A high arched foot is the opposite of a flat foot, where instead of the foot rolling down (pronating) to have a low or flat arch, the foot does not roll down very much and maintains a high and curved arch with often more weight on the outside of the foot.
With high arched feet, the toes are often in a clawed position. This foot type tends to be very rigid in nature and often lacks some shock-absorbing properties. When the foot does not absorb shock effectively due to failing to roll in sufficiently, symptoms such as shin, knee, heel and back pain are more common as these structures are forced to take more force than they are normally supposed to.
What causes a high-arched foot?
The structural alignment of the bones within the foot is hereditary, so are almost always inherited from parents or grandparents. Some neuromuscular diseases such as Charcot Marie Tooth Syndrome can also cause high arched feet.
While a high-arched foot on its own without any pain or other symptoms may not require any treatment, when problems and discomfort arise, treatment is often indicated. The specific treatment you need will depend on your symptoms and your podiatrist will create a personalised treatment plan after a comprehensive consultation. This treatment plan may involve:
- Custom foot orthotics. These inserts are placed inside the shoes to control the mechanics of the foot while walking. This places the feet in a better functional position, allows the foot to more easily absorb shock and more readily adapt to uneven terrain
- Footwear changes – changing the footwear you wear to ensure there is adequate cushioning and the shoe isn’t pushing the foot further outwards
- Stretching of tight muscle groups must also be addressed to effectively relieve symptoms