Do you like to run but often feel pain in your feet or legs when standing or walking? Do you have difficulty finding the right shoes? Do your feet have a tendency to roll outwards (underpronate) when you’re walking briskly or running?
You might have a foot problem called a high arch. This means that the arch in the middle of your foot, from your toes to your heel, is unnaturally high. This places unnecessary pressure on the area of your foot between your toes and ankle and produces considerable pain when you’re moving. Fortunately, the right shoes and footwear can help you avoid pain. Proper shoes can also help runners improve their performance.
How do you choose the best running shoes for high arches? These are the factors you need to look at when purchasing running shoes specially suited for this foot problem.
Table of Contents
- – Form
- – Cushioning
- – Support
- – Flexibility
- – Durability
- Here are the top ten best running shoes for high arches:
- 1. Asics Gel Nimbus 15
- 2. Asics Gel Cumulus 17
- 3. Saucony Ride 8
- 4. Mizuno Wave Rider 18
- 5. Nike Air Pegasus+ 30
- 6. Nike Air Max+ 2013
- 7. New Balance Men’s MT1210
- 8. Brooks Running Pure Cadence 3
- 9. Brooks Ghost 6
- 10. Adidas Supernova Glide 5
Though shoes for high arches are slightly larger than normal shoes, they’re still slimmer than motion control shoes. Motion control shoes are great for flat feet or overpronators but not for high arches or underpronators. What most people like about motion control shoes is that they restrict the shoe’s movement around your foot. This can be uncomfortable for high arches, however, as they’d be rubbing against the foot. For mild to moderate cases of high arches, the best shoe type is a neutral shoe.
Every time we run and as we land, the impact is usually absorbed by our feet. Impact absorption can be difficult for high arched feet, though, which is why extra cushioning is needed to help protect the high-arched foot from suffering from the pressure. The foam or padding needs to be particularly thick in the middle of the sole. Neutral shoes are also made with thick cushioning on the outer side of the foot and in the heel area since the heel takes the brunt of the contact. Shoe manufacturers use different types of padding to achieve this, such as polyurethane foam, gel or air. You can choose any type depending on your preference and how effective it is as cushioning.
In addition to cushioning, the extra padding in shoes for high arches also provide necessary support. It’s especially important that the padding mid-sole molds to the arch. This padding needs to be thick but comfortable enough that your feet can enjoy running for miles in the shoe. For severe cases of underpronation or high arches, inserts can also be purchased to fill in the shoe for more support.
Despite the extra padding for support and cushioning, shoes for high arches are also designed to be more flexible than typical running shoes. People with high arches are prone to having stiff, unyielding feet. For maximum comfort, the shoe needs to be supple enough to curve and allow your foot some movement. This guides the foot to a more natural position while in motion. To check how flexible the shoe is, see if you can bend it gently. Pay attention especially to the inner side of the shoe. Also, make sure that the upper part of the shoe is soft.
Runners will also benefit from a lightweight shoe which should feel easy on the feet for better performance. Many high arch shoes are made of special material for full cushioning but are light at the same time. Since running shoes for high arches have distinctive features, it’s no surprise that they cost more. In this regard, you will likely want more durable shoes that can last for many miles since you’re paying more for them. However, don’t hesitate to replace your shoes once you’ve clearly worn them out, usually after 300 to 400 miles, as they’ll eventually lose their effectiveness.
Here are the top ten best running shoes for high arches:
1. Asics Gel Nimbus 15
The Asics Gel Nimbus 15 has distinguished itself as well-cushioned with plenty of arch support. Its ample cushioning is due to the gel which covers the shoe’s entire sole, with more gel given to the arch area. Foam was also used to supplement the gel. The heel is made of hard rubber to ensure both support and sturdiness while the front area is made of soft rubber for flexibility. Memory foam surrounding the upper part of the shoe gives the foot a soft and comfortable fit. The only downside to this shoe is that it’s heavier than expected.
2. Asics Gel Cumulus 17
Another crowd-pleaser from Asics is their Asics Gel Cumulus 17. This neutral shoe also utilizes gel for more than enough cushioning and support, particularly in the heel and forefoot. The upper part feels great, thanks to the breathable mesh fabric allowing your foot to stay cool and dry. This model also comes in simpler styles with lesser colors making it appealing to runners who want something less flashy. However, a slight concern with this shoe is the slightly heavy weight.
3. Saucony Ride 8
The Saucony Ride 8 is praised by its users as a great neutral shoe which makes for an enjoyable run. It has plenty of cushioning and is moderately light on the feet compared to other brands. Saucony’s PowerGrid cushioning system ensures cushioning and exceptional durability especially around the heel and forefoot areas. Shock absorption is another great feature of this shoe. Flexfilm material in the upper part also contributes to the soft comfort of the shoe and helps keep it light.
4. Mizuno Wave Rider 18
A comfortable shoe that’s nicely responsive and provides extra cushioning, the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 is not surprisingly among the best in the market. Their innovative Pebax Parallel Wave technology accounts for the shoe’s effectiveness in absorbing impact and delivering comfort. The mesh material in the upper part feels cool and dry and fits well even for runners with wider feet. The soft but strong bulk in the middle of the sole perfectly supports your high arch for a smooth run. It’s also a favorite for neutral shoes that are sturdy but light.
5. Nike Air Pegasus+ 30
Known for premium quality and durability, Nike has produced another champion in its Nike Air Pegasus+ 30. Several features make it unique, namely its cushioning technology and shoe design. Built with Nike Cushlon EVA, the mid-sole support for high arches is well-padded but firm for enough for stable movement. The heel is an important feature in running shoes for high arches and this particular shoe impresses with its durability but light weight for optimum shock absorption and responsiveness. The shoes are also flexible with seamless transition.
6. Nike Air Max+ 2013
Nike continues to please its customers with the Nike Air Max+ 2013. Flex grooves in the sole account for the splendid flexibility in the shoe and make your transition while moving smooth. Nike’s remarkable Air Max technology cushions the foot firmly but comfortably and absorbs impact. Layered material on the upper foot makes this shoe breathable and light as well. This shoe is also heavy duty and built to last. The only issue some customers have with this shoe is the weight; although light enough, it’s not quite as light as other models.
7. New Balance Men’s MT1210
Ideal for trail running, the New Balance Men’s MT1210 provides reliability and support for high arches. Firm but comfortable top quality foam protects the entire shoe for ultimate cushioning. It also adds to its durability and you can expect this shoe to stand the test of time. You don’t need to worry about stability either, no matter the running surface, as this shoe offers excellent traction. Mesh material on the upper part fits securely around your foot and facilitates ventilation.
8. Brooks Running Pure Cadence 3
The Brooks Running Pure Cadence 3 is preferred by runners with high arches because of its incredible cushioning and support. You can’t help but appreciate how light this shoe feels. The BioMoGo DNA cushioning system is found in the sole predominantly in the heel and forefoot area to maximize comfort and responsiveness. The mid-sole is also specifically designed to fit the contours of high arches. Users also commented on the durability and toughness of these shoes. Though it may be priced along the upper range, this is a worthwhile investment.
9. Brooks Ghost 6
Another great neutral shoe for high arches from Brooks is the Brooks Ghost 6. This shoe boasts of unique Anatomical Brooks DNA gel cushioning for a comfortable experience and complete support while running. A crash pad underneath the padding minimizes impact. The shoe is also not too heavy, making it more responsive. The sole is made of first-rate rubber material, adding to the shoe’s sturdiness and to ensure flexibility, the forefoot has flex grooves. The upper part of the shoe is of thin but strong mesh material, highly breathable but may not be ideal for rainy weather.
10. Adidas Supernova Glide 5
With its cushioning system and durable material, the adidas Supernova Glide 5 is a highly recommended neutral shoe. Adiwear was utilized for the outsole, making it hardwearing and suitable for high mileage. Special foam material that molds to your feet and snugly fits your high arch provides support and stability.
Mesh material surrounds the upper part of the shoe and breathable fabric lines the inside for a comfortable feel and improved flexibility. Special foremotion technology in the heel area lets it adjust to the running surface for a smoother running experience.
Shoe manufacturers have developed shoes specifically to address the needs of joggers and runners with high arches. From the structure of the shoe to the material and type of padding, there are many kinds of shoes available so take your time making your choice. Most important of all, before finalizing your purchase, make sure to try on the shoe and walk around a bit in it to get an idea of how it will feel when you’re moving.