Foot supports are typically used to deal with a variety of biomechanical disorders of the feet and lower leg. These foot orthotics are inserts which are worn in the footwear to attempt to change alignment of the feet in such a way that they help conditions in the foot and leg. These complaints vary from, for example, plantar fasciitis in the heel to shin splints that may happen in the legs of athletes. All the research evidence shows that the clinical outcomes with foot inserts are likely to be good and most people that have foot orthotics are satisfied with them. However, foot orthoses can only ever be worthwhile if you actually use them. You do need to have correct footwear to use them in and use them for long enough for the disorder they were prescribed for to get better.
Among the issues with foot orthotics is that you need to use them in footwear. This can be a issue if you do not like using footwear or live in a hot environment where the wearing of footwear is difficult. In these climates people like using jandals (called ‘thongs’ in Australia) which you can simply not use with a foot supports. There are several alternatives that are offered. Among those is to reduce the time that you’re not wearing the foot orthoses, so that you wear footwear with the foot orthotics for long enough and do not wear the flip flops too much so that the painful problem does not occur. An alternative is to use things like the arch support sandals or jandals like the Archie Thongs from Australia. These have some arch support included in them and may typically be used as opposed to foot orthotics. Footwear such as the Archies will most likely not be as good as an adequately made foot supports, but they could be more than sufficient to supplement them and use when the proper footwear can’t or will not be worn.