Are Orthotics Right For You?

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orthoticsOrthotics are commonly used by the running and non running population if an effort to reduce or prevent pain from the foot to the lower back. Orthotics vary in their composition and can be soft, semi rigid or rigid. Orthotics can be purchased over the counter at the San Diego Running Institute or an appointment can be made with Dr. Runco to make you a pair of flexible, custom orthotics.

The difference between over the counter orthotics like Superfeet and custom orthotics are numerous. Superfeet insoles are not made specifically for the runner or the condition they are trying to remedy. Superfeet are general arch supports that provide added stability for an unstable foot. Custom orthotics are custom made specifically for your feet and additional modifications are then made to them to correct your foots function. Typical modifications include, heel lifts, metatarsal pads, added heel cushioning, Morton’s extensions and more.

There is a misunderstanding by the lay public as to how orthotics work and is unfortunately perpetuated by companies, doctors and stores like Roadrunner Sports that seek to take advantage of the runner/consumer. Simply molding an insole to your foot is not helpful. If you had a dislocated knee and someone made you a custom knee mold how would that correct your knee? It wouldn’t. What makes an orthotic custom is how you modify the molded insole to correct the runners abnormal biomechanics. This is done by adding modifications to correct excessive pronation or supination and dropped or collapsed arches.

Orthotics are also not always the answer. Often by getting a proper shoe fitting and replacing old worn shoes corrects the problem. For others their training protocol needs to be modified. Others still may require a stretching and strengthening program. Before you start spending all kinds of time, effort and money on potentially useless over the counter or custom orthotics stop by the San Diego Running Institute.

Our team of running specialists can tell you if you are an orthotic candidate and if so steer you the right way and possibly saving you lots of wasted time and cash. If you have a specific running injury or condition that you know requires over the counter or custom orthotics our running specialists can provide you with more information on your condition and can refer you to Dr. Victor Runco. Dr. Runco is an ultrarunner and foot/ankle specialist. He has helped thousands of runners and non-runners with custom, flexible orthotics. If you prefer to just schedule an appointment with Dr. Runco call (858) 268-8525.

Find out more about our Custom Orthotics Services.

By | 2010-03-27T20:56:30+00:00 March 27th, 2010|Training|0 Comments

About the Author:

Dr. Runco is a U.S. Navy and Gulf War Veteran. He began private practice in 2000 primarily treating and fixing running injuries. He has been a professor of Anatomy, Physiology, and Biomechanics at various colleges and continues to teach continuing education in the fields of rehabilitation, custom orthotics and athletic taping. He is also a member of the American College of Sports Medicine, National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. He has completed over 15 Marathons in 15 states and has run 11 50 mile Ultramarathons.

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