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? about insoles

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? about insoles

Postby gary c. » Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:11 pm

Like I have said before I'm very fortunate that I can wear just about anything on my feet without problems. My current hiking boots are a pair of Montrails and a pair of Golites. Both seem to me to have decent insoles that came with them. I'm just wondering if I would benefit from buying insoles for them. I'm not at all surprised to have tired feet after carrying a heavy pack all day, just wondering if insoles would help. Who does/dosen't use aftermarket insoles and why?
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby rlown » Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:27 pm

I got a pair of SuperFeet insoles from REI to replace the standard ones that came with my Vasque boots. High arches, so the extra support was very welcome. I tend to pronate more on my right foot and have consistently blown out a big toenail on that foot. Haven't had that issue for 2 seasons with the new insoles. My pack is always at 50+ for over 5 day trips. There was an obvious difference immediately after replacing the original insoles.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby copeg » Sat Jun 11, 2011 6:55 pm

Just prior to hiking the JMT I started to get a pain in the top of my left foot (probably from running a lot). Up to that point I had few foot problems and didn't think too much about it (thought it was from over-exertion), but nevertheless I visited a podiatrist. Diagnosis was that - due to high arches - I severely over-pronate, the prescription of which were custom insoles. I had tried others (non-custom) without success in the past (in fact just the opposite), but these really did the trick - fixed problems I didn't even know I had.Your mileage may vary, but getting a professional opinion might help. A long day with a heavy pack though, sounds like the more appropriate cure is something stronger than insoles: advil, whiskey, etc... :D
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Sat Jun 11, 2011 8:51 pm

I've also used the Superfeet insoles from REI for my Vasque trail runners. I also bought a new pair afterward and used the standard insoles. (As with previous posters, I have high arches and am pronated.) The major difference for me was the snugness of fit which translated into less slippage within the shoe going downhill. On the flats, I really felt little difference. In my opinion, both the standard and the Superfeet insoles could benefit from more cushion for the ball of the foot.

I am not 100% sold on the Superfeet, but I am willing to give them another try. I come from a downhill skiing background and firmly believe a molded insole is the way to go. However, the insoles sold at REI seem to just be cashing in on the Superfeet name and not as useful as the old school heated-and-molded insoles I purchased years ago.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby rlown » Sat Jun 11, 2011 8:56 pm

only thing i'll add is that insoles don't last forever; molded or not. I'm about due for a new pair.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby gary c. » Sat Jun 11, 2011 9:39 pm

Thank you all for your replies, just what I was looking for. So far it sounds as if most of you that replace original insoles have problems such as high arches and use insoles for relief. I can also understand where they may need replacing as rlown mentions at some point. My Montrails have a fair amount of miles and may be reaching that point, I will look at them closer. In the past I have never felt the need to buy a pair but was wondering if I have been missing something.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby fishmonger » Sun Jun 12, 2011 6:26 am

I've never really had any issues with my feet, wearing anything from vintage 8 pound leather mountain boots to current lightweight boots like the la Sportiva Trango. I don't wear lighter footwear, so I don't know if insoles are more important once you give up on the ankle support.

I recently bought a barely used pair of Trango Evo Extreme boots that came with a pair of fancy insoles thrown in as a freebie - I tried both the standard soles and the "Ed Viesturs Signature Series" soles. I only did 2 days in each set of insoles, so not feeling any difference may really not be enough to tell, but to me the boots felt totally the same


I did the heat molding before using the custom soles, so they did fit me well (however, the molding of these is nothing at all like the effect you feel with liner boots in touring ski boots). They are not causing any problems, so I will keep using them this summer in my summer boots for an extended trip.

http://www.rei.com/product/721632/sole- ... igh-volume

I once used some gel insert soles and had to ditch them after a few days, but had not brought the stock soles - ended up losing a toe nail following that trip because the soles were just too fat for the boots I was wearing. I guess I learned my lesson not to try new stuff on my feet while in the backcountry and not have a proven backup solution in the pack. The Viesturs soles are not as fat as the gel soles were so they should do well on our 150 mile hike later this summer.

Would I spend $45 on insoles? Right now, based on just 2 days of testing, probably not.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby ChinMusic » Sun Jun 12, 2011 11:27 am

I like the SuperFeet insoles but can live without them too. If you do decide to get insoles like SuperFeet please do a couple dayhikes prior to a long trip. It took my feet a day or so to get used to the Superfeet. I don't think I was used to the support.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby quentinc » Tue Jun 14, 2011 5:07 pm

My main issue is arch support, and I find the Spenco arch support inserts to be much better than SuperFeet.
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Re: ? about insoles

Postby deej » Fri Jul 22, 2011 7:48 am

I know this is an old post, but just in case anyone's interested: I have plantar fascitis (sorry about the spelling) along with a heel spur and am pretty flat footed. I began with Superfeet a long time ago and they helped with my cramping arches. Nothing beat the orthodics I had made for me, though, but who wants to spend that kind of money. Recently, I tried a new one: I think they are called SOLE or something like that. Kind of wildly designed and sold at REI. I like them, as well. Am taking them with me to Mammoth for the weekend to test them out dayhiking long miles. Will probably opt for my custom pair when I head out on the trail next week, however. The SOLES just might be taking the edge on my SUPERFEET.
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