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This is the second installment of our footwear comfort series. See the first article on boot selection here.
Ever sat around camp after a long day of hunting and listened
to your hunting partner brag about how great his feet feel and how awesome his
boots are? While he is carrying on you find yourself thinking, “What did I
miss? I went to the extreme. I selected the best boots money can buy. I even
had my feet measured, but they still hurt!” Read on as we reveal possible
Develop your own sock
A sock system is very
important to the protection and overall comfort of your feet. Quality sock
systems consist of a liner sock, next to your skin, with an outer sock worn
over top the liner. This dual-sock system enhances the comfort and fit of your
boots, while eliminating hot spots and blisters. However, the most advantageous
part of this system is the ability to adjust the thickness and weight of the
outer sock, according to the temperatures you encounter.
A good sock system will discourage hot spots while improving comfort.
Always be mindful of the blend of fibers in your sock system.
Quality liner socks, like Bridgedale socks, consist of Coolmax, Polypropylene,
and Lycra. Your outer socks, DarnTough and Bridgedale both make good ones, will
have a blended content of Merino Wool or New Wool with Polyethylene, Nylon
and/or Spandex. These blends help control moisture buildup and reduce shear
forces next to your skin. The result is a sock that stays put, dries faster in
the back country, and reduces the risk of hot spots and blisters, all while
Transform your fit
with aftermarket footbeds:
Consider upgrading your boots this year with medical-grade soft-polymer
footbeds. Hunters from around the world are realizing the benefits of
aftermarket footbeds over conventional off-the-shelf arch supports, but many
unwittingly get stuck with low-quality versions that don’t meet the basic
credentials of a good footbed.
Medical-grade soft polymer footbeds are game changers in hunting boot comfort.
A good footbed will not feel out of place in your shoe, and won’t
require a long “break-in” period. It will also provide a full-contact fit to
spread pressures equally along the surface of the foot, while providing the
right amount of support for any activity. Lastly, it should be built in a way
that keeps it from moving within your shoe.
Because we understand the impact of a hunter’s footwear on
his outdoors experience, we developed our own footbed to meet these needs. Our
digitally designed Lathrop and Sons Synergy footbeds are at the cutting-edge of
footbed design. Wearing Synergy footbeds will improve your level of performance and
leave you with noticeably less discomfort after a long day on the mountain.
Advanced design software enables custom-fit footbeds for perfect fit and comfort.
Using advanced design software, our soft polymer Synergy
footbeds are designed to completely change your shoe experience. Our footbeds
have the ability to completely transform the fit of any boot, providing you
with a full-contact fit and a custom feel. Unlike standard off-the-shelf
footbeds, which can take weeks to get used to or feel strange and out of place,
our Synergy footbeds can be custom fit specifically for you.
The Synergy footbed is designed with arched wings that
encompass your feet, reduce excess motion, and provide just the right amount of
support on and off the trail - with or without your pack. The characteristics
of the soft medical grade polymer lends itself perfectly to prevention of hot
spots and dreaded blisters. These footbeds are designed for everything, from long
brutal hikes to carrying out your trophy bull!
Do yourself a favor before you hit the mountain this year, evaluate
your socks. Did your feet fail last year? Did you fight blisters? Did you have
cold, damp, sweaty feet? Upgrade to a sock system that works.
Then evaluate your boot’s insoles. Are they flat, thin, flimsy
or compressed? Can you see or feel your foot imprint? These characteristics are
an indication that your factory footbeds need replaced with a quality soft-polymer
footbed, such as the L&S Synergy footbed.
Good luck out there this season! Stay comfortable and shoot
Stephen and James Lathrop are avid bowhunters who own and operate a specialized boot shop and foot orthotic laboratory in Illinois. They have helped numerous big game hunters, including several Hoyt employees, to relieve chronic foot and back issues, and prepare for hunting season, by providing recommendations and/or custom-fitted footwear.
For more information on the L&S Synergy footbed or to
outfit your boots for this season give one of our experts a call. We look
forward to helping you achieve the next level of comfort. (618) 544-8782