What are Arch Supports?
Arch supports are inserts that are placed into a shoe and help to provide the arch of your foot support. An arch support helps to eliminate or diminish the feeling of pain that may be caused by common foot problems. In addition, an arch support provides many benefits to your overall body health.
Importance of Arch Supports
Many people experience foot pain at some point in their lives. Not to mention, most already suffer from common foot problems but can easily benefit from the use of arch supports. Did you ask, “How?” Arch supports help to lessen your foot pain and make walking and standing much more comfortable. So much that they help distribute pressure across your arches, provide stability and balance, provide support, and lessen foot pain. So, keep reading to learn about the benefits of arch supports, types of arch supports, and where to shop the best arch supports for your individual needs.
How do arch supports help me?
For people already suffering from chronic conditions of the feet or persistent pain, arch supports can help alleviate symptoms and assist in recovery. Supporting the arch can have some of the following important benefits. Below, we will explain in detail the benefits of arch supports.
Benefits of wearing arch supports:
- Arch supports help distribute pressure. Arch evenly distribute pressure across your feet and align your body.
- Provide stability and balance. Arch supports are a great source for balance and support. They can help improve your posture and balance which can help lessen foot pain and problems related to imbalance and a lack of proper support.
- Arch supports provide support. For those who require specialized support, their feet ailments may demand that they use artificial supports. These can help to alleviate pain and/or prevent further damage. This might be especially beneficial for those who suffer from plantar fasciitis.
- Lessen or prevent pain. Arch supports can help lessen your foot pain. Foot pain can not only cause discomfort but make it difficult to go about your day and handling important duties. However, in cases where it’s still possible, it may still be quite painful for you.
- Arch supports prevent your arches from harm. Not only can arch supports help alleviate pain but they also provide support to your arches which prevent them from collapsing. Once they collapse, often the plantar fasciitis stretches out which could lead to painful foot conditions such as plantar fasciitis.
Now you understand the benefits of arch supports; let’s take a look at a few popular arch supports for foot pain. Some of the best arch supports include Superfeet, Aetrex Lynco, and Lucky Feet Shoes arch supports.
Lucky Feet Shoes Premium Insoles
Lucky Feet Shoes Premium Insoles were designed to provide unsurpassed comfort throughout your busy day. They effectively support your arches and evenly distribute pressure, helping increase stability and reducing excessive motion. Made out of silicone, they are designed to fit comfortably in most footwear. Wearing Lucky Feet Shoes Premium Orthotics in your shoes can provide the support you need and help relieve stress on your knees, hips, back and feet. Lastly, whether you’re standing, walking or running, you owe it to your aching feet. Grab a pair of these insoles today
Aetrex Lynco Arch Supports
Aetrex Lynco’s arch supports are recognized as the #1 orthotic system on the market today and are recommended by orthopedic medical professionals worldwide. Lynco offers a large selection of medial arch support products, so let’s start with Lynco’s most popular arch supports. The L2200 are exceptional for their slow recovery memory foam, which customizes to the shape of your foot, providing both balance and body alignment, thus reducing unnecessary stress on the plantar fascia. While the memory foam is great, it does make fitting difficult. Therefore, when memory foam is not an option, Lynco also offers the L2400 series. The L2400 series arch supports are customizable and are designed with removable gel plugs that allow you to modify for pressure points in your feet. This model is a little thinner than the memory foam L2200 model, so it will be easier to fit into most shoes.
Lucky Feet Shoes Arch Supports
Finally, Lucky Feet Shoes dress arch supports effectively support your arches and evenly distribute pressure across your whole foot. These arch supports are designed with comfort in mind and are thinner than most. Their ¾ length is ideal for those looking for a shorter length medial arch support to help alleviate plantar fasciitis pain and heel pain. They are great for the active individual who is looking for more support and less conformity in their orthotics. These Lucky Feet Shoes Arch Supports are built without a metatarsal pad and with a metatarsal pad. Extra metatarsal cushioning can also help your ball-of-foot pain and foot conditions such as Metatarsalgia. The metatarsal pad(met pad) provide forefoot support and help keep your toes spread apart and in their natural position. The pads add increased metatarsal support with overall cushioning to provide ball-of-foot pain relief on top of the benefits of an arch support.
What are the Different Types of Orthotics?
There are various types of arch supports you can benefit from. They vary in length, thickness and specification. Depending on why you need or are looking to wear an arch support, will also depend on what your arch support would look like. In all, we have detailed below the different types of orthotics.
A List of Things to Keep in Mind When Buying Insoles/Inserts & Orthotics
- Length of Insole/Insert. Arch supports are made in various lengths depending on the type of foot pain or shoes you are looking to put them in. A full length insole will be best for an athletic shoe with a removable footbed and a ¾ insole will best fit in a dress shoe, or a shoe with no removable insole.
- Your Arch Type. Depending on your arch type, you may be placed into a different size “arch”. What this means is that if you have a lower arch you’ll be placed into an arch support with a lower arch so your foot can become more accustomed to wearing an arch. If you have a high arch, you will most likely be placed in an arch that is high, so that your arch can be kept at its highest point.
- Footbed Type. The footbed of an arch support can vary from very firm to a soft pillow like material. This depends on the type of foot problem you have, the tolerance level your foot has, type of activity you are going to be using them for and overall, your weight. These factors will all play a role in determining your arch support footbed.
- Arch supports will vary in what type of material they are made of. Some will be made of a dense hard material or a soft forgiving material like memory foam. The benefits of both will vary based on the type of foot or foot problem you are suffering from.
Knowing When You Need Arch Supports/Orthotics
Plantar Fasciitis. If you have plantar fasciitis, you will definitely need an arch support or an orthotic. The advantage of wearing an arch support is that you are offered relief of heel pain and if you have plantar fasciitis and are wearing a silicone or plastic insole you can also decrease your chances of getting plantar fasciitis.
Arch Pain. If you are experiencing arch pain, it may be time to start wearing arch supports. Arch pain can be due to underlying problems, or from excessive activity. Arch supports will benefit your feet and whole body, in the long run. We sincerely recommend wearing arch supports at the first sign of arch pain.
Over-Pronation. Over pronation is when your ankles tend to roll inward while walking. If you notice this, or have been diagnosed with over pronation, an insert orthotic will help to keep your ankle and body aligned properly.
Standing For Long Periods. If you have an occupation where you are on your feet all the time, you should consider wearing orthotics in your shoes at all times. Wearing insoles will help prevent the occurrence of a more serious foot problem.
Heel Spurs. A heel spur feels like a hard rock in your heel. If you suffer or are at risk of getting a heel spur an orthotic will help to alleviate the pain that comes with a heel spur. Orthotics help to evenly distribute pressure and doing this will also help to lower your risk of the heel spur getting larger.
Supination. Supination is the motion of your foot rolling outward when you walk. If you supinate when walking, orthotics will help to keep your feet and body aligned.
Morton’s Neuroma. Orthotics are especially beneficial to someone with Morton’s Neuroma because an orthotic with a met pad, helps to alleviate the pressure and pain between and around the toe area.
Running. Being an avid runner puts a lot of strain on your feet and body. Inserts help to keep the shock to an absolute minimum. Also, inserts benefit your arches and help to keep your entire body supported.
Visiting an Orthotic Specialist. We recommend visiting one of our Pedorthist in one of our 9 Southern CA locations! Having someone fit you to the orthotic that will fit your needs will help to keep your body happy and healthy!
A List of 6 Types of Arch Supports
- Custom Orthotics
Custom orthotics are insoles that are molded to the exact shape of your feet and arch. These types of insoles are generally firm and a little more aggressive on the arch, depending if your arch is high or low. It isn’t a brace or ankle brace, or just kt tape. These insoles, like the name, are customizable to your needs. If you need them to be thinner, thicker, shorter or longer, all of this can be accomplished with a custom insole made of silicone, not plastic. In addition, you can also add a met pad, which help to decrease forefoot pressure.
- Over the Counter Orthotics
Over the counter orthotics are pre molded arch supports that can come in various arch sizes. You can purchase these insoles with various arch types; the most common are low and medium to high arches. In addition, these can also be purchased with and without a met pad for forefoot pressure.
- Full Length Orthotic
A full length orthotic fits best into a shoe that has a removable insole. This insert will probably work best with athletic shoes; these types of shoes generally have the most toe room and a removable insert. Full length orthotics will also offer your forefoot more cushion and protection.
- 3/4th Length Orthotics
A ¾ length orthotic will fit best in a dress shoe or a shoe that does not have a removable insole. ¾ length insoles are also usually thin and firm. The reason they are firm is due to how thin they are. If it’s going to be thin to take up less room in your shoes, it has to be strong enough to bear the weight.
- Dress Insoles
These types of insole are best for, well, dress shoes! They fit in a men’s dress shoe nicely, so that you don’t risk taking up too much toe room. They additionally fit into a women’s heel or flat also taking up less room. Dress insoles are perfect for those fancy shoes that do not offer you any arch support, and good for either men’s or women’s orthopedic health.
- Memory Foam Insoles
Memory foam orthotics are thick and full length. Usually they will fit best into a shoe with a removable insole.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is arch support important?
Arch support is crucial to keeping your feet, knees, hips, back and body in proper alignment. Lack of proper orthotics can increase your chances of getting a serious foot condition.
How do I know what arch support is right for my shoes?
Finding the proper arch support for a specific style of shoe can be tricky. If you want to put orthotics in a flat shoes, or heel, you’ll need to find insoles that are ¾ lengths and are thin. This helps so the insole takes up the minimum amount of space in the shoe since these types of shoes generally don’t have much depth to them. A sandal, for example, offers little to no arch support and is one of the major reasons why orthodics are then needed.
Orthotics for a running or walking shoe can be a full length or a ¾ length. In addition, as long as the insole is removable, a full length orthotic will fit right in.
How does arch support benefit my shoes?
Arch support inside of a sturdy, solid and supportive shoe will offer your feet and shoes many benefits. Orthotics inside of a shoe will offer a longer life span of your shoes. Inserts help to absorb shock to the body and keep your feet supported. An insert can also benefit your foot health by keeping the arches supported and the pressure evenly distributed as you walk, and are much better than just tape or thick socks.
If I have flat feet will insoles hurt my feet?
If you have flat feet, it is possible that an orthotic may hurt your arches at first. This is due to the pressure an insole puts on your arch. The pressure may cause a little pain, due to your foot not being used to it. Once your foot adjusts to the pressure and support it’s receiving, you’ll be good to go!
What is the difference between a custom orthotic and an over the counter orthotic?
The main differences between the two are, the custom orthotic is usually molded exactly to your arch and foot. These usually come in a hard molded material and even sometimes a soft medium density insole. You can have the insole made exactly to your needs and wants. An over the counter orthotic is pre molded and will fit any foot and arch. These are a good starting point if you are just starting out.
What type of insole is best for plantar fasciitis?
If you have plantar fasciitis, the best type of insole would be a rigid, hard insole, if your arch can tolerate it. Usually a foot will have no problems adjusting to a rigid insole. A hard insole will be more supportive on your arch and will allow for a fast recovery time, usually.
Are shoes with little or no arch support bad for your feet?
Shoes that do not offer you arch support are doing more damage than good to your feet. This is due to the shoes not having a supportive insole. The lack of arch support causes your body to be out of alignment and also puts more pressure on your heels and the ball of your foot. You won’t even be able to do some yoga poses or execises if your feet are not healthy or hurting from bad shoes. If you suffer from a foot condition this could make it worse, and if you don’t suffer from a foot condition, it could create one.
Now that you know the benefits of arch supports, find a comfort shoe store near you
Finding the best arch supports may be a difficult challenge since you have to take into consideration the shoes and socks in which the arch supports will be worn in and your foot type. Therefore, before you make a purchase, we recommend you visit any of our stores for a FREE FOOT ANALYSIS. Our trained staff can help you find the best arch supports based on your foot type and gait (the way you walk). We have a number of Lucky Feet Shoes comfort shoe stores in Southern California. We carry many over-the-counter arch supports designed to provide support and comfort. In addition, we also provide custom orthotics for those seeking a customized fit. So now that you understand the benefits of arch supports, schedule your Free Foot Analysis today; your feet will thank you!
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