23 Apr

Insoles Manufacturing: Sculpted Support

Insoles Manufacturing: Sculpted Support Insoles Manufacturing: Sculpted Support Insoles Manufacturing: Sculpted Support
 
Digitally Sculpted
Techniques for creating insoles have evolved significantly as processes improve and new machinery is produced. We use the latest CAD/CAM technology when producing a large proportion of our insoles, as it ensures unparalleled accuracy and repeatability. However, before this process begins, the insoles must be digitally sculpted using footwear software by the team. They will then input additional extras prescribed by the orthotist, such as pads and posts for the purpose of tilting flat feet, or offloading the front of the foot.

Once these digital molds have been created, they are sent to the milling room to be precisely milled by the CAD/CAM machines on the appropriate material. By creating a digital graphic for each patient this can be stored for future use, to ensure new devices can be replicated accurately.

Refined Techniques
An alternative method to CAD/CAM milling is used when the technicians craft flat-bed insoles straight from an orthotist’s measurements and prescription, cutting them out by hand from a base material. All insoles then undergo the process of having prescribed features added to assist with orthotic requirements; such as encouraging optimal joint motion, or offloading high-pressure areas in the foot. Technicians will glue on elements such as met bars and valgus pads, before adding a top cover. This top cover will often be selected according to patient requirements, as there are a variety of material options for different prescriptions and then layered as instructed. Some top cover materials feature antibacterial properties to prevent infection, bamboo for reinforcement, or lightweight materials designed to absorb shock whilst retaining its shape.
To finish the product, the edges of the insoles are then ground down meticulously to exact measurements and smoothed out, to ensure they sit snugly within the footwear and do not irritate the feet. Sections that need to be carved out are removed at this point, requiring expert skill and judgement.

Collaborative Devices
The Steeper insoles team work closely in collaboration with the made-to-measure footwear team, as frequently orthotists use total contact insoles alongside orthopaedic footwear to distribute load and reduce pressure on vulnerable areas of the foot. As the interface between footwear and foot, the right insole can ensure the best possible clinical outcome. Steeper’s ability to manufacture footwear and insoles together ensures that devices complement one another and work in conjunction.

As the functions of insoles continue to evolve, our manufacturing processes are constantly developing to reflect this, using age-old techniques combined with innovative machinery to continue to supply reliable orthotic devices and provide ongoing support for our patients.

For more information on our bespoke insole solutions or to send your enquiry to us, please contact: 
orthoticenquiries@steepergroup.com