Best Walking Shoes For Flat Feet – How To Choose Right

According to the 2012 National Foot Health Assessment, 8% of adults over 21 years of age have flat feet. This approximates to about 18 million people. In addition to this, 4% have fallen arches. (1) These numbers show how common the condition is. If you have flat feet, there is a high possibility that the condition will cause pain when standing or walking. Selecting shoes that are specifically made for flat feet is one very important step.

​In this article, we will discuss the three main types of flat feet, how you should select the right shoe and the five best walking shoes for flat feet.

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Rankings

1st choice
for Man

2nd choice
for Man

1st choice
for Woman

2nd choice
for Woman

3rd choice
for Woman

Best Compression Tights

Gender

Brand

Rockport

New Balance

Skechers

New Balance

Easy Spirit

Arch Support

Good

Good

No

Great

Good

Insole Removeable ?

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

No

Score

96 / 100
94 / 100
95 / 100
93 / 100
93 / 100

Getting Started

Types Of Flat Feet

Arch Type And Foot Alignment

Fallen Arches

This condition occurs when there is no arch at the bottom of your feet. This arch is created when the tendons in your feet pull. When they don’t pull enough, fallen arches may result. The condition often causes pain and discomfort. (2)

​If you suffer from this condition, you may notice a flat print when you walk on a wet floor. Some of the factors that contribute to developing fallen arches include: (3)

​If you suffer from this condition, you may notice a flat print when you walk on a wet floor. Some of the factors that contribute to developing fallen arches include: (3)

  • Dislocation of bones
  • Genetic abnormality
  • Tibial tendon damage
  • Nerve damage
  • Arthritis
  • Pregnancy
  • Aging
  • Diabetes

Common symptoms of fallen arches: (4)

  • Experience pain
  • Swelling in the feet
  • Leg or back pain
  • Foot pain
  • Difficulty walking

Flexible Flatfoot

In this kind of flat foot, the foot has a natural arch but becomes flat when weight is exerted such as when you are sitting. (5) The condition usually begins during childhood and continues into adulthood often professing in severity as one age.

​Common symptoms of flexible flatfoot:

  • Overpronation
  • Shin splint
  • Aching or foot fatigue
  • Low back pain
  • Arch pain
  • Heel pain
  • Fatigue when walking

Flexible Flatfoot

This condition is often caused by the weakening of the posterior tibial tendon which supports the arch. In many cases, the cause is old age or overweight.


Understanding Your Gait

When it comes to selecting the right walking shoe for flat feet, your choice should depend on the activity you are engaged in and your gait. If you are on your feet most of the day, you need to find a shoe that is comfortable enough for extended wearing.

​Your gait is another issue to address. Gait is defined as the pattern of how a person walks. (6) It is composed of how your foot strikes the ground and can be divided into these eight phases. (7)

8 Phases Of Gait

  • Heel strike - the moment your foot strikes the floor
  • Foot flat - when your foot rolls on the ground and knee bends
  • Mid distance - when one leg is supporting your body
  • Heel off - when the heel leaves the floor
  • Toe off - when the toes leave the ground
  • Early swing - hip extends 10 degrees
  • Mid swing - hip extends 30 degrees
  • Late swing - neutral ankle position

If you examine how you walk, you will probably have an idea which aspects of your gait require extra support. With this knowledge in mind, you can find the feature that you need to have to give you the right support.


3 Main Kinds Of Walking Shoes For Flat Feet

how-to-choose-the-best-running-shoes

In all types of flatfoot, one of the ways to address the issue is to wear proper footwear. We will now talk about the three main types of walking shoes. (9)

Performance Training Walking Shoes

These are also called lightweight performance shoes. They are ideal for those who have neutral feet and are flexible and lightweight and allow the wearer to achieve the speed and performance they want. When compared to other walking shoes, however, they may lack durability.

Stability Shoes

These are very supportive and are ideal for flat feet. They are durable and commonly have a dual density midsole for extra support. They also have thigh heels but not as thick as the ones in a motion control shoe. They give good reinforcement to the arch of each midsole.

Motion Control Shoes

The main feature that motion control shoes have is that they are quite heavy. They are designed to be rigid and limit overpronation. They are also known to be durable making them ideal for overweight people. One of the problems is that they have a thick heel that can make walking difficult.


Qualities To Look For In Walking Shoes

choosing-sport-footwear

Not all walking shoes are created equal. Still, there are three main qualities every good walking shoe should possess. (11,12)

7 Qualities Of Good Walking Shoes

  • Flexibility - make sure the walking shoe allows you to roll your foot naturally during each step so as not to strain the leg muscles.
  • Lightweight - ideally, the walking shoe should feel like you are walking bare feet. Heavy shoes only make you tire faster and strain your muscles.
  • Flat heel - flared heels are ideal only if you are walking on uneven surfaces because they provide extra stability. For regular walks, choose a flat heel on the other hand for great walks, go for a flared heel.
  • Good traction - the outsole of the foot should have grooves to help with traction. This will keep your feet safe even on slippery ground. This is very important if you plan to walk on uneven surfaces such as trials.
  • Arch support - shoes that have insoles to provide the cushion for your arches are a good choice for walking. This supports your arch as you walk.
  • Round front - walking shoes should ideally be rounded on the front so they do not cause any foot problems such as bunions. Also, make sure that the toe box provides ample space for your foot.
  • Cushioned heel collar - this is a good feature that helps ensure you get a proper fit.

Although it will be difficult to find a shoe that excels in all of these factors, there are a handful of options that meet the criteria. In the next section, we’ll give you a roundup of our five recommended walking shoes for flat feet.


5 Best Compression Tights for Runners

Rankings

1st choice
for Man

2nd choice
for Man

1st choice
for Woman

2nd choice
for Woman

3rd choice
for Woman

Best Compression Tights

Gender

Brand

Rockport

New Balance

Skechers

New Balance

Easy Spirit

Arch Support

Good

Good

No

Great

Good

Insole Removeable ?

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

No

Score

96 / 100
94 / 100
95 / 100
93 / 100
93 / 100

Getting Started

1. Rockport We Are Rockin Chranson Walking Shoe

Looking for a walking shoe that can work well on different surfaces? The Rockport We Are Rockin Chranson shoe is a good option. It provides a durable grip on a variety of surfaces. It also has lightweight material to help reduce foot fatigue.

Another feature is the latex footbed that has extra cushioning and the mesh lining to enhance durability. The shoe also has shock absorption qualities.

What We Like:

  • Flexes in all directions
  • Outsoles support natural walking motion
  • Provides ample stability
  • Stylish in appearance
  • Suede and synthetic upper
  • Latex footbed
  • Good arch support

What We Didn't Like:

  • ​Some complain the tongue is not straight
  • Laces easily untied
  • Rough stitching
  • May have the uneven insert

2. New Balance MW411V2 Walking Shoe

For those who are serious walkers and want a shoe that looks more athletic, the New Balance MW411V2 are a good option. They come in white, gray and black and have the appearance of a running shoe. Another good point is that they have a rubber sole which ensures good traction on different surfaces.

The shoe also provides great cushioning and are also lightweight which are very important features to in walking shoes.

What We Like:

  • Nice outer appearance
  • Good sizing
  • Insole gives good support when walking
  • Flexible and bend to the natural gait

What We Didn't Like:

  • Not comfortable for standing
  • Not ideal for formal wear

3. Skechers Go Walk 4 Walking Shoe

If you are on-the-go kind of person and want to have a shoe that you can slip on anytime, the Sketchers Go Walk 4 Walking shoe are a good choice. They are simple yet elegant and easy to wear. The material used is highly breathable making it ideal for those who have sweaty feet.

Another good feature is that they are easily expansive and can blend with whatever foot shape you have provided a snug yet comfortable fit. The shoe also comes in a variety of colors.

What We Like:

  • High energy return on every step
  • Outsole has a seamless design
  • Anti-bacterial odor control
  • Mesh upper to expand with your foot
  • Increased arch support
  • Stabilizing fabric toe panel
  • Lightweight

What We Didn't Like:

  • May be too narrow for some
  • Lack arch support

4. New Balance WW577 Walking Shoe

The New Balance WW577 walking shoe falls provides good cushioning while remaining durable on the outside. If you are looking for a shoe that can withstand different elements but still gives ample comfort, this is a good option.

Another feature is the shock absorbing nature of the heel that enables you to remain balanced even on uneven surfaces. The shoe is ideal for trail walkers who need extra stability and traction.

What We Like:

  • Solid rubber outsole
  • Reflective detail for better visibility
  • Stable midsole for cushioning
  • Heel with shock absorption technology
  • Ideal for concrete floors
  • Can endure standing for long periods of time

What We Didn't Like:

  • Thin inserts according to some reviewers
  • The tongue may be too stiff and abrasive for sensitive wearers
  • Runs small for some

5. Easy Spirit AP1 Sports Walking Shoe

For those who want a pair of walking shoes that doesn’t look bulky and has a nice slim, fashionable appearance, the Easy Spirit AP1 Sport walking shoe is a good option. The shoe comes in a variety of colors from white to black and beige and is ideal for day to day use.

The insole of the shoe is also removable allowing you to replace it with something more suitable if you like. The sole is made of rubber so it provides ample traction.

What We Like:

  • Rubber sole for traction
  • Casual in appearance
  • Flexible
  • Ideal for low impact walking

What We Didn't Like:

  • Lacks cushioning
  • Not slip-resistant

​Conclusion

Selecting shoes for walking is a whole different story from selecting a pair of running shoes. Cushioning and flexibility are two of the most important features to look for. No matter what kind of flat feet you have, the list provides ample choices of the best walking shoes for flat feet. Let’s have a quick recap.

If you are planning to use the shoes casually and want something that doesn’t look too sporty, the Sketchers Go Walk 4 Walking shoe are a good choice for women. Not only do they provide the flexibility and cushioning you will need but they are also slip-on and easy to wear.

For men, we recommend the Rockport We Are Rockin Chranson shoe. The shoe is ideal for walking on different surfaces and comes in formal colors such as brown and black making them good for day to day activities.

On the other hand, if you are after something that is sportier and can be used for intense walking, the New Balance WW577 walking shoe for women and the New Balance MW411V2 for men are for you. They are designed to adapt to different walking surfaces and also have the durability and the cushioning you need for power walks.

Did you find this article helpful? What is your favorite walking shoe? We'd love to hear about your ideas in the comments below. Also feel free to share this information with others looking for a good pair of walking shoes.

Amber Irwin
 

Hi everyone. I'm Amber a running and sports writer. I love to share my passion with fellow outdoor lovers and hope to establish a community here. I believe running is an amazing sport for everyone and hope to inspire others with my words. Welcome to my fantastic blog!

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