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on February 18, 2013
An ex-football player past his prime (6'3", 360 lbs, size 13D, medium arch), I was recently diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. My orthopedist recommended daily stretching exercises and Orthoheel slippers to wear indoors (no more walking around in socks). What a difference! The slippers and exercises lessened my symptoms from the start and, over time, eliminated most of my discomfort, so I decided to find some orthotic inserts to improve my street shoes.

So far, I've tested:
1. Dr. Scholl's Massaging Gel Extra Support
2. Aetrex Copper Medium Arch
3. Spenco Polysorb Total Support
4. Superfeet Copper DMP
5. Powerstep Pinnacle
6. Powerstep Pinnacle Pro

each for two hours' total walking time over a few days in two pairs of my favorite shoes: New Balance 606 hikers and Cole Haan loafers with Nike Air.

Dr. Scholl's Massaging Gel Extra Support: Advertised for big & tall men, they didn't do much for me. While the extra cushioning helped at first, it helped less and less the longer I walked on them. I mentioned this to my orthopod and he told me the key to managing PF is not cushioning, it's support. Grade: D

Spenco Polysorb Total Support: Remembering my doc's advice, I chose these for the rigid heel cup and arch support. Though quite comfortable overall, the arch support was a bit too low for my medium-high arches and the heel cup was insufficient support for weight. While they worked reasonably well for me, I believe they would a be better choice for lighter individuals with lower arches. Grade: B

Aetrex Copper Medium Arch: Promising better arch support, these felt very similar to the Spenco insoles even after walking around the block. I then swapped one of the Aetrex insoles for one of the Spenco insoles and walked around again. Only then could I tell them apart. The Spenco offered a little better support for the mid- and fore-parts of my foot, the Aetrex offered a little better support for my arch. Grade: B

Superfeet: I was in an Allen Edmonds store and noticed the Superfeet insoles. The clerk said many men my size have good success with them. I tried the Orange and the Copper DMP versions in the store. Finding the Orange too high for my arches, I got a pair of the Copper DMP. These are easily the most rigid of the insoles I've tried...and easily the best. Superfeet arch support sits farther back on the insole than other brands. This made a real difference in the support and comfort I felt walking long distances. I also found the medial post support in the heel did a better job than other insoles in combatting over-pronation. Grade: A [Update: I have since tried Superfeet Black in dress shoes that couldn't accommodate the Orange insole. They work well but are not as supportive as the Copper.]

Powerstep Pinnacle: While it seems well-made and offered good support, it simply did not work for me. The gel-based arch support sits too far forward and in the middle of the insole. The insoles felt like I had lumps of clay underfoot. After a few blocks of brisk walking, my feet began to fatigue as if I were walking barefoot in sand. Again, these may work for some people but they didn't for me. Grade: C

Powerstep Pinnacle Pro: Other wearers commented that the Pinnacle Pro differs markedly from the Pinnacle, so I tried a pair. I barely made it a block before heading back home. Though more rigid than the Pinnacle and with a better heel cup, the Pinnacle Pro was too inflexible through the arch and ball of my foot. These were the only insoles I tried that truly caused me pain. Of course, it could just be the contours of my feet, and for others the Pinnacle Pro might be great. Grade: F
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on July 24, 2017
bought these for my bates boots (12) and didn't need to trim them at all. I walk about 5 miles (usually a bit more) every day in these boots. Not only have these removed my heel pain, they also have absorbed any odor there might be. I suspect I'll have to replace them every 6 months or so, but that isn't a criticism.

Overall, worth the price and comfortable for boots.

Update 12/6/2017: These are still going strong. I don't have sweaty feet generally, but these are still keeping any odor eliminated. This is important because my boots don't breath well (waterproof). Also, the fabric hasn't begun to wear / peel / decay. In the past the toe area has worn out in other brands. Still sticking with 5 stars!
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Knee specialists seem to be recommending adding a soft cushion to your step to avoid wearing down the soft cartilage in your knees. I decided to give this a try and I like it a lot. The bridge is a bit too far up for my foot size (9) but I still use them and find they make a difference in how my legs/knees feel come the end of the day.

*I wouldn't wear these to work out in for anything heavy. If you're looking to treat a particular condition I would consult a specialist and find out where your specific needs are (and probably have some custom created for you)
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on December 4, 2012
These insoles have been fairly good. I feel like they may rest on the slightly expensive side for what they are, but since they are still holding up after a few months, I'd say they are probably worth it.

Wearing a 13-shoe size, I trimmed down the toe area with a pair of scissors. I appreciated the built-in "cut lines" that Dr. Scholl's had so I got an even cut on both soles.

The arch support is a little hard - and it is possible that this is by design - but it sticks out as one uncomfortable feature. The sole is basically made up of areas of gel (like the heel), the pad itself, and the yellow plastic supports you can see in the photo. In the arch area, specifically on the inside of the foot, I feel like there isn't enough pad and it can be a little hard. If you wear flatter shoes like I do, you will immediately notice the discomfort in the inside arch of your foot.

Again, this is perhaps by design. I am not a foot doctor nor do I pretend to understand what is best for my feet. I will say, after a day or two of wearing these, I no longer notice any discomfort or hard places on the sole. I guess I have become used to it.

I will say, overall, these are good insoles. They have held up well, fit well (they don't come out of my shoe when I remove my foot, they stay put), and I can still tell they are in after a few months of usage.
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on February 8, 2014
Given its price range, I believe this product was intended to provide "basic" cushioning & support to your heel... In my opinion, these are fine if you do limited walking (less than an hour a day)... another advantage is that they don't really stink with feet odor..

That said, I do believe that it can be improved (keeping my needs in mind) in the following ways (some of these may cause the price to rise but I would be ok with that):

1. The plastic arch support is too rigid: I felt this hindered the natural bending of my foot as I walked... this may be a design issue or maybe coz I have low arches...

2. Slim it down!!: I do not need toe support at all...I only need heel support... so i would be ok if the complete this was made a little slimmer... the biggest advantage being that I would not have to force my feet down my shoes anymore because of the room that these insoles eat up.. also, if i put these in formal leather shoes, the shoes don't really "feel" completely tied to my foot... i keep getting the feeling that if i yanked my foot too abruptly my shoe would fly off...

3. be more flexible... this is similar to point 1 above but worth mentioning..
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on April 10, 2017
I'm 6'2" and 310lbs. These are great inserts and gave them in all my dress shoes and boots.
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on March 23, 2017
Absolute waste of money. For what they are charging this does not measure up at all. The heel is the only part with any cushion at all and it has no 'cushy' feel at all, more stiff like you got something in your shoe. The rest of the thing is absolutely paper thin and provides no cushion or comfort whatsoever. If this were 3 or 4 bucks it'd be just 'okay' but at this price point no excuse for it.
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on September 6, 2014
The problem with these is that they are universal. Since they are good for a range of size 8-14, if you have smaller feet you may not want to get these. I wear size 9.5 in mens and the problem that I found is that they put the arch support way too far forward and too long. I got them to work by cutting the heel back. I would recommend you put your foot on them outside the shoe with the arch being in the most comfortable position, then trace the outline of your foot onto the pad. Then cut them down. I wish they made smaller size ranges so that the arch support problem wouldn't be an issue but for me it was. Even after I cut the heel down, I found that the arch was still too long. It may work for others but it didn't work for me.
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on September 3, 2013
Insoles of course vary from person to person because we all have different feet. Knowing that, take my review with a grain of salt.

I have tried several other types and brands of insole, most recently the Orthaheel brand, and these relieve and/or prevent my foot pain more than any other. I suffer from Achilles Tendonitis with a side of Plantar Fasciitis. I like these insoles because they provide the extra arch support I need, and are wide enough in the larger size I buy to work well with my wide feet (my only complaint about the Orthaheels was, while they seem to actually be a better-made product -more sturdy that is- they were too narrow for me and the arch support was in the middle of my foot).

They wear out "quickly" (depending on your definition), so I have to buy a new pair every 3-4 months. At this price however, that's not a big deal to me, given the relief they provide.
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on August 19, 2016
It's a little bit thinner than I was expecting. I tried buying the gel inserts at Walmart but, the 13's they had there were to small. I decided to buy on-line for an insert that went up to a 14 and was (hopefully) a little wider. I can wear a 13 or 14 shoe, depends on the maker. However, most 13 gel inserts that you pick up at local stores don't fit 13/14 shoes well. These do fit my shoes much better. My only complaint would be their thinness. The orange piece you see in the stock photo is actually a hard plastic with a bit of arch support built into it. Next time i purchase I'm going to look for a piece that's solid gel. These multi-piece type inserts typically fall apart on me after moderate use.
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