It’s all about easy entry and a wide and comfortable fit for flat feet.
Running shoes are full of options for various conditions that affect your running gait. From over/under-pronation to flat feet, runners are spoilt for choice when it comes to taking care of their different physiological needs.
Football boots, however, are much simpler. They often have a flat sole which doesn’t provide much support for your feet and different running gaits. Further more, with the now common in-built “sock” construction, it’s much harder to put on football boots due to a smaller mouth opening for your feet. For a flat footed player, both of these factors can be an issue.
We connected with physio, Reggie Tang, who shares his thoughts on boot solutions for players with flat feet.
Playing football with flat feet
“People with flat feet have little to no arch on the underside of their feet. As a result, the base of the foot tends to be much wider as your feet spreads out when placing weight on it. This means that the length and width of flat feet will feel different when standing vs when you’re sitting and trying on your football boots. Make sure your football boot can support the width and length when you’re standing,” says Reggie.
“Having space, especially for your big toe, is so important as your big toe supports your body weight and impact. If you’re having a boot that’s too narrow, this forces your toe to be angulated, creating bunions. This changes the angles of your biomechanical movements and may cause strains and injuries to parts of your body.
To find the right football boots for flat feet, Reggie recommends choosing your footwear based on these features.
- A wider boot with ample toe room
- A wider mouth opening for ease of foot entry. Choose football boots with a classic tongue construction instead of one-piece uppers.
- A soleplate that alleviates stud pressure. The less pressure, the better.
Low arch insole for flat feet
If you’ve already got a football boot that works very well for you, perhaps you’d like to give an insole a try to add some curvature and support. Our choice would be the Currex CleatPro Insoles for low arches. Currex also produces insoles for medium and high arches if you know a friend who needs similar support respectively.
Currex Cleatpro Insole – Low Arch
However, Reggie notes that replacement insoles may come with drawbacks too.
“Your stock insoles are pretty thin and whatever new insoles you bring in to provide support are most likely going to be thicker in mass. This means a reduced volume and space for your feet and you might end up crunching your toes – affecting your biomechanical movements and may cause discomfort or even worse, injury.”
Low pressure for flat feet – Copa Mundial Astro Turf
With football being an intense game with quick sharp movements, your feet do get a battering especially if you lack an arch that could alleviate some of that weight and pressure.
For flat footed players who constantly face soreness and stud pressure, especially when playing on hard and shallow artificial ground, go with the most comfortable option available – turf shoes. They’re a bit more padded and feature many small studs across the base which spreads out the pressure.
Easy on the sole
adidas Mundial Team Astro
One of the best options you can get is the adidas Copa Mundial in the astro turf variant. The sole is kind on your feet when it comes to pressure and its leather upper can stretch to accommodate wider feet. To top it all off, the classic tongue construction makes it very easy for you to slip your feet in.
Personalized fit – Puma Future 5.1
The Puma Future 5.1 is one of my favourite boots on the market right now. It’s got a soft, sock-like upper that is just so comfortable and is lovely to strike the ball with.
Customize your lacing and fit
Puma Future 5.1
For flat footed players, that comfortable upper will go a long way in stretching to accommodate your fit in its already wide cut. The coolest bit about the Puma Future is that you can personalize the lacing structure on your boots. This way, you can adjust where the laces loop to alleviate any pressure you experience on your feet – a godsend for players who have fit issues with their boots.
If putting on your boots is a challenge, Puma also develops a low cut variant for greater ease of entry without the slightly extended sock in the regular variant.
Premium leather – Mizuno Morelia 2 Japan
If you crave top notch craftsmanship and supreme leather quality, look no further than the Mizuno brand with their “Made in Japan” line. Handcrafted and built for an accommodating fit, Mizuno also tends to produce boots on the wider side. This is because their boots are produced with the Japanese market in mind – most of whom have wider feet. Our pick has to be the Mizuno Morelia 2 Japan for it’s quality and durability while the tongue construction and wide fit make it a perfect choice for those with flat feet.
Mizuno Morelia II Made In Japan FG
With most football pitches in Japan being “hard ground“, the Morelia 2 Japan’s studs are mostly short and conical-shaped to reduce stud pressure with a decent amount of traction on fields.
That said, the “Japan” series can cost a pretty penny. If budget is a concern, you can always look towards the Elite and Pro models for quality that is still very good while saving some dough in the process.
Old school flair – Nike Premier 2.0 and adidas Copa Gloro
Among the most affordable football boots available are the Nike Premier 2.0 and the adidas Copa Gloro – a throwback to boots of yesterday with a multitude of modern colourways that won’t look out of style today.
Nike Premier II FG
adidas Copa Gloro
Both of them have a classic tongue construction and an accommodating fit. A side note on the Nike Premier, they carry the shortest studs on any FG soleplates in the market. The soleplate’s also highly flexible for a natural flex to provide a comfortable ride for the flat footed player.
They’re both cheap, easy to put on and very comfortable – a no brainer in my opinion.
Reginald (Reggie) Tang has over 14 years of experience as a physiotherapist and is also the physio for the Singapore National Rugby Team. You can visit Reggie and his team of physios at Physio Solutions for all your physio and fitness consultation needs.