7 Best Running Shoes For High Arches in 2024

Jovana Subic
Jovana Subic on
7 Best Running Shoes For High Arches in 2024
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The high-arched feet, or cavus feet, have arches (soles) that are higher than normal. This leads to uneven pressure distribution in the feet, which might cause pain and balance issues. Not every high-arched condition should be treated, it depends on how you experience the symptoms, if at all.

The most suitable type of running shoes for high arches is neutral running shoes, those that don’t have any supportive elements (like stability and motion control shoes). We are fully aware that it is quite a selection since they make up 85% of all running shoes on the market. So we are here to come to your aid! Enjoy our top picks for high arches, they are a result of rigorous testing both in the lab and on the test runs.

NOTE: If you’re experiencing severe pain caused by high arches, consult a physiotherapist or podiatrist instead of reading this guide. 

Disclaimer: The purpose of this guide is to educate, not to make any medical diagnosis or recommendation.

How we test running shoes

We spend at least 7 hours on each shoe review to save you time in finding the best match for your running needs.

With our independent shoe testing lab and a team of dedicated runners, we never miss a shoe release. Here is how we test each pair of running shoes before claiming it the best for high arches:

  • We run at least 30-50 miles in the shoe to get a good feel of its support, comfort, and performance in a variety of conditions.
  • We take the shoe back to our lab, cut it into pieces, and measure every imaginable parameter, including weight, stack, drop, softness, flexibility, (even shoelace slippage!), among 30 others.
  • We receive no free shoes from the brands and purchase them with our own money to stay transparent.

Best daily running shoes for high arches

Nike Pegasus 40

What makes it the best?

After intensive lab and run trials, the 40th version of Nike Pegasus is our best daily trainer among high-arch running shoes. For such a number of editions, the Pegasus has captured the essence of a daily trainer with its natural feel, grounded yet protective stack, and robust outsole. As a well-rounded pair, we faced whatever run training we had effortlessly.

The Peg boasts multiple grooves along its length leading to unrestricted movements in our runs. As a non-plated shoe, it felt easy to maneuver, which is ideal for a daily trainer. Our bend test confirms it’s 45.6% more flexible than average—a crucial element for comfort. Moving to the midsole, a React foam with two Air Zoom units unveils itself as we split it into two. The ride feels very balanced with some stability, good ground feel, and enough cushioning for long miles. Our lab reveals a below-average 30.52/20.5 stack, with a composition 24.8% softer than average for comfort. The shoe boasts a durable outsole with exceptional grip during our runs. With a thickness of 3.4 mm and an 86.0 HC toughness, it surpasses the 3.2 mm/80.3 HC average. Even after extensive outdoor use, the outsole shows minimal signs of wear, promising a long lifespan for daily mileage.

Unfortunately, it lacks ventilation and feels toasty on humid days. We recommend exploring other pairs for summer training.


  • Plush and comfortable upper
  • Breathable
  • Secure lockdown
  • Has enough toe-box space
  • Not overly soft or firm underfoot
  • Good energy return
  • Great grip on most surfaces
  • Incredible durability
  • Perfect for everyday miles and LSDs


  • A generally narrow fit
  • Heavier than the v39
  • Not a very memorable ride
Full review of Nike Pegasus 40

Best speed training shoes for high arches

What makes it the best?

We experienced the best of both worlds with the Endorphin Speed 4. It seamlessly blends responsiveness and comfort in a lightweight package—a great companion from training sessions to race day. Even our lab findings can’t deny it’s the best speed trainer for runners with high arches.

Running with the ES4 made us feel incredibly quick and agile, thanks to its feather-light 8.4 oz (237g) that disappears as the miles go by. While most plated shoes feel rigid, this trainer has a much more natural feel because of its nylon plate. Still, it’s as responsive as we could dream of, gracefully powering our strides. Our bend test confirms it’s as flexible as the average running shoe, needing only a force of 29.4N to bend to 90 degrees.

Beneath the shoe lies a stacked and supportive midsole. Our durometer confirms a balanced measurement of 22.3 HA, ensuring our surefootedness regardless of pace and distance. This becomes extremely helpful as leg fatigue sets in. However, we recommend runners who prefer the ultra-plush feel to explore elsewhere.


  • Remains lightweight
  • Excels at all paces
  • Great for track workouts
  • More spacious fit
  • Bouncy and enjoyable ride
  • Enhanced stability over v3
  • Suits daily training
  • Exceptional value


  • Slightly heavier than predecessor
  • Could be a bit firm for some
Full review of Saucony Endorphin Speed 4

Best race running shoes for high arches

What makes it the best?

The Alphafly 3 is everything speed-oriented with its massive energy return, otherworldly comfort, enhanced arch fit, and refreshing aura, securing its position as the ultimate racer among high-arch running. Adding to its charm is the revolutionary stable ride it provides.

Built for speed, it thrives at faster paces attributed to the FlyPlate and Air Pods in the midsole. These elements work in harmony to deliver a steady stream of power and responsiveness. In our bend test, it boldly exceeds the average stiffness by 144.7%, unleashing boundless energy with every stride.

The dynamic ZoomX midsole is a masterpiece, featuring a tall stack with two layers for enhanced stability and impact protection. The 29.3 HA firm top layer ensures surefootedness, while the bottom layer is a very soft 18.1 HA for relief. We enjoyed the bouncy and forgiving ride the Alphafly 3 offers.

This shoe defies expectations by maintaining a light build even with its height. Our scales reveal it’s only 7.1 oz (201g), allowing us to fly without the burden of foot weights. What also feels like a breath of fresh air is the well-ventilated upper that scored a 5/5 on our breathability test.

However, indulging in its glory requires a $285 investment. We recommend budget-conscious runners to explore other options.


  • Remarkably lightweight despite its broad size
  • Best-in-class breathability
  • Excels in the marathon distance
  • Repositioned Air Pods offer a better ride than the v2
  • ZoomX foam delivers massive energy return
  • Aids in forward momentum, especially when legs begin to fatigue
  • Better than ever for 5K/10K racing
  • Finally smooth transitions!


  • Heel strikers might wear down the outsole quickly
  • The arch could still be a challenge for some
  • The sock-like tongue might not suit everyone
Full review of Nike Alphafly 3

Best trail running shoes for high arches

Hoka Speedgoat 5

What makes it the best?

We found the Hoka Speedgoat 5 to be the best trail shoe for high-arched runners. As our lab and run tests have shown, this shoe is comfortably cushioned, with a fantastic fit, and a ton of traction on the trails.

The Speedgoat 5 doesn't have a massive midsole. Its heel and forefoot stack heights are 4.2 mm and 0.4 mm shorter, respectively, than the average trail shoe. But we felt that it still offered more than enough cushioning. Its midsole is an impressive 60% softer than usual, and it did a fantastic job of absorbing the impact from our test runs while providing immense comfort.

The Speedgoat 5 also has a flexible upper that offers an excellent locked-in fit. Thanks to its gusseted tongue with a butterfly design and its padded heel, our feet were kept securely in place during our runs.

Its outsole has a tacky grip, in large part due to the lugs not being spaced too far apart. That impressive grip kept us stuck to all kinds of terrain, from frozen surfaces to moderately muddy roads and loose off-trail ground.

However, the Speedgoat 5 does get significantly stiffer in the cold. After 20 minutes in the freezer, it became 85.8% more rigid than at room temperature and 6.5% stiffer than the average trail shoe in the cold. Those who need a more flexible trail shoe in frosty temperatures should look elsewhere.


  • Super grippy
  • Springy ride
  • Stable platform
  • Extra durable
  • High impact protection
  • Lightweight
  • Breathable
  • Secure fit
  • Excellent heel hold


  • Not for wide feet
  • Flared collar is not for everyone (style-wise)
Full review of Hoka Speedgoat 5

Most comfortable running shoes for high arches

What makes it the best?

Hours of running and lab tests led us to discover the ultimate comfortable running shoe that supported our arches—and it’s none other than the ASICS Gel Nimbus 26. This trainer embraced us with generous padding from all angles while ensuring it delivers the stability and ventilation we need.

The knit upper stretches to our foot shape and feels extra soft to the touch, showing its focus on comfort. While most plush uppers sacrifice ventilation, this one feels surprisingly breezy. We couldn’t resist checking in the lab and our tests revealed a high 4/5 rating, perfect for any season.

Beneath our feet lies a plush and thick stack that feels like home. It welcomes us with a warm embrace, muting out any sense of the ground. Our durometer confirms it’s 21.6% softer than average and our caliper shows it rises to a whopping 40.4 mm in the heel. Further facilitating gentle landings for heel strikers is the PureGEL technology in the rear area.

Despite its soft and stacked nature, the midsole offers gentle support by widening its landing base. Every stride feels surefooted and secure in this pair.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the best shoe for anything beyond moderate paces. At 10.7 oz (303g), it takes a lot of effort to speed up.


  • Premium all-around comfort
  • Enhanced toebox design
  • Exceptional durability
  • Best-in-series outsole
  • Ideal for long distances
  • Superb knit upper
  • Surprisingly stable
  • A dream for heel strikers


  • Increased weight
  • Limited energy return
  • Tongue lacks padding
Full review of ASICS Gel Nimbus 26

Best value running shoes for high arches

Saucony Axon 3

What makes it the best?

We have the streets and the lab results as our witness — Saucony Axon 3 offers the best value among high-arch running shoes. It delivers consistent performance, comfort, and durability that makes every cent worth it. At only $100, this shoe has premium features that some more expensive counterparts don’t even have.

Axon 3 feels impressively light on foot, weighing only 8.6 oz (244g), 12.5% lighter than the average daily trainer. What also makes it airy is the perforated mesh upper that’s free from obstructive TPU overlays — resulting in a high 4/5 score on our breathability test. No need to worry about sweaty feet and blisters.

The shoe feels good to be in for long hours because of the breezy upper and the cushioned platform. Our arches feel supported by the buttery smooth foam, which our durometer confirms is 22.5% softer than average. Despite long hours on the road, we didn’t experience any pain.

Underfoot, the outsole boasted of its excellent quality as it conquered any road with ease. After miles of running, we had no slips and the outsole barely showed any wear. At 3.9 mm, it smartly exceeded the average by 0.7 mm to extend its life.

We warn caution that Axon 3 is quite rigid, which may feel too stiff for easy days.


  • Incredible value at only $100
  • Significant weight reduction from version 2
  • Impressively cushioned with PWRRUN foam
  • Fantastic durability
  • Suitable for quicker paces
  • Excellent as a daily workhorse
  • Lovely upper
  • Works for short and long runs


  • Probably too stiff for very relaxed runs
  • Slightly narrower forefoot than before
Full review of Saucony Axon 3

Best running shoes for high arches overall

ASICS Novablast 4

What makes it the best?

After intensive lab and run tests, we chose the fourth version of ASICS Novablast as the best among high-arch running shoes. It’s a well-rounded pair that emphasizes comfort and delivers a great combination of support and energy so we can face whatever run training we have for the day.

With soaring stack heights reaching 39.2 mm in the heel (vs. 33.5 mm average) and 30.2 mm in the forefoot (vs. 24.6 mm average), the maximum cushion gives us immense comfort and just enough spring to bounce forward. This carries us through easy paces and even tempo workouts when we want to pick up the pace.

Our arches feel supported at any point in the run since we feel like we’re running on clouds! We had to test its plushness in the lab and our durometer confirms it's 28.7% softer than average. Novablast 4 also provides a generous landing platform to enhance stability and ensure we remain balanced.

As a non-plated shoe, it’s easy to maneuver the midsole, which is ideal for a daily trainer. Our bend test confirms it’s 13.5% more flexible than average — a crucial element for comfort.

Unfortunately, the upper lacks ventilation and feels toasty on hot and humid days. We recommend exploring other pairs for summer training.


  • Enhanced outsole offering better grip and durability
  • Improved upper comfort with premium materials
  • Upgraded tongue padding
  • Exceptional value at just $140
  • More cushion than ever before
  • Accommodates a wide range of foot sizes
  • The most stable Novablast yet
  • Retains most of its fun and energetic ride


  • Not the best for hot summer runs
  • Outsole still lacks grip in wet conditions
  • Minor weight increase compared to v3
Full review of ASICS Novablast 4

A 3-step guide to buying high-arch running shoes

High arches need your attention if you’re experiencing pain, instability, soreness. Here, we’ll focus on what running shoes, and not other forms of arch support, can do for your high arches. 

1. Do you have high arches?

First things first: discover your arch type. It doesn’t hurt to be sure, given that runners have poor knowledge of their foot type. You can check this visually and by scanning your overall condition and looking for symptoms. Visual confirmation is the best, especially when done with a specialist who observes your movement. Symptoms might appear or you might be lucky enough not to experience them. 

Visual test: discover your arch type 

The easiest and quickest way to check your arch type is the so-called wet test. You should: wet the sole of your foot (ideally both of them, one at a time), stand onto a piece of paper while allowing the moisture from your feet to sink into the paper, and step off.


If you have a high arch, the footprint will show only the front and heel of your foot with nothing in between. If there’s a thin line connecting them, you have a moderately high arch - better than the extreme. 


If you’re not sure after doing this test or feel your feet need more attention, the best thing is to consult a podiatrist on this. They up the ante and use a dynamic approach which entails looking at your barefoot movement, pronation, tibia rotation, and heel deviation. 

Symptoms of high arches 

Can you feel the pain? Immediately stop your activities and rest. Look for professional help if the pain doesn’t go away or if it reappears. 


If you’ve discovered that you have high arches based on the test, it’s also valuable to know how they feel. Cross-reference your experience to get a confirmation.

  • High arches can be asymptomatic or pain-free. However, your feet can get tired and achy easily. You also might have difficulties finding the shoes that are comfortable. 
  • High arches don’t necessarily cause pain, though your feet can feel more tired and achy when you have them, and your legs stiffer. Highly arched feet can make it difficult to fit into regular shoes. Trying to wear shoes without enough room or support to accommodate a high arch can be painful because more stress is placed on the metatarsals. In this way, high arches can be instrumental in causing or worsening plantar fasciitis and metatarsalgia.
  • Other known symptoms are knee, hip and low back pain, plantar fasciitis, metatarsalgia, hammertoes (bent toes) or claw toes (clenched like a fist), calluses on the ball, side or heel of the foot, instability of the foot. 

2. Do you need arch support? 

Not all high arches need support. If you aren’t experiencing pain or problems during running, there is probably no need to look for arch support. Just because you have a certain arch or pronation type, it doesn’t mean it’s something that should be fixed. 

However, if you have a visual confirmation that you have high arches and you’re experiencing some of the symptoms, arch support is recommended.

Types of arch support in running shoes from least to most supportive:


neutral or no support (Nike Air Zoom Pegasus)stability-shoe.jpg

stability: support for mild to moderate overpronation (ASICS Gel Kayano)


motion control: supports severe overpronation (Hoka Gaviota 3)

3. Features to look for in high-arch running shoes

The imperative is to look for comfort. Then, take into account other features. The end goal is to lessen or prevent pain caused by high arches.


In the pursuit of high-arch support, these are the features of running shoes you should focus on: 

  • Well-cushioned running shoes, especially in the ball and heel of the foot. They should offer good to maximum shock absorption to compensate for the decreased foot’s ability to absorb the shock
  • High arch support to help with the pressure distribution and pain by preventing the arch from collapsing too much 
  • Neutral running shoes which help with supination through the cushion that supports the arch.


Saucony Axon was cut in half in our lab and is a good example of a high-arch running shoe.

Bonus tip: look for shoes with a removable insole, just in case you decide to go for special arch-support insoles or orthotics. Also, we analyzed 183,911 running shoes and discovered that the more arch support you request, the more expensive they become.


A removable insole from Nike Air Zoom Pegasus, a popular daily running shoe for high arches.

Treatment for high arches

Depending on the cause and severity of high-arches symptoms you’re experiencing, types of treatment may vary significantly. Leaving serious conditions that usually ask for surgical interventions aside, the most common treatments are:

1. High-arch running shoes

Covered in detail in this guide - these shoes should improve your overall running-with-high-arches experience.

2. Physical therapy

Great way to learn more about your body and be aware of how certain parts move and why. Stretching and strengthening techniques can go a long way in improving your muscle tone and tendon flexibility. These techniques can also be a part of your prevention plan.

3. Over-the-counter orthotics and insoles (shoe inserts)

They might help at first. If the issue is gone, good. However, if the pain comes back in the same or another area, it means you probably started putting more strain on other body parts. The sooner you look for professional help, the better.

Learn more about insoles and orthotics in our in-depth guide to find out which one is right for you.

4. Custom orthotics and insoles

These have a great success rate (can result in a 74% reduction in foot pain) and are highly recommended, especially because they are made for your feet only and might differ for the left and right foot.

5. Ankle braces

Their purpose is to support the ankle and prevent over supination.

Jovana Subic
Jovana Subic
Whether it's a vertical kilometre or an ultra, climbing in the Alps or exploring local mountains, Jovana uses every opportunity to trade walls and concrete for forests and trails. She logs at least 10h/week on trails, with no off-season, and 4x more on research on running and running shoes. With a background in physics and engineering management, she prefers her running spiced with data.