By Jordana Bieze Foster
Personalized insoles created using additive manufacturing technology are associated with improved biomechanics and comfort during running, according to research from Loughborough University in the UK.
Investigators allocated 38 runners to a control group or a personalized insole group. Both groups wore identical running shoes. The personalized insoles were created from DuraForm polyamide using laser sintering, based on 3D scans of the plantar surface of the patient’s foot in a nonweightbearing position and 15 anthropometric measures. Runners in the control group wore insoles manufactured the same way but based on a scan of the original insole from the shoe.
Participants wore the insoles for three months. The personalized insole group reported less discomfort for overall fit and specifically for the heel region, although both groups reported similar levels of discomfort under the arch. Runners who wore the personalized insoles also demonstrated less ankle dorsiflexion at footstrike, maximum ankle eversion, and peak mean pressure under the heel than the control group. The findings were e-published on October 22 by the Journal of Sports Science.
Salles AS, Gyi DE. An evaluation of personalized insoles developed using additive manufacturing. J Sports Sci 2012 Oct 22. [Epub ahead of print.]