Best Sneakers for High Arches
So you have decided to start running for exercise. You have the time, you have mapped out your route, and you have sneakers that you think are perfect for your high arched feet. You head out on your first run, and you do okay, but you notice your feet and shins hurt a little. You chalk it up to being a new runner and decided to try again.
Over the next few weeks, you notice that your shins start to hurt almost immediately upon starting your run, and your feet hurt even when you walk. What is going on? It is quite possible that the sneakers you picked are the problem. You need to do some research and find the best sneakers for high arches. The first step, so to speak, is to identify which way your foot pronates.
What is pronation?
Pronation is the roll of the foot when walking with a natural gait. Some people have flat feet or over-pronation. They have a low arch, or virtually no arch, so their feet roll inward, creating a strain on ligaments and ankles.
People with high arches have under-pronation. Because the arch is so high, there is undue stress on the outside of the foot. The ball and heel of the foot also receive more pressure, which in turn puts more pressure on the shins. This is what happened to you when you started running. And this is why finding the right sneakers is vital if you want to continue running.
What do I look for in best sneakers for High Arches?
This seems obvious, doesn’t it? You need a sneaker with good arch support. But finding that is not as easy as it sounds. Even if a sneaker does have arch support, it usually isn’t sufficient for people with high arches. You may need to supplement the arch support with orthotics or inserts.
Going to a podiatrist who will give you an exact diagnosis of what support you may need is ideal. However, if you do not want the hassle of a doctor visit, there are options to still get helpful information.
Many stores that specialize in running shoes have technology to 3D map your foot. This will enable you to find the proper insole to provide the amount of support you need. If you don’t have one near you, most chain drugstores, like Wal-Mart, have a Dr. Scholls kiosk that will map your foot, and give you a color-coded recommendation for insoles.
This will be your best friend when it comes to finding the best sneakers for high arches. Cushioning serves as shock absorption for your foot. Because your high arches cause pressure points in multiple places, the placement of the cushioning is important.
You will want to find a shoe that has good cushioning on the outside of the foot and in the beds of the ball and heel. The cushioning on the outside will lessen some of the impact by forcing your foot into a more natural balance.
Cushioning in the arch area is also important. Because you will most likely need to add insoles, you want to look for a firm arch, but not one that is too soft. If the arch support is too soft, it will gradually flatten, leaving you right back where you started, and you definitely do not want that.
Think of it like Goldilocks and the Three Bears: you don’t want cushioning that is too soft, because it will give way. You don’t want cushioning that is too hard, because it will force your foot into an unnatural position. You want to find cushioning that is “just right.”
Top of the foot
When looking at the cushion of a sneaker, many people do not look at the part that rests on the top of the foot. This is a big mistake because focusing solely on the underside of the foot ignores what is going on at the top.
High arches force the top of the foot higher, which causes more friction between the top of the foot and the tongue and laces of the sneaker. This can result in blisters on the tops of the feet, and you don’t want to add to your foot problems.
When you are looking at the cushioning for the rest of the sneaker, do not forget to check the cushioning of the tongue. If you find a sneaker that fills the rest of the requirements but not this one, you can loose-lace when you tie your shoes. Thread the laces through every other eyelet (instead of everyone), thereby lessening the number of pressure points.
Other features of The Best Sneakers for High Arches
After you have looked at the above aspects, there are other features to consider. You will want a sneaker with the correct base. A sneaker with too much of an arch in the sole will not give you enough stability. Likewise, a sneaker with too much base will not give you enough support.
You should also look for a sneaker that is made of lightweight, breathable materials. Many of the recommended sneakers for high arches are made of mesh. This can be both good and bad, as mesh is a material that has a lot of give. This could lessen pressure points on the foot, but it could also not give proper support.
How do I decide?
You will have to do your research. Using these guidelines, take a look at what different shoe companies have to offer. Once you have gathered all of the necessary information and know what you want and need in the sneaker, go to a store that sells running shoes and try on the different brands.
Keep in mind, what looks good on paper and what feels good on your feet aren’t always the same thing. Ultimately, if you do a little bit of homework, you should be able to find the best sneaker for high arches that will get you back to running pain-free in no time.