The simplest, most effective, and perhaps cheapest way to manage flat feet is by wearing the best walking shoes for flat feet.
This deformity might not pose a health risk to you, but it’s certainly painful and uncomfortable.
Latest statistics indicate that it affects around 20% to 30% of the population, with some suffering from unilaterally flat foot (one foot) and others bilaterally flat feet (both feet).
To help you manage this condition, we have invested considerable time to research about flat feet and a good guide to help you shop for the best walking shoes for fallen arches.
Let’s start with a quick comparison chart:
What is Flat Feet?
Medically known as fallen arches or pes planus, flat feet is basically a postural deformity affecting the arches of the foot, whereby they collapse and the entire sole comes to near-complete or complete contact with the ground.
You may wonder – what exactly causes flat feet? Is it something you are doing wrong?
Well, one of the main reasons why people suffer from flat feet is poor choice of shoes.
That’s right. When you wear a pair with no arch alignment and support, you are likely to suffer from flat feet or make the condition worse. Other reasons, according to studies, include:
- Genetic factors
- DiabetesInjury on the foot
- Problems with the nerve system
- Incidences of over-pronation while running
- Damaged or stretched tendons
Flat feet are not a health threat, but the condition can cause discomfort to a point where you are unable to walk with shoes. Furthermore, it can cause more problems, making your life a nightmare. Here’s what we are talking about:
- Over pronation which is a situation where the feet roll excessively inwards causing your shoes to wear out faster than usual
- A muscletissue complication or other underlying bone problems
- Some painful sensation in the lower leg, hips, knees or the ankles and lower back area.
In extreme cases, flat feet can be treated through surgical means but most of the time non-surgical treatment is recommended.
A common practice that might ease the condition and reduce over-pronation is wearing the most comfortable shoes for flat feet.
Do the Wet Test to Get to Know Your Arches
Getting the right shoes can be an endless hassle if you do not know the type of your arches (whether they are normal, flat or high). A mere look at your foot won’t do you justice.
To help you get a clue of the exact type of your arches, do the wet foot test. This will allow you to choose the right shoe in terms of size and shape.
However, this test will not help you determine the condition of your arches. It is imperative that you visit a doctor for accurate findings.
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Start by pouring some water into a pan, forming a thin layer. Ensure that the pan is shallow.
2. Now dip the sole of your foot inside the pan to make it wet.
3. Step onto a blank piece of paper and stand on your leg. A shopping bag would do in this step.
4. Now step off from the paper and look down. That’s the shape of your arches.
So, how do you know if your arches are normal, flat or high? Here’s a quick breakdown.
if you see that around half of the arch region filled in, it means your arch is normal and naturally supports your entire body weight. The rolling in or pronation acts as a natural shock absorber. This finding means that you can wear any shoes.
If you find that the arch of the footprint is filled in, it is likely that the foot collapses inward whenever you run. The additional pronation may stress your knees and feet, increasing the risk of injury when walking or running. In this case, go for shoes that offer more stability. A good example is a pair with internal wedges on the arch side or one with dual density midsole.
If the footprint shows no contact or just a little contact along the edge, and all you can see is a the ball and heel of the foot, chances are that the foot may not roll-in much when on the move. It won’t absorb much shock too. If you get these findings, go with well-cushioned pair with just a little arch support or none at all.
What Types of Shoes are Best for Flat Feet?
When you have flat feet, you don’t wear any type of shoe, no. There are pairs that are specifically made for people with this condition, sporting a number of features to offer the best support possible.
Go with the best shoe brands for flat feet and you will not regret it!
Here are a number of shoe types to look for when shopping for these shoes:
These are shoes that come with good support for flat feet. They are made to offer utmost support to your arches, allowing you to walk comfortably.
Stability Control Shoes
Stability is important if you want to control overpronation, a common condition associated with people with flat feet. These shoes are designed to give you stability as you walk or run.
Motion Control Shoes
These ones are a designed to provide comfort to those with advanced degrees of overpronation. They help increase the quality of your stability when moving around and offer a much more flexible experience.
What to Look for When Choosing the Best Walking Shoes for Flat Feet
Support is an indispensable factor when it comes to shopping for best shoes for walking with flat feet.
Go for a pair that offers support to the low arches to prevent progression of flat feet.
You will want shoes that help realign your feet and relive pain.
The dynamics of your feet maters when it comes to picking the best shoe brands for flat feet. Know your size and shape to get bio-mechanically designed shoes for comfort.
Shoes with good stability control for walking come with a low arch design that provides sufficient cushioning for flat feet. They help with shock absorption and pressure distribution while walking.
If you have flat feet and run most of the time, you will want a pair that offers motion control. This feature offers side support for low arches preventing further over-pronation.
Stiff Outer Sole
A stiff outer sole that does not bend in the middle is perfect for flat feet. It offers more stability and improved motion control
A good grip will give you a painless walking experience. Good gripping shoes also come with great arch support that distributes your body weight evenly across your foot.
Breathable shoes allow your big toe to be flexible and also relive your feet from unnecessary sweating, giving you a comfortable walking experience.
Tips for Buying Shoes for Flat Feet
Shop Late in The Day
When you shop at the end of the day, you stand a better chance of picking the most comfortable walking shoes for flat feet.
How you ask? Well studies show that during the day the feet swell up and this might prevent you from getting the right size for you.
Measure Your Shoe Size While Standing
As much as it might be comfortable to sit while trying out your new shoes, it’s much better to stand.
This way you get to have an accurate measure of your actual shoe size, plus your feet slide right into the shoe more efficiently.
Wear Socks and Try on The New Shoes
This is more of a preventive measure just to make sure that your shoes still fit comfortably even when you have your socks on.
Consider Your Larger Foot When Buying Your Shoes
This is something most people go through when looking for the best walking or running shoes for flat feet. Most of the time you get a pair that fits comfortably in one foot and not in the other.
The simple solution to this is to make sure you pick the pair that fits comfortably in your larger foot. That way you will be able to avoid pain.
Give Space Between Your Big Toe and Your Shoe
If you have flat feet, you will not want to go with really tight shoes, and this is why you have to give space between your big toe and the shoe you wish to buy. This gives your feet enough toe room for a flexible walking experience.
Review of 7 Best Walking Shoes for Flat Feet 2017
- Designed for motion control
- Give pronation control thanks to the extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar
- Durable build that is efficient thanks to its HPR GREEN outsole
- Skid resistance with a wet-dry traction
- Reliable leather upperfor utmost support
- Rigid and stiff synthetic sole for motion control
- The toe box is a bit shallow but you can order a larger size to get a good fit.
For those that have been searching for shoes that give great support for low arches, the Brooks Addiction Walker is a must have.
Coming from a reputable brand that is a member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, these modern and casual shoes give amazing over-pronation control, making them some of the best Brooks walking shoes for flat feet and overpronation.
They come with a fabric lining that has an easy to remove sock liner. Better yet, they feature HydroFlow technology that cushions your midsole to achieve the much needed shock absorption that flat feet require.
The brooks addiction walker is a true demonstration of quality and Comfort, making it one of the best walking shoes for men with flat feet.
Despite the fact that you might have some issues with the size of the toe room it offers, you get more value from being able to pick from the different sizes. This is a pair that people with flat feet can rock everyday no matter the occasion.
- Designed for a biomechanical fit
- Offers smooth traction
- Provides good cushioning and stability
- Breathable mesh tongue and a lace up vamp for walking
- Durable rubber sole
- Quality textile and leather build
- The sizing might be a bit small for some users, so be sure to get a larger size
- Only available for women
- Available in just two color variations
The Saucony Grid Omni Walker are athletic shoes, designed with a Grid System technology that keeps your feet pampered with each stride you take.
The fact that they are made by a brand that has been in the shoe game for years, you are sure to enjoy quality.
This pair is SADMERC approved, a clear show of it being a legit product that you can rely on. In addition to its HRC cushioning, the shoes provide the comfort that every woman with flat feet is looking for.
The midsole is shock absorbing to maintain motion control as walk. Get this pair and you will understand why it is one of the best Saucony walking shoes for flat feet.
If you are in the market for some of the best walking shoes for bunions and flat feet for women, the Saucony Grid Omni Walker should be on the top of your list.
They are built with a stiff sole for stability control when walking or running. Apart from the fact that there are only a few colors to pick from, the overall design is stylish and appealing.
- Lightweight design that’s ideal for walking
- Quality fabric and synthetic build
- Sturdy rubber sole that is good for flat feet
- Breathable mesh for comfort
- Removable sole for convenience
- They are not ideal for long distance running as they may wear quickly
- Not enough color selections
With years of manufacturing experience to its name, ASICS is still famous for encouraging and promoting a life of fitness and health.
If you are looking for the best Asics walking shoes for flat feet, we bet you will love the Asics GEL-Tech Walker Neo4 is designed for those that spend most of their day on their shoes and suffer from flat feet.
You can say goodbye to knee and lower back pain when you have these as they are made of breathable mesh to cool your feet down easily.
Asking about arch support? These shoes feature a DuoMax support system that comes with a lightweight midsole that is not only durable but also well cushioned.
They give you the freedom to move in any position without the risk of over-pronation or pain.
Although these shoes are not designed for going on long distance running, they serve their purpose for light running and walking.
These are the right pick for those who work all day on their feet and are in the search for the comfortable men’s shoes for flat feet.
- Breathable upper mesh that comes with supportive overlays
- Offers excellent motion control for flat feet
- Moisture management which work to keep feet cool and dry
- Study rubber sole ideal for over-pronation
- Honestly, compared with other picks in our review, this pair is a bit pricey. But the features make every penny worth it!
For over a century, New Balance has been working to give athletes a chance to achieve their goals. Its main mission focuses on developing shoe designs that consumers want.
The New Balance WW847 takes motion technology to a whole new level making walking for people with flat feet a breeze.
Designed for people with over-pronation and low arches, these shoes offer excellent stability. Its mesh-like design is enough to keep your feet cool and breathing even when you walk for long distances in scorching sun.
If you are in the market for the best New Balance walking shoes for flat feet, you could try this pair and experience its benefits.
These shoes come with many advantages. They feature a breathable mesh to prevent excessive sweating by the feet and offer excellent motion control, making them some of the best women’s walking shoes for flat feet.
While some people might find the price point a bit too high, there’s no doubt that this pair is worth every penny.
- Lace up design for running
- Available ina variety of colors
- Ideal for over-pronation and flat feet
- Cushioning and support for high arches
- This pair is only available for men
Mizuno is an industry pioneer with over a century of experience and specialization in sporting equipment. Over the years its philosophy still remains to contribute to society with its high quality goods.
The Mizuno Wave Inspire 11 is built with superior quality that makes it one of the best men’s walking shoes for flat feet. Designed with the wide and flat feet individuals in mind, these shoes offer a true fit and can be ideal for running as well as walking.
You can enjoy picking from a variety of colors available to find what suits your style. You can also get to enjoy anti pronation levels that keep your feet healthy with great support.
If you are a runner in search of the best affordable men’s walking shoes for flat feet, there’s no doubt you will love this pair. It comes with cushioning and support for high arches or even flat feet. There are a couple of colorful designs to pick from,so finding what you want won’t be any trouble.
- Water resistant upper leather
- Mesh upper for breathability
- Shock absorbing mid sole for comfort
- Removable anti-bacterial orthotic
- Stylish sports design
- Honestly, these shoes seem to wear out quickly, especially if you wear them regularly
Vionic is a brand you will want to associate yourself with if you have flat feet or bunion feet. It designs shoes to help people with various feet conditions walk comfortably and pain-free.
The Vionic Walker Classic is a good example of what this brand is capable of. It helps realign your strides thanks to its advanced podiatrist design. It comes with removable orthotics designed biomechanically to support flat feet.
Want to know how they perform in terms of motion control? Well these shoes are equipped with a motion controlling foot bed that realigns over pronated strides with the help of its contoured arch support. It’s out sole is made from quality rubber that offers good level of flexibility.
Getting excellent shoes that help realign your strides when you have flat feet is no easy task. The Vionic Walker Classic is one of the few designs that make it easy for those affected with flat feet to move around without pain. With these shoes, walking and working on your feet is made easy as it offers great support and comfort.
- Breathable upper mesh keeps your feet dry
- Lightweight design for easy walking
- Good support
- Reflection for visibility and safety
- Water repellant for dry feet
- Expensive but worth the price
Whether you want to dominate your running time, or just get comfortable walking and exercising, the Nike Lunarglide 7 are the go-to-shoes. Besides the fact that they are made by a reputable brand with decades of experience, these shoes are designed to get you anywhere you want with ease and style.
The water resistant feature keeps your feet dry through all kinds of terrains, making them a good option for walking, hiking and camping.
Talking of walks, the 3M upper reflector works well to keep you visible even when going out for a run or a walk in the dark. For that level of convenience these have to be one of the best Nike walking shoes for flat feet.
The Nike Lunarglide 7 is designed for running but is also a true fit for those looking for the best shoes for walking with flat feet. They guarantee utmost comfort and a variety of colors to choose from.
Although you will have to dig deeper into your pockets to get this pair, there is no reason you shouldn’t get it if you are suffering from flat feet.
Fallen Arches can be such an uncomfortable condition, but it doesn’t have to be if you have the best walking shoes for flat feet. We are talking about roomy shoes that are light weight and breathable. If you are not sure about the size of your foot or the shape of your arches, do not just get that pair because you like it – you might get disappointed to find that the shoes do not fit you completely. Firstly, do the wet test as described in this guide to be on the safe side. Go ahead and compare our picks and get yourself a pair of shoes that will make your walks or runs a breeze.