ARCH SUPPORT: ESOLES vs G8′S (and SuperFeet)

by on January 28, 2013
Last updated: May 25, 2013

In terms of cycling foot correction, quality arch support trumps everything else. Wedging and shimming should be attempted as necessary after quality arch support is in place. For more about this, please see Foot Correction Part 1: Arch Support.There is plenty of detail in this post which was written some time ago, though it has been updated. At one time or another I’ve tried most of the arch support options out there and have settled on the Esoles Supportive, G8′s and very occasionally, SuperFeet as my preferences. The aim of this post is to succinctly explain the differences between them so that anyone intending using them can make an informed decision.

G8 2600

Pros:

  • 4 interchangeable arch inserts that clip in securely and deform under load to maintain contact with the arch while minimising  the chance of pressure hot spots developing in the arch.
  • Adjustable placement potential for arch inserts, fore and aft, and to a lesser extent, laterally.
  • Arch fixing system exceptionally secure
  • Rigid rear foot support underneath.
  • 4 sizes – Small: 37 – 40 / Medium: 41 – 43 / Large 44 – 46 / X Large 47 – 49 all with cut lines on the bottom to trim to fit. 4 sizes doesn’t sound a lot but the movable arch support inserts allow a range of customisation within any size that gives them the ability to reduce the number of sizes
  • Exceptionally durable
  • Reasonably low profile and thinner in the forefoot.
  • I’ve included this ‘Pro’ provisionally only. A range of metatarsal pads, posts, and a higher high arch option is coming (no firm ETA yet). The high arch kit option has missed several ETA’s so far (High Arch inserts now in standard package) and while I know it will arrive eventually, it is this previous experience that prevents me stating an ETA for the posts and mtp pads.

Cons:

  • Highest arch option (30mm) not as effective as the eSole black insert. It is more or less equivalent in effect to Esole second highest (Blue) insert. Until high arch kit arrives, not really suitable for those with really high arches. STOP PRESS 5.4.13: All G8′s that we now ship come with high arch inserts (34mm) which are equivalent to eSoles black arch insert in addition to the other arch options.

eSoles Supportives

Pros:

  • 14 sizes in single size increments from 36/36.5 to 49/49.5
  • The highest arch insert, Black, is the most suitable I’ve found for those with high to very high arches.
  • Arch inserts deform in a controlled manner under load to maintain arch contact
  • Relatively inexpensive for what they offer
  • Standard built in MTP pad can be cut out and replaced with one of 2 higher options included in the kit.
  • Durable relative to cost
  • Cater to the widest range of feet.
  • Reasonably low profile in forefoot

Cons:

  • No rigid rear foot support.
  • Velcro attachment points for arches is reasonably secure but not as secure as G8′s system.

SuperFeet

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • Durable
  • Terrific rear foot support (SuperFeet Green)
  • Low profile (SuperFeet Black)
  • Infinitely better than most standard cycling shoe insoles.

Cons:

  • Fixed arch heights really only suit low arch feet.
  • Not enough arch support for flat feet.
  • Green takes up a lot of space in shoe. For some with poorly fitting shoes, this is a plus.

Note: Often, more specific answers to your questions can be found in the Comments below or in the eBooks section and FAQ page.

To learn more about bike fit products offered by Steve, click here.

Do you have a bike fit success story? Please go here to share.

Thank you for reading, return to the Blog page here or please comment below.

Find more like this: Bike Fit, Feet

Comments are closed for most posts not part of the subscription blog. If you have a question or comment, Prime members can use the Prime Q&A.

2 Responses to ARCH SUPPORT: ESOLES vs G8′S (and SuperFeet)

  • Paul Nielsen-Mazewski says:

    Hi
    Thanks for this honest analysis, though wonder if you have ever come across these:
    http://www.solestar.com/

    I have them and while I’ve not used any of the others mentioned here I find the Solestar amazing, even magical.

    Thanks
    Paul

    • Steve Hogg says:

      G’day Paul,
      I’ve only seen 3 or 4 pairs of Solestars. They’re very expensive here, around $300 which explains their rarity. The interesting thing from my point of view with Solestar, is that they build up the outside of the forefoot of the insole which is contrary to my experience of what most people need. Of the pairs I’ve seen, I replaced all but one and modified the one that I didn’t replace. It’s hard for me to have a strong opinion though, based on such a small sample.