Best Shoes For High Arches

Transformative technology for high arch support.

Updated on May 3, 2024

Let’s tell a familiar tale. You’re about to try on the 5th pair of shoes that have claimed to be high arch shoes. You are cautiously optimistic. But as soon as you stand up, you find that these “good shoes for high arches” don’t even scratch the surface—of your sole. Our poor arch stays suspended in the air while the balls and heels of your feet are as cushioned as can be.

Sound a bit close to home? You may have high—or even extremely high—arches, and unfortunately the shoe market often doesn’t always cater to these lovely arched feet.

With KURU, your feet can experience the comfort they deserve with some of the best shoes for high arches. Each pair comes equipped with our proprietary blend of three layers of technology to offer superior, lasting arch support you can feel.

What are High Arches?

High arches, or Cavus foot, is a condition in which the arches of the feet rise off the ground in a more curved shape than normal. This arch type results in a diminished ability to absorb shock and can lead to supination, or the excessive leaning on the outer edge of the foot while walking.

Because the full sole of the foot doesn’t touch the floor in a highly arched foot, the midfoot goes unsupported while the balls and heels of the feet have to do all of the work. This can be a painful combination and lead to conditions such as plantar fasciitis—especially when you’re on your feet all day.

The best high arch shoes—women and men alike—feature high-quality arch support and shock-absorbing cushion to help create a supportive structure under your arches.

In addition, if you have high arches, it’s important to keep your feet strong and flexible to prevent pain and discomfort. One way to do this is by regularly stretching your toes and arches. Check out the video below demonstrating a toe extension and arch stretch for high arches.

  • Woman wearing KURU ATOM Slip-On best shoes for high arches.

Most Common Causes & Risk Factors for Developing High Arches

Though high arches can result from certain medical conditions, they are often inherited genetically just like their cousins, flat feet. Because the whole sole of the foot does not touch the floor with a high arch, it does not have the stability that a more neutral foot would. Therefore highly arched feet often struggle with ankle instability, supination, and frequent ankle sprains.

  • Genetic predisposition
    This refers to an individual’s increased likelihood of inheriting certain genetic traits that may increase their susceptibility to certain conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, or diabetes. These genetic predispositions can be inherited from one or both parents and can manifest in a variety of ways, ranging from mild to severe.
    Genetic predisposition
  • Neurological disorder
    A neurological disorder is a condition that affects the nervous system and can result in a wide range of symptoms, including tremors, seizures, memory loss, and difficulty with coordination and balance. Examples of neurological disorders include Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy.
    Neurological disorder
  • Medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, spina bifida or muscular dystrophy
    These medical conditions affect different parts of the body and can result in a range of physical and cognitive impairments. Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that affects movement and coordination, while Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is a genetic condition that affects the peripheral nervous system. Spina bifida is a birth defect that affects the spinal cord and can result in a range of physical disabilities, while muscular dystrophy is a group of genetic disorders that result in progressive muscle weakness and wasting.
    Medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, spina bifida or muscular dystrophy

Symptoms & Diagnosis

Although some people with high-arched feet will never experience symptoms, others may experience pain—sometimes in less obvious ways, such as shin splints or ankle sprains.

  • Supination, or excessive weight bearing on the outer edge of the foot
  • Consistent ankle sprains from lateral ankle instability
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (MTSS) —or shin splints
  • Reduced ability for your foot to absorb shock

Your doctor will be able to provide the best pathway forward for treating your unique case. For a few tips on conservative treatments you can try at home, check out our high arches treatment section below.

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Facts and Stats

  • About 20% of the US population has high arches.
  • Arches are typically measured using a standard arch index, which ranges from flat feet or low arches to medium to high or extremely high arches.
  • Those with naturally high arches are more likely to experience supination, or excessive weight distribution on the outer edge of the foot.
  • Highly arched feet do not absorb shock as effectively as a more medium arch would, so it’s important to wear shoes with arch support and cushion on a daily basis.

Treatment

To help treat painful symptoms of highly arched feet, we must start by supporting them.

Since the whole sole of the foot does not naturally touch the floor, shoes with quality arch support and shock absorption are key to help treat and prevent symptoms of high arches.

The best men’s and best women’s shoes for high arches feature the ultimate in arch support, meaning the sole should actually hug the entire arch—not simply the ball and heel of the foot. And since this arch type can’t always effectively absorb shock, high arch shoes for men and women should include a plush cushion within the footbed for shock-absorbing power.

  • Strengthen your feet, ankles, and calves with exercises for high arches
    Regular exercise can help improve the strength and stability of the muscles and ligaments in your feet, ankles, and calves. This can help reduce your risk of developing ankle sprains or other injuries, which are more common in individuals with high arches.
    Strengthen your feet, ankles, and calves with exercises for high arches
  • Wear high-quality footwear
    Proper footwear is essential for individuals with high arches, as it can help distribute weight evenly and reduce pressure on the feet. Look for shoes with ample arch support, a wide toe box, and a cushioned footbed. Avoid high heels and shoes with minimal arch support.
    Wear high-quality footwear
  • If you experience heel or arch pain, roll out your feet on a lacrosse or tennis ball
    This can help reduce pain and inflammation associated with plantar fasciitis, a common condition in individuals with high arches. Rolling your feet on a ball can also help improve circulation and relieve tension in the muscles of your feet and calves.
    If you experience heel or arch pain, roll out your feet on a lacrosse or tennis ball
  • See a physical therapist if needed
    If you experience persistent pain or discomfort in your feet, ankles, or calves, a physical therapist can help you develop a personalized treatment plan to address your specific needs. They may recommend stretching exercises, manual therapy, or other interventions to improve your range of motion, reduce pain, and improve overall foot health.
    See a physical therapist if needed

FAQs

  • How do I know if I have high arches?

    Though your doctor or podiatrist can give you an official diagnosis, you can perform a couple simple at-home checks to start.

    First, look at already worn-in shoes. Footwear that has excessive wear on the outer edge of the sole, but less on the inside, can be a symptom of supination, which usually exists in those with high arches.

    Second, get your bare foot wet and step on a dry piece of paper—preferably one that can absorb a bit of water. You likely have a high arch if you see only a thin line at the outer edge of your foot, or little to no imprint of the middle of your foot.

  • How do I know which shoe to buy for high arches?

    The best shoes for high arches—for men and women alike—offer extra support for arches and cushion that truly meets and molds to your arch. Whether you’re looking for casual shoes, dress shoes, or flip flops, KURUs line of high arch support shoes can help alleviate symptoms (including plantar fasciitis) for all-day pain relief.

  • I just received a pair of your shoes and my feet are sore/hurt after wearing them. Why is that?

    Some customers experience tenderness when they first start wearing a new pair of KURUs.That’s ok! Your body may need time to adjust to the new levels of anatomical support you experience with our patented KURUSOLE technology.

    Our shoes are also designed to mold to your unique foot shape, which takes a bit of a break-in period.

    To help mitigate this, we suggest you follow our break-in procedure, including wearing your KURUs for a couple hours perday around the house in the first couple of weeks as they break in and form to your foot.

  • How is the arch support of KURU shoes?

    KURU shoes deliver excellent arch support without the need for thick inserts or expensive, custom orthotics.

    Superior arch support starts with our patented KURUSOLE technology, which delivers natural cushioning and dynamically hugs your heel with every step. Every foot is unique, and our ULTIMATE INSOLES adapt to fit your needs by using your own body heat to custom-mold to the shape of your feet over time.

    The corrective nature of our superior arch support is designed to neutralize your weight distribution and place your foot in the best anatomical position. This support can take some getting used to. We suggest slowly breaking in your new shoes over the course of 2–3 weeks.

  • Can I use custom orthotics with KURU shoes?

    Due to the anatomical shape of the KURUSOLE, custom orthotics with a rounded heel fit best inside our shoes.

    If the underside of the custom orthotic (the part that sits on the footbed) is squared off, then it may not fit into our deep heel cup—which is rounded like your foot.

    That said, many of our customers tell us the KURUSOLE technology offers better support and stability than they expected, and they don’t need to wear their custom orthotics with KURU shoes.

Three Layers of Support

At KURU, we pride ourselves on our unique approach to shoe design. We believe that shoes should be shaped to fit the natural contours of your feet, which is why we create every pair in three distinct support layers, not just an insole.

 

Our revolutionary ergonomic design starts with a curved footbed and adds unparalleled triple-layer support that includes shock-absorbing KURUCLOUD, heel-cupping KURUSOLE, and arch-supporting ULTIMATE INSOLES. The result? Shoes that are so comfortable you’ll stop thinking about your feet.

  • 1

    KURUSOLE

  • 2

    KURUCLOUD

  • 3

    ULTIMATE INSOLE

  • How KURU brings relief

    KURUSOLE

    Our patented KURUSOLE plate protects and stabilizes the heel and provides dynamic flexion with each step. This plate extends from the arch to wrap around the heel—but not under it—to support and leverage your heel’s natural cushioning system: the fat pad.

Our Secret

Animated GIF showing KURUSOLE tech in KURU shoes vs. typical flat interiors for plantar fasciitis pain.
Why Others Love KURU

Why Others Love KURU

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ratings.

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Much needed relief! I have developed plantar fasciitis and have high arches. These shoes have helped so much that I am now interested in slippers to wear around the house (we have hard floors) and sandals for the summer. I can thank my husband for finding your company!

Heather M.

THE SHOES I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR. These shoes are truly the answers to my prayers. I’m a medical student who started clinical rotations in the hospital, and this is the 4th pair of shoes I’ve tried. Usually I finish the day with my feet and back hurting, but these shoes are so supportive, especially for someone with high arches! Definitely worth the purchase.

LIZ23

MARKETING CLAIMS NOT OVERSTATED. I have high arches and unfortunately Plantar Fasciitis. All I had available to me were these heel cups that you insert into your shoes. They work but are highly uncomfortable. These Kuru – Chicane are the answer to my problems. Plantar relief plus arch supports. All I could hope for.

ROBERT69

FANTASTIC SHOES. I’m never satisfied with my shoes. I’ve got high arches and a couple other issues. These shoes are great. They felt great right from the start.

LAURIE IN TENNESSEE

SO COMFORTABLE. When you buy their shoes you’ll get an email telling you about a break in period. You also get a note in the box when they arrive. I highly recommend this break in. The first two days I wore them for about 2 hours, felt great! The third day I got carried away and that wasn’t a good idea. I went a few more days at a couple of hours a day and now I LOVE THEM! I have a high arch and they feel wonderful!

KATCHER

BEST SHOES I’VE DANCED IN. This is my second pair of the exact same shoes! I love to dance Zumba and other dance fitness classes. I also happen to have high arches and have always developed cramps in my arches with other sneakers. Since purchasing my first pair of Kuru Atom shoes, I have never once developed any type of arch cramping or other foot pain. These shoes are so comfortable that they allowed me to visit a theme park 3 days in a row with no pain at the end of the night!

ZULY BRADEN

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Recommended Shoes For High Arches

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