Motion Control Shoes and Orthotics

Reader Rick asks “If I have flat feet, should I wear an orthotic, or wear a motion control running shoe? Or, can I have both or will this cause too much stability and actually make me a supinator?”

It all depends on whether or not you are having problems. If your foot is just flat, than a motion control or certainly a wider outsole shoe would be recommended for you. Motion control shoes usually have a firm heel counter (non-collapsible) a stiff footbed below the sock liner and a firm EVA midsole, which are all designed to prevent excessive pronation (foot collapse inward).

What a motion control shoe may or may not have is a stable upper, which is also necessary for proper support and pronation control. If your podiatrist determines you need an orthotic (excessive pronation), a motion control shoe can help, but you will still need the orthotic.

Don’t worry about the shoe and the orthotic causing supination (turning outward) as the combination won’t have that effect. Worst case scenario, you will have more control than you need, but this shouldn’t be a problem.

One response to “Motion Control Shoes and Orthotics

  1. can someone please tell me the difference between “stability” and “motion control” as these terms seem to be used interchangeably. I did a switcheroo (no transition time but no reason to think I needed it) from a pair of Kayanos (season 15 I think) into Saucony Power Grid, and at 5 weeks suffered a third metatarsal fracture (no apparent reason- just running down the road). Having been a runner for over thirty years and never having such a thing happen, trying to avoid a repeat but also need a shoe which accommodates a wide forefoot. It’s almost 4 months now and still not back to running or even normal walking/standing. I did the “arch” test with the water and it appears normal to high, and I have been told I am a neutral runner. I am confused! I’m light, 51, and just want to get back to running; although the Kayano 18s are too narrow for me, and I hear they are going back to the symmetrical laces next season, so don’t want ’em. Nikes are always too narrow at the forefoot; my mid foot and heel are narrow. Thanks for the advice.

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