It’s not just industrial site workers who need specialized work shoes, but standing all day can be a pain for anybody with high arches. Whether you’re a nurse, bank clerk, office worker, or even one of those industrial workers, we have you covered with this guide to the best work shoes for high arches.
BEST WORK SHOES for high arches FEATURED RECOMMENDATIONS
1. Dansko Women’s Professional Mule
Popular with many nurses, Dansko Clogs provide all-day comfort with good arch support and a padded instep collar. Furthermore, they are approved by the APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) for promoting good foot health. One of the best shoes for standing all day.
- Leather and or fabric uppers
- Padded instep collar for comfort when walking
- Roomy reinforced toe box for protection with plenty of "wiggle room" for your toes
- PU outsole with rocker bottom to propel foot forward and provide shock absorption
2. Skechers Women’s Sure Track Trickle Slip Resistant Work Shoes
Available in models for both men & women, we have looked at Skechers “Work” Women’s Sure Track Work Shoes. They feature the memory foam technology Skechers are famous for and offer high arch support with a Flexsole midsole in a slip and “trickle” resistant shoe.
- Memory foam insole
- Soft fabric shoe lining
3. Dunham Men’s Blair Slip-On
Sometimes you need high arch support shoes at work which also add a touch of elegance to your daily appearance. Sporting a classic smart loafer look, these 100 percent leather slip-ons from Dunham feature a nylon arch support shaft for all-day comfort and stability.
4. Vionic Women’s Pacific High Tide Toepost Sandals
Being in work doesn’t always mean an industrial setting or straight-laced office environment. For women who work outdoors, or perhaps in more casual offices in the summer, these stylish sandals offer orthotic high arch support with a tough rubber outsole.
- Synthetic leather and fabric upper
- Thong sandal style for an easy on and off
- Subtle raised dot design on footbed for traction
- Podiatrist-designed, biomechanical orthotic footbed with deep heel cup for support
- Flexible EVA dual-density midsole provides optimal support, helps absorb shock and reduces pressure on the feet, knees and ankles
5. New Balance Women’s WID626v2 Work Training Shoe
We may have looked at New Balance Women’s work shoes, but they are actually available for both men and women. Making use of New Balance’s patented ABZORB foam lining, these stylish leather work shoes can absorb all the impact and pressure as you walk or work all day.
Reviews of The Best Work Shoes for High Arches for men & women
Although many running and walking shoes are advertised as being designed for high arch support, finding the best work shoes for high arches can often be more difficult. To make your task easier we have selected five of the top shoes which offer high arch support and are suitable for work too.
There are many work boots which are suitable for men with high arches so we have focused more on women’s work shoes but still included a couple of choices for men.
1. Dansko Women’s Professional Mule
Although you may laugh at the idea of a clog for work, the all leather upper of this work shoe makes it appear more stylish. A polyurethane outsole features a rocker bottom for better shock absorption and is also slip resistant for use in many different environments.
To support those high arches, these clogs feature a Dansko Natural Arch technology in the footbed with a thermoplastic polyurethane stabilizer. Memory foam in the dual-density removable footbed adds further cushioning while the arch stabilizer evenly distributes the impact across your foot.
What makes these shoes really comfortable for all-day work use is the padded instep collar with a high abrasion heel counter too. As you walk, your heel can freely move up and down without further irritation and a roomy toe box allows your toes to move freely at the other end.
- Stylish with full leather uppers.
- The slip-resistant rubber outsole is suitable for all surfaces—wet, dry, and even oily/wet surfaces.
- Lightweight EVA midsole for less fatigue while providing stability and shock absorption.
- Padded instep collar stops pressure on the top of your foot.
- Dual density foam footbed creates breathability and to prevent your feet from overheating or sweating.
- Removable footbed allows for most standard and custom orthotics.
- Good arch support from the Dansko proprietary stabilizer arch support tech.
- Approved by APMA for healthy feet.
- Can feel heavy to women who haven’t worn clogs before and may take time to get used to.
- Quite stiff and not too comfortable if you are more accustomed to softer shoes.
- Sizes tend to run large and you should try to buy one size, at least, smaller than your regular shoe size.
|Just because they are often advertised as nurse’s clogs doesn’t mean you need to be a nurse to benefit from Danskos. Any woman who stands all day in their line of work will find the arch support and cushioning offered by these professional clogs to help take away that end-of-day foot pain. And they look stylish with most slacks too.|
2. Skechers Women’s Sure Track Slip Resistant Shoes Work Shoes
Skechers are better known for their casual range of shoes but now have seven brands including the “Work” brand proudly emblazoned on the plush tongue. Featuring a casual lace-up design, the upper is made from a smooth leather-feel synthetic on top of a nitrile rubber slip resistant outer sole. It’s not the most attractive of their shoes but it does offer comfort for people with high arches on their feet all day.
Cushioned insoles use a memory foam topping and can be removed if you need to fit other orthotics. Flexsole midsoles should provide enough support for all but the extreme highest of arches with exceptional shock absorption too. As the memory foam adapts to your foot, it will cradle the whole foot for more stability and prevent rolling of the feet.
Skechers shoes are known for the comfort they offer, and their “Work” range is no exception. With the foot securely cradled, you will feel much less pressure on your heel and the ball of your foot with any weight-bearing activities like standing or walking.
- A synthetic upper has a smooth leather look and is flexible with a cushioned tongue.
- The closed design of the synthetic upper makes them suitable for working conditions where liquids can spill on your feet—i.e. kitchens and hospitals.
- Slip-resistant rubber outsole with added traction is suitable for most environments.
- Thick memory foam cushioned insoles for more comfort and mold to your foot shape for more stability.
- Mesh fabric collar with heel panel for a cooling effect.
- Flexsole midsole offers arch support and better shock absorption.
- Can help correct underpronation with foot securely cradled.
- The lace-up design keeps the foot in place.
- Bulky and not visually appealing.
- Sizing runs on the small side, especially if you have wider feet. Try going half a size up or choosing a wide size for a more relaxed fit.
|If you already own a pair of Skechers shoes for high arches, you will know just how comfortable they can be. These “Work” Skechers feature more of a foot protective design with the same memory foam cushioning and Flexsole midsole support for support and comfort when at work on your feet all day.|
3. Dunham Men’s Blair Slip-On
Sometimes you need high arch support at work in a shoe which looks more formal—maybe you’re an office worker or a waiter who spends much of the day on your feet. These classic dress shoes feature a nylon shank embedded into the midsole for more support for your high arches.
A full grain leather upper with a stretchy gore material allows for extra movement with a comfortable feel and more stability. The cushioned footbeds provide more shock absorption, with the arch support helping to create a smoother gait of the foot.
One feature we really like is the support shaft being made of nylon, meaning there is no need to take your shoes off in many airports or other security scanners—ideal for those business trips. Although they are designed more for office work or dress purposes, the lightweight construction makes them ideal for walking too.
- The classic good looks that don’t look like an orthotic shoe.
- Full grain leather upper available in brown or black.
- Many width sizes to choose from, including an extra wide in all sizes.
- Good arch support for high arches with an embedded nylon shank.
- EVA sole is lightweight and offers good traction.
- Cushioned footbed for comfort when standing all day.
- No padding on the rear collar means the shoe can feel tight and bite into the ankles.
- The hard plastic sole doesn’t offer the same flexibility as some high arch running or walking shoes.
- Sizes can run large.
|High arches aren’t just a problem for workers in the more manual industries. Often you can be on your feet all day in the office, a bank, or even as a hotel doorman. When you need a smarter shoe for high arch support, the Dunham Blair Slip Ons combine classic looks with superior cushioning and arch support.|
4. Vionic Women’s Pacific High Tide Toepost Sandals
Sometimes in the summer months, you may look on with envy at those other workers with their more casual shoes and sandals. These stylish sandals from Vionic mean you can also wear summer shoes without worrying about the pain of high arches.
A podiatrist-designed footbed offers elevated support and hugs your foot arch all day so you can walk and stand in comfort. A cushioned EVA footbed absorbs the impact as you stand or walk for longer periods.
Lightweight and comfortable for wearing all day, they are easy to slip on and off with an open-back design and fabric strap linings that prevent irritation of your feet. The tough rubber outsole will also add more traction and stability to your stance.
- Stylish and available in a choice of 13 attractive colors from Golden Cork to a more traditional Black or plain White.
- Elevated footbed with orthotic arch support for medium to high arches.
- Fabric lined straps prevent rubbing of the feet.
- Cushioned EVA footbed absorbs impact and adds comfort.
- A comfortable 2-inch heel promotes a higher position of the foot with the arch resting more on the platform.
- Easy slip-on design.
- The ultimate in breathability—cooler feet tend to be less stressed and prone to pain.
- No heel cushioning or back collar to keep it in place.
- The open design makes them unsuitable for use in a more industrial or food environment with no protection for the upper foot.
- Flip-flop like noise as you walk.
|In the summer we all like to get a bit more air to our feet when at work for a cooler, less fatigued foot. The orthotic arch and podiatrist-designed footbed of these sandals make them ideal for high arch support at both home and work. Great for people who work in more casual offices, as tour leaders, or those who are outdoors all day.|
5. New Balance Women’s WID626v2 Work Training Shoe
Available in styles for both men and women, the New Balance 626 Work Slip Resistant Shoes have been designed for all-day comfort as you work. ABZORB technology in the foam lining prevents shock or impact which can result from high arches with an extra crash pad for heel protection too.
Men’s version also available:
Made with a 100 percent leather upper and slip resistant rubber outer sole, these shoes are lightweight enough to help prevent pain when you walk around. The leather upper and closed lace up design also means your feet are safe from spills and other liquids you may encounter.
The great feature of these work shoes is they don’t look like traditional bulky non-slip shoes you may often find restaurant workers wearing. The New Balance 626 work shoes just look like traditional black shoes but with that extra support and cushioning for high arches of your feet.
- Lightweight and low profile design—not too “chunky”.
- 100 percent leather upper for durability and liquid resistance.
- Non-slip rubber outsole for greater stability at work.
- ABZORB cushioning system to protect your feet from impacts.
- Footbed features blended foam midsole for cushioning and compression set arch support.
- Removable inners for fitting additional orthotics if you have very high arches.
- Lace-up design and full arch shaft ensure a secure fit.
- Non-marking outsoles.
- Limited choice of colors, only black or black/gray.
- Sizing runs small and narrow—order at least a half size up.
- The rubber outsoles can make an annoying squeak as you walk.
|If you work on your feet all day, you will know how uncomfortable the impacts of constantly walking on hard surfaces can be. New Balance Slip Resistant Work Shoes aims to replace the natural impact absorption missing from your feet with ABZORB technology and crash pads in this shoe. An EVA midsole also features arch support which is set by the compression of your foot as you stand.|
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Why Do You Need High Arch support work shoes?
We all know walking or running can be much more painful with high arches, but when working does it really make that much of a difference? If your job involves you standing all day often on hard surfaces, you’ll be glad of extra cushioning when you have high arches.
Some jobs, especially those like nurses or other health care specialists, may involve more walking around hospital corridors than even an athlete performs most days. Work can be difficult enough most days without wearing incorrect footwear which makes it excruciating.
A survey of 1000 American adults by the American Podiatric Medical Association in 2014 found half of the group lived daily with some form of foot pain. Choosing the correct footwear for your work and following a foot care routine could prevent this.
Why Are Your High Arches Causing Foot Pain at Work?
Officially known as Cavus foot, this condition occurs when the arches of your feet are too high. As your foot lacks the natural shock cushioning of the arch, it makes your muscles in the feet work harder and also offers less support to your feet in general.
The following short clip from authoritative foot health site Dr. Foot illustrates with diagrams the condition of high arches.
Here are some of the reasons high arches may be causing you pain at work:
- Feet with high arches struggle to protect the arches and other parts of the feet from high impacts or sudden shocks.
- More pressure is applied to the heel and forefoot regions of somebody with high arches resulting in more pain in both of the areas.
- Most footwear doesn’t provide adequate support for high arches, which can lead to a build-up of pressure and more pain.
- Feet with high arches are more prone to slipping and sliding around inside a shoe which can cause friction, discomfort, and eventually blisters.
- Pressure on the toes which can result from standing on high arch feet all day can cause hammer toes, calluses, bunions, and other pain in the joints of the toes.
- Underpronating is a common problem with the feet having to work harder from high arches. This, in turn, can lead to fascia pain and in particular plantar fasciitis.
What to Look for in the Best Work Shoes for High Arches
Fortunately, there are features in shoes which can help protect your feet from pain while you work. Corrective footwear, which offers pain relief from high arches, will mean you’re no longer itching to get home to get those shoes off.
Perhaps the most important factor for any shoe which aims to relieve foot pain is how well it reacts to the impacts of walking or standing. With high arches, you are missing the majority of the body’s natural shock absorption which can lead to not just foot pain, but leg and hip pain too as the pain travels.
High arch support shoes should have shock absorbers or inserts/shock pads on both the outer and inner sole of the shoe. Gel inserts or specialized patented multi-density foams will often be used for superior shock absorption.
Cushioning of the Best High Arch Support Work Shoes
The best kind of cushioning or padding a work shoe can have would be adaptive cushioning which conforms more to the shape of your foot. This can provide support where it is needed most while adding comfort to the fit of the shoe. Memory foam tends to be the material that adapts most and even remembers, hence the name, the shape of your foot.
The heel is a notoriously weak spot for people with high arches and a good work shoe should feature extra cushioning or padding in the insole. Crash pads or inserts in the heel area can further absorb the shock away from the heel for less pain.
Obviously, the best work shoes for high arches are going to need to offer pretty decent arch support such as a molded orthotic embedded in the sole or a shank at the base. Shanks in the sole will normally be made of steel, a carbon composite, or nylon to take the load off as you flex your feet in more awkward positions or stand for long periods.
Shoes which offer good arch support will significantly relieve the stress from the heel and ball of the foot to distribute the pressure more evenly.
The Outer Sole
Shoes designed for use in the workplace should feature slip-resistant and durable outer soles. Many occupations, especially in the catering or medical industry, will involve walking on floors which are both wet and slippery. A high arch foot may be more prone to a gait which can cause unstableness on a dry surface, let alone wet ones too.
Shoes which are slip resistant will allow you to move more efficiently without the risk of falling and hurting yourself. The outer sole will also need to be durable enough to cater for all types of liquids, including oils and solvents, which could damage softer soles.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Flexible Should a Work Shoe for High Arches Be?
People who have higher arches are also known to have more rigid and stiff feet. You should aim to purchase a pair of work shoes which offer more flexibility in both the upper part and the sole of the shoe.
Extra flexibility will balance the rigid nature of your foot and allow an even distribution of impact as you walk or stand. You can test the flexibility of a shoe by simply bending it manually in different directions.
Can You Fix High Arches?
Wouldn’t it just be easier if you could cure the high arch of your foot and buy “normal” footwear again? Yes, definitely, but surgery is not always possible and only recommended in the most severe cases where the pain is extreme and limits your ability to move.
Custom orthotics or shoes which have been specially designed for high arches are two of the most popular non-surgical treatments. Although they won’t magically make your high arches disappear, they will relieve much of the pain of the condition.
How Can You Tell You Have High Arches?
Anyone who has high arches will tell you that you will definitely know when you have them—the incessant pain gives it away! Unfortunately, many other foot conditions have the same pain, including other arch types. Choosing the wrong arch support for your feet, especially in footwear for work, may lead to yet more pain.
A simple test you can do at home is the wet test where you inspect the shape of your footprint. A barely visible midsole of the foot or your arch is an indicator of high arches. Another sign of high arches is the undersole of your shoes, with excessive wear at the outside of the sole being a sign of high arches and underpronation.
If in doubt, a visit to your local medical practitioner or a referral to a podiatrist can run more tests to correctly identify your foot arch and make recommendations.
The average American spends over eight hours a day at work, which is significantly more time than most will spend running in a day! Yet people still spend more time focussing on high arch support shoes for walking or running, something they only do a few hours every week—just look at the number of running arch support shoes available.
The best work shoes for high arches can help absorb the impact all day long of any walking or standing you do at work. Why go home with foot pain that means you can’t enjoy any other activities at home?
In our opinion, the best work shoes for high arches are the Dansko Women’s Professional Mule, a stylish clog with great arch support. They’re not just for nurses, but any woman who has high arches and has a job which involves standing or walking on their feet all day.
Best of all, they are certified to promote better foot health by the American Podiatric Medical Association.