If the Shoe Fits

I’m having feet issues. A combination of genetics and decades of bad shoe choices have escalated into a diagnosis of flat feet and a need for orthotics.

Now, the word orthotics, in theory, should no longer strike fear in the hearts of people fated to wear the things. It used to be that foot problems meant orthopedic shoes, which were huge and lumpen and deformed, and were really not attractive. These days, those with foot problems fork over big cash for orthotic inserts that are not dissimilar to a plain old insole, except that they’re custom-made to fit your feet, have a whole lot more support along the arch and cost four or five hundred bucks.

Orthotic inserts were meant to solve the problem of ugly shoes, as they fit into most decently-made shoes, and no one would ever know you had uneven legs or were knock-kneed. Friends with orthotics have confirmed that they wear theirs in everything from Doc Martens to Fluevogs, just so long as the shoe has a removable footbed, decent heel support and a high level of shock absorption.

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