20% of the world population has flat feet, or what is the same, a characteristic morphology that causes all or almost all of the sole of the foot to be in contact with the ground.
However, the main manufacturers of running equipment do not usually create specific products for the runner with flat feet. Therefore, in this article we present 6 models of running shoes for flat feet. But first of all, let’s go over the basics.
Can flat feet cause injuries when running?
There is an intense open debate on the subject, with different points of view that try to back themselves up with contradictory investigations. A 2013 study, which obtained data from previous reports, showed that there is a correlation between flat feet and a greater propensity to be injured, although it is very small.
The characteristic muscular flexibility of flat feet can cause excessive pronation during the race
A possible justification for this relationship is that the instability of a foot that is too flexible can cause excessive pronation during the race. Which, in turn, can cause injuries on or below the knee.
If you have flat feet it is necessary to check if medical treatment is needed or just take corrective insoles. Achilles tendon contractures and obesity are quite common causes to start suffering from flat feet when you are an adult. In this link you can consult a complete list of causes of acquisition of flat feet at maturity.
Do I need special running shoes for flat feet?
The probability that a runner needs specific running shoes for their flat feet is quite small. For that to happen, the following conditions would have to be fulfilled at the same time:
- Flat feet are correctable with corrective insoles and appropriate footwear.
- You really suffer from flat feet in the race. Even if you have feet with excessively flexible arches, these could work without problems while running. One study showed that only in the most extreme cases does the arch collapse.
- The runner feels that running is unstable and they cannot correct their feet and leg muscles. Or, also, if you experience fatigue or foot pain during your daily workouts.
If these 3 conditions are met, it is possible that you should take a look at our catalog of running shoes for flat feet, composed of shoes with some correction for pronation and running shoes for neutral tread and good support for the arch, also, they allow you to use insoles.
We have selected here some sneakers with a big support for the arch of the foot, which are joined to 7 others that we selected last year.
New Balance 1500 v4
The New Balance 1500 v4 is the fourth version of the mixed shoe that has impressed all runners for its lightness (221g) and ultra-stability. In the midsole with Revlite, a cushioning material with very good response, we can find a structure made of rubber with more density to control pronation and give stability to the arch. However, neutral runners can use the 1500 v2 without problems. The grip is fabulous and the fit with Fantom Fit is very breathable and pleasant to the touch. Ideal for your daily workouts if you like the natural drop of 6mm and make fast segments. For racing, the 1500v2 works very well over long distances. One of the best shoes of the moment.
Nike Lunarglide 9
The Nike Lunarglide 9 has a slightly softer profile than the previous shoe, with a cushioning based on Lunarlon. The transition is smooth and consistent, with the wider base of the ankle and the softness of the upper part of the shoe ensuring that you are always centered. The support for the arch is good and you can use insoles, a new feature with regard to the earlier version. The Lunarglide 7 is ideal for the marathon if your goal is between 3:30 and 4 hours or for training in average paces.
Mizuno Wave Inspire 14
Like all the new Mizuno models of the 2016 season, the Mizuno Wave Inspire 12 comes with a completely renewed upper in functionality and style. The seams and adhesives are better placed to avoid chafing in the arch of the foot and provide more resistance to the front, two weaknesses of the previous version that have been resolved. Outside, Mizuno has added better quality coatings and a little more branding. The result is a shoe more careful but also heavier. Finally, the cushioning has the new U4ic rubber that gives a smoother behavior in the race. The Mizuno Wave Inspire 14 is a good choice for those seeking a balance between stability and comfort.
Adidas Solar Glide ST
The Adidas Solar Glide ST brings a new specific technology to support. The StableFrame is made of a firmer material that is below the arch of the foot. The combination of Boost and the StableFrame offers first-class transitions. On the one hand, the Boost provides more response and energy return, on the other, the StableFrame compensates with stability and consistency in the tread.
Nike Air Zoom Structure 22
It has the BEST (and biggest) foot arch support on this list, something evident to the naked eye. Despite the appearance, the mesh is not Flyknit and provides an adjustment with more support. The midsole that is in contact with the arch of the foot (around 20% of it) is thicker, making the step transition from the heel to the finger particularly stable. The template also rises 2 mm at its highest point, to help correctly position the arch.
Asics Gel Kayano 25
It is a shoe for pronators of medium or heavy weight who want to enjoy the best comfort. A model full of technology (e.g. Fluidride in the midsole), something that is reflected in the price. Even so, the Kayano 25 is the best shoe on the market for moderate pronators, fantastic for flat feet – above all, if the runner is a heeler – and, last but not least, it gleams in the dark!
Brooks Transcend 5
Although it is classified as a “pronator shoe”, the Transcend also serves for runners with neutral tread because of its stability control, it does not go beyond an exceptional support for the arch. Its biggest peculiarity and added value is the extra padding that provides the inner sock with support straps – just under the arch – that wraps the foot, provides a pleasant sensation of comfort and raises the arch.
- Brooks Transcend 5 for women
Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18
Brooks sells these shoes ensuring they provide “cushioning, support and stability in equal parts.” It offers a firm and stable tread, thanks to a hardened part on the back with 4 densities of foam joined without adhesives. Can be used with templates, which makes it one of the favorite models among pronators.
- Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18 for women
There are no secrets, the best way to prevent injuries is to run with footwear with which we feel comfortable
As always, the final recommendation is to try a model and check that you are comfortable with it. The best way to prevent injuries is to run in shoes with which we feel comfortable.
What do you think of our selection? Have you found the pair of running shoes perfect for flat feet? As usual using our tool, Perfect Match can help you to choose the right running sneaker for you.