Whether you’re a soldier, hiker, law-enforcement officer or just enjoy wearing military boots, you need them to be ultra-comfortable.
No matter if you’re walking, running or just staying on your toes for hours, feet that are screaming in pain will impair your performance, which can be dangerous in fast-paced situations.
So, what’s the answer?
Research shows that insoles reduce injuries and stress on the feet of those undergoing military training.
With this in mind, why not level-up your comfort with these best insoles for military boots:
But first, let’s look at some features of the best combat boots insoles so you can narrow down your options.
What Should You Look for in the Best Insoles for Military Boots?
You want your insoles to provide comfort and support to your feet. Depending on if you walk 10 miles a day in a desert or mostly take strolls on paved roads, this will mean different things.
Insoles provide arch support in rigid or semi-rigid support platforms. These are also called orthotic insoles.
Rigid ones control motion in your two larger foot joints located directly below your ankle joint. These can even help change foot function and improve aches and strains in your feet, legs or lower back.
Rigid insoles are mainly used for people with diagnosed foot diseases or issues, not for the general comfort-seeking military-boot wearer, so there aren’t any on our list.
Semi-rigid insoles combine cushioned materials with rigid ones. They absorb shock for those who put a lot of pressure on their joints due to intense exercise and provide greater foot balance. They’re also good for in- or out-toeing disorders. On our list, the Walk Hero Plantar Fasciitis Insoles are semi-rigid.
Soft insoles aren’t called orthotic inserts since they don’t have much arch support. They’re designed to be shock-absorbing and take the pressure off spots that tend to get sore. They typically have soft cushioning material and are primarily protective, not controlling.
The type of socks you wear can also increase the support and comfort of your feet. To learn more, read our article on the best military boot socks!
The heel is the largest bone in the foot, and it endures a lot of impact from walking and other forms of physical activity. It supports your body weight as soon as you’re on your feet.
To help prevent or treat heel pain, the best insoles for military boots should provide heel support. These should help hold the foot in the correct position. By raising the heel, for example, you put less strain on the tendon. One insole that does this is the Happystep Orthotics Memory Foam Insoles.
Sweaty feet are a common enemy among most people, not to mention for soldiers doing their service in hot desert environments.
To avoid this sweat and improve breathability, your military boots’ insoles should consist of breathable materials with wicking properties, such as polyurethane, or have vents that allow airflow. Dr. Scholl’s Work Insoles (Pack 2) have cooling vents.
Foot sweat can also lead to foul smells, and if you’re unlucky, fungal infections. To prevent this, your insoles should also have antimicrobial features or materials, such as the Powerstep Pinnacle Orthotic Insoles do.
Manufacturers make insoles mostly of either foam, gel or leather, or a combination of these.
Foam insoles give great cushioning, which is probably their biggest benefit.
There are differences between memory foam and regular foam, namely that the memory type molds itself around your foot’s shape. In contrast, regular foam is typically semi-rigid. Because of this, memory foam helps to keep your feet more stable, and it’s unlikely that you’ll slip with these inside your shoes.
Memory foam inserts consist of polyurethane, are very lightweight and won’t feel bulky. To learn more about insoles made from this material, check out our article on the best memory foam insoles in 2021!
Note that foam has high density; however, this makes them less breathable. Without proper ventilation, this could lead to sweaty, smelly feet and perhaps even bacterial infections.
They’re also not the most durable types of inserts on the market, so keep this in mind if you’ll be away on military service for extended periods.
Gel insoles are superior at shock absorption since they’re more dense and durable than foam types. So, these will help protect your joints if you frequently engage in high-intensity activities in your military boots.
Another benefit is that they redistribute pressure from your weight more evenly across your feet instead of concentrating on a few spots. They’re also long-lasting compared to ones made from foam.
But, they tend to be heavier than their foam counterparts and can weigh down your shoe a little bit. Without proper airflow, they can also cause sweaty feet and might cause your foot to slip around inside your shoe.
Insoles made from leather have superior breathability compared to synthetic materials. This means that they prevent sweaty, smelling feet as well as stop them from slipping around inside your shoes. They also have pretty good cushioning.
However, leather insoles tend to be less supportive than other types and are often rather bulky inside the shoes.
Research has proven that insoles that combine polyurethane (memory) foam with gel are the most effective in reducing pressure on soles, making them the best insoles for military boots.
If you stand on your feet all day or need to run through forests during your training, this will help prevent foot pain. A good example of this is the Powerstep Pinnacle Orthotic Insoles, which are a mix of foam and gel.
As for measurements, you should buy a pair of insoles that are about the same size as your boots. Keep in mind that you can usually trim inserts that are too big, but it’s more difficult to make small ones larger.
Reviews of the Top 5 Military Boots Insoles for 2021
Ready for the fun part? Let’s review the best insoles for military boots on the market.
Made from both EVA foam and a gel heel, these combination insoles provide cushioning and absorb shocks from your heels. This material combination is also the most effective in terms of reducing pressure on the soles.
With a semi-rigid support platform, buyers report that they hold their feet in place throughout the day, and it has a high arch that further helps with support. If you have flat feet, these could balance the pressure from your weight.
Smelly feet are never pleasant, and a great touch with these inserts is that they have an antimicrobial top fabric that prevents this. Not only does this fabric combat foul odors, but it also keeps the feet free from blisters with its friction and heat-reducing features. In short, these are great for military boots in hot climates.
Another plus is that the Powerstep Pinnacles will last you for a long time—about six months to a year if used regularly, according to reviewers.
But, even the sun has its spots. Some users experience a bit of sliding in their shoes when wearing these insoles. Others complain that the fabric covering the foam and gel loosens rather quickly. However, you can easily fix this with some glue.
- Cushioning and shock-absorbing.
- Reduces pressure on your feet.
- Great arch support.
- Antimicrobial and anti-friction top fabric.
- Suited for hot environments.
- Can slide a bit inside the boots.
- Top fabric isn’t durable.
Dr. Scholl is a well-renowned brand when it comes to quality insoles. These gel-based ones reportedly reduce fatigue in your muscles, according to Dr. Scholl.
Users agree and state that they absorb shock and foot blows, so your feet will recover quickly and be ready for the next foot strike in no time. This makes them great to use for military personnel that frequently perform high-intensity activities. This combines well with the cooling vents for added breathability and reinforced arch support.
Dr. Scholl makes these inserts specifically for people who stand on their feet all day, and they’re advertised as a good fit for boots. According to users, they’re rather thin, making them fit well in different types of military boots.
The downfall with this thinness is that they don’t provide the best arch support for your whole feet. Customers state that they support the heel very well but that other parts of their feet feel less assisted.
There are also reports that these aren’t as durable as advertised. The packaging states that they will last for three months, but some feel like they lose some of their impact after one month.
- Fits different boots very well.
- Vents for airflow.
- Great heel support.
- Balls and arches aren’t greatly supported.
- Not as long-lasting as stated.
These Walk Hero insoles are semi-rigid orthotics that customers praise for their superior arch support. They’re especially liked by people with flat feet and help keep their feet stable and lifted. There are even reports of these soles decreasing pain in the knees and ankles.
Note that they’re made with EVA (ethylene-vinyl acetate) and silicone with a textured surface. Customers say that this prevents their feet from slipping inside their shoes.
Another plus is that they’re very durable—users report using these effectively for months at a time.
The great support these provide comes with a trade-off on cushioning. Buyers don’t feel like they’re soft enough at the heel and toes and experience more pressure on some areas of the feet.
Another con is that these are one-size-fits-all insoles, with a women’s 6–6.5 and a men’s 4–4.5. But, some users report that their toes don’t have enough space with these inside their boots.
- Superb arch support.
- Helps people with flat feet.
- Soles are anti-slip.
- Can decrease ankle and knee aches.
- Not the softest insoles.
- One-size-fits-all isn’t as stated.
The memory foam in these Happystep insoles gives a very cushioning and soft feel underneath your feet, according to customers. They’re reportedly very comfortable and not hard to the touch.
While the foam is about ⅛-inch thick, the heel has ¼-inch thickness. The added cushioning to your heel means that it’s slightly uplifted, putting less stress on your tendon. Users report that these insoles lessen their foot and knee pain, especially the aches caused by being on your feet all day.
This means that the Happystep insoles suit people who walk 10,000+ steps a day or have to be on their feet during long shifts. They’re also good for hikers that wear military boots.
However, note that these lack support platforms; they’re less ideal in terms of arch support. So, they aren’t as supportive for military-boot-wearers in fast-paced environments.
Another problem for buyers is that these soles seem to flatten fast and provide less cushioning after only a month when used frequently.
- Extremely cushioning.
- Pain-relief for sore feet.
- Uplifted heel for more support.
- Great for people who stand on their feet all day and hikers.
- Not the best arch support.
- Tend to flatten and lose cushioning.
These Spandex and polyurethane foam insoles are specifically made for men’s boots, including military ones. Knixmax has designed them to “give you the boost you need through your work day” and states that they deliver all-day comfort and support.
However, users find this a little misleading and report that they feel rather rough and hard despite the foam. To put it short, they aren’t that comfortable.
But, customers do confirm that the breathable Spandex prevents sweaty feet by enhancing air circulation while also providing pain relief to their feet. Also, the high-density base layer makes the insole extra-shock-absorbing.
Another thing worth mentioning is that these are available in men’s, women’s, and kid’s sizes. This wide range of sizes will hopefully offer something that fits your feet.
Note that these are reportedly large, and they’re hard to trim. Also, some state that they lose their cushioning and support after a month or two since the foam deflates rather quickly.
- Made with military boots in mind.
- Very breathable.
- Shock-absorbing dense base layer.
- Wide range of sizes.
- Not that comfortable.
- Sizes are too large.
Do Insoles Hurt at First?
Insoles don’t hurt at first, but they may take some getting used to. Insoles that are rigid or semi-rigid need a small break-in period. Since they provide a lot of arch support, they tend to be harder than soft insoles and uncomfortable before breaking them in.
We recommend that you start using them for one to two hours a day for the first week and then extend to three to four hours a day. You should be able to wear them all day long after a couple of weeks.
Will Insoles Make Shoes Tighter?
Whether insoles will make shoes tighter depends on their thickness and how wide and long they are. If you choose insoles that are the same size as your military boots, they might make them slightly tighter. But note that military boots tend to loosen with time, so if you find that they aren’t as tight as they used to be, insoles can help them snug your feet better.
For more information on how to choose insoles for a tighter fit, check out our article on the best insoles for boots that are too big.
How Long Do Insoles Typically Last?
High-quality insoles typically last for about six to nine months. But foam insoles wear out faster since they compress and lose their cushioning. You should generally replace them every three to six months for optimal comfort.
Conclusion: What Are The Best Military Boot Insoles?
These are all great insoles that will bring added comfort and support to your military boots. But, our favorite ones are the Powerstep Pinnacle Orthotic Insoles.
They provide both cushioning and shock-absorption with a mix of gel and foam materials. Also, they’re semi-rigid with high arches for added support. The antimicrobial fabric helps prevent foul-smelling feet when you do heavy work, especially in hot climates.
But note that insoles with high arches aren’t the best for running. However, these insoles are top of the line for walking or standing on your feet for long hours.