When we enter a running store or browse through countless websites looking for a running shoe the one question that we ask ourselves the most is what is the best shoe for my foot type? There are three basic foot types medium (normal) arch, flat (low) arch, and high arch. The quickest and easiest way to determine your foot type is by taking the "wet test." You can perform this test by wetting the bottom of one foot completely, and then step on a piece of paper or on a flat, dry surface. Step off and look down. Make sure to put full pressure on the foot you are trying to imprint. This will allow you to get a more accurate read of your foot type.
Medium (Normal) Arch
If your wet footprint shows about half of your arch, you have the most common foot type. With this type of arch you will have little or no pronation issues. With this type of foot you can wear just about any shoe type. Runners with medium arches feel most comfortable in stability shoes that provide moderate arch support. Some lightweight runners with normal arches are more comfortable in so-called neutral-cushioned shoes without any added medial stability devices such as a two-density midsole.
Recommendations: Asics 1150, DS-Trainer 15, Brooks Adrenaline GTS 10, Mizuno Wave Rider 12, Wave Elixir 6, Wave Inspire 6, New Balance 760, 905, Saucony Progrid Guide 3
Flat (Low) Arch
If you see almost your entire footprint, you have a flat foot, which means your arch won't provide enough support on the medial (inner) side. If you have a flat or low arch you will tend to overpronate. The more of your arch you see with the wet test, the more you will overpronate. When shopping for a shoe you will look for a stability or motion control shoe. These shoes come with very firm multi-density midsoles that are often coupled with added support features. Also, tall, heavier runners generally do better in motion control shoes.
Recommendations: Adidas Supernova Sequence 2, Women's Brevard, Asics 2150, Gel-Kayano 16, Women's Gel-Foundation 8, Men's Gel-Evolution 5, Brooks Beast, Mizuno Women's Alchemy 9, New Balance 587, 850, 993, 1225, Saucony Pro Grid Omni 8, Grid Hurricane 10, Grid Stabil CS
This footprint consists of just your heel, the ball of your foot, and a thin line on the outside of your foot. This is the least common foot type. If you have this type of arch you tend to underpronate, sometimes referred to as supination. When looking for a shoe, look for a neutral-cushioned shoe. It is very important for you to wear a shoe that has no added stability features such as a dual density midsole.
Recommendations: Adidas Supernova Glide 2, Asics Gel-Cumulus 12, Gel-Landreth 5, Gel-Nimbus 12, Brooks Ghost 2, Mizuno Wave Rider 13, New Balance 883, 1064, Saucony Progrid Ride 2, Women's Pro Grid Triumph 7
The most important thing to remember when shopping for shoes is that whatever works for your colleagues or training partner does not necessarily mean that is the best shoe for you. Look at an old pair of running shoes if you have excessive wear on the outside of the forefoot than that shoe has too much control, if the shoe has excessive wear on the inside of the forefoot that shoe does not have enough control for your foot type. You are looking for even wear throughout the midfoot of the shoe.