eSoles Review

Reviews & Tech

12/21/2008| 0 comments
by Dave Osborne

eSoles Review

We review eSoles.

We review eSoles.

After discovering eSoles at Interbike, I knew I had to give them a try.  Age, injuries, and activity affect our feet according to eSoles. The arches in our feet change and eSoles can realign the foot and the rest of the body.

It starts with the scanning process. A 3D image is taken of both feet and the foot bed is further customized according to the brand and model of you’re cycling shoe. There are interchangeable arch supports and metatarsal pads for additional customization and comfort. The color coded arch supports increase in height by 4 mm. The staff at eSoles can review your scan that’s on file and recommend what arch support and metatarsal pad to try.

Off I went on my ride with the eSole footbed in my right shoe. I should explain they do come in pairs but I figured I would see how the eSole compared to a standard footbed. The first sensation I felt was in my arch. It wasn’t bothersome but the contact from the support against my arch was obvious. I thought the plastic arch piece would be too rigid and hurt during my ride. Thankfully, it is flexible and there wasn’t any excessive pressure. A few minutes later, and I didn’t notice it anymore.

The other noticeable sensation was from the metatarsal pad. The extra support here was the most significant change in comfort for me. I have a tendency to curl my toes while riding and often get a cramping sensation on the outside edge of my foot. The pad had the right amount of cushioning without being bulky. It simply felt good. I knew I was still curling my toes but the metatarsal pad seemed to reduce the tension.

After a half hour of riding, I wished I would have brought the other footbed. I was developing hot spots and a cramping feeling in my left foot. The difference of support and comfort between my feet was becoming obvious. Again, the biggest distinction for me was in the ball of my foot with the metatarsal pad making a significant difference in comfort. Terry “the tech guy” Dawson from eSoles later explained to me the metatarsal pad helps to spread out the bones and avoid compression. This reduces numbness and hot spots. I can’t argue with him there. It definitely worked for me.

I have purchased footbeds from shoe stores in the past and something about them was never right. They were either too wide, too long, or too thick. If I found one that was comfortable, it would be too thick and reduce the room in the toebox. If I wanted to keep using it, I had to consider changing my shoe size. The eSoles did not have this tendency. I was warned about the eSoles leaving my cycling shoes and ending up in pair of runners or casuals because of the support and cushion. Well, I did just that and even used them in my racquetball shoes. Here’s the downside. Cycling specific eSoles are not designed for impact.

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