Shoe inserts, compared

I have learned about more types of shoe insert-soles lately and I’m gonna try them out.  This page will be updated periodically.

Superfeet GREEN:  I wore them on my 3-week AT hike.  Maybe I had a pair on the PCT.  They are rather “tall” so your shoes must be roomy.  More arch support than I need, I have very normal feet.

Superfeet Berry
:  I liked these and used 2 pair on my PCT thru-hike.  They are less

“tall” than the green and have a bit more cushion in the ball of the foot, which I need. Still there must be something better.

Montrail Enduro– for me, not great, they don’t seem fancy or have special cushiony

areas where you want them.  I don’t know why Erik the Black likes them, but he also wears shoes that totally do not work for me either.  Maybe if you’re young and pain-freethis works for you, but these inserts aren’t much better than the ones that come in your shoes IMHO.

Sole blue– these are what I am using right now.  They’re ok but I’m not excited.  I also

bought the wrong size.  My arch is more forward than “normal”
feet so I always buy a size or two up and trim down the toe area to fit my shoes.  One size up good.  Two sizes up bad.


Spenco Earthbound– recommended by hiker Rockin


Lynco L405 Sports Orthotic Insoles- 

recommended by hiker Wired  I ordered two pairs of these. In Jan 2013 I started using one pair in my hiking shoes.  First, I put them in my running shoes, but it felt way too weird to me.  So, I have been using them for hiking for a month and a half now.  Wired warned me that they feel very strange at first until you get used to them.  It’s very true.  The “bump” you can see in the photo doesn’t go directly under your metatarsal.  It sits beween the arch and metatarsal which feels strange.  Why it’s designed that way, who knows.  On my first use, a 6 mile hike on Atalaya, it’s a 3 mile uphill gain of 2,000′ then reverse down.  I felt comfortable with them halfway up the mountain.  It’s strange feeling, but I like the amount of cushion and the slight “float” the bump gives to my problem area- the metatarsal.  One thing to consider is they are rather thick/tall.  Comperable to the Superfeet green, plus the “bump”.  Again, I bought one size larger and trimmed the toe area, that’s what works best for my rather forward arch placement.

IMG_3328   IMG_3329

Dr. Schol’s  I saw a cool ad in Backpacker mag recently for some new sports insole by this brand that reduces shock by blah-blah percent and they look pretty good to me.  I will look into it.


About wanderingdot

Thru-hiking the PCT 2011, CT 2014, Ice Age Trail 2017 Artist/sculptor, professor, master fabricator
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2 Responses to Shoe inserts, compared

  1. Erin/Wired says:

    I keep meaning to comment. Careful on using those inserts if they are new to you…do a bit at a time over a week or so until your foot gets used to the lump on the bottom. It seems awkward at first, but it totally works and alleviates impact and pressure on the ball of your foot. Let me know what you think.

  2. wanderingdot says:

    Thanks, Wired! I’m ready to try new options. I got two pairs of these Lyncos. One for running shoes, one for hiking/showshoeing. I know theres something better than what I have been trying. I have rather normal feet– but I need more cushion under the ball of my foot- that’s where I get long-distance trouble!

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