Arch Types: How Your Feet Are Unique

If we could all walk side by side down a beach and look back at our footprints in the sand, they would each have their own unique characteristics. What isn’t seen, though, is that our feet are uniquely different on the inside too. We each have a certain foot type and bone structure, and one way this is shown is the kind of arch in your foot. At Harvey R. Danciger, DPM we base the foot care we provide on your feet. Each patient receives the tailored, individualized treatment that his or her feet deserve. Your arch type can play a large role in your choice of footwear and overall foot health.

Which Arch Type Are You?

If you were to step a wet foot onto a heavier blank piece of paper, the shape that is left offers clues to the type of arch you have. There are three distinct variations:

Low ArchThis is often considered a “flat” foot and you would see almost your whole footprint on the paper. It may have an oblong pancake shape.  Nearly 20% of the population has this type of arch and it can lead to various foot problems, as the low arch allows more flexibility in the foot structure. This results in the foot generally overpronating, or rolling inward, increasing your risk of arch pain, heel pain and plantar fasciitis.

Medium Arch – The most common foot type with over 60% of the population having this kind of arch. A footprint would show the ball of your foot, your heel and approximately half of your arch. Though fairly stable, this foot type can experience heel and ball of foot pain.

High Arch – This is considered to be the most rigid type of arch. Your footprint would show mostly ball and heel with very little arch. There is increased pressure on the ball of the foot and heel with this foot structure, as the high arch reduces the surface area of the foot that absorbs shock. Each step or strike on the ground puts a great deal of stress on the foot, and heel pain, ball-of-foot pain and plantar fasciitis are common complaints from those with high arches.

Save Your Feet with Orthotics

Whether you have foot pain or not, your feet can greatly benefit from wearing custom orthotic inserts. Orthotics can keep a flat foot more stable and aligned, and alleviate stress from overpronation. They can provide extra cushioning and support for a medium arch, and they can fill in the arch cavity left from a high arch, offering support and shock absorption. The right orthotics will enable to you to stay pain free and enjoy an active, healthy lifestyle.

We believe that your feet deserve exceptional care.  Learning about your specific arch type will help you make the best decisions when it comes to your footwear and personal foot care.

Dr. Harvey Danciger can evaluate your feet, offer footwear advice, identify potential problem areas and help you find your perfect orthotic. Make an appointment at our office in Palm Desert, CA today by calling (760) 568-0108. You can also request an appointment online.

Dr. Harvey Danciger
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Dr. Harvey Danciger is a podiatrist and foot surgeon in Palm Desert, CA specializing in the foot and ankle