Barefoot Science Insoles – How Well Do They Work?

by Theresa on March 4, 2010 · 8 comments

Barefoot Science Insoles were something I picked up about 4 years ago at the Calgary Exhibition here at Stampede time. I had no idea that they were even featured on TV. It looks like HSN ran a segment on them and so I thought these insoles were fair game to put up on my blog. If you have foot, knee or back pain you may want to have a look at this foot strengthening system.

Barefoot Science Insoles make your feet stronger

Barefoot Science Insoles make your feet stronger

Barefoot Science Claims

Barefoot Science is the only insole that strengthens and rehabilitates your feet
Reduces stress and strain on hips, knees, back and neck
Relieves foot related pain and discomfort throughout the body
Helps prevent risk of injury by building a stronger more flexible foot
Benefits anyone - from seniors to children

What's the Difference Between Regular insoles and Barefoot Science?

The first thing I liked when I was introduced to them was that they were not like conventional insoles or shoe inserts. The regular insoles or orthotics only work to support your feet. They add cushioning, support, or bracing but that only weakens the muscles in your feet.

The Barefoot Science Foot Strengthening System goes to the root of foot problems. It retrains and strengthens the muscles that support the feet. As the foot's arch becomes stronger, higher, and more stable your alignment will improve throughout the body. Painful symptoms caused by stress and strain are reduced or eliminated.

You replace the inserts every week

You replace the inserts every week

My Experience with Barefoot Science

I  never thought I'd ever be telling the whole world about my bunion problem. :) I  have high arches which have caused really bad bunions on my feet especially on the left foot. About 5 years ago I had really bad pain in my bunion and pain in my knees which really scared me because I'm only in my thirties. So I bought these and gave them a try. I can honestly say my bunion and knees has never caused me pain since. They are easy to use and I feel that they are very comfortable to wear. Before buying these I bought some custom made orthotics but the problem with the custom made ones are that they are expensive and you have to get new ones made I think they said every year or so. VERY expensive! So Barefoot Science has saved me lots of $$ and pain and suffering as well. So I do highly recommend this product. I also like the fact that the little insert that you change seems to be in the perfect spot that your foot needs for support yet I still feel that my feet are getting a work out and getting stronger.

What Do Others Think about Barefoot Science?

So my opinion is only one opinion. Since everyone has different types of foot problems I wanted to read other peoples experiences to get a general feel if they're working for the majority of people. So on HSN I counted how many positive to negative reviews for this insoles. Out of 159 there were around 30 people (about 18%) that flat out did not like this product. The rest were very pleased with their purchase and have seen positive results.
On another site Buzzillions, 8 out of 59 people (14%) didn't like them and the rest were very happy with Barefoot Science insoles.

Summary of Consumers Positive Comments

  • Problem with right foot and unbearable pain that shoots up leg - Can now go shopping and be on their feet all day. So happy they purchased them.
  • Problem with flat feet, bad veins, circulation problems - The supports have been a true blessing. No more swelling in the ankles and legs don't feel heavy at the end of the day. Felt they were much different than regular arch supports
  • With orthotics still limps and foot cramps - Tried Barefoot Science and after just a few weeks feels significant improvement.
  • Flight attendant with foot and back problems - Tried Barefoot Science and back pain immediately disappeared. Thought they were a miracle.

Anyways, I could go on and on about positive stories.

A few Annoying Things

  • I got the half sole ones but I can't wear them with my open toed heeled shoes in the summer. They show on the side of my shoe!
  • The smaller inserts tend to get a little squished and loose their shape.

They are available at and eBay.

Barefoot Science Insole 3 4 Length Size XLarge Men 12 14 6 Levels
Barefoot Science Insole 3 4 Length Size XLarge Men 12 14 6 Levels
Time Remaining: 6d 21h 4m
Buy It Now for only: $48.87

Barefoot Science 4 Step Multi Purpose Full Length Insoles
Barefoot Science 4 Step Multi Purpose Full Length Insoles
Time Remaining: 25d 7h 10m
Buy It Now for only: $49.49

Barefoot Science Existing 7 Step Therapeutic Insole Foot Support
Barefoot Science Existing 7 Step Therapeutic Insole Foot Support
Time Remaining: 6d 8h 25m
Buy It Now for only: $74.95

Barefoot Science 6 Step Active Arch Activation Insoles
Barefoot Science 6 Step Active Arch Activation Insoles
Time Remaining: 18d 9h 10m
Buy It Now for only: $59.95

Barefoot Science Existing 4 Step Multi Purpose Support Insoles
Barefoot Science Existing 4 Step Multi Purpose Support Insoles
Time Remaining: 18d 9h 10m
Buy It Now for only: $54.95

NEW Barefoot Science Multi Purpose 3 4 Insoles Medium Five 5 Levels No Box
NEW Barefoot Science Multi Purpose 3 4 Insoles Medium Five 5 Levels No Box
Time Remaining: 2d 19h 38m
Buy It Now for only: $46.50

Barefoot Science 4 Step Multi Purpose 3 4 Length Insoles
Barefoot Science 4 Step Multi Purpose 3 4 Length Insoles
Time Remaining: 25d 7h 10m
Buy It Now for only: $49.99

Amazon also has a large selection of Barefoot Science Insoles for you to choose from

Handy Hints
So if you follow the instructions, you'll be fine. I'm just wondering if some people who have written negative reviews might not have read the instructions? You need to have a specific kind of shoe. These are the guidelines from Barefoot Science.

Choose Your Shoes With Care: Look for shoes that feature plenty of toe room, adjustability over the arches (i.e., shoes with laces or straps), with heels lower than 3.5 cm or 1.5 inches and that have pliable, rather than rigid soles. Important: Your shoes should provide a roomy fit for adequate circulation and movement. Loosen the laces over your instep – cranking them tighter only intensifies the bracing effect of the footwear. The right shoes will enable your feet to move with less restriction and will allow Barefoot Science to provide the highest degree of immediate, as well as long-term, benefit.

So you'll start at level 1 and work your way up one week at a time. I originally started off without the inserts and then gradually worked my way up with the various inserts. Also if you find that they bother you, just wear them a few hours at a time. Especially if you're on your feet all day. Your comfort will increase with each day. If you give your feet time to adjust, you're going to do well.

Barefoot Science Insoles are definitely worth a try especially if you've never had success with regular orthotics. The thing is, my feet have dramatically changed and if I try to go back to my pair of shoes with the orthotics in them they are soooo uncomfortable. I should actually throw them out. So you'll have to stick with the Barefoot ones once you start using them.  You might have heard of another TV offer for an orthotic called Walkfit Orthotic Insoles if you want to check out that review.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Larry F. April 11, 2010

I’ve been wearing barefootscience inserts for 18 mos. after suffering big-time w/plantar fasciitis and nerve problems in both feet. I tried every other orthotic on the market including some my podiatrist gave me after a series of shots. Nothing worked until I started using Barefootscience inserts inside some Dr. Scholls leather oxford shoes. I work on my feet 40 hrs. a week on concrete and my feet have never been better!

2 JimW. April 12, 2010

I had suffered with plantar fasciitis and nerve pain, much like Larry F. describes. I am an RN and I work 12 hour shift, much of the time. I was frantically trying and buying every orthotic, insert, and shoes, to find an answer to my foot, and calf pain. Not until i began using Barefoot Science inserts did I find the relief that I was looking for. I have used BS for over two years now, and have, on occasion, worn a pair of shoes for the day without my inserts, only to have the foot pain return. That was during the first 18 months i used BS. Now I can actually were most of my shoes for and sandals through out the day with out the inserts, pain free. I do however mostly use the inserts on a daily basis, because I feel that they offer the support that I need.

3 JT June 20, 2010

I’m interested in this product due to PF, therefore the review is of interest to me personally. One might want to check the math in the review….the percentages are definitely lacking accuracy- given the numbers.
I do hope the other information is accurate. Feel free to delete this comment, but please correct the math.

4 Theresa June 21, 2010

Thanks JT. Guess my math skills aren’t up to snuff!

5 Kathleen November 17, 2010

It was explained to me that Barefoot Science insoles provide exercise for your feet and some people experienced difficulty because they progressed to higher levels too rapidly. Therefore, I approached use of the insoles like an exercise program. I used level #1 for one week, level #2 for two weeks, and so on, through level #7 for seven weeks and beyond. It worked perfectly for me–immediate relief from foot pain–no problems–excellent results. I still wear them on a regular basis and am on my feet much of the time at work and at home.

6 lilly March 23, 2011

I devaloped Morton’s Neuroma, a very painful condition, Dr. prescriped an anti inflammatory ointment to calm the pain, but it still was very painful to walk.So instead of foot surgery, I tried the 3/4 soles of Berefoot Science, I bought in 2002 and never used them before, and unbelievable, I am enjoying painfree walking again!!!!!

7 Greg Williscroft August 25, 2011

I am a Certified Orthotist in Canada and disagree with the majority of what is being said here.
These foam plugs under the arch are the same as using differing durometers of cushioning under your feet; similar to a Dr. Scholl’s or neoprene pair you can buy from the drug store.
The issue with plantar fasciitis in most cases is an alignment issue: too tight achilles tendon, plantar flexed calcaneous (heel bone) that pulls the insertion of the the Plantar fascia away from the bony attchment at the inside of the front of the heel. This swelling and irritation is what you feel after you step down first thing in the morning. A propper assesment of alignment is needed to determine if re-positioning is needed. The idea of excercising the plantar fascia with these plugs is a non starter, as the fascia is not a musccle. It is a slightly stretchable, fibrous sheath that attaches at the base of your toes and starts at the front of the heel. It is it’s lack of stretchability that causes it to be pulled out of the front of the heel (bone spur) and cause the pain. Changing this situation is what is needed to eliminate the problem.
Cushioning the area will not stretch the achilles; which is needed to allow the heel bone to sit nuetrally and take the pressure off the attachment of the fascia and heel.
If a soft foot plate is all you need, then don’t spend this much on Barefoot Science, just get some neoprene off the shelf inserts from the drug store. Neither one will correct any alignment issues, they will both offer cushioning only.
For problems that have alignment issues, these ‘custom’ foot orthotics will offer temporary relief at best. They are not able to re-position the bony architecture enough to make a big difference due to their non custom approach and materials selection.
They show our proffession as scam artists and that is absolutely incorrect. To offer facts and testimonials that are not reasonable is a sign that there clearly is bias towards this product.
I would be happy to discuss this assesment with anyone.

8 Elizabeth April 19, 2013

Well, to all the certifide orthotists out there and to Mr. Greg Williscroft. I have been in pain for years nothing you folks did worked, no insoles on the market helped, custom orthotics actually made it worse. Barefoot Science works, in a matter of 3 days I had no pain! So for me and so many others this is no scam. Oh and also why do professional athletes use this product? Hmmm…So because this goes beyond the old theories it is a scam…well I waited 5 years and suffered 5 years for nothing…Thank you Barefoot Science for creating this insole.