Arch support is a term used most for athletic shoes. They are said to be beneficial and help relieve pain or stress. But yet it hurts your feet whenever you wear them and walk. So what is the truth about the arch support? Is it really helpful or a curse as you feel today.
Recent study and research have shown that those with normal arch when use shoe with arch support; it provide them with ore stability, control and balance. But when a person with slightly more under or over pronate use arch support it hurts, and it hurts real bad.
In fact many independent research and experts came to the same conclusion ( Dr. Mathew Klein, Craig Norton, Shannon, Dr. Andrew Schneider and Dr Krista A. Archer ). After going through the research articles and experts opinions; we now know the higher the arch the better will be support and balance at the invest of greater knee varus torque.
So the main problem is not with the arch support but one of the three arch of your feet; longitudinal medial arch, longitudinal lateral arch and latitudinal Instep arch. Either when you have a flat feet or uncommon pronation; arch support made for normal feet hurts to you.
When Arch Support Starts To Hurt
Arch support generally does not hurt but is usually more comfortable to your feet. But at times it may start to hurt and must be avoided. After all having an improper support is more troubling and painful than having a shoe with no support. Here are some quick points that leads to pain while using support shoes.
1 ) Using Shoes With High Arch When You Have Flat Feet
It’s nothing new, people in general does not know what their arch are and straight away go for higher arches when looking for shoes. Yes higher arch support helps but you need also to have higher arch. At least a person with medium arch can adjust to the shoe but not you with the flat feet.
A person is said to have a flat feet when his or her arch is almost flat while in standing and siting position. This can happen when your arch does not develops or you over-pronate. In some case it is also linked to genetics and are there right from the time of birth.
These persons should have shoes with low arches or little to no arch at all. Since your entire foot bottom naturally tries to touch with the ground; when using a shoe with high arch it starts to cause pain in heel, swelling along the ankle and other knee issues.
2 ) Using Flat Sole & No Padding When Have High Arches
Your stability decrease with higher arch and with speed. So if you have a higher arch feet and want to run with a shoe with flat shoe; it will not only hurt but can leads to serious injuries or may simply let you fall of imbalance. Maybe why you never see anyone run in her/his flip-flops.
The best way to know whether you have a high or low arch is to see an imprint of your feet. If you see more curve in the middle with a major part not been in print; suggest you have a much higher arch. What you need now is a responsive arch support that is high and well cushioned.
Having a soft insole that flex like a spring provide strong support and allows your feet to flex and move freely. Generally women’s have higher arch than men except while pregnancy. So choose the shoe that based on your current condition and recent foot size and arch. You can easily measure your foot size by following the link.
3 ) You Tried To Break-in Your Shoe In Just One Day
Some shoes require time to break-in before it adjust to your own feet and become more comfortable. The process generally requires an hour or two of frisk walk for a week. But i don’t know why some people try to do it in just one day; and later complain the shoe hurts.
What do you expect! Its brand new and hard and you want it to beak-in and adjust in just one day. That’s only gonna make it a matter of struggle with your shoe and latter pain in your arches and heel. The curves in your shoe are there to support your feet; but most of the time are not up to the mark.
These are flexible enough to adjust to your actual foot shape but it takes time. Even my new shoe takes a week before it finally become comfortable; with little more progress with each passing day. So if keep faith in your shoe and give it the due time it require to break-in.
4 ) Using Your Old Worn Out Shoe For Long
We all have that shoe that we love and struggles to give up! Maybe it’s lucky, associated with someone you love or just your first shoe you bought on a trip or simply you don’t have much money. There is so many reasons to use your old shoe; but just one to replace with a new one.
Old shoe that is worn-out have its shape changed at ankle, toes and on sides. This leads to change in angle at which your feet land on the ground or surface. This shift in feet movement than its natural path put stress and pressure on knees, hips and feet. So it not just bad for your feet but for your posture and in a way entire body.
Depending on your activity your old shoe can have a number of different abnormality. The soles could be uneven or wrapped, have holes, deformed and does not feel the same as they used too. You may be forcing your feet to do more that it should wearing that worn out shoe. May be why your feet feel more sour after wearing such shoe.
5 ) Maybe The Problem Isn’t The Arch But Size
Our feet change its shape faster that we expect, it need just a minor variation in our weight and it’s change in one form or another. Till adulthood our feet change with change in height; but then its the weight, pregnancy, diabetes and injuries that reshapes our feet.
Your shoe should be of sufficient size and width with enough room for your feet to move. If its too tight or too loose the insole will not fit perfectly on your feet. And an insole which does not make contact with your feet at the right place; does not produce desirable effects of comfort and support.
A one size variation up or down can cause minor disruption in normal feet movement. Now when you walk for long it only multiplies with each next step. Similarly if the width is too much or too low it cause stress forces on longitudinal arches. Your foot will be squeezed against the upper and the arch being pushed back against the upper.
6 ) Using A Shoe That Aren’t Meant For Walking For Long
Girls’ You are in Trouble! Heels are everywhere, its stylish, fashionable and makes a shoe look even more sexy. But do you know they are not meant for long walk specially the ones with higher heels? Since the design of footwear have change beyond realization; no wonder your feet struggles to cope up with the challenge.
Using high heel you push your body weight on the forward and relatively weaker part of your feet. In time it creates to much tension and pressure on associated muscles and joints causing pain. But if not understood these leads to serious issues such as hammertoes and bunions.
On the flip side if you only use flip-flops it never provide that support to your arch and cushioning that it needs. That will cause your feet to become more and more flat with time. So the right way is to have a balance between the two. Have a shoe that provide enough arch support and cushioning that you require and meant for specific purpose.
Other Factor’s That May Cause Your Feet To Hurt
- You buy shoes that might look good but does not have excellent build quality and feature irregularity in its design.
- You have undergone a recent injury and haven’t give time for your feet to recover.
- The insole used is of poor quality and isn’t offering sufficient support and padding to your feet.
- Maybe you are using a workout shoes for running and walking. These days shoes are build around specific needs and goals; and so must be used accordingly.
- You have a bad posture and body alignment that put more pressure on your feet ligaments and joints.
- The custom inserts that you use does not fit well with your shoe and your feet type.
- You simply having a minor injury which you are ignoring for too long.
Benefit’s Of Having Good Arch Support
Having arch support is greatly beneficial; It helps with better utilization of muscle power, reduce pronation, increase shock absorption, better posture, flexibility, lower injuries and support. People who use shoes with arch support experience better control and balance on a variety of terrain.
Arch support is know to relieve pain and better recovery from osteopathic foot and ankle sprains. Higher arch support helps receive pain with excessive movement in case people with higher arches. Even in case of flat feet, low arch shoes with appropriate cushioning provide better experience and performance than no support.
What makes an arch support a must for any good non casual shoe is its key features; durability, strong support, flawless fit and better compatibility. So try not to go with your gut feeling but invest some time to know about your next shoe. Not just it aid with the spring like function of your feet but also help protect against injuries.