Most people have heard the term “flat footed” which is used to describe low arches, but what are high arches? In this article, we will talk about what high arches are, how they affect your ability to run, and we will discuss five of the best running shoes for high arches.
What are High Arches?
A high arch is where you place much more emphasis on the heels and balls of your feet. One of the best ways to find out whether you have high arches or not is to perform the wet footprint test. For this you will want to wet your feet and then walk onto a surface such as concrete. Take a look at your footprints afterwards. If they look like an exaggerated question mark, then they are high arches.
This means that you will absorb more shock than usual in the balls and the heels of your feet, rather than having it spread out across the whole of the foot. Your feet will have less flexibility and you are more likely to be at risk of injuring your ankle.
While there are some diseases and medical conditions that can cause high arches, the most common cause by far is genetics. Depending on the severity of the condition, there are different ways to respond to high arches. In certain cases, you may require custom orthotics and physical therapy.
But the majority of people with high arches can see improvements by buying the right type of running shoes. Finding a running shoe with proper cushioning and support is crucial. This article will help you find the right shoe for your needs.
What to Look for in a Running Shoe for High Arches?
The main two things that you should be looking for in a running shoe if you have high arches is cushioning and support. But there are other, more general, factors that you should also consider. In this article, we are assessing our five running shoes on the following five categories:
- Cushioning – How much cushioning there is around the sole of the shoe is very important. This will help to reduce the pain that running can bring, it can also allow you to run with a more natural stride. Reducing the issues that are associated with high arches.
- Support – How well supported is your foot while you run? Running shoes that support the area around your arches will help you run better and with a smoother technique.
- Value – How good value the shoes are, is always important, no matter what your shoe needs are. You don’t want to spend a fortune on a pair of running shoes that will fall apart, nor do you want to be running in badly constructed running shoes just because they are cheaper than normal.
- Durability – How long will your running shoes last? A good pair should last at least 250 miles, with some pairs lasting twice as long. But it’s not just how long they last; it is also about what conditions they can perform well in.
- Traction – This is a measure of how well your running shoes grip the road or track as you run. The trickier the terrain, the more traction is required. In this article we are assuming that you will be running on roads or in the gym, so we have adjusted our expectations to match that. Which will be reflected in our scores.
Each one of these categories will be scored out of five, with a total score of 25.
Best Running Shoes for High Arches
Here are five of the best running shoes for runners with high arches. We will present them in a rankings table, and then take a more in-depth look at each shoe in turn.
|Best Running Shoes for High Arches||Cushioning||Support||Value||Durability||Traction||Total|
|Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21||4||5||4||4||4||21/25|
|Saucony Endorphin Speed 2||5||4||3||4||4||20/25|
|ASICS Gel-Nimbus 23||4||5||4||5||4||22/25|
|Brooks Glycerin 19||5||5||3||4||4||21/25|
|Hoka One One Clifton 7||5||4||3||5||5||22/25|
As you can see, all five running shoes score very highly, and there’s not much in it when it comes to picking our favourites. The Hoka One One Clifton 7s and the ASICS Gel-Nimbus 23s are the two highest scoring running shoes on this list, both scoring 22 out of 25. Let’s take a closer look at all five shoes to give you a better idea of which one suits your personal needs best.
Running Shoe for High Arches #1: Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21
The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 is a great running shoe, it has superb cushioning courtesy of the DNA loft crash pad and the BioMoGo DNA system. They provide amazing support (probably the best of all five running shoes on this list) and are decently priced too. Making them excellent value for money.
Highly durable, the Adrenaline GTS 21 has great traction and will allow you to run outdoors in all weather. These are wonderful running shoes which will make a huge difference to anyone suffering from high arches. They are also great for neutral arched runners. A worthy entry on this list.
Running Shoe for High Arches #2: Saucony Endorphin Speed 2
The cushioning on these Saucony Endorphin Speed 2 running shoes reminds us of the Hoka One One Clifton 7s (also on this list). This is quite surprising as Saucony usually focus more on creating the lightest running shoes around. Not that we’re complaining, if your high arches make running uncomfortable, the amazing cushioning in these shoes could make all the difference.
The shoes offer excellent support, are highly durable, and as with any Saucony shoe their traction is excellent. The only slight downside is that they can end up being quite expensive. If you have the budget for them then they are a great shout. But if you are looking for a lower priced option, you may be better off looking elsewhere.
Running Shoe for High Arches #3: ASICS Gel-Nimbus 23
ASICS are always a great company to look at if you are really into your running. The Gel-Nimbus 23 is one of their best shoes and is a great shout for anyone with high arches. This is down to the excellent support that the shoes offer. They also use Flyte Foam technology to provide excellent cushioning. We’ve scored them a five out of five for durability, as these shoes will outlast many similar brands.
Traction is excellent, and the price is fair. One thing that we really like is that you can pick your regular shoe size, but you can also specify if you want normal, wide, or extra wide. This choice really helps you to get the best fit possible, which explains their high support score. Of course, you have to know whether your foot is wide or not beforehand, so it may be an idea to get measuring.
Running Shoe for High Arches #4: Brooks Glycerin 19
Another Brooks shoe on our list, this time it is the Glycerin 19 running shoe. This has more cushioning than the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 and is actually quite similar to the Saucony and Hoka One One running shoes. The shoes offer excellent support and are incredibly comfortable to run in. The transition zones in the sole are great for ensuring that heel to toe running style, and the shoes offer great traction.
The only area where the shoes are scored a little lower is value for money. That is because the price can fluctuate quite a lot depending on what size foot you are. If you are lucky, you can get an absolute bargain, but some foot sizes come with a pretty hefty price tag. Thanks to the durability, comfort, and support though, the shoes are still well worth considering.
Running Shoe for High Arches #5: Hoka One One Clifton 7
The final running shoe on our list is the Hoka One One Clifton 7 running shoe, a legend of the game that makes multiple lists due to its incredible cushioning, support, and durability. Despite the huge cushioning, the shoes are surprisingly light, making them great for running in. Even if you aren’t planning on running, the shoes will suit an active job or socialising great, as they look amazing and can prevent your feet from aching.
Traction is excellent, and the shoes should last you around 300 miles or so, but we’ve still scored them low for value. As with the Brooks Glycerin 19 (above), it’s not that all of the shoes are expensive, but rather that the price can differ depending on what size you go for. Get the right size and that value for money score could be a five! But get the wrong size and you may need to invest a little more.
Either way, these are incredibly good running shoes for runners who have high arches, and deservedly share top spot on our list with the ASICS Gel-Nibus 23s.