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Thread: Insoles

  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopetofinish View Post
    Spenco . Used them for years. Lots of choices, specific to outdoor use.
    Originally, recommended by a physical therapist.
    My chiro doc peddles Spenco, I use them in every shoe I own, Vans to Altra to Ariat boots.
    "It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change". Charles Darwin

  2. #22
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    I started the trail with plantar fasciatis issues and used superfeet to start. They are nice if you shoe doesnt have a rock plate. I switched to another brand thats sold in drug stores, you can find it on amazon under the brand comfort zone, which was more of a foam with arch support and it worked great from about NY on. Survived the water and mud no issues. Not to mention they were about $20 cheaper than superfeet, which can be hard to find once you get on trail.
    Last edited by kgordon; 04-22-2020 at 07:52.

  3. #23
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    I used to use simple Dr. Scholl's 3/4 length to get a bit of both metatarsal and longitudinal arch support. Worked great for about 20 years. Then about 15 years ago I discovered SuperFeet and started using them primarily. Then about five years ago I started having all kinds of foot issues and started experimenting with every different thing I could find. Then about 2 years ago I developed some severe posterior tibial tendinitis and my doctor recommended a good high arch support which I found best represented by some Soles. But, with other foot issues compounding other problems, my current insole choice is the cork Soles which allow me to do quite of bit of custom shaping (much easier to do than with SuperFeet) while added metatarsal buttons, a little extra support under my right longitudinal arch and a hollow carved out under my third, left, metatarsal. Geez, getting old can make simple things so much more complicated at times.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    Limmer Boots, had a different approach to insoles. After waiting the requisite 1 to 3 years for the custom boots to show up, the boots had no insole, rather there was just the bottom thick layer of leather of the boot. The user would then have to put up with a couple of months of painful break in while the feet slowly sunk into the leather forming to their feet. If someone survived the break in they would eventually end up with the leather custom contoured to their feet. Various methods to accelerate the break in were used, the big one was soaking the boots and wearing them dry. More than a few folks would not put up with the break in process and on occasion nearly new Limmers would show up at garage sales or on the resale rack at the store. If someone survived the break in, then they were in good shape and many folks have their original boots 20 to 30 years after they bought them (obviously resoled a few times).

    The heat moldable inserts I referred to previously accelerate the months long process to 5 minutes. They are also offered in two thicknesses.

    Limmer at one point did offer to compromise their boot if the customer insisted. They would either just adjust the custom measurements for an insole of have the hiker show up with an insole when hey had their fitting.
    My sense is that there are 2 fundamentally different kinds of insoles.

    The first are those that form to the natural shape of our feet - the cork insoles of a Birkenstock, heat moldable insoles, and traditional thick leather insoles.

    But there are some of us for whom the natural shape of feet is the cause of bad dysfunction. I have general joint laxity and because of that, completely flat feet both at the arch and the front metatarsal arch - both of which are the source of tremendous problems.

    I recall discussing the use of Superfeet with one of the countless sports podiatrists I've worked with and she laughed at me, saying that they don't close to amount of arch posting that I need, not to mention the metatarsal support I need (unless I tape in Spenso metatarsal pads).

    I hike and ski with Superfeet as the amount of posting I have can cause blisters on the arch, but for day to day, hard custom insoles that change the natural position of my feet are critical.

  5. #25
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    I used Superfeet Green for years, then switched to the Sole brand insoles.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigcranky View Post
    I used Superfeet Green for years, then switched to the Sole brand insoles.
    Why the switch?

    I switched to Soles because I needed more central longitudinal arch support to manage some tendinitis. At this point I might be okay going back to superfeet, But, now that I'm using the Soles, I find them easier to grind, cut, and modify as needed.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  7. #27
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    I used to be a huge fan and user of SuperFeet green. But I found a much less expensive alternative (1/4 the price) that's just as good (perhaps better?) called Copper Fit Balance Insoles from Walmart:

    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Copper-Fi...n-TV/372674185

  8. #28
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    Why the switch?

    I switched to Soles because I needed more central longitudinal arch support to manage some tendinitis. At this point I might be okay going back to superfeet, But, now that I'm using the Soles, I find them easier to grind, cut, and modify as needed.

    We had stopped in Manchester Center, VT, during our Long Trail e2e hike. My partner was having terrible issues with blisters. She had never used insoles and hated the idea The local outdoor shop carried and recommended the Sole insoles, and she got some and they saved her hike. She's worn them ever since.

    When I needed new insoles, I looked at hers and liked the overall design and construction better than the Superfeet, so I tried a pair. Love 'em. Nothing more than that.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigcranky View Post
    . . . so I tried a pair. Love 'em. Nothing more than that.
    I sure wont argue with that reasoning.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  10. #30
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    I have been using the Superfeet Berry for many years. I tried custom orthotics because they were covered for free under my insurance. They caused huge blisters and increased foot pain.

    I went back to the Superfeet Berry insoles. 😎

  11. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sara View Post
    I have been using the Superfeet Berry for many years. I tried custom orthotics because they were covered for free under my insurance. They caused huge blisters and increased foot pain.

    I went back to the Superfeet Berry insoles. 
    Enjoyed your CDT vlog! I hope you are feeling better.

    I use the Berry in my snowboarding boots but I thought they were a cushion profile sized for women. I'm concerned they don't have the support for backpacking--I have flat feet. Are they cushion profile (vs stability or anything else)?

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by danil411 View Post
    Enjoyed your CDT vlog! I hope you are feeling better.
    I use the Berry in my snowboarding boots but I thought they were a cushion profile sized for women. I'm concerned they don't have the support for backpacking--I have flat feet. Are they cushion profile (vs stability or anything else)?
    Thank you! My COVID-19 recovery is going well!

    I like the Berry model because the heel cup is designed to be a bit narrower for a woman's foot. I feel very snug and stable in the shoe, and it gives medium arch support.

    I might try some of the other women's models - as they seem to go on sale more often than the Berry. Superfeet insoles are so expensive when you go through 7-8 pairs of shoes a year!
    Follow My Hiking Adventures: http://www.youtube.com/SaraDhooma
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  13. #33
    Registered User PopcornFool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankIV View Post
    How many of you trial and errored a few different brands before settling on your favorite, vs those who hit he jackpot with your first ones?
    I hit the jackpot. I did just what Slo-go'en suggested and went to REI. In my case, I bought my shoes and inserts at the same time. I was able to try on many brands and styles of each. The associate worked with me to find the right combination of shoes and inserts that met all my needs.

    I've had lifelong plantar fascia and ankle issues. I've worn doctor-prescribed orthotics for years. I've also had ankle reconstruction surgery and hours of physical therapy afterward. I'm particularly cautious regarding my preferred mode of transportation - my feet. I'm also a research freak and went in to REI armed with hours of research regarding top recommended footwear and inserts for men in my situation.

    The final perfect match for me turned out to be Asolo Drifters with Superfeet Green inserts. Not at all what I was anticipating going in. Even sizing was significantly different than my "normal". The boots are not as light as I would have hoped, but I've put hundreds of miles on these without a single foot or ankle issue (zip ... nada) even on the most rugged terrain and longest days. The peace of mind earned through the years and miles is worth every extra gram to me. And the Superfeet inserts have proven incredibly comfortable, supportive, and equally rugged. I doubt that I'll change to a different insert. When you find something that works ... well ... why mess with it?

    I'm not suggesting Superfeet Green are right for you. Every foot and need is different and YMMV. But I can definitively recommend fitting new shoes and new inserts at the same time if you have that opportunity. Your footwear should be an integrated system and not every insert will work with every shoe brand and model. It just makes sense, when you think about it, to fit them together if you can instead of using trial-and-error until you find something that works.
    ~ All I want is affordable, simple, ultralight luxury. Thatís not asking too much is it?

  14. #34

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    Just wanted to thank everyone for the continued input. Super helpful. Mostly just to know how many types and brands there are.

  15. #35

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    For me, I tried the superfeet and found the arch to be to far back on them and be uncomfortable. So a little more trial and error, and I saw a pair of Dr. Scholl's Comfort & Energy Extra Support Insoles, at the big blue box store. I used these for over a thousand miles, had no issues at all, and like them a lot.
    Then I was at that store again and saw what looked like a similar, but heavier duty/support version of the same insoles (Dr. Scholl's Pain Relief Orthotics for Heavy Duty Support), and thought - why not try and see? The writing on the box said for people over 200 lbs, which I am, and that's not including 20 or so pounds of loaded out back pack. So I got them and tried them, I did from Bennington, VT to Katahdin in them with no issues & like them a lot too.
    It's pretty interesting what a difference the "right for you" pair of insoles make.

    willin'

  16. #36
    Registered User DeadBushi's Avatar
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    I use Protalus insoles. They help with my Flat feet and Plantar issues. The insole is rigid and acts like a rock plate of sorts and provides excellent arch support. This is the only insole I use. I use them in every pair of shoes I own.

  17. #37

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    I used Superfeet Green for a few years but the foot surgeon I went to changed to Redi-thotic Max. The redi-thotics have more cushion but don't last as long. The Superfeet are more durable but have almost no padding. DeadBushi mentioned Protalus. Never heard of them. I'll have to give them a try. I need good insoles as I've aged. I need arch support. I also have arthritis. For me when my feet start to ache that is my queue to put in a fresh pair of insoles. I wish somebody made an insert with stiff arch support (like Superfeet Green) with gel in the forefront and heel (like Dr. Scholls).

  18. #38

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    Anybody try a brand called “Tread Labs”

  19. #39

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    Superfeet orange. I needed a little extra cushion with my trail runner shoes. Used two pair in 2500 miles. Held up well and I was quite pleased.

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