How to Choose the Best Insoles for Flat Feet [2019 Edition]
I have been a big supporter of insoles for many years. My first pair was an inexpensive one from Target. As I continued to run and it became a little more serious I could tell the difference between the cheap insole and a quality one.
Today I will share with you the top five best insoles for flat feet runners (like me!)
Why Are My Feet Sore From Running?
WebMD describes Flat feet as fallen arches.
Flat feet can happen to pretty much anyone and is caused by stretched or torn tendons, abnormality from birth, dislocated or broken bones or a nerve problem.
Here is a quick diagram of the difference between a fallen/flat arch and a normal arch of the foot.
Runners have purchased shoes specifically designed for flat feet for years (shameless plug - here are our top 5).
The biggest reason why these are popular according to JointEssential.com is that the soles inside these shoes have a slightly increased arch support which provides pressure relief.
Do Flat Feet Cause a Lot of Pain?
That depends on the person; some people find flat feet very painful and others are oblivious to their flat feet.
Flat feet can cause a lot of pain because it can affect the whole leg, including feet, ankles, lower leg, hip and lower back.
Flat feet can also cause problems with the bones, connective tissues, and muscles in the feet. Flat feet can also make feet roll inwards a lot more than they are supposed to (this is known as overpronation).
A lot of people who have flat feet go through a lot of shoes quickly as well as having a lot of leg related injuries.
But I Enjoy Running
If you are a runner who has flat feet and feels pain either during or after a run, there are many things you can do to make your feet more comfortable. I would suggest that you begin by looking into the different types of insoles because they can relieve the pain of your feet during or after your run.
These insoles are specially designed to bring comfort to those with flat feet. They are slightly thicker in the arch area, providing extra support for your feet.
Traditional arches that are one-size-fits-most are usually not sufficient for those with flat feet. Some insoles can be very firm while others can be quite soft.
You can even use them in all your shoes, not just running shoes, to increase comfort and arch support during your daily routines.
Insoles for flat feet can help with the alignment of your legs as well as to prevent knee and ankle injuries.
How Can Insoles Help Me?
Some insoles can be used for everyday wear, not just running. These insoles will provide comfort during activities such as walking and sitting; even when you are relaxing, these insoles are working to try to fix your flat feet.
In the rest of this article, I will focus on the insoles that are best for running.
According to Jeff Rizzo of Rizknow YouTube channel, insoles can also make your running shoes more comfortable by making your arch better.
This is a primary difference between insoles for flat feet and those for feet with standard arches.
They can improve your performance, allowing you to run longer by adjusting your stride.
Good insoles will also help you get more miles out of your running shoes.
What Do I Look For When Choosing Insoles?
Having a quick conversation with a podiatrist may help you decide which insoles might be the best for you. If you are willing to do some trial-and-error insole testing, the insoles listed below should help you get the support you need.
Be sure to check the sizes of the insoles.
There are several qualities you may want to consider, such as whether they are easy to clean, whether they are able to mold to your feet, and price. Road Runner Sports is having a pretty good sale on everything including custom insoles.
What Are The Options for Insoles?
As Jeff Rizzo pointed out, normal store-bought running shoes have insoles already in them, but because the shoes are designed with everyone in mind, these insoles may not suit everyone’s feet.
The insoles inside store-bought running shoes are cheaper and thinner than the insoles you can buy for specific concerns.
All insoles are made out of different materials, but the ones created for flat feet may feature thicker support than the standard insoles found in store-bought running shoes.
The 5 Best Insoles for Flat Feet [2019 Edition]
Tread Labs gives us Stride Insoles, which have a lot of good features that can suit many types of feet. Stride Insoles come in four different arch heights to suit the needs of people with varying levels of fallen arches, or flat feet.
This custom level of support can help you find a fit that is comfortable, keeping you running longer.
Stride Insoles by Tread Labs also have PURE antimicrobial treatment which is able to kill a high percentage of bacteria (99.9 percent) as well as having biomechanical support, giving you firmness and comfort for long distances or running.
Stride Insoles by Tread also have a deep heel cup so that you can get more cushioning to stay comfortable for longer.
The whole point of designing these with foams and cushioning is to keep you running for as long as possible without sore feet.
Unlike the insoles mentioned before, such as the Superfeet Green or DK Signature Edition for Sole Insoles, the Stride Insoles by Tread Labs are able to slide perfectly into a lot of different types of shoes and can mold to suit your feet. You can read more about the comparison between Superfeet and Treadlabs here.
In case you were curious, I wear these socks with my insoles for ultimate protection!
The Stride Insoles by Tread Labs have top covers that can be replaced to reduce odors and keep the insoles fresh for longer.
A possible slight downside is that the replacement top covers maybe difficult to find or go out of stock. I know this seems petty, but it can be frustrating.
What separates Aline from other insoles is their seven U.S. technology patents.
These patents are aimed at promoting natural biomechanical movement to increase comfort and performance.
Currently, they have hundreds of professional and Olympic athletes using their products to achieve optimal performance in their sport of choice.
Most runners who use ALINE Insoles choose the ALINE Active insole, because of its unique foot suspension system.
The foot suspension system works with the foot's natural movement patterns to create a 'preferred path of motion'.
This foot suspension system allows them to train and compete more comfortably for longer.
A little on the pricey side but 100% worth it!
One of the best insoles for flat feet is the Low-Arch model of Sof Sole Fit, which comes in different designs and bright colors.
They are designed for those people who are very active, featuring an anatomical nylon plate and a lot of foam in them (65 Durometer in the heel/ arch area and 40 Durometer in the forefoot).
They are firm so that your foot does not roll inward while you run, which makes them quite durable.
- High-arch support orthotic insoles for men and women; improves footwear fit, performance, and comfort
- Full-length, removable foam shoe insole has a 3.3cm arch height for supporting high arches
- Reinforced nylon plate supports the arch and heel, and promotes anatomical alignment; deep heel cup stabilizes foot
- High-rebound foam density is specially-calibrated for high arches, promoting a natural stride
- Ideal for all-day support, or while walking running, hiking, and cross-training; available in three arch heights: Low Arch, Neutral Arch, and High Arch
Although these are one of the best insoles for flat feet, they are also a little pricey when you compare them to other insoles on the market.
These insoles also have a limited size range to choose from.
These particular insoles are made out of a number of materials, including carbon fiber, wool, Memory Cloud memory foam.
The Memory Cloud memory foam shapes to the design of your foot to give you as much comfort as possible.
This high impact foam is great for very sensitive feet. These insoles are thin and available in different colors.
They have a heel cup which is designed to absorb the impact of running and walking so that your heels are not in pain.
I like these because of the memory foam’s ability to shape to my feet.
- FIT PROFILE: Low volume / Low profile (Volume refers to the amount of space the insole will take up in your shoe. Profile is how much shape you can expect to feel under your foot)
- STABILIZER CAP: the reinforced rearfoot of the cap provides structure and support for our most flexible, low-volume insole
- HEEL CUP: features the most accommodating heel cup and can help stabilize and support the foot
- SUPERFEET SHAPE: the flexible, low-profile shape helps stabilize and support the foot, which can help reduce stress on feet, ankles and knees
- HIGH-DENSITY FOAM LAYER: closed-cell foam supports and cushions the foot for long-lasting comfort
Superfeet Black Theraputic Support not only has Memory Cloud memory foam, but it also has other types of foams.
The polyurethane foam middle layer makes the insole comfortable and gives support. The durable bottom layer also gives your feet support, but more importantly maintains the shape of your feet.
Superfeet and Spenco are two really popular insoles, we break down the differences of the two in this article.
These insoles are a bit pricey, too. If you are into style and design, then maybe the Low-Arch model of Sof Sole Fit would be a better option for you.
The Superfeet Green is one of the best insoles for flat feet, and is from the same company as Superfeet Black Theraputic Support.
The Superfeet Green insoles have a closed cell foam that can mold to your shoes and to your feet, which can help stop injuries.
Superfeet Green also feature an Encapsulating Stabilizer System (ESS) which give your feet proper support and alignment, regardless of which shoes you decide to use them in.
This ESS technology can bring an end to running discomfort and pain.
Superfeet Green knows that the first connect of your feet to the floor is felt through your heel, so it has added a deep heel cup that absorbs this shock, adds stability to the foot, and cushioning for your feet.
- FIT PROFILE: High volume / High profile (Volume refers to the amount of space the insole will take up in your shoe. Profile is how much shape you can expect to feel under your foot)
- STABILIZER CAP: acts as the base of the insole that supports the rearfoot and provides structure and stability to the foam layer
- DEEP HEEL CUP: features the widest and deepest heel cup that offers maximum support and can help with natural shock absorption
- SUPERFEET SHAPE: a high profile shape to help stabilize and support the foot, which can help reduce stress on feet, ankles and knees
- HIGH-DENSITY FOAM LAYER: closed-cell foam supports and cushions the foot for long-lasting comfort
Superfeet Green, like the DK Signature Edition for Sole Insoles, are incredibly thick (3.75mm – 8mm) so you may have issues fitting them into your shoes.
If the thickness is an issue, the Superfeet Black Theraputic Support is thinner and may be a better option for you.
Durability of Insoles for Flat Feet
A lot of the best insoles for flat feet are quite durable, not only because they are made out of firm materials that make them rigid, but because they are designed to stand the wear and tear of intense exercising, including running.
Despite their rigidity, they have material that is breathable for your feet while effectively absorbing the impact of each step during running.
The firmer material in the insoles means they can last for a long time. For example, the Low-Arch model of Sof Sole Fit is notable because it is both firm and durable.
Depending on how long and how often you wear them really affects how long they will last. The current pair I have in my running shoes have lasted a little over a year with no issues.
Because there are so many insoles to choose from, it can be hard to remember what to look for in your ideal pair of insoles. Here’s a quick reminder of the three basic things you should be thinking about while you are insole shopping:
- the insoles should feel comfortable on your feet
- the insoles should help relieve knee, ankle, and foot pain, preventing injuries and supporting flat feet
- the insoles should allow you to perform better and more often
Last update on 2019-02-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API