Watching Jennifer Lawrence and Amy Adams hit the red carpet at the Golden Globes with their high heel shoes, I started to wonder if they had high arches. You’d think only a podiatrist would wonder such things. But it seems lately that this issue has been a big concern for people seeking out information on our website.

If you are a woman with high arches and you have pain in your feet, there are some things to consider.

High arched feet primarily contact the ground in the heel and the ball of the foot. If you’re having pain you could have a condition called metatarsalgia. This condition can develop in the ball of the foot, particularly if you have a job that requires a lot of standing.

You may notice yourself gravitating toward your pretty high heels because they feel better than lower-heeled shoes at first. That’s because the shoe matches the arch of your foot. Unfortunately, when your heel is higher than one inch, more pressure is added to the ball of your foot.

If you wear heeled shoes frequently throughout the day, your Achilles tendon will tighten and you’ll increase the chance of developing unsightly hammertoes.

Recommendations for women with high arches:

  • Protect the ball of the foot with additional support either in the form of a metatarsal pad, or a slim over the counter ¾ length arch support that includes a metatarsal pad, if you wear heels regularly. Dr. Jill’s gel metatarsal pad’s are reusable and are applied directly to your skin.
    Stretch your calves before working out at the gym or running outside. Wearing heels all day shortens the calf muscle and without proper stretching, you are more likely to have problems with your feet such as heel pain. If you don’t have prescriptive orthotics, replace the inserts that came with your athletic shoes with a good full-length arch support. You can find Superfeet at local pharmacies or Powerstep at our office or online.
  • Wear a lower heel during the day. More supportive dress shoes with squarer heels no higher than 1.5 inches would be best. When fashion dictates, alternate between wearing dress heels and lower heels or flats.

You may have been born with pretty high arched feet, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with pain. If you’ve tried over the counter arch supports and your pain is not better, seek consultation with a foot specialist.

The Foot and Ankle Center of Lake City in Seattle has been treating patients for over 30 years. Make an appointment by calling us at 206-368-7000 or request an appointment online at

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