Why You Need to Know Your Foot Type

We rarely think about our feet unless they’re hurting us. But our feet do much more than simply get us from here to there. They keep us standing and moving, they act as shock absorbers, and they support our entire body while maintaining alignment and balance.

What type of feet do you have?

Knowing your foot type tells you what kinds of foot issues you’re at risk for, and what you can do to treat or prevent those issues. The most common foot types are:

Medium arch (neutral foot): Your footprint reveals that your heel, ball of foot and big toe are all equally visible. This is the most biomechanically efficient type of foot, with less risk of common foot problems, though they are still at risk of foot conditions as a result of improperly-fitting shoes or repetitive stress injuries from everyday stress and pressure.

High arch (pes cavus): This foot print shows just a small part of the heel and ball of the foot, indicated high arches and toes that barely touch the ground. Motion causes shock to be absorbed mostly by the hell and ball of the foot, which can lead to repetitive stress issues and heel pain, plantar fasciitis, arch strain, metatarsalgia, and claw toes. High arches can lead to supination, with the footprint resembling a C shape, showing most weight put on the outside edge of the foot. Excessive supination can strain the ankle muscles and tendons, and lessen ankle flexibility. This can force the smaller toes to work harder and lessen the efficiency of walking and running.

Low arch (flat foot): The whole foot shows up in a footprint. A flat foot pronates—or falls inward—which reduces stability, and can stress or inflame the plantar fascia pain and other problems, heel spurs, knee discomfort, posterior tibial muscle tendonitis and bunions.

Some good news: it’s important to know that not all pronation or supination is harmful. Problems are more likely when the feet go too far in either direction. And not all people with flat feet or low arches pronate, nor do all people with high arches supinate.

To make things even more complicated, no two feet are identical—not even your left and right feet! That’s why, no matter what kind of feet you have, expert guidance can help to treat, relieve and even prevent many foot conditions. At Foot Solutions, our experienced staff of Foot Care Specialists measure and evaluate every aspect of your feet, from length and width to how your weight is distributed when you walk, and the impact on your posture and balance.

But that’s not all! We also take the time to get to know you, your overall health picture, your lifestyle and your goals—whether it’s getting or staying fit, being able to stand or walk without pain, or improving your overall posture, balance, alignment and health.

Once we have that information, we can help determine the very best solution for your very individual feet, and help you choose from a wide selection of stylish, top-quality shoes, and a range of accommodative arch supports. Learn more about your feet with our FREE Holistic Foot Analysis and expert recommendations. Click here to find the store nearest you, and book an appointment today. You—and your feet—deserve the best!