We all know that good running shoes are essential for marathoners, sprinters, and casual joggers alike. But no matter how happy you are with your current shoes, you shouldn’t overlook the power of a good pair of insoles. From reducing fatigue to improving overall foot mechanics, here’s why running insoles make a difference.
1. They minimise impact forces
A good pair of insoles will cushion your foot strike (in fact, according to the Journal of the American Pediatric Medical Association, they can reduce ground impact by up to 6.8%). A great pair of insoles goes one step further and improves how your foot rolls through the gait cycle.
Our Run Performance Insoles, for example, have anatomical padding for cushioning heel strike. They also have WeightFlex inserts and sensorimotor spots to help you activate your foot muscles more efficiently and support the natural roll of your foot.
Why is this important? When you run, your legs and spine absorb up to 5 times your body weight with every step. Under those conditions, muscles tighten, the spine compresses, and your shin bones may develop tiny stress fractures. In most runners, healthy feet help the body process and absorb the shock via a fat pad in the heel and the natural outer-heel to inner-toe roll of the foot. A good pair of running shoes also goes a long way through in-built foot support and squishy soles.
But you can’t expect to run barefoot or in flat shoes for long without painful consequences. And if your running shoes are worn out or don’t provide as much support as you’d like, quality insoles can help bridge that gap for a more comfortable run.
Run Performance Insoles
Quality running insoles can also reduce some muscle fatigue. That’s not to say you can run an additional 5 kms without getting tired. But the support and boosted muscle activity some insoles provide can save your foot and leg muscles a bit of stabilisation and shock absorption work with every step. If you’re a distance runner especially, the effects will stack up.
It’s also important to note that muscle fatigue leaves you prone to soft tissue injuries like Runner’s Knee. As the muscles tire and stop sufficiently supporting your ligaments and tendons, these structures will have to pick up the slack and may develop micro tears over time.
On that note, running insoles like our Run Performance pair can reduce your risk of injury. They do so by:
- Reducing the rate of muscle fatigue, leading to better internal protection for soft tissues.
- Absorbing some shock, which can protect you from repetitive stress injuries
- Support the roll of your foot without over-protecting the arch, thus protecting your tibialis posterior tendon (which runs along the arch and helps it keep its shape) from tendonitis.
- Provide extra protection for the heel, reducing your risk of plantar fasciitis and heel spurs.
Now, these benefits don’t end at the feet. The body is a kinetic chain in which the feet are the foundation. So, proper support for the feet means your ankles, knees, and hips get gently nudged into better alignment as you run, protecting them from excess strain and stress. And, by extension, injuries like ankle sprains and patellar tendonitis.
Some things to consider
When picking out your running insoles, always keep these things in mind:
- Good insoles provide cushioning without feeling too squishy. While running or walking on over-squishy soles may feel much better, these will not support your feet as much. Not to mention, your feet and ankles will need to do a lot of corrective work to keep you balanced and stable.
- They should be the right size. Only a properly fitted insole will provide your foot with the support it needs. That’s why we’ve got a wide range of sizes available from 35 to 48.
- Mind the material and design. Quality insoles will protect your feet much better than mass-produced foam inserts.
To sum up
Running insoles make great companions for joggers, sprinters, and marathoners alike. They cushion the heel, support the foot roll, and can even activate the muscles for more efficient activation and support, leading to less fatigue, impact shock, and reduced risk of injury. That said, not every pair of insoles is made equal. You need a quality, well-fitted pair to protect your feet right.
If you require assistance selecting the right product for your needs or wearing the brace, call us on 1300 668 466 or contact us via live chat.
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