Learning O-Lifts while Using Orthotics


I am a great fan of your art-and-science and have been lurking around T-Nation for years. But suddenly, I decided to join after reading a couple of articles regarding to having fun with oly lifts and watching your instructional videos. I have been doing research regarding what type of lifting shoes I can use in combination with corrective orthotics and I couldn’t think of anyone else who could help me with this- but you. I hope you can spare a couple of minutes for me.

I have read in the post below already and my situation is slightly compared to what your wife has.
(ref http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding_thibaudeau/leg_length_discrepenc )

I am planning to Olympic lifting classes at the sport sciences faculty of the University of Amsterdam. Since I want to take it seriously, I wanted to makes sure I am geared properly. Currently, I am using orthotics which are prescribed, cast and made by my podiatrist for correcting to the leg length discrepancy (longer left leg) and “flat feet” with hyper-mobile feet which I most probably inherited from my mother.

Because of the collapsing of my arches on my feet, my feet have naturally gotten wider than average and it is sometimes a pain to find proper shoes also. I would love to do all my power lifts bare-feet but experience shows me that it is best to do it with orthotic intervention. So I need some sort of vessel to house the correction insoles and make sure there is no intra-foot movement, because I once tried dead-lift only with the soles, and that turned into a fiasco due to lack of traction… even Steve Wonder saw that coming!

The gear I currently use are (all with the prescribed insoles):

  • Chuck Taylors for powerlifting exersizes
  • Asics Gel Nimbus 15 for running
  • Adidas Supernova Glide for running, walking with anti-pronation support without insoles
  • Adidas Samba classics from the 90’s with a tough rubber sole for when I need a change of gear.

I have a couple of questions regarding this. I hope you folks can help me.

  • To start with, should I even try?
  • In case yes for the question above, is it ok to to learn olympic lifts or should I just stick to powerlifting? I am kinda very excited and am looking for a new challenge. This is the best challenge in terms of strength training after all.
  • Which brands do you use or advise? I know this might be a sensitive question, please feel free to discharge if you see it fit (I was thinking of Adidas Adipower or Adidas power perfect 2)
  • What type of materials should I ask my podiatrist to use in case new insoles need to be cast
  • What else can I do or use to make sure that learning Olympic lifts will be more fun than rather concentrating on corrections and or fixing deficits/imbalances all the time?

Thanks a big bunch!

Kindest regards,

I’m not CT, but I have the Adipower and love them, and a few of my friends have the Nike Romaleos, and one has both…The Nikes are a bit wider than the Adidas…I noticed you said you have wide flat feet and will be putting an orthotic in them too.

I lift with custom made orthotics placed into my lifting shoes. They fit fine. Even better than when I started lifting.

[quote]nkklllll wrote:
I lift with custom made orthotics placed into my lifting shoes. They fit fine. Even better than when I started lifting. [/quote]

did your orthotics compress and lost the support? My sets are compressing the better I become at deadlift (current 1RM is 142,5 kg). Do you know what material they are made of?

I have no idea what material they are made of, but I remember telling my doctor that I trained hard and heavy. They definitely aren’t flimsy and are still firm in their support. I don’t know how much you weigh, but I’ve put more weight on mine and they still work great. (Lots of heavy pulls and jumps at this point, DL 1rm is 170.5kg).

I would just talk to your podiatrist and have them order a new, stronger set of orthotics.