Flat feet is a postural deformity that refers to the condition wherein the arches on the inside of a person’s feet are flattened. This condition allows the entire sole of the foot to come in contact with the ground when standing or walking. The condition can develop when the arches of the feet were not able to develop during childhood. Flat feet can also occur due to the constant stress inflicted to the feet because of old age or injury.
The arch of your foot serves as a natural shock absorber. It is designed in a way that it absorbs shock when you put your body weight over your feet when walking or running. Adequate shock absorption is critical as it helps alleviate the impact to your feet, ankles, hips, and knees, which subsequently results in injuries if done excessively.
Things to Consider
In the past two decades, the majority of shoe manufacturers developed specific technologies geared toward people having flat feet in order to help them walk or run comfortably and safely. When looking for running shoes, it is recommended that you choose the ones that have motion control, stability, and support. These are the features that can help alleviate the discomfort brought about by your flat feet.
Shoes that have stability control can provide you with the right combination cushioning, durability and support. Stability control shoes usually have structured cushioning that helps limit any excess motion of the foot throughout the gait cycle, thus, provide your feet with a more stable impact when hitting the ground. Stability shoes also come with an additional compound of dual density foam along the instep of the shoes. You can easily identify it as it usually sports a different color than the rest of the shoe. The added compound of foam is considered one of the critical parts of the shoes as it can help you maintain a stable gait and pronate forward rather than inward.
On the other hand, shoes that have the right motion control can do wonders to your running experience if you are suffering from flat feet. Motion control shoes improve upon the built-in stability control technology of the shoes in order to provide you with additional cushion with the help of an added foam or any other padding material which is embedded along the arch area of the shoes.
Shoes that have motion control restrict any unnecessary motion of the feet while running which help reduce the tendencies of the foot rolling inward. To put things simply, motion control shoes help secure your foot in place while walking or running. However, motion control shoes tend to be heavier compared to traditional running shoes. The extra weight is crucial for those who are looking to improve their running experience.
Top 3 Running Shoes for Flat Feet
Brooks is one of the leading manufacturers of high-quality running shoes on the market. The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 is one of the best-selling running shoes praised by many users around the world because of its great features and casual design. Being the 15th installment in the Adrenaline Series, Brooks made sure that the shoe comes with some updated features from its predecessor to make your running experience a lot more comfortable and enjoyable.
The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 comes with an excellent arch support and stability feature that can accommodate the needs of many runners who are looking for stability and support for their feet. The shoe’s stability and support are results of the amalgam of Brooks’ BioMoGO DNA and Diagonal Rollbar features. The shoes also come with an additional crash pad in the midsole section which can provide you with a smoother heel strike and transition. For added support, Brooks also integrated a DRB Accel unit in the mid-foot.
In terms of flexibility, the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 is also one of the best options on the market because of its Flextra and Omega Flex Grooves technologies in the midsole. These features greatly improved the shoes’ flexibility without having any adverse effects to cushioning. The outsole’s Omni Grooves technology works perfectly well with the previously mentioned features for added flexibility.
Pros: Balanced blend of cushioning and stability. Excellent cushioning with the help of BiMoGo DNA. Versatile running shoe for running and other outdoor activities.
Cons: Tends to run narrow.
Saucony is another reputable brand name recognized by many runners because of the company’s extensive line of high-quality running shoes. Another impressive offering from the world-renowned shoe manufacturer is the Saucony Guide 8. It is an excellent running shoe geared towards serious runners especially those suffering from flat feet.
Although Saucony Guide 8 initially provides a rather rigid and stiff feel, it consistently proves to be more of an advantage rather than a caveat as it makes the user realize that the shoe’s natural stiffness is essential in providing your feet with the right responsiveness and immediate feedback. It also has the appropriate measurement for any traditional lightweight running shoes because of its 8mm heel to toe differential.
The Saucony Guide 8 was also awarded by world’s authority magazine for runners, the Running Magazine, as one of the best stability shoes in the market. This further solidifies the shoe’s capacity in terms of shock absorption. It also features a quad density foam midsole, which provides a decent motion control. In fact, people who have used the shoe firsthand noticed its firm ride, stability, and support.
For the 8th edition of the Guide series, Saucony made some changes by adding more toe spring which is greatly noticeable even for first timers. Because of this added feature, you are able to achieve more efficient and quicker toe-offs. This is something that most runners are looking for in a running shoe. The entirety of the shoe is also highly compact, making more breathable and comfortable. The shoe’s PowerGrid technology also adds up to the shoe’s comfortable feel. The PowerGrid technology refers to the cushioning material designed to provide you with high propulsion return while preventing any wear due to excessive use.
Another great feature of the shoe is its upper mesh material that exudes an attractive style. The best thing about the Saucony Guide 8 is it is available for both men and women as well as for kids. Generally-speaking, the Guide 8 is a versatile runner that offers bang for your buck!
Pros: Attractive mesh upper. Breathable and comfortable. Versatile. Lightweight. Excellent cushioning system.
Cons: Narrow toe box.
ASICS is another reputable brand name that is almost synonymous with high-quality shoes. Being one of the brand names highly revered by many running enthusiast and athletes, the company has dedicated years of research and development to create some of the best running shoes in the market. The ASICS GEL Kayano 22 is one of the company’s most sought after models in its extensive line of running shoes.
The GEL Kayano series stands out among its competitors in the market because of its impressive features. Aside from the shoe’s attractive color palette, the premium running shoe is highly recommended for people suffering from flat feet and overpronation. Compared to its predecessor, the 22nd edition in the series greatly improved the shoe’s heel area so that it would be able to provide security to the runner when running on a more industrial terrain.
Another improvement in the GEL Kayano 2 is its upper. It now features a more seamless design that incorporates perforated Fluid Fit ton effectively prove maximum breathability while accommodating any foot type. The shoe’s stretch mesh layer is also durable and irritation-free which can help protect your feet from blisters.
GEL Kayano 22’s excellent shock absorption provides a great deal of motion control for athletes and runners alike, especially for those dealing with flat feet and overpronation. Because of the shoe’s motion control, it is slightly heavier compared to other running shoes on the market, but is a lot lighter compared to stability running shoes. The shoe also boasts a great deal of pronation control with the help of its Dynamic DuoMax Support System that serves as a reliable platform for heavy runners and overpronators. The midsole also comes with the Fluid Ride 2.0, a great feature that serves as a support for the shoe’s gel cushioning properties.
Pros: Excellent cushioning and support. Durable. Breathable and comfortable. Lightweight. Snug fit.
Cons: Mediocre flexibility. Not recommended for snow and rough terrains.
These three are just some of the best running shoes in the market intended for people with flat feet and overpronation issues. Although these shoes vary in terms of feature, advantages and caveats, the decision still lies on you as you need to choose the one that suits your needs.
So far, the Saucony Guide 8 has the best reviews among the three because of its versatility and great support. However, the ASICS Gel Kayano 22 and Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 are not far behind because they also have their own share of an excellent set of features.
Choose any of the three and you will be able to have a great running experience without worrying about your flat feet and overpronation problems!