Shoes for Hobbit Feet

I'm on the look out for some new shoes - I have been to a shop and will be visiting another (probably more than one knowing my luck), but any advice I can take with me on where to start would be extremely helpful!!

I have in the last few weeks been prescribed some orthotics. They've been through a couple of tweaks and I now have the final devices. Pod has said to go for either a neutral or a stability shoe. They do just about fit in my old (ladies, UK8.5) Brooks Adrenaline GTS 10 (the orthotics themselves are quite deep), only the toe box tapers too much on to the outside of my foot squishing my little toes (I did have saucony omni 8s before these and they have the same problem, if not more so). The shoe fits elsewhere really well and the taper on the toe box isn't a problem on the other side of my foot, there is the perfect amount of room around the big toe.

With a slightly earlier incarnation of my orthotics I went to our local shop and ended up with a pair of mens Puma complete velocis II (as they didn't have any ladies shoes in stock that would take the orthotic in my size). These are great round the little toes as the toe box is less tapered but I am finding that  now I've done more than run round the block in them, that the rest of the fit is too sloppy around the ankle, mid foot and the big toe side of the forefoot, and I'm getting too much movement no matter how I tie the laces!

I realise that I'm going to have to try a lot of shoes on, but I'm finding that the shops I've been to don't seem to stock much in my current size (or perhaps bigger) on the ladies just wondering if anyone had any suggestions on ladies shoes with a rounder toe box, that will take a pretty deep orthotic (or indeed a men's shoes that have a smaller fit, but still a decent toe box), so I can ring round the local shops to see what they have in stock before going over there to find they have nothing appropriate in my size. I'm not sure going up a half size in the brooks is the answer as I think then my big toe will be flapping around a bit  and I'll be getting too much movement in my forefoot- but maybe this isn't too much of a problem?

Thanks for any advice offered! I need to get the shoe choice right this time as I can't afford to keep buying pair after pair of shoes, and this pair will have to last the requisite 400 miles!



  • Don't know about ladies in partic, but Adidas Respone Stability fit that bill in mens.

    They are cheap and durable too. Just look a bit crap.

  • You could also try the New Balance '2e' wide fitting.
  • I would suggest Mizuno neutral shoes which I find have a reasonably high volume as well as being wide in the toe box.

    I think you'll find the New balance too wide at the heel with the new PL-1 last. The SL-2 lasted shoes would have been perfect but the only shoe now available in that last in the UK is a motion control shoe

  • Thanks for the suggestions, I shall bear them in mind, just have to find the energy to tackle runners need in Holborn and/or the marathon store tomorrow lunchtime.


  • You don't say what sort of shoe you're looking for, but I wear full-size, custom-made orthotics and have size 9 feet and I'm a laydee.

    I wear mens' Nike Equalons (8.5) as women's shoes don't come up large enough to accommodate the orthotic, plus I have wide, bony feet and womens' shoes are generally too narrow.  They have a wide toe box, but fit well elsewhere.

    The other problem will be that the orthotic will push your heel higher in the shoe, so it won't grip as well around the ankle.  You don't say either whether you fit your orthotics on top of the existing insole or remove the insole (which I do) and replace it with your orthotic - that too will make a difference.

    You could try a different pair of socks, perhaps some slightly thicker than you currently wear.  I wear Hilly monoskins as they are anatomical, but they have a very thick heel and toe which also help pad out those areas.

  • My orthotics are 3/4 length (not full length) carbon made by Langer. I want shoes for road running in the first instance. I am not fast, so don't need anything 'racy'. I'm just under 5'8' and about 150 pounds. The orthotics do indeed push my heel up.

    I've been taking out the existing insoles and replacing them with the orthotics, although the puma ones are so flat that I've tried leaving them in too to help with the sizing, but it doesn't make enough difference. No chance am I getting my feet in the brooks with the insoles and orthotics!



  • I have 3/4 length orthotics and run in Mizuno Wave Rider 13s. Would happily have recommended the model but the 14s are getting very bad reviews as it seems Mizuno has slightly increased the heel causing problems for a few people. They have changed some other Mizuno models too. Mizunos are a wide shoe so may still be worth considering.
  • Thanks - another vote for Mizunos, deinitely have to see if I can find some in 8.5 and 9 to try on. How do they size generally??

  • Abotu average, albeit wide image I wear a size larger for my running shoes but think quite a few people do that. I also take the insole out of the shoe. 

  • Grr, not having much luck in finding ladies shoes in my size(s) to try...the shop for which I have a £15 off new shoes vouchers only stock ladies shoes up to a size 8, and my other local shops are not doing much better...I really am not having much luck with the fit of men's shoes either.

    I just want to be able to try stuff on without having to go through the palaver of ordering shoes, waiting for them to come in, finding they don't fit well, ordering some more...I just want to get some shoes so I can get back to getting out there!

     Sorry for the whine!

  • Just to update in case anyone comes across this thread in the future with a similar issue.

    I've ended up in ladies Mizuno Wave Rider 14s in an 8.5 (my usual running shoe size). I've only done a two mile run in them (having a few problems with my cardio with the hayfever at the mo), but already they are the most comfortable running shoes I've ever had. They seem to fit my feet really well, and seem very responsive.

    I did look up people's opinions on these shoes before going to the shops, and 13 wearers don't seem to like the changes made to the 14, but as someone who has never worn 13s and has come from stability/motion control shoes they seem fantastic! There have been complaints about the height of the heel collar on the 14s, but for me we a deep orthotic, it feels really secure and my heel feels nicely locked in. So, maybe not for 13 wearers, but for someone with my issues they seem fabulous. Just the right amount of room for the toes too! Time and miles will be the test, but for now I am happy.

     I did have problems finding shoes to try in my size - some of the major shops only seem to stock ladies shoes up to an 8 and offered me mens shoes to try, which for me, fit wise had the same problem as the pumas. Two shops were particulalry keen on Brooks Defeyance in mens 8.5. On the treadmill they did everything they should, but I was still concerned about the fit, and I'm so glad I held out until I was able to find some Mizunos to try because they just feel so completely different in a really good way.

     Thanks for your help and suggestions everyone.


  • Glad you've got something sorted out at last.  Give it a week or two, but if they are comfortable etc, then I'd advise buying another pair.

    I always buy two pairs and rotate them - they also last  better that way. 

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