Do your feet hurt daily, or shortly after starting your session? It’s possible that you have flat feet, and may require a skate shoe with more support. This article will go through some of the shoe options that are available for better support of your feet.
Basically, Flat Feet is when arches of the foot collapse with the entire sole of the foot coming into complete or near-complete contact with the ground. This can create problems with your joints and ligaments and can through your body out of alignment. Flat feet can be a painful condition, which requires you to have a better supported arch to alleviate the pain and help realign your joints.
Are Skate Shoes Supportive?
Generally speaking, not in the least just have a look at your skate shoes.
- They have a flat outsole, which allows the bottom of the shoe to completely touch the ground and your board.
- Take out the insole. The insole is probably a very thin flat layer of some sort foam. The insole is designed to help take some of the impacts from jumping, but it is quite thin. The longer you wear the shoe, the more compacted that insole gets, and offers even less support, or relief.
- What is under the insole? The midsole is likely a flat piece of cardboard-like material or a fabric material sewn to the outsole. It probably doesn’t have any arch support either.
Look at a pair of running shoes now. The outsole is not flat and is contoured so that only certain parts of the sole touch the ground. The insole may be a foam and will have some kind of contour to it to properly fit in the shoe, and arch support. The midsole may also have arch support; the raised piece in the middle of the shoe where your arch would sit.
What Shoes Should I Pick?
It has been understood that cup soled shoes (generally the outsole is glued, and or sewn to the upper of the shoe) offer better support and stability for your feet and ankles, than a vulcanized shoe (the outsole is attached to the upper with a ribbon of rubber holding the two pieces together).
The vulcanized shoe offers a better board feel than a cup soled shoe. However, skateboarding shoe manufacturers are now making shoes that offer greater support for flat-footed people than ever before. Let’s look at some of the best options out there right now.
FP Footware is leading the industry with its revolutionary shoe design. Their shoes are designed to support your foot, and for maximum impact absorption, but also to maximize board feel. It seems like a difficult feat, but FP has accomplished this and now offers 6 models of shoes in different colorways. 4 cup sole and 2 vulcanized.
How they do this:
- Bio Mechanically correct outsole – They hollowed out the traditional outsole and left an anatomically correct heel cup and arch support to distribute impact force across the entire surface of the heel.
- DGS outsole – They filled the hollow area with FluidX Non-Newtonian Protection™ due to its unique adaptive properties. The outsole is more flexible, has better board feel and absorbs at least twice as much energy as traditional vulc or cupsoles.
With all the science and technology behind FP Footwear, they probably make the most supportive shoe in the skate industry. Definitely a shoe for the flat-footed, or people who suffer from fatigue
Nike is one of the biggest athletic shoe manufacturers in the world, and their skateboarding line is one of the most popular shoes for skaters. While the shoes are not built to be supportive themselves, Nike SB offers high tops, low tops, vulcanized, cup sole, and a variety of different support technologies. I don’t think you’ll have any problems finding a shoe that fits (Pun intended).
Let’s look at some of their more supportive options they have available with different models of shoes:
- Nike SB Zoom Stefan Janoski- Zoom Air unit in the sockliner provides responsive cushioning. Sockliner has been re-engineered for improved cushioning and lasting comfort
- Dunk High Pro- A Zoom Air unit in the heel and a padded tongue create a comfortable fit that's made to skate.
- Air Max Stefan Janoski 2- Max Air unit in the heel cushions every step, while a flat rubber outsole optimises grip when you're on your board. Full-length IP foam midsole provides superior comfort and cushioning.
Nike SB offers some very comfortable skate shoes that, while not offering extra arch support, should help to reduce fatigue, and allow you to rip for a little longer.
We could not have a skate shoes list without mentioning the most iconic skate shoe manufacturer, Vans. Historically, Vans have had one of the flattest and the least supportive shoe on the market. However, they have made some big advances with their “Pro” lines that offer ample support and still provide board feel.
- Checkerboard Slip-On Pro- The classic Vans shoe now features an UltraCush HD sockliners to keep the foot close to the board while providing the highest level of impact cushioning.
- Gilbert Crockett 2 Pro- The enhanced footbeds deliver superior cushioning and impact protection and the revolutionary Wafflecup construction offers the support of a cupsole without sacrificing any of the grip or boardfeel of a traditional vulcanized shoe. They also feature the UltraCush 3D sockliners
- Rowan Pro- featuring Vans’ all-new PopCush sockliners for superior cushioning, and reduced fatigue
If you are looking for the classic skate shoe, with maximum grip and boardfeel, but still need that extra support for your flat feet, the new Vans Pro models should help you find what you might be looking for.
eS has been a market leader in skate shoe technology since its inception in 1995. Not only have they made some of the most iconic shoes but they have also made comfortable and supportive shoes, for people that need them. Here are some of their models of note:
- TRIBO- Built-up arch support, System O2 Air-Bag for impact resistance, and a PolyUrethane midsole for supreme comfort
- Silo – Key features are STI Energy Foam MidSole for Supreme Comfort and a molded energy foam insole for proper foot support and comfort.
- Accell OG- The most iconic and respected skate shoe in the world features die-cut STI Energy foam insoles, and die-cut EVA midsole.
If you are looking for a shoe with lots of support and features which will keep your flat feet from hurting, look no further than eS shoes. They have features that provide comfort, protection, and arch support.
Maybe you really like skating the thin shoes that have no arch supports, or molded insoles, and refuse to deviate to a bigger, more supportive shoe. Well, don’t worry because you can also just replace the insoles in your favorite shoes. Since I already covered insoles for flat feet, I’ll keep this short.
The folks over at FP Footwear also make insoles. They have different styles and thicknesses depending on your shoes, and how flat your feet are. Footprint Insoles are custom orthotics. This means that they are completely customized to your personal feet, and shoes.
Simply heat the insole for several minutes in the oven, and they become pliable. Put them in your shoes, put your feet in your shoes, and either walk around or just apply pressure to them in order for them to mold to the shape you need. FP Insoles will provide you with Increase Balance and performance time.
They stop The Arch From Collapsing (Overpronation), can help prevent arthritis from uneven cartilage wear and can prevent acute injury such as torn ACL. FP Insoles are an exceptional product that can help keep your feet and joints in good shape, and prevent the fatigue that keeps you from skating.
Remind insoles have some really advanced features that will help to keep your feet healthy and keep you skating. They offer 3 different insoles to fit in your shoe, and suit your foot needs. All of the models all feature one or several layers of foam impact rebound system.
It’s anti-microbial and anti-friction fabric systems reduce hot spots and blisters, keeps the feet cool, dry, odorless and gives you excellent foot grip for enhanced control and stability.
Remind Insoles have a technology they call Blue Magic, which is a state of the art shock absorbing smart foam that will out-perform any other product on the market. Blue Magic can absorb massive amounts of energy while maintaining a soft feel.
They also have ANATOMICAL ARCH SUPPORT which is Bio-mechanically engineered for proper anatomical alignment. This enhances your performance and provides joint pressure relief. Remind also makes a moldable option, which similar to FP, you heat up so it can mold to the shape of your foot and shoe.
Dr. Scholl’s Athletic Sport Insoles
These ones are going to likely be the cheaper and less effective option for you. But unlike the others, these can be found at several stores in your town. Dr. Scholl’s Athletic Series Sport Insoles were designed for people who participate in a range of athletic activities where they experience muscle fatigue in the feet and legs.
Designed with Massaging Gel Advanced technology, which allows our athletic insoles to reduce stress on your lower body joints and keeps you on your feet longer. They have a flexible arch and lateral support to provide motion control for stopping and cutting, which means your foot won’t slide around in your shoe as much during ollies, stalls, and flip tricks.
Flat feet suck, and I know. I spend a lot of time on my feet at work, and at home. It can be quite painful and tiring. It’s hard on your joint and your muscles. I need to be very careful about the shoes I buy.
My feet hurt badly, and then my calves start to cramp up when I am skating in a thin-soled shoe with no arch supports, but If I have the proper footwear, my session is longer, and my skating is so much better.