Best Running Shoes for High Arches: Stay Comfortable, Supported, and Injury-Free

Person running in the Best Running Shoes for High Arches


A runner with high arches ends up putting more pressure on the ball and heel of their foot. In turn, this could lead to aches and pains and potentially even injury. The solution? Look for a shoe that is well cushioned and has the appropriate amount of arch support. But before you dive into specific shoes, it might be worth checking to see if your arches are actually high. A physical therapist, podiatrist, or specialty running shoe shop may be able to physically examine your feet and/or shoes for signs of high arches and supination (e.g., underpronating). Underpronating is when you roll excessively outward upon impact. High arches and underpronation often go hand in hand, but not always.

If you'd like to check your arch height at home, you can do something called the wet test. Grab a piece of paper, then wet the bottoms of your feet. Step on the dry paper with your wet feet and then carefully step off. If you have high arches, you'll likely see only the ball and heel of your foot. Runners with normal arches will likely see a small strip of arch, while flat-footed runners will see the majority of their arch imprinted on the paper.

Once you've determined if you have high arches, you can start looking for the best running shoes. Take a look at our shoe list below and compare the specs to find just the right pair. Some runners prefer a softer, cushioned feel while others do best with more support and rigidity. It may take a bit of trial and error to find the best shoe, so if you order online, consider buying a few pairs to try out. (After you check the return policy, of course!)

Many runners with high arches find that they need an orthotic to properly support their stride. Orthotics can be purchased either over the counter (e.g., from a running store) or they can be custom-made. Look for a shoe with a removable insole and plenty of room in the toe box. This will make it easier to swap in an orthotic if you decide to go that route.

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The Best Running Shoes for High Arches - Our Top Picks

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Best Overall Running Shoes for High Arches - Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 39

Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 39

SPECS

  • Upper material: Engineered Mesh
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: More than half a dozen color options, including an option to design your own colorway

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The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 39 is made to be the most reliable running shoe in your collection, a workhorse that will offer you maximum comfort and performance each and every day. It's an especially supportive option for runners who happen to have higher arches, with flywire technology that keeps your foot comfortably in place.

We also cheer for the engineered mesh upper, which offers lightweight breathability but also delivers more stability than your average mesh. Meanwhile, Zoom Air cushioning is available at the heel and the forefoot, providing liftoff and propulsion at every step. You get all of that, plus a rubber outsole that offers durability and traction, ideal for off-road running expeditions.

What We Like

  • Flexible and lightweight, but also strong and supportive
  • Cushioning at heel and forefoot
  • Sporty, contemporary style
  • Rubber outsoles ensure traction

What We Don't Like

  • Not recommended for wider feet
  • Women's sizes are a bit more limited

BUY: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 39

Best Running Shoes for Narrow Feet and High Arches - adidas Ultraboost 22 Road-Running Shoes

adidas Ultraboost 22 Road-Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Primeknit synthetic upper
  • Outsole: Continental™ rubber
  • Color options: Core Black/Matte Silver/Beam, Core Black/White/Solar, Footwear White/Bliss, White/Grey One/Almost, Wonder Oxide/Off White

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If your feet are on the narrow side, don't miss the adidas Ultraboost 22s. These neutral trainers are packed full of Ultraboost foam cushioning and feature a maximal stack height to support your high arches. The shoe's Primeknit upper contains 50 percent recycled materials and features extra foam around the heel to minimize blisters. The stretchy knit upper and extended heel tab lock in fit and keep your foot secure.

Beyond its cushy feel and fashion-forward design, the Ultraboost 22 is also a good choice for a variety of road conditions. Its outsole is made of Continental™ rubber (yep, the same company that makes car tires), so you'll have a good grip on the road regardless of whether it's dry or slick with rain and leaves.

What We Like

  • Aesthetically pleasing style; you'll want to wear these shoes with jeans!
  • Ultraboost foam is soft and comfy
  • Grippy Continental™ rubber works well in both wet and dry conditions

What We Don't Like

  • Likely won't work for wider feet
  • Ultraboost foam doesn't have the best energy return

BUY: adidas Ultraboost 22 Road-Running Shoes

Best Road-Running Shoes for High Arches - Reebok Floatride Energy 4 Adventure Running Shoes

Reebok Floatride Energy 4 Adventure Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Recycled plastic ripstop
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: Black/Grey/White; Grey/Teal/Orange; Orange/Lilac/Acid Yellow

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The Floatride Energy 4 Adventure Running Shoes are uniquely designed to accommodate two different needs: The need for high arch support, and the need for durability even in off-road environments. Built with versatility in mind, these shoes offer the lightweight feel you want in a running shoe, with an outsole that's strong enough to withstand gravel or similarly rocky terrain.

Those who want eco-friendly shoes will love the fact that these are made with at least 30 percent recycled materials. And from a style point of view, all three colorways are vivid, sharp, and timeless.

What We Like

  • Made with 30% recycled materials
  • Durable outsoles
  • Lightweight, flexible feel
  • Ample foam cushioning
  • Modest price point

What We Don't Like

  • Somewhat limited size range
  • Not recommended for wide feet
  • Will take a couple of runs to break them in

BUY: Floatride Energy 4 Adventure Men's Running Shoes

Best HOKA Running Shoes for High Arches - HOKA Clifton 8 Road-Running Shoes

HOKA Clifton 8 Road-Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Vegan engineered mesh
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: Anthracite/Copper, Aquarelle/Eggshell Blue, White/Black, Blanc de Blanc/White, Cantaloupe/Silver Peony, Grape Wine/Beautyberry, Summer Song/Ice Flow

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With superlight EVA foam cushioning and a breathable upper, the HOKA Clifton 8 is updated and lighter than before. This high-stack, maximum-cushioned shoe has a number of other extras that make it special; wearers love the extended heel pull tabs for easy entry and the durable outsole.

The Clifton's also feature HOKA's proprietary early-stage Meta-Rocker which features a curved design and offers a smooth ride. For runners with high arches looking for a versatile and well-cushioned shoe, the Clifton 8s are worth a try. Wearers report that they feel a bit narrower than average, so you may want to look into the wide size.

What We Like

  • Great outsole traction
  • Versatile shoe—works for long, slow runs and speedier efforts
  • Good support in the midsole for high arches

What We Don't Like

  • Narrower than average fit
  • EVA foam doesn't have the best energy return

BUY: HOKA Clifton 8 Road-Running Shoes

Best Trail Running Shoes for High Arches - Nike React Pegasus Trail 4

Nike React Pegasus Trail 4

SPECS

  • Upper material: GORE-TEX
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: 5 unique colorways for men and 4 for women

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The Nike React Pegasus Trail 4 is an ideal companion for running off the beaten path. Designed to withstand rocky and uneven terrain as well as inclement weather, these shoes will offer superior comfort (and high arch support) no matter the conditions.

Start with the GORE-TEX materials used on the upper, designed to keep inclement elements (including sloshing rainwater) out of your shoe. The outsoles are designed with less rubber than normal, creating a smooth transition from paved to off-road surfaces. And the lightweight, durable foam offers outstanding stability.

What We Like

  • Excellent for weathering inclement elements
  • Great transitions from paved to unpaved surfaces
  • Lightweight and breathable

What We Don't Like

  • Higher price point
  • No extra-wide sizes available

BUY: Nike React Pegasus Trail 4

Best Running Shoes for Wide Feet and High Arches - adidas Terrex Two Ultra Trail

adidas Terrex Two Ultra Trail

SPECS

  • Upper material: adidas Primeknit
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: Steel/Grey/Orange; Black/Grey

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It can be challenging to find a running shoe that accommodates both extra-wide feet and extra-high arches. That's what makes the adidas Terrex Two Ultra Trail shoe so special. This is the running shoe we recommend for anyone whose foot size and shape demand something precisely-fitted and immaculately designed.

There's certainly a lot to love about this shoe, starting with the BOOST midsole, designed to offer extra comfort and support even on the rockiest terrain. In addition to all-day support, these shoes also provide an all-condition grip, thanks to the rubber outsole.

What We Like

  • Superior traction
  • All-day cushioning and support
  • Sleek, elegant design

What We Don't Like

  • Fairly limited color selections
  • Not as well-suited for running in wet or inclement weather

BUY: adidas Terrex Two Ultra Trail

Best Running Shoes for Shin Splints and High Arches - Reebok Trail Cruiser

Reebok Trail Cruiser

SPECS

  • Upper material: Ripstop
  • Outsole: Textured Rubber
  • Color options: Black/Rubber-Gum/Moondust; Grey/Acid Yellow; White/Red/Army Green

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The Reebok Trail Cruiser is one of the most supportive and durable running shoes around, well-suited not only for those with high arches but also for those with recurring shin splints. That's largely thanks to the FuelFoam midsole, which offers the ideal balance of comfort and support.

Additionally, we love the durable yet lightweight ripstop uppers. The textured rubber outsoles offer plenty of grip, no matter the conditions. These shoes are made to be abrasion-proof, and they're equally well-suited for trail runs and for walking around town.

What We Like

  • Excellent balance of comfort and support
  • Abrasion-resistant
  • Stylish design
  • Modest price point

What We Don't Like

  • No extra-wide sizes available
  • Not as well-suited for longer runs

BUY: Reebok Trail Cruiser

Best ASICS Running Shoes for High Arches - ASICS GT-2000 11 Road-Running Shoes

ASICS GT-2000 10 Road-Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Synthetic polyester knit
  • Outsole: ASICS High Abrasion Rubber (AHAR)
  • Color options: 17 colorways

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The GT-2000 used to be marketed as a stability shoe, but it's now veering into the neutral trainer category. Regardless of what you want to call it, it's a supportive trainer that can work for a variety of runners. The synthetic knit upper is both lightweight and supportive—ideal for locking in fit. And the combination of FLYTEFOAM™ Propel cushioning and GEL™ technology cushioning in the heel absorbs impact extremely well, a must if you have high arches.

For runners needing a bit of extra support, the LITETRUSS™ technology is still around to prevent excess movement in the foot. While it has plenty of support, the lightweight and 8mm drop keep this shoe inching toward the category of neutral trainers.

What We Like

  • Numerous color options
  • Durable outsole with a great grip
  • Supportive knit upper
  • One of the lightest shoes on our list

What We Don't Like

  • 8mm drop can take some getting used to
  • Reviewers say the laces feel overly long

BUY: ASICS GT-2000 10 Road-Running Shoes

Best Brooks Running Shoes for High Arches - Brooks Ghost 14 GTX Road-Running Shoes

Brooks Ghost 14 GTX Road-Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Synthetic mesh
  • Outsole: Rubber
  • Color options: Black/Blackened Pearl/Aqua

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If you often log miles in rainy or muddy conditions, you know all too well the pain of soggy feet. Thanks to the lightweight GORE-TEX® Invisible Fit membranes in these shoes, your toes will stay dry and blister-free. The membranes are bonded directly to the synthetic uppers, so you won't sacrifice breathability and fit for waterproof protection.

And for your high arches, the Brooks Ghost 14 GTX delivers plenty of cushioning. These neutral shoes contain DNA loft cushioning and segmented crash pads for a smooth ride and 3D Fit Print construction in the heel locks the fit into place. These shoes shine on soggy days, but their moderate weight (about 9 ounces per shoe for Women), makes them a great choice for everyday runs and long efforts, as well.

What We Like

  • GORE-TEX® upper for comfy, waterproof runs
  • Soft cushioning in the midfoot
  • 3D Fit Print construction in the heel prevents slippage

What We Don't Like

  • Best for rainy and muddy rains—not speed work
  • Reviewers say the laces have a tendency to come undone

BUY: Brooks Ghost 14 GTX Road-Running Shoes

Best New Balance Running Shoes for High Arches - New Balance Fresh Foam 880v12 Road-Running Shoes

New Balance Fresh Foam 880v12 Road-Running Shoes

SPECS

  • Upper material: Double jacquard mesh
  • Outsole: Blown rubber
  • Color options: Libra/Vibrant Pink/Vibrant, Night Air/Libra/Night Sky

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If you're searching for a shoe that will please the widest number of runners, the New Balance 880 just might be it. With its 10-millimeter drop and Goldilocks cushioning, the 880 is a good choice for most runners. The shoe features a dual-density foam midsole and a durable rubber outsole that will hold up to training.

This go-to running shoe also features a nice double jacquard mesh upper to lock in fit and support the foot. And the heel and tongue are well-padded. Wearers reported that this shoe felt a bit roomy in the upper, but if you have high arches or wide feet, that might be just what you need.

What We Like

  • Works for a wide variety of runners
  • Durable rubber outsole resists signs of wear
  • Roomy upper accommodates wide feet

What We Don't Like

  • Outsole best suited for roads; not grippy enough for slick or unstable trails
  • Double jacquard mesh upper can get sweaty during warmer runs

BUY: New Balance Fresh Foam 880v12 Road-Running Shoes

How to Choose the Best Running Shoes for High Arches

Runners with high arches are often (but not always!) underpronators. With underpronation, aka supination, the foot rolls excessively outward upon impact and this may cause aches and pains in the feet. As you select shoes, look for a wide-toe box as high-arched runners often put more pressure on the front of the foot. If the toes are cramped this could lead to issues like hammer toes or bunions. Pay attention to the following when evaluating the best shoes for high arches:

Level of Stability

Runners with high arches often do well in neutral or cushioned shoes. Unlike their flat-footed counterparts, they don't need motion control features like medial posts or guard rails.

Amount of Cushioning

Look for extra softness and bounce if you have high arches. Some extra cushioning can help with shock absorption, which is often lacking when you've got high arches. In general, you probably don't want a minimalist shoe. Instead, look for something with a higher stack height and a thicker sole.

Arch Support

Extra midfoot support is key in mitigating the effects of high arches and/or underpronation. Look for shoes with plenty of cushioning in and around the arch. Some runners with high arches find relief with orthotics, either over-the-counter or custom options.

FAQs About Running Shoes for High Arches


Are high arches good for running?

This really depends on the individual. Some runners with high arches never experience aches or injuries while others endure a lot of foot issues. Since everyone's biomechanics are different, it's tough to say whether high arches are good or bad. However, if you can find a pair of shoes designed for your foot type, you'll be less likely to experience problems.

What problems can high arches cause?

As there is more force on the ball of the foot and heel (and less shock absorption), high arches can lead to conditions like hammer toes, bunions, and sometimes stress fractures in the metatarsal. High arches are also associated with ankle instability, increasing the risk of strains and sprains.

Are memory foam shoes good for high arches?

In general, yes. To support the foot and absorb impact, look for shoes with extra cushioning. Runners with high arches may do especially well with memory foam in their shoes since it molds to the shape of the foot and can provide support for the arch.

About the Author

Megan Harrington

Megan is a runner and writer who resides in upstate New York. She is a former collegiate runner and regularly competes in marathons. Megan uses her personal experience in competitive running to review fitness equipment and write running guides.

See More from Megan

Megan is a runner and writer who resides in upstate New York. She is a former collegiate runner and regularly competes in marathons. Megan uses her personal experience in competitive running to review fitness equipment and write running guides.

See More from Megan

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