You are a basketball player and it was an important game you just won today which get your team through the next stage of the district or national tournament. You are proud of yourself, partying with your mates but suddenly feeling an itching pain in your arch. The first solution that comes to your mind to relieve this stinging pain is taking rest. But you have to play another important match the very next day and you don’t have much time for resting. Here’s where the lifesaver comes, The Insoles for basketball shoes.
Generally, basketball shoes don’t have extra cushioning like running or walking shoes have. The lack of cushioning can restrict you from jumping and making quick moves. Insoles provide enough padding to prevent injuries while landing after sky-high jumps. There are many types of insoles in the market right now for different purposes and for different type of feet with different fits. So as a basketball player I will share my experience and opinion on which basketball shoe inserts you should choose for yourself.
Quick recommendation on which is the best basketball insoles:
- List of Top 5 Best Basketball Shoe Inserts:
- 1) Powerstep Pinnacle Maxx – Best Insoles for Flat Feet Basketball Players
- 2) Sof sole ATHLETE Performance Insoles- Best Sports Insoles for Casual Use
- 3) Superfeet Black Premium Insoles- Best for Slim Basketball Shoe Inserts
- 4) Walk Hero Arch Support Orthotic Inserts- Basketball Shoes Insoles for Plantar Fasciitis
- 5) Shock Doctor Active- Insoles NBA Players Use
- Buying Guide – Best Insoles for Basketball Shoes
- Arch and Heel Support:
- Insole Thickness:
- Shock Absorption:
- Fit for Purpose:
- Size and Fit:
- Some Other Factors to Consider:
- Flexible and Lightweight
- Moisture Wicking and Odor Prevention
- Break-In Period
- My Verdict:
List of Top 5 Best Basketball Shoe Inserts:
Here is the list of basketball shoe insoles that I’m going to review after analyzing different factors:
- Powerstep Pinnacle Maxx
- Sof Sole ATHLETE Performance Insoles
- Superfeet Black Premium Insoles
- Walk Hero Arch Support Orthotic Inserts
- Shock Doctor Active
1) Powerstep Pinnacle Maxx – Best Insoles for Flat Feet Basketball Players
Powerstep Pinnacle Maxx is the pro version of Original Pinnacle, which is obvious as it offers more comfort and a deeper heel cup for maximum stability. The insole is full-length that ensures the protection of your foot from toe to heel. The arch support is neutral which is perfect for flat feet players.
Flat-footers usually face over-pronation while playing basketball or even during a walk. To provide better mid-foot support there is a two-degree medial post that decreases the inward tilting of your feet.
It also provides firm arch support with a slightly angled exterior heel platform. These features help in stabilizing and providing extra support to your heel while making quick movements.
It’s excellent cushioning in the insole base due to the double layer of EVA foam absorbing shock while landing after a sky-high jump.
According to some users, the fabric is not attached well enough with the insole base. But it’s not a deal-breaker as you can peel the detached portion of the insole fabric without being worried about cushioning system.
Basketball players or even any kind of sports athletes face bad smelling feet problems due to excess sweating. The fabric on the insole base is anti-microbial that prevents bad odor and keeps your feet dry throughout the game.
2) Sof sole ATHLETE Performance Insoles- Best Sports Insoles for Casual Use
As the name suggests, these insoles are not just for basketball players but can be used by other athletes as well. The comfort and support are perfect for most types of feet as it has neutral arch support and moderate heel cup.
Unlike rigid support of specialized insoles, these insoles are lightweight and flexible yet provide excellent support to your feet. There are gel pads in the heel and forefoot area that provides impact protection. Additional comfort comes from the Implus foam in the base.
This full-length insole is treated with a moisture-wicking hydrologic treatment that keeps away moisture from your feet. As it is not rigid like other specialized basketball support insoles, it can be used in day-to-day activities and does not require a break-in time period.
I prefer these insoles over those insoles having air bubbles like Sof Sole Airr Insole since the air bubbles worn out quickly compared to foam and gel cushions. Those who do not like the rigid support of specialized basketball insoles would love these insoles since it is flexible still provide stability and comfort.
3) Superfeet Black Premium Insoles- Best for Slim Basketball Shoe Inserts
Unlike most of the insoles that occupy more space in basketball shoes, Superfeet Black Premium Insoles take up less space yet provide adequate comfort to your feet. The arch support is more moderate as compared to other variants of Superfeet insoles due to its unique shape.
Your feet will experience less stress due to the reduced thickness of the insole. Due to this, you can use them without taking out the actual insole.
These insoles are suitable for almost all types of feet due to their versatility in the size. The base of the entire insole is made of high-density foam that provides comfort and reliability. You can trim off the forefoot area of the insoles easily as per your required size.
There is a reinforced stabilizer cap beneath the foam to provide extra structural support and durability to the rarefoot. Extra support and stability come from heel cups since they keep your heels in place and stable.
These insoles offer the perfect balance between performance and support. Due to its solid construction, these insoles are a bit higher in price as compared to others.
Walk hero arch support orthotic insert is the best deal for those flat footers who also suffer from plantar fasciitis. Its firm arch support helps in aligning your flat feet and your leg. Since basketball players suffering from plantar fasciitis do not require high arch support. So these orthotic inserts provide exact arch support for better stability.
Additional stability and comfort are provided by the deeper heel cup with inbuilt silicon material which also helps in fighting plantar fasciitis. It also prevents your feet from overpronation. These inserts are moisture-wicking and keep your feet dry.
The premium feel of these inserts is due to the EVA foam from which the insole base is made of. This feature offers the due cushioning and impact protection every time you land on your feet from a high jump.
These inserts come in 13 different sizes which means you do not have to trim your inserts anymore.
5) Shock Doctor Active- Insoles NBA Players Use
Shock Doctor Active inserts have a unique Adaptive Arch Technology that gives exact fit for almost any type of feet yet provides support to important areas. These inserts are best for regular basketball players since it features shock pads in heel and forefoot areas.
It features a Mid-foot Shock Dome that relaxes your feet and reduces impact protection. The full foot control bar reduces the chance of injuries and stress while running by aligning your foot.
Your toes are protected from injuries due to extra padding which also provides comfort. These inserts provide high arch support which is great for those who need excessive arch support.
I want to point out the overall fitting that might be odd due to extra cushioning. Other than that, this insert is the best amalgamation of stability and comfort.
Buying Guide – Best Insoles for Basketball Shoes
While purchasing basketball shoe insoles one must consider each of the following factors.
Arch and Heel Support:
No matter what the shape of your arch is or how intense you play basketball, everybody needs some level of arch support. Especially those with plantar fasciitis and flat feet need extra arch support.
Be mindful of which shape of arch support would suit you. You should get high arch support if you have high arches. While in the case of plantar fasciitis or flat feet, both neutral and moderate arch support would be best.
Also, the heel area must be supported and well-positioned which is possible with a deep heel cup.
Insole thickness is another fact to which you should pay attention. Thickness plays an important role in providing ample cushioning. It should provide padding and support while jumping, running, and making fancy moves during basketball.
Some insole models come with extra padding and support that can make them bulky. On the other hand, the lighter ones are not durable enough but fit easily in your basketball shoes. So it is totally up to you and your specific requirements.
The durability of shoe insoles varies greatly with the usage of the product. In my opinion, generally, the duration after which one should replace its insole is 3 months. But if you use shoe inserts in day-to-day activity, you may require early replacement.
You should be careful of the sudden break-up of the insoles while playing as it could be risky. I would suggest purchasing from known brands which can reduce the risk of insole breakage.
As I previously mentioned, your feet are prone to injuries due to continuous running and stress on your arches. These insoles are great that can take impact and provide support to your arches. No matter what type of game you play, hard or moderate, shock absorption is essential.
Some models provide extra cushioning that supports your arches on jumping. Also, it is beneficial for those suffering from plantar fasciitis.
Fit for Purpose:
Inserts made for athletic shoes are good to go but specialized basketball insoles are even better. These inserts are specially designed for fancy movements and the intense pace required for basketball. Specialized insoles for athletes can be used in daily use, however, generally used insoles cannot be used for basketball shoes. Because they won’t provide enough support.
There are custom made insoles are also available in the market if you have special orthotic conditions. They provide the exact support what you are looking for but might come with a bit higher price.
Size and Fit:
I would recommend looking at the feedback from customers regarding the size of insoles. It can help you in selecting the exact size as per your requirement. The right size of the insole is very important to provide accurate positioning of your foot along the contours of shoe inserts.
Also, consider the size and shape of the shoes to ensure that there is enough space for your foot. So your foot can rest comfortably inside the shoe after putting in the inserts.
For better comfort, remove the existing insole of your basketball shoes. It provides enough space for basketball shoe inserts without constricting your feet.
There are some trim-off insoles in the market. I would suggest you go with the ones that don’t require any adjustments. Full-length insoles provide better arch and heel support as compared to half-length inserts.
Some Other Factors to Consider:
Flexible and Lightweight
These two features of a basketball insole greatly affect your performance. Lighter insoles allow you to execute those thrilling moves in basketball without weighing you down. EVA and some other lightweight materials are being used in making lighter insoles.
Firm insoles can provide better support but they must be flexible enough to move freely with your feet movement.
Moisture Wicking and Odor Prevention
The basketball insole comes with moisture-wicking treatment and odor prevention material is desirable. If a pair of perfectly good insole is smelly, I would surely replace it with new ones.
The firm insoles require a longer break-in period than others. I would suggest do not wear new basketball insoles before the match. Start with wearing insoles for a few hours and then shift to full time.
Q1) Can you wear insoles while playing basketball?
You can wear athletic insoles or specialized orthotic insoles in your basketball shoes while playing basketball. Avoid wearing everyday inserts while playing basketball since they don’t provide enough support to your arches and heel. However, you can wear basketball specialized inserts or athletic inserts in everyday activities.
Q2) What insoles do pro basketball players use?
- Shock Doctor Active- Insoles NBA Players Use
- Powerstep Pinnacle Maxx – Best for Flat Feet
- Sof sole ATHLETE Performance Insoles- Best for Casual Use
- Superfeet Black Premium Insoles- Best Basketball Shoe Inserts
- Walk Hero Arch Support Orthotic Inserts- Best for Plantar Fasciitis
Q3) Can I play basketball with plantar fasciitis?
If you play with plantar fasciitis it will make your pain worse. It is recommended by physiotherapists to take a rest between games if you have plantar fasciitis to give rest to your arches and feet.
However, you can play basketball with plantar fasciitis since specialized orthotic inserts are now on the market. These inserts are light in weight and provide support and cushioning to your arches and ample.
Sof sole ATHLETE Performance Insoles is the perfect all-rounder as it is an amalgamation of durability, support, and comfort. The material of the insole base is moisture resisting which eventually prevents odor from developing. Extra cushioning and support to arches, ample, and heels are provided by gel pads in the forefoot and heel area.
Generally, basketball inserts are firm to provide support however do not provide comfort. This insert provides comfort as well as supports your feet and takes the impact while landing on feet after long jumps.