Insert: An insert is any device which will fit into a shoe. This can be a soft, cushioned insole you find at the drug store for $10, or it can be a custom made orthotic costing a couple hundred dollars at your doctor’s office. Soft insoles are flexible and add comfort and cushion to a shoe. When you purchase a soft, flexible insole, you should know that they will not be providing support, only extra cushion.
Insole: An insole is actually the innersole or lining of the shoe. All shoes come with some type of insole. The insole may be thin and stitched into the shoe or thicker, cushioned and removeable. Insole has become a general term to describe inserts or arch supports.
Arch support is a general term to describe any device which slips into the shoe and supports the arch. Placing something under the arch may add comfort or support and sometimes simple arch supports or pads from the drug store will do the trick. I
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