Are Birkenstocks Good For Flat Feet?

Birkenstocks. The name itself speaks of comfort, a relaxed feel, and that scent of cork footbed that we all know and love. However, people with flat feet often wonder whether these reliable shoes are suitable for their particular feet or not.

Flat feet, also referred to as pes planus, simply means that your foot’s arch has dropped and its entire sole touches the ground. This could bring about various health problems, including back pain, tiredness, and misalignment. Therefore, it is important to find the right kind of shoes.

Why Pick Birkenstock for Flat Feet

There are a few reasons why Birkenstocks are great shoes for flat feet. Birkenstocks are equipped with all the tools and features to ensure the most comfortable experience you will ever have. Learn more about how they will help you:

Arch Support

Birkenstocks have an arched contour. This is not an artificial high arch pushing your foot into a position it should not be in. It’s more like a cushioned, shaped ridge that serves as a reference point instead. 

The arch acts as an intermediate between your heel and forefoot, redistributing the weight on the bottom of that affected foot to other areas. This more evenly distributed weight can take pressure off and reduce pain during long periods of standing or walking.

Shock Absorbance

Since flat feet do not have a natural arch, they are more likely to experience pain due to higher impact levels. The shock-absorbing property of the footbed made of cork and latex will help you avoid the troubles of falling arches and heel pain. 

Cork is a super bouncy, resilient material that helps take some of the pounding off your feet. This extra layer of cushion provides a great deal of plush comfort, enveloping your foot and helping to dampen shock.

Deep Heel Cup

This might not seem like a useful feature, but our bones are like building blocks, and you should not underestimate the power of a good foundation. 

Birkenstocks have exactly that, and the deep heel cup is beneficial for those with flat feet. Also, speaking of flat feet, a deep heel cup will prevent the rolling of the foot, as the heel sits properly into the footbed.

Moldable Footbed

Birkenstocks don’t just offer you support; they give you support molded to your foot! This cork footbed is one of the unique features every Birkenstock model has. As you wear them, the posture footbed gets a space of its own because the cork will mold to the shape of your foot. 

The cork gets molded to your foot by making room for it and creates a customized shape for you, representing the highest level of support and comfort for your foot.

Good Toe Space

This feature can sometimes be overlooked, but in reality, it is yet another important factor for low arches. In many Birkenstock styles, the toe box is wider as compared to other sandals, giving your toes enough area to flex naturally and easily. Other narrow-strap flip-flops may feel tight, but not with Birks.

It is essential to leave both feet and toes naturally spacious for balance and stability. To prevent bunions and hammertoes, you must provide enough space for your toes. Birkenstocks have wide open-toe boxes which give your feet the perfect space they require.

How to Pick the Right Birkenstocks

Finding the right Birks for you may not necessarily be a hard task, but this can confuse you, especially when many options would perfectly meet your individual needs. Here’s what you should know to find the right pair: 

  • Know Your Arch
    • Low Arch: If you have extremely flat feet, then ensure that your Birks develop an arch. Models like Arizona, Florida, and Madrid have more than enough depth and a heavy level of arch contouring, which is already proven to decrease any likelihood of muscle strain. They are so slim and therefore very supportive too. 
    • Moderately Flat Arches: If you have a little bit of an arch, lower-end styles should suit you. With its adjustable strap, the Gizeh sandal offers a happy medium of support and openness. The Mayari is also a contender here, with a slightly flatter arch but an incredibly comfortable toe post that still adds stability.
  • Footbed Matters
    • Regular Footbed: This footbed is the original Birkenstock product, using a firm cork construction. It has the highest level of arch support and is best suited to flat-footed runners in need of a little more structural stability.
    • Soft Footbed: This option provides a mushier feel during the break-in and may be a solid decision if you are delicate-footed or simply hopping into Birkenstocks. But the more cushy cork may not be great long-term support for someone with flat feet.
  • Fit is King
    • Size Up: Birkenstocks are generally not the widest shoes out there, so if you think about premium comfort, definitely add a size. We recommend going up half a size, especially if you have wider feet. Arch support works best with a proper fit.
    • Heel Grip: Make sure that your heel is placed firmly inside the heel cup. This also helps prevent your feet from slipping and keeps them in proper alignment.
    • Adjustable Straps: Choose adjustable straps in the form of buckles or hook-and-loop closures. That will let you customize the fit to ensure optimal comfort and support.


Birkenstocks are designed for patients suffering from flat feet. Since they have features like proper arch support, shock absorption, and general foot stability, they can serve you very well. However, optimal support for flat feet depends on individual circumstances. Considering the style, type of footbed, and the presence of all the features you and your flat feet might need can lead you to the best pair of Birkenstocks you will ever own. 

If you’re confused about whether or not you need orthotics or are looking for the best Birkenstock model for you, look no further. Book a call with Stride Soles and get a free online evaluation today! Contact us today!


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