Why is custom foot orthotics so useful?
Custom foot orthotics can help prevent or correct foot pain, knee pain, hip pain, and even low back pain. Your feet are your foundation and when your arches go unsupported, it can upset your alignment from your belly-button down. This is due to your ankle rolling in and constantly rotating your leg bones, putting undue wear and tear on your tissues over time.
Why is custom foot orthotics better than the off-the-shelf inserts?
Store bought inserts are definitely a cheaper option, but they will only work based on three big assumptions, which we will explore further. Because of these, I only end up recommending off-the-shelf inserts rarely.
Assumption 1: The first major assumption is that everyone has flat feet. Most of these inserts are based on fitting about 70% of the population, as only 70% of the population has feet that generally fit the mold. Custom orthotics fit every one unique to their exact arch, weight, and special considerations.
Assumption 2: The second major assumption is that you fall within the average mold and cast. Once a stand-on scanner assesses you, your foot mold is averaged and shifted into the closest fit with hopes that it is ‘close enough’ to your actual foot mold. Again, custom orthotics win here because there is no averaging of your foot, and no downgrade, meaning you have the best chances of feeling great while on your feet.
Assumption 3: The third major assumption is that you do not need any custom modeling for your feet to prevent the wear and tear to your specific body. Often, it is essential to building specific accommodations into orthotics to relieve certain areas or add pressure to others.
I already have custom orthotics, when do I need new ones?
The simple answer is every year, ideally.
Firstly, your foot and your biomechanics change with time. Like your teeth, as you age, the bones in your feet shift slightly over time. Correcting for this is important to ensure you are fully supported.
Secondly, similar to a pair of shoes, orthotics wear down over time. The arch of the orthotic needs to be maintained to match the arch of your foot to give it the proper support. Depending on how many kilometers you are putting in with your orthotics, you will want to get your inserts assessed in our clinic for proper fit.