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5 Benefits of Custom Orthotics for Athletes

When you think about athletes you may think about a pitcher’s throwing arm or a basketball player’s pivot moves. Every sport has a unique set of skills and techniques needed to excel, but no matter what sport they play, all athletes rely on optimum body alignment, which for most athletes begins and ends with their feet.

 The proper body biomechanics, including for the feet, are necessary for any athlete. That’s true whether you’re a runner powering out a kick or a pitcher needing to firmly plant your foot before releasing the ball. But if you have flat feet, high arches, a foot deformity, foot pain or heel pain, even walking or jogging can be a challenge. 

 The good news is that prescription shoe inserts -- called custom orthotics -- can get any athlete back in the game. Dr. Jarna Rathod-Bhatt and Dr. Rahul Bhatt, our skilled podiatrists at Apple Podiatry Group, count down these 5 benefits of custom orthotics for athletes. 

What are custom orthotics?

Before we get into the benefits, let’s talk a little bit about custom orthotics themselves. As the name suggests, custom orthotics are prescription, tailor-made shoe inserts. 

When it comes to podiatry, there are no cookie-cutter solutions. For instance, two people may have flat feet, but the condition manifests differently for each person depending on things like their weight, the shape of their foot, and their natural gait. 

The beauty of custom orthotics is they’re created to address the unique foot issues of an individual. At Apple Podiatry, we use state-of-the-art technology to scan your feet to calculate the most accurate measurements. This data is used to create a digital mold of your feet, which we send to the lab that fabricates your custom orthotics. 

So now let’s run through the benefits of custom orthotics.

#1 They’re personalized to address your unique needs

Since custom orthotics map out every contour of your feet, they can respond to any biomechanical issues, like the unique way you plant your foot when you walk or run. Custom orthotics are also dialed in for your weight and the shape of your foot, including conditions like high arches or flat feet

#2 They provide proper support

Another notable benefit of custom orthotics is that they provide optimal support for foot movement and maintain your body balance. 

Think back on the last time you wore the wrong footwear to do a simple activity like walking. Now imagine you are an athlete with high arches and a tendency for shin splints competing at a championship game. Proper support for athletic performance may mean the difference between scoring the winning touchdown and sitting on the sidelines. 

#3 They help prevent injuries

Each year, an estimated 8.6 million Americans suffer a sports-related injury. When you have pain from an injury, you tend to overcompensate and overuse the uninjured muscles or tendons. Your movement is less efficient, resulting in additional stress and strain on your muscles, joints, and spine. 

But custom orthotics are created to support your unique feet, so they keep your spine, hips, and knees in proper alignment as you move and play. This helps your body work like it’s supposed to, lessening your chance of injury.

#4 They realign your body

As we mentioned, custom orthotics helps the athlete with body alignment issues, which start in your feet. When you flex or collapse your arches to plant your feet, the action triggers a series of reactions starting from your feet and going to your ankles, knees, hips, and spine. 

If custom orthotics correct your foot issue, whether it’s flat feet or pronation when you walk, then your body is balanced. This allows your legs and hips to line up the way they’re supposed to, so there’s less strain on your spine.

#5 They enhance athletic performance

Since custom orthotics can address major barriers like injuries, pain, spinal alignment issues, biomechanical problems, and foot anomalies, they’re the ultimate secret weapon in any athlete’s toolbox, next to training and practice. Custom orthotics can not only help you meet the demands of your chosen sport, but also help you maximize your athletic performance.  

If you’re an athlete and want to learn how custom orthotics can help you, book a consultation right now by clicking the “request appointment” button. Or you can call one of our Apple Podiatry Group offices in Arlington or Irving, Texas, to schedule your appointment.

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