Runners often associate the word orthotics with inserts that can be purchased at a local convenience store. Though they might be somewhat related, shoe inserts have a vast spectrum of functionality far more advanced than just a squishy cushion.
While some inserts are just cushions placed in a shoe, custom orthotics
are specially designed to solve a specific problem. Whether you suffer from strains of the knee or sore spots on your feet, custom orthotics can dramatically improve your posture, your performance and the overall wellness of your feet.
Taking medicine before you'e sick?
Many people who get into running turn to over-the-counter options for orthotics before they even have a problem. Orthotics are not a protective measure. They are a corrective measure.
Running on orthotics without reason might do more harm than good. Why fix it if it's not broken?
Custom orthotics are made specifically to correct your running pattern, and knowing your running pattern is key before you seek the custom inserts.
The cure-all for running related injuries?
Some of the most common running injuries can be corrected with custom orthotics. Some of these injuries include:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Chronic blisters
- Shin splints
- Stress Fractures
- Runner's knee
Although there are ways to avoid these injuries, more often than not, you didn't plan to get hurt. Seeking a professional podiatrist or consulting an orthotic specialist is highly recommended as they can pinpoint the exact injury and how to cure the ailment.
What's the damage?
Over-the-counter inserts can start at only $10, but if you need a highly specialized, custom made insert, you can spend anywhere from $20 to $100. With such a price difference, why pay more money?
A half hour of reading running blogs will show that users would spend the additional money time and time again from the results they've seen. Running pain and injuries can last years without correction, so the decision to look into orthotics can have lasting results.
Running and exercise aren't always easy, but it can be far more comfortable and less painful if you take the necessary steps in preparing and finding proper orthotics to adjust for flaws in your stride or step.
Always take appropriate warm up precautions to avoid injury, and don't push yourself beyond what you are capable of. Work up to your goals.