I’ve developed a case of Plantar Fasciitis in my left foot this summer, a painful repetition injury often caused by hiking or running that presents itself as chronic heel pain. The pain is caused by the inflammation of the ligament that connects your heel bone to the ball of your foot.
I’ve had Plantar Fasciitis before, about 9 years ago, and found that switching to a firmer insole, Superfeet Green, helped relieve the pain. But Superfeet Green are designed for use in higher volume shoes like my old leather hiking boots and not low volume trail runners like the La Sportiva Ultra Raptors that I’ve worn for hiking and backpacking the past few years.
I’ve tried other insoles since switching to trail runners, but I’ve found it difficult to find any that are thin enough to replace the factory insole that comes with my shoes. Until I tried Superfeet Carbon, at the advice of an EMS saleperson.
Superfeet Carbon insoles are thin enough to fit into my trail runners and provided instant relief for my heel pain. Enough that I tackled a 4500′ climb up the second highest mountain in New Hampshire, the following day, although I brought my old insoles along just in case.
Out of the box, you trim Superfeet Carbon insoles like any other insoles, placing the factory insole next to the replacement insole and cutting the extra material away from the forefoot area so that the two are the same size. Slip the replacement insoles into your shoes and that’s it.
What’s the difference between them and the old factory insoles? There’s a slightly higher arch at mid-foot and a more articulated heel cup, but otherwise it’s hard to tell the difference. The shoe volume feels the same and there’s plenty of room above my toes to move around.
If you suffer from Plantar Fasciitis, I recommend you get a pair of Superfeet Carbon Insoles if you have low volume hiking shoes, like trail runners, or Superfeet Green if you have larger volume hiking boots. They really do make a huge difference in your comfort and can help prevent a recurrence of Plantar Fasciitis if you’re prone to it.
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