Do Custom Orthotics Make a Difference for Athletes?

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Custom orthotics are used to help people with a multitude of foot & ankle problem, which help to make everyday activities that much easier and healthier.  But what about athletes?

Most sports requires some type of specialized shoe, whether they are cleats for soccer, ice skates for hockey or running shoes for….well, running!  Most of the shoes on the market that are designed for specific sports often offer a modified support to deal with the type of activity and how it affects the feet.  As these are being mass-produced, the support that is built in is generic based on the common needs of everyone.

If you are a serious athlete, whether still in school or as an adult participating at an amateur level, you can do better.  Professional athletes have the financial ability, usually covered by their team, to have custom-made shoes for their individual needs and foot structure.  For non-professional athletes, short of laying out a lot of money, the option most go with are commercial orthotic devices that can be purchased at the local grocery store or CVS.  This is where custom orthotics come into play.

Custom orthotics are inserts that are fabricated using a cast of your feet, creating a mold that follows the contours of your feet from heel to toe.  From this mold the orthotics is crafted so that it will easily slip into whatever shoes you will be wearing whether you’re working or participating in sports. Custom orthotics provides better support, helping you to maintain the best possible posture and balance. Beyond the performance aspect of custom orthotics, another benefit is that by helping athletes reduce the likelihood of injuries to the feet, legs and back that can be influenced by the way you walk and run. The graphic below offers just a few of these injuries that can be avoided or alleviated through the use of custom orthotics:

While still expensive, most insurance plans will cover the cost of a pair of orthotics with the patient paying a much smaller cost. If paying completely out of pocket, patients should expect to pay a larger cost but depending on where you get your custom orthotics made can dictate the price.

Country Foot Care can help athletes and anyone looking to build a healthy body on a strong foundation of healthy feet.  Along with custom orthotics, we have a wide variety of specialty footwear for work and play available through our onsite Medical Shoe Store in our Mineola, NY office.  Additionally, we have a licensed pedorthist on staff if you need to have custom shoes made.

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