The Critical Link Between Insole Design and Foot Health
Certain jobs and lifestyles require people to be on their feet for hours at a time, but there’s nothing more detrimental to work performance or general enjoyment like sore, achy feet. So what’s the best insole for standing all day, and how does the right insole help alleviate common foot issues?
The Role of Insoles in Supporting Long Days on the Job
Careers in medicine, hospitality, and emergency services are only a few examples of jobs that require a lot of standing and demanding work that puts stress on the feet. Proper insoles can help prevent foot health issues that are often the result of wearing non-supportive footwear that don’t adequately cushion the foot or absorb damaging impact and shock.
Although standing and walking may not be the same caliber of intensity as higher-impact activities like running or hiking, all-day movement puts pressure on the feet in different ways and for longer periods of time. Even with performance footwear designed for movement, the insole adds a critical layer of support for those long, demanding days.
What’s the Best Insole for Standing All Day?
We’ve discussed in the past how there are ideal insoles for different types of shoes. Sports shoes can be enhanced by insoles that account for the biomechanics of a particular activity, such as pressure points, oxygen consumption, muscle responses, and underfoot stability.
For walking and standing all day, the best insole will similarly take into account the impact of repetitive movement and extended pressure on the foot. INSITE insoles are backed by data and biomechanical testing that takes these factors into account to develop an insole that can add support in the right places for all-day activity.
The key features of an insole built for supporting long work days include:
- Arch Support.
Extended periods of walking or standing require just as much arch support as any other activity. Proper arch support is a major factor in preventing foot injuries and issues like plantar fasciitis, and because everyone’s foot arch is different, the best insole for standing all day will accommodate the wearer’s unique arch shape.
Poured PU foams can be molded to deliver the arch support your customers need. Individuals with flat feet can aggravate their low arches with continuous overpronation, so an insole with a bit higher arch support can prevent overpronation and consequential discomfort. For those with higher arches, less arch support is needed but insoles must distribute weight evenly across the foot to prevent serious conditions like achilles tendonitis.
A highly-breathable insole, such as one made using open-cell PU, provides greater comfort for long periods of time when wearers are moving quickly and creating the potential for sweaty or damp environments in their footwear. A dual density insole can combine poured and open-cell PU to deliver strong support and breathability – the best of both worlds.
- Energy Return.
Impact protection is paramount for long days on the job, as it helps keep the feet comfortable during repetitive movement. Coupled with a lightweight construction and compression set, the best insoles for standing all day can take on every foot strike and absorb damaging shock and impact.
- Electrostatic Dissipation.
Electrostatic dissipating (ESD) insoles work with ESD footwear to minimize the amount of static that can build up on the body during movement, which is important for reducing the risk of electric discharge or other potential hazards, such as electric shock. For individuals who work on or around sensitive electronic components, this overall footwear feature is essential for workplace safety.
Overall Foot Health is Part Insole, Part Footwear
Preventing foot injuries and conditions is a combination of wearing the proper footwear, having the right insole, and following best practices, such as taking breaks and avoiding hard, flat, unsupportive footwear like sandals and flip flops. Even if a foot injury doesn’t arise, individuals can often experience pain in other ways, such as in the knees and hips, as a result of poor footwear and insole support.
Footwear customers have long had to manage their own insole purchases, and only if they recognize they need additional support. By including insoles that provide the right level of comfort, performance, and support for the majority of wearers directly into your footwear, you’re elevating their experience with your brand and promoting foot health at the same time.
Every customer has biomechanical differences, such as arch height, gait, and forefoot placement, etc., but the best insoles for standing all day address those nuances in movement and provide the right amount of comfort, performance, and support all in one.
INSITE Contoura insoles are our recommendation for footwear designed to support individuals who stand all day or are constantly on the move. Because Contoura insoles are designed using data from more than 120,000 3D foot scans, the footbed accommodates the different foot types we detailed above and comfortably fits 85% of wearers. Our Scientific Advisory Board provides input on our ergonomic designs, ensuring our insoles fit the foot’s natural shape and movement.
Consumers will appreciate not having to get a special insole or consulting a podiatrist just to wear the shoes they purchased.
Standing and walking all day puts a lot of pressure on the feet, even with the right shoes. Footwear brands should help customers practice better foot health by using insoles that support the way they move.
An ergonomic design, built-in arch support, and ideal levels of comfort and support for the way the body moves all day long makes your customers’ experiences with your footwear all the more enjoyable – and won’t require them to make a special trip to their local insole provider.