What Are The Best Athletic Shoes For Patients With Wide Feet?

Jenny L Sanders DPM

I previously blogged about my favorite running shoes for narrow feet (http://bit.ly/9L6jHP ). This month’s blog is about running shoes for wide feet.

Wide widths for men are 2E and 4E, and wide widths for women are D and 2E. Brooks is my favorite manufacturer in the wide width category. For men, I prefer Brooks Beast®. For women, I prefer Brooks Ariel®. Both styles have firm heel counters and firm medial ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) for maximum pronation control. They will also accommodate an ankle foot orthotic (AFO) as well as a wide or medial flange orthotic.

Men’s 4E and women’s 2E width running shoes are not always available in department stores or even specialty running shoe stores. For these widths, I recommend that patients order online. The sites www.zappos.com and www.endless.com are two of my favorites as they offer free shipping both inbound and outbound.


No offense to the doctor but I find this to be an overly simplistic response. I am in complete agreement that the Brooks Ariel and Beast are excellent shoes, but they are hardly universal in regards both to fit and biomechanical function. The Brooks Linear Last does not commonly perform well for those with a higher, more defined instep nor those with narrower heels.

Under those fit situations, Brooks has far better choices that still meet the construction characteristics mentioned by the doctor. These include the Adrenaline (likely the greatest amount of forefoot space within its performance category) and Glycerin/Ghost/Defyance. This is not to neglect other brands, such as Asics and Saucony. The new Saucony Echelon LE meets a unique niche for a plain, all leather athletic shoe, which combines additional widths without sacrificing sole integrity.

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