms.
- Keeping your feet warm in winter
In cold weather, there is nothing more important than to keep your feet warm. There are certain insoles that can help you in case your feet are often cold.
As the reasons are quite different, it is obvious that the insoles should be different as well in order to be able to meet the individual needs of each user.
Important factors to keep in mind prior to buying your new insoles
Finding the right insoles is not a simple task. There are certain factors that you need to take into account once you go shopping. The first thing to consider, naturally, is the purpose the insoles shall serve. If you have a specific condition, you may also need to consult your doctor who would be able to give professional advice as to the type of insoles that will provide better relief and give you guidance how to wear them, if there are any specific requirements.
In addition to that these are the important factors that you need to keep in mind while shopping for insoles:
- Insole size
Insoles usually bear the same sizing as shoes but most often come as a shoe size range. You can find Men’s 9-11 or Women’s 6-9 as size on the insole. The idea is that a full-size insole is usually meant to be trimmed by the user to fit their specific footwear. When you place the insole in your shoe, simply trim the end so that it fits perfectly. Note that manufacturers use different sizing.
If you are buying ¾-length insoles or inserts, you shall look for a size that corresponds to your shoe size. They are not meant to be trimmed in any way.
If your shoe size is between sizes, say you wear 8,5 while the sizes are 6-8 and 9-11, you should buy the bigger size.
- Insole material
Insoles are usually made from four materials – foam, gel, leather, and cork. Each of them has specific features and different feel when placed in the shoe. Foam is the material preferred for cushioning, pressure relief, and support, gel provides shock absorption, cork is better for support while providing a light cushion, while leather is mainly chosen for the feeling it gives and for cushioning. As a whole, the material of the insole depends on your preferences and in many cases, insoles made from certain materials are used in specific situations.
- Your foot arch type
There are three different types of foot arches and you need to determine the right one for you so that you can choose proper insoles. Knowing your arch type is also essential when buying footwear. The three types are: 1. neutral or medium, 2. low arch, flat feet or fallen arch, and 3. high arch. You need to buy insoles that correspond to your arch type as otherwise they can do more harm and no good and wearing them can even be painful.
- Insole footbed type
In order to suit different needs, insoles come with four different footbed constructions. You can choose between: 1. rigid orthotic arch support, 2. semi-rigid orthotic arch support, 3. cushioned arch support, and 4. no arch support or flat cushion. Make sure that you are looking at insoles that have the footbed type, which matches your specific needs.
- Insole placement
Last but not least, you also need to pay attention to the insole placement. Not placing the insole correctly in your shoe may lead to adverse results. Almost all full-length insoles replace the insole that your shoe already has. In other words, you need to take the existing insole out and then fir the new one. Only very thin and flat full-length insoles can be worn on top of the existing shoe insole.
¾-length insoles are placed on top of the existing shoe insole. If you buy inserts, they are placed either under or above the existing insole depending on the type and instructions.
Paying attention to these factors will help you select the right insoles for you and get the relief and/or support and comfort that you need.
Types of insoles for a better posture
There are several types of insoles that have a positive effect on your posture as well. This is due to the fact that they relieve pain and discomfort and help you step and move in a proper way. There are three main popular types that you can choose from, depending on the specific condition you have.
- Orthotic insoles
Orthotic insoles are also often called orthotic arch supports, arch supports or orthotics. Their main aim is to provide support to the arch and heel and ensure that your foot is in a natural and healthy position throughout the day no matter what you do.
Orthotic insoles can be found in two types: featuring a rigid or semi-rigid support plate. The rigid insole is with a support platform that is almost completely stiff. It provides extensive arch support and is not recommended for people who wear orthotic insoles for the first time. The semi-rigid platform is somewhat flexible but still provides good support for the foot. Just the feeling of the arch support is not so aggressive and stiff.
The main advantage of orthotic insoles is that they guide your foot to move naturally and thus reduce the risk of pain and injuries. The support they offer prevents over-pronation and supination, arch pain and plantar fasciitis.
The Total Support Orthotic Insoles that you can find in our online shop are biomechanically engineered and feature a 3D-Modulation system in order to provide superior comfort and excellent results in reducing and relieving pain in feet, legs, knees, and back. They are suitable for people with sensitive feet and for those who suffer from diabetes or arthritis.
The Total Support Orthotic Insoles are an innovative product that provides varying degrees of hardness beneath key areas of the foot, which reduces over-pronation and helps ease stress and pain. They provide superior support for flat feet and their deep heel cups are padded with gel for extra comfort while walking or performing any other activity.
The insoles are offered in one size for men (7-12) and one size for women (4-7).
Note that if you have never worn orthotics before, that there is a kind of adaptation period until your feet get used to them. Wear them for 1 to 2 hours per day as a starter and for 3-4 hours after a couple of weeks. After that, you will be able to wear them as long as you need.
- Cushioned arch supports
These insoles aim to provide maximum cushioning and some support for the foot. They do not feature rigid or semi-rigid platforms and are often preferred by people who suffer from foot fatigue as a result of standing up for many hours rather than seeking pain relief from a certain condition. Cushioned arch supports are preferred by runners and walkers and people who spend a lot of time standing. They help feet feel relaxed and thus improve the overall position of the body.
- Gel insoles
Gel insoles are generally heavier than the other type of insoles and are well-known for their shock-absorption properties. Hence, athletes prefer gel insoles or insoles with gel padding for their activities. The insoles absorb much of the impact shock and help reduce foot fatigue.
The Honeycomb ActivGel Insoles available in our online shop utilize a new Honeycomb ActivGel™ Technology that features 360° Ventilation and air-cooling system. The insoles are designed in a way to provide maximum comfort and support and offer impact cushioning for heels, knees, and ankles.
The Honeycomb ActivGel Insoles are made of medical-grade silicone, which makes them very durable and flexible. They fit perfectly with all kind of shoes and you can wear them while at work, during a sports activity or at home. You can wear them every day and enjoy 6 separate cushion zones, comfy suede surface, and a high-quality gel silicone all combined in the new honeycomb design technology.
The insoles come in three different sizes – S (for women), M (for women and men), and L (for women and men). There is a sizing chart that can help you find the right size for you.
Choosing the right insoles guarantees the comfort of your feet and will relieve foot fatigue and pain. It is important to have a look at the different types of insoles offered on the market and select only those that fit your specific condition. Otherwise, their use may have rather negative than positive effects.
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