Custom orthotics are medical devices worn on the inside of shoes to address various foot-related issues and to improve overall foot function. Unlike an off the shelf orthotic, a custom orthotic is made to fit an individual's specific foot shape, size, and biomechanics.
After a thorough assessment by a podiatrist or orthopedic specialist, custom orthotics are crafted based on factors including arch type, gait, and any other foot conditions or abnormalities the individual may have.
Who benefits from custom orthotics?
Orthotics can benefit a wide range of individuals, including:
Individuals with a foot deformity, flat feet, or collapsed arches
Individuals with pain in their lower limbs and feet
Individuals with feet that overpronate or supinate too much
Those with plantar fasciitis or rheumatoid arthritis
Those with bunions or corns
Athletes and routinely active individuals
Individuals who spend long hours standing, walking on hard surfaces, engaging in repetitive movements
Choosing a foot-friendly work boot
The benefits of a custom orthotic can be negated by subpar shoes. So then what should one look for when shopping for a pair of foot-friendly work boots?
Selecting a good-fitting pair of work boots is essential to promoting all-day comfort, support, and overall foot health. Here are some general features to consider when choosing your next pair of work boots.
The proper fit
Your work boots should only bend where your toes bend and they should not twist excessively.
A firm heel counter
Work boots with a firm heel counter can help control excessive pronation and promote stability. This can be particularly beneficial if you traverse many uneven surfaces throughout the workday.
Adequate arch support
By supporting the arch, boots with proper arch support help distribute body weight more evenly and reduce the risk of foot and ankle instability.
Laces for an adjustable fit
By properly lacing up your work boots, you can ensure that they snugly conform to the shape of your feet.
Orthotics add extra height to the foot, so make sure the beats have enough depth to accommodate both your feet and the orthotics. Not doing so can lead to discomfort and foot pain.
A flat insole
Some off the shelf footwear may already have inserts in them, so it is important to check before using your own orthotics in a pair of work boots. In order for the orthotics to work properly, it is crucial for them to rest on a flat and neutral base. This allows the orthotics to properly align and support the foot in its most stable position.
Can I use the same orthotics for my running shoes and my work boots?
While it is possible to use the same orthotics for your running shoes and work boots, you may notice that they feel a little different when worn in each. Running shoes and work boots serve different purposes and so often demand different degrees of foot support.
If you decide to use the same custom insoles for both, we recommend considering the following:
Compared to running shoes, work boots often have a higher heel pitch. This means that the heel is usually a little bit higher than the toes and this can cause your orthotics to perform differently.
A rigid midsole offers added shock absorption and reduces pressure on the feet. Look for a work boot that has a cushioning midsole that will protect your feet and legs from the shock of repetitive motions.
If you have any questions about foot orthotics, orthotic management, or a particular condition orthotics could be used for, please feel free to comment below! You can also reach out to our team at docpods.com/au!