The Benefits of Flat Feet in Athletics

Flat feet, often considered a drawback in sports, can actually provide some advantages. Some well-known athletes have flat feet and excel in their respective fields, and roughly 25 percent of the population has flat feet. One key advantage of having flat feet is the ability to absorb shock effectively as a result of increased flexibility in the arch, which aids in controlling and mitigating the impact upon landing. However, individuals with flat feet should focus on strengthening their feet to perform well in sports and minimize potential associated risks. The benefits of having flat feet for speed and injury prevention become evident when we consider that flat arches tend to lower the risk of injuries as they offer more flexibility, enhancing shock absorption capabilities. Additionally, athletes with flat feet often display better control during the landing phase of sprints, optimizing the time their feet spend in contact with the ground. This is mainly because their feet typically make initial ground contact in a neutral or slightly pronated position, allowing for a more efficient transition off the ground. Ultimately, regardless of arch type, the strength and stability of the feet are vital for controlling landings. Weak arch support during landing can lead to extended foot contact or potential injuries. If you have flat feet and they are causing problems in the sports you like to participate in, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for an evaluation in addition to recommendations on how to strengthen flat feet into a potential advantage.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  


Pain around the heel or arch area
Trouble standing on the tip toe
Swelling around the inside of the ankle
Flat look to one or both feet
Having your shoes feel uneven when worn


If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flatfoot