Best Cross Training Shoes for Flat Feet in 2018 Sept.

Updated and medically verified by Patricia Nolan. Last updated on Aug 23, 2018.

Cross training shoes are specifically designed for high-intensity workouts and activities. They have to compromise in select areas to cater to multiple environments. If you are dealing with flat feet, this compromise often works to your disadvantage. Historically speaking, cross-training shoes feature bottoms that are flat to the ground. They make up for this feature through the addition of ankle support techniques and extra cushioning. Below is a look at 5 different cross trainers that will measure up to your flat feet. We also include a discussion of specific features and elements you should keep an eye out for in the purchasing process.

5 Best Cross Training Shoes for Flat Feet

Rating

Product

Price

My Rating

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Reebok Men's Crossfit Nano 7.0 Cross-Trainer Shoe

BEST VALUE

PUMA Women's Tazon 6 WN'S FM Cross-Trainer Shoe

3.

Champion Men's Gusto Cross Trainer

4.

Adidas Men's Freak X Carbon Mid Cross Trainer

5.

ASICS Women's Gel-Craze Tr 4 Cross-Trainer Shoe


5 Best Cross Training Shoes for Flat Feet (Review)

Reebok Men's Crossfit Nano 7.0 Cross-Trainer Shoe

Reebok is one of the top names in the cross-training industry. They work exclusively with the Crossfit brand to promote their shoes. You can expect this top-end quality with their introduction of the Crossfit Nano 7.0 cross-trainer shoe. The intrigue starts with the applied design. The utilize their proprietary combination of mesh, netting, and synthetic materials to develop the Nano Weave outer covering. This covering remains lightweight and increases the protection against unwanted elements. The rubber sole is made from rubberized materials and is thick in nature. The bottom of the sole houses against-the-grain extensions that increase your traction and stability across multiple surfaces.

The cup of the heel features extra padding and reinforced materials. This helps the foot sit more naturally, reducing the rise in unnecessary capacities. The heel area is also fully encompassing, keeping you locked in during complex or adverse movements. The toe box is very spacious and features the use of their power launch technology. The introduction of these forces allows for users to gain better push-off and assists in landing and pressures.

PROS

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    Multiple proprietary works that benefit the flat-footed user
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    Fully encompassing ankle holds and cupping
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    Spacious toe box with added movement controls
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    Strong design in layering of materials

CONS

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    Features a small mid-rise

PUMA Women's Tazon 6 WN'S FM Cross-Trainer Shoe

PUMA is a second company that hosts heavy presence in the athletic field. Their Tazon FM cross-trainer shoes help add strengthened materials to a reinforced build. The shoe is made up of synthetic leathers that add strength to the entire outer casing of the shoe. This material is carried all the way up to the tongue of the shoe, creating a model that will stand up to the test of time.

The reinforced materials start in the rubber insoles. The back of the shoe holds a dual layer of rubber and gel materials. The gel layer helps to reduce fatigue and problems associated to increased movements. The rubber sole builds up the support, allowing your ankle room to breathe and the power to remain stable. The front of the shoe features a thin layer of rubber materials, which is a proper mold for those with flat feet. The mid-rise is existent but is minimal in the total cut.

PROS

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    Dual layer of support in the sole
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    Strong materials in the build with synthetic leather
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    Proper layering throughout the undercarriage

CONS

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    Toe box is rather small; applied fit

Champion Men's Gusto Cross Trainer

Champion takes a more simplistic approach to cross trainers with the inclusion of their Gusto cross-trainer model. This shoe features a simple look that does not compromise on functionality. The bottom sole is comprised of rubber materials that include spaced out cuts for added surface grips. The mesh and fabric build creates a lightweight option that does not compromise on strength. This lightweight notion helps to create breathability for the user, never pressuring or tightening on the foot.

The inner sole is made up of a memory foam build. This insert is very cushioned and provides that form-fitting mold you want to host for flat feet. The shoe rises to the lower ankle area, but features an ample amount of padding in the fabric sense.

PROS

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    Memory foam technology throughout the insole
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    Even distribution of rubberized outsole
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    Mesh and fabric design for a lightweight shoe

CONS

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    Backing only houses less than half of the ankle

Adidas Men's Freak X Carbon Mid Cross Trainer


Starting will a company that is well-versed in the athletic space, Adidas takes workouts to new heights with their development of the Freak X Carbon Mid cross-trainer shoes. Featuring a low-profile look, this shoe rises to the middle of the ankle, allowing you to increase the use of quick movements and shifts. The bottom sole is layered in a triple material formatting. This format starts with a gel-like substance that is greeted with two additional layers of rubber supports. The gel area helps absorb shock, while the two rubber layers limit the flex of the shoe and add support to the entire bottom of the foot.

Comprised from synthetic materials, the strength is prevalent and the weight remains light. The inner portion of the shoe features a removable insole, allowing users to add their own support measures or create a better fit for the foot. This leaves the flat-footed user at-ease with knowing they can stay true to their size without having to compromise for a tighter fit.

PROS

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    Triple layered sole for added support
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    Gel-like shock absorbent material that reduces wear and tear on the foot
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    Removable insole for a better fit

CONS

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    Limited padding in the ankle supports

ASICS Women's Gel-Craze TR 4 Cross-Trainer Shoe

ASICS was one of the first companies to pioneer into the cross-trainer space and their Gel-Craze TR 4 model is perfect for those ailing from flat feet. It starts with their innovative design to the rubber sole. It features a layer of gel-like material that meets up with a rubber support system. The two work to keep you moving in a stable sense and allow for an increase in lateral movements. The shoe is comprised of synthetic materials, leaving you with a functional, lightweight option.

There is great intrigue held within the insole and the shoe backing. The insole features the proprietary Gel-Craze technology. This format introduces gel components that extend to the front of the toe box. The back is highly reinforced and utilizes a padding backing that is very thick in nature. This keeps ankle stability at an all-time high and ensures the proper holding mechanism.

PROS

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    Gel-infused technology utilized throughout the shoe
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    Dual layer of support in the sole
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    Insole is comfortable and helps reduce shock on the foot

CONS

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    Minimal ankle coverage in the back rise

Briefing of the Elements that Make for a Solid Cross Trainer Shoe

Cross training shoes are specifically designed for physical activity. This can range anywhere from running short distances to powerlifting. This makes the general construction of the shoes very important to the user. Below is a brief video discussing some of the differences between running shoes and cross training shoes:

Some of the major differences highlighted in this video expand into the mid-sole area, the bottom support elements, and the weight of the shoe. These are all important elements one can pick out without advanced knowledge in this space. Additional measures should be taken to ensure the proper footwear and we'll dive into those specifics below.

Compromising for a Flat Bottom

If you have flat feet, it is important to note the significance of the mid-rise. The mid-rise in the sole area of the shoe creates an even weight distribution. This distribution carries all intensive movements, hosting benefits no matter the physical activity. When you are in the market for cross-training shoes, you will notice few shoe types holding this feature. This is by design, but it does not have to hamper your flat feet or further progress the condition. One way to make up for this lack of rise is through a thick rubber sole. The thick sole provides stability measures across all surfaces and movements. It keeps your foot in a stable position, reducing inner slide and other such unwanted movements. It becomes the pillar for keeping your footing in-check.

The second portion for the mid-rise compromise comes at the insole. If the insole features an extensive padding, such as memory foam or gel-like material, it can make up for the lack of mid-rise. Shoes that form fit your feet help to reduce this developed pronation and can help shape them over time. The more pronounced the insert the better, helping to increase progression in arch height over time. These tools can be looked at as rehabilitation measures for flat feet.

Limiting the Flexibility

A second feature we notice in a strong pair of cross trainer shoes is limited flex in the shoe. Having flat feet usually calls for some flex in the toe box and limited movement in the back of the shoe. Cross trainer shoes go against this grain once again, but the added stability measures will not hamper the foot. The flexibility usually goes hand-in-hand with the strength of the rubber sole and memory insoles. Limiting the movement throughout the shoe is necessary for hosting the activities prescribed by a cross-training shoe.

When you use a cross trainer, you are looking for optimal support in lateral movements, cutting, and other such quick jolts. A strong construction base helps you perform these movements without an increased injury risk. Reinforced materials and built-up support measures mark for two features you should be looking for in these regards. They will help limit the flex of the shoe and help you perform these complex movements without foot risk.

Added Heel Support

One area where cross trainer shoes excel is in the heel supports. These shoes feature all sorts of formats of this support targeting all areas of the ankle. Meticulous design measures that go into the production of these shoes adds cushion to high-traffic areas.

If you are performing deadlifts, you are going to want a shoe with a shock absorbent material in the insert or shoe backing. If you are looking to perform cuts or quick shifts in body movements, look for a shoe that features side-by-side ankle supports that surround the foot. The heel is a very important area for the flat-footed user as it draws more usage than those with regularly arched feet.

Spacious Toe Box

The last piece that you are looking for in these shoes is a spacious toe box. A tight toe box will contribute to creating new forms of pronation that can lead to additional injuries. The front of the foot and the back of the foot are the two most utilized areas for the flat-footed user. The toe box should also feature some sort of added support, whether it be in the insert or the limited flex in the front of the shoe. A spacious toe box also leads to greater development strides. The user can move about freely, limiting the constriction on the toes.

Toe movement is important as it is one of the greatest contributing factors in shifty and quick movements. If you are constricted, you will notice this limited mobility in your strides and the negative effect it has on the rest of your foot. Movement starts and ends in the ankle and toe area, so it is important to ensure that these areas feature an intensive amount of care and a unique design.

Conclusion

After detailing these five products, we give this round to the  Reebok Crossfit Nano 7.0 cross-trainer shoes.  These shoes were designed specifically for the Crossfit space, which is an applied form of workouts that draws from all fields of the work. This makes these shoes the most capable option for conquering any workout format. There is heightened attention in the high design, which is a key component for flat-footed individuals. It features a heel cupping and holding techniques that keep your ankle stable throughout all movement types. An even distribution of rubberized materials in the sole also creates for proper footing and reduced flex in unwanted areas. The features surrounding this model are too good to ignore, leaving it as the top option in our discussion.

It is important to note the comprises created in cross-training shoes. Ensure you are matching these compromises with comparable features to ensure you attain the proper support and padding you need to assist your flat feet.


Sources
  1. Medical News Today: What's to know about flat feet?
  2. American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS): Flat Feet & High Arches
  3. NHS: Are flat feet a problem?
Patricia Nolan

Patricia is a podiatrist (foot and ankle specialist) practicing in Pennsylvania Hospital. Dr. Nolan completed her undergraduate education at Temple University, Podiatric Medicine , and went on to the New York University of Podiatric Medicine to continue her medical training. She is board-certified in Emergency and Podiatric Medicine. Her biggest expertise is foot and sport injuries. She is a big fan of running; furthermore, she’s an expert in choosing the proper footwear and shoes for running and other sports. Linkedin , Twitter