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  1. #1

    Default Need recommendations for Hiking boot insoles

    Disclaimer: I'm new at backpacking thing.....
    1) Am I supposed to take the old insoles out (I bought 3/4 insoles) and replace them with the new ones? Or do they go on top of the old ones.
    2) What are some suggestions on the best insoles to get?

    I wear Hi Tech waterproof boots. Went to Sports Authority and placed my feet on the machine to see what kind of insoles I needed. Got the Aiir Arch Performance Insole which is a (little longer than a) 3/4 quarter insole- meaning the insoles stop right before the toes- it's not full length. If I take the original insole out, than the new insert seems not as cushiony (yeah, at the toes)- it's harder. If I keep both insoles in, it provides more cushion but less room - especially with hiking socks.

    I went out today with a brand new backpack with about 20 lbs on me wearing wool socks and liners on a 4 miles hike (with both insoles in). While cushiony, I got some tender spots. I guess I can use a thinner wool sock???

    Help. Thx.

  2. #2
    Registered User Moose2001's Avatar
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    Take the old insoles out and put the news one in. Do yourself a BIG favor and ditch the waterproof boots. You'll cut way down on blisters and your feet will thank you for getting breathable boots.
    GA - NJ 2001; GA - ME 2003; GA - ME 2005; GA - ME 2007; PCT 2006

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  3. #3
    Registered User WILLIAM HAYES's Avatar
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    try green superfeet

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    no real idea whats technically correct, but i accidentally wore my boots without insoles for a day once and the thought of going hiking with even 1/4 of the foot suffering without an insole is not a pleasant one at all. either its meant to go on top of the original insole or its something i wouldnt even contemplate ever using for hiking.

  5. #5

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    there are so many choice out there, we us sole http://www.yoursole.com/us/footbeds/ they have many options to choose from with p
    lantar fasciitis they are the only insoles I would [FONT='lucida grande', helvetica, arial, sans-serif]recommend.

    [/FONT]

  6. #6

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    I switched from custom made orthotics (at $400) to green superfeet and would not go back. The custom orthotics helped my feet a bit but they messed up my gait which in turn messed up my knee. Yes, you typically remove the existing insoles.

    BTW. In general, you are not looking for cushion but instead, support. Most cushion in an insole will be compressed flat in a few days of hiking. That said, there is also a theory that if you practice hiking bearfoot or with little support (think vibram 5 fingers), it will make your foot stronger so the need for support will not be needed. It is the support that create atrophy in the muscles in the feet. If you take this approach, you want to work into it SLOWLY. Not on your first day of the AT.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bflorac View Post
    BTW. In general, you are not looking for cushion but instead, support. Most cushion in an insole will be compressed flat in a few days of hiking. That said, there is also a theory that if you practice hiking bearfoot or with little support (think vibram 5 fingers), it will make your foot stronger so the need for support will not be needed. It is the support that create atrophy in the muscles in the feet. If you take this approach, you want to work into it SLOWLY. Not on your first day of the AT.
    Agreed.

    Stay away from support, or at least minimize it, during your training. That's why it's called training.

  8. #8
    Registered User mgeiger's Avatar
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    I swapped in Merrell double density insoles into my Merrell Moab XCR boots (removing the original insoles) and it made a big difference. I hear good things about super feet as well.
    GA 80-Miler

  9. #9
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    There are several models in the superfeet line. Be sure to match up the model to your foot. My foot is a very high volume 12.5 4E, so the green ones wouldn't work no matter how much they work for other people. Be an educated shopper and I'm sure you'll do good.

  10. #10
    The spirit is strong ... LDog's Avatar
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    If you think you want to try superfeet, be sure to research them on their web site. If you rely on the info on the boxes, you won't know that some colors are better for folks with high arches, and some are better for those with low to mid arches. Some work better in shoes with low volume in the toe box, others in shoes with more volume. A recommendation to try green ones would not have worked for me ...
    Ldog
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    "The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness." - John Muir

  11. #11

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    Thanks everyone. After reading your posts, I decided to ditch my High Tech boots altogether (made my feet too sweaty and I kept getting an itchy rash) and went to an outfitter who recommended Vasque's Breeze GTX boots. These boots give me both the support, comfort, and breathability I need. Lesson learned: Go to an outfitter vs. Sports Authority.

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