Are you tired of your flat feet getting in the way of a productive hike? Do you find that after just an hour or so on the trail, you’re wincing because of your flat and aching feet? If you answered “yes” to either one or both of these questions, this informative guide and review are for you.
To discover exactly what you need to look for when shopping for the best hiking shoes for flat feet, plus the top 5 hiking boots for flat feet we bet you didn’t know about, read on ahead!
The top 5 hiking shoes for flat feet we recommend for 2021:
If you’re not 100% sure what flat feet are or if you have them, here’s a quick overview:
Having flat feet means you have fallen arches which aren’t elevated to the middle of your foot as normal.
The arches in your feet are supported by tendons connecting the heel and toes in order to keep you stable and reinforced your foot when walking. In feet with regular arches, your tendons take the force of impact from regular activities like walking and develop a definite arch.
If the tendons deteriorate, either as the result of a medical disorder, injury, genetics, or otherwise, this can impede your movement. It can also reduce the support your feet lend when you are standing or walking.
Everyone is born with flat feet. Most people’s feet develop arches, but some remain flat or pronated. Signs of flat feet include swelling in the bottom of your feet, discomfort in your toes and arch areas, and difficulty standing up on your toes. If you find that hiking for short periods out on the trail makes your feet tired and ache incessantly, these are also symptoms of flat feet.
From genetics to an injury to arthritis and beyond, there are plenty of reasons individuals have to grapple with flat feet. The good news is, you’re not alone. There is plenty you can do to increase your comfort and support your low volume arches with the best hiking boots for flat feet.
Let’s take a look at the key features you need to look for when searching for the best hiking shoes for your flat or pronated feet.
The first feature you should look for when on the hunt for the best hiking shoes for flat feet (or any arch type for that matter) is a waterproof design. Without a waterproof exterior, moisture will seep through the lining of your hiking boots, which could make the leather shrink, crack, and warp. Water damage will not only affect the design of your hiking shoes, but the shrinkage and warping could cause additional discomfort to your flat feet, impeding your stability when out on the trail.
The best hiking shoes for flat feet are waterproof and properly support your arches so you can focus on the road ahead and not on your aching tendons.
If you have flat feet, it is very possible that your feet roll inward when you walk or stand. As a result, this not only weakens your arches but can prove to be very destabilizing for your ankles. So, the next thing you need to look for when picking out the best hiking shoes for flat feet is footwear that offers ankle and arch assistance.
If you’re tired of your hikes causing you pain, there is an easy way to find relief. Your hiking shoes can give you the proper ankle and arch support you need. Not only will you be more comfortable when embarking on your outdoor adventures, but the right support will provide additional stability.
The best hiking boots for flat feet with sufficient ankle and arch support help distribute your body weight on your feet more evenly. If you place too much weight on a single region of your feet, you risk strain, twists, and sprains.
The fit is another key factor to consider when selecting the best hiking shoes for flat feet. With flat feet, it is paramount that your shoes fit snug against your foot and don’t leave too much room where there could be a risk of slippage.
It’s essential to ensure that your hiking shoes aren’t so loose that your feet are slipping around, but they also shouldn’t be so narrow or tight that they cause irritation and blisters.
Always pay close attention to the sizing of any hiking shoes you buy to ensure you select the fit that is right for your flat feet.
If you have flat feet, they are going to bear the brunt of your hike much more than if you had more defined arches to distribute the impact. As such, the next feature you need to look for when purchasing the best hiking shoes for flat feet is sufficient padding.
The footbed of your hiking shoes should be padded enough to sculpt your feet into an arch while you hike without causing fatigue or pain. The right padding will help make your outdoor experience way more comfortable while maintaining the proper construction and support for your feet.
The material your hiking shoes are manufactured from is another critical feature you’ll need to consider when buying the best hiking shoes for flat feet. It is better to invest in shoes made with quality material that will both offer support and stand the test of time rather than select a cheaper option that lacks durability and will wear out too soon.
The best hiking shoes for flat feet are made from quality synthetic or leather, which not only offer great longevity of use but are very sturdy as well. These materials will give you the support you need in the long run and won’t wear out after a few intense hikes.
You always want to make sure your hiking shoe materials provide sufficient ventilation too, so your feet won’t get all hot and sweaty after a lengthy outdoor excursion.
Now it’s time to take a look at the top 5 best hiking shoes for flat feet. Check these out and keep reading to access our pick for the final winner from the group!
The first best hiking shoes for flat feet on our list are by Vasque. These are a great choice for more moderate hikers who don’t need super rugged boots but still want a durable pair. We like how light these shoes are, so you won’t feel weighed down when you put them on.
These hiking boots are manufactured from durable Gore-Tex fabric and nubuck leather, which means that they are both waterproof and dust resistant.
We were duly impressed by the cushioned toe and heel areas, which will enhance your comfort on the road but also provide you with essential ventilation. If you find that areas like your heel and toe seem to bear the brunt of your hikes from uneven weight distribution, these hiking boots could be just what you’re looking for.
The Vasque Men’s Breeze Waterproof Hiking Boot also sports a quality TPA midsole to support your arches and provide you with the stability you require. We would say that the arch is not as stiff as other products on the market, but this also means your break-in time will be lessened greatly.
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The next best hiking shoes for flat feet on our list incorporate some cool technological features that we really loved. The Lowa Men’s Renegade GTX Mid Hiking Boot definitely offers the shock absorption, comfort, and sturdiness you’ll require, with a TPU midsole that conforms to your feet.
We were glad to see that these hiking boots sport a reinforced insole to reduce the brunt of the impact from your hikes, with a stacked heel to provide relief for even the flattest of feet.
One astounding feature that stood out to us was these boots’ climate controlled footbed. The footbed is moisture wicking, so even on a tough hike when you’re sweating buckets, these shoes will keep your feet nice and dry. These hiking shoes also sport integrated ventilation, which is a must for long, hot hikes.
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These best hiking shoes for flat feet on our list are a rugged pair by Salomon. We love how lightweight these hiking boots are, featuring a waterproof, leather design that will serve you well for many trips ahead.
We loved that these best hiking shoes for flat feet feature dual-density midsoles to give you the arch support you need, while still being durable enough to hold up well against tough terrain.
Another cool feature is the built-in sock liners that reduce shock impact on your feet when hiking while fighting excess moisture and unpleasant odors. The boots have exceptional traction, so whether you’re going on a light hike or a rugged wilderness expedition, these hiking shoes will remain impervious. While these best hiking boots for flat feet are definitely on the more expensive side, the investment for your flat feet could be well worth it.
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The Merrell Moab Ventilator Mid Hiking Shoe made it to our list of the best hiking shoes for flat feet for its impact absorbent air pockets and durable leather and mesh design. We love that these shoes are slip resistant, so if you find that you lose your balance sometimes on a hike these could be your new favorite.
You’ll have plenty of traction on both wet and dry terrain, making these hiking shoes a great option for a wide range of hiking excursions.
We were also glad to see that the Merrell Moab Ventilator Mid Hiking Shoe features the M Select Fresh insole, to ward off excess sweat and moisture. Merrel’s proprietary built-in M Select Fresh technology stops bacteria from gathering, wicking moisture and preventing unwanted odors.
The footbed of these hiking shoes provides sufficient cushion so your feet won’t bear the brunt of shock when hiking, plus quality ankle support for optimal stability.
The only real downside for us is that these hiking boots are manufactured from partly synthetic materials, rather than leather. They might not last as long if you take frequent hikes on rough terrain, but for more moderate hikers you’re good to go.
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The final best hiking shoes for flat feet selection on our list are the Dunham Men’s Cloud Mid-Cut Waterproof Boot. These hiking shoes will provide the comfort and sturdy qualities you’re looking for without breaking the bank, which is always a huge plus in our book.
These hiking boots are a great option for light to moderate hikers, with a dependable, waterproof design and cushioned interior.
We liked the Memory Foam footbed and the removable molded interior that supports your foot while giving you the optimal comfort you’ll require. Even better, you can purchase the Durham Men’s Cloud Mid-Cut Waterproof boot in a range of extended sizes and widths to conform to an array of foot needs.
The quality leather design is highly durable while remaining resistant to weather elements, while the outsole grip provides impressive traction for any surface.
Another element that makes these hiking shoes so great for flat feet are the built-in rollbars to fight the overpronation that most people with flat feet experience. With a padded collar and shoe tongue, you’ll easily feel like you’re walking on air in these boots.
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And the winner is — the Salomon Men's Quest 4D 2 GTX Lightweight & Durable Leather / Canvas Hiking Boot! There were so many things we liked about these best hiking shoes for flat feet, from their dual density midsoles to built-in liners that provide impressive shock absorption.
The traction you’ll get from these boots is exceptional, plus the waterproof, leather exterior is durable to face any type of weather condition or terrain you’ll be dealing with. We loved the arch support the Salomon hiking boots provide, which is a must to keep your arches and ankles stable and comfortable. For quality, dependability, comfort, and support, the Salomon Men's Quest 4D 2 GTX Hiking Boot is a worthy investment.