Having flat feet, or ‘fallen arches’, means that your feet have low or no arches and press almost completely flat against the ground.
The arch, or instep, is the middle part of the foot that’s usually raised off the ground when you stand, while the rest of the foot remains flat on the ground.
Signs of Flat Feet
- Pain in the feet, ankles, lower legs, knees, hips or lower back.
- The feet rolling inwards too much (overpronation) – this can cause shoes to wear out quickly and lead to injuries.
- Underlying problem with the bones, muscles or connective tissues in and around the feet (see below).
Flat feet only need to be treated if you have an associated problem, such as pain, overpronation or an underlying health condition.
Non-surgical treatments are often recommended first, although surgery may be needed in some cases.
- Wearing supportive shoes that fit well.
- Wearing specially made insoles (orthotics) inside your shoes to support your feet and stop them rolling inwards.