If you place your knees together and you have a sizable gap between your two feet, you may be knock-kneed. It can cause pain and discomfort, as well as difficulty in keeping good walking and running form.
The best shoes for knock knees will help to keep the feet aligned properly, which will, in turn, keep the knees in the right position. They should be a stability shoe or a motion control shoe and have a firm heel counter to keep your feet locked in.
We recommend the New Balance Fresh Foam 860v11 as our top pick. It’s a stability shoe with a medial post to counter overpronation and keep the lower legs aligned. And it has a stable internal heel cup and an engineered mesh upper that locks the foot into position.
We’ve reviewed 10 options that would be good choices for those with knock knees.
Top 3 Best and Favorites
New Balance Fresh Foam 860v12
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Hoka One One Arahi 5
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Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22
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1. New Balance Fresh Foam 860v12
New Balance shoes are known for being solid and stable options. The 860 is a stability shoe, which means it is designed for individuals who need extra support for overpronation. This is a prime condition if you have knock knees.
The engineered mesh upper locks the foot while still allowing air to flow freely. A medial post adds stability which allows the foot to stay in its natural gait every step. Keeping the foot in the right position reduces the chance of injury to both the feet and the knees.
Another thing that helps to stabilize the foot is a firm internal heel cup, known as Ultra Heel. This keeps the heel locked in while the arch is being supported and the foot is being stabilized by the medial post, making sure everything is lined up the way it should be.
The Fresh Foam X midsole cushioning in this shoe also helps to absorb the shock of impact on every step, so both the ankles and knees are protected while you walk or run. This provides a smoother ride that doesn’t put extra pressure or stress on the knees.
Some people may feel that the shoe is too narrow in the forefoot to be comfortable.
- Medial post
- Ultra heel internal heel cup
- Fresh Foam X midsole
- Engineered mesh upper
- Some people may feel that the shoe is narrow in the forefoot
2. Hoka One One Arahi 5
Stability is important to help align knock knees correctly and prevent injury. But cushioning is also a crucial part of a high-quality shoe. Good cushioning can help to reduce the shock of impact every time your foot lands.
The cushioning in the Arahi is known for being shock-absorbing and comfortable. Plus, it’s also made for stability.
Flat-Waisted Geometry technology makes the shoe more stable, and the molded foam insole is soft. A Hoka EVA J-Frame helps prevent overpronation by using higher-density foam on the medial side of the shoe.
A newly-updated mesh upper is made to provide extra support around the foot. A Meta-Rocker also helps to propel you forward, alleviating the pressure on your knees as they have less work to do moving you forward.
Some people may find that the sole of the shoe isn’t as durable as other shoes they’ve tried.
- Firmer EVA J-Frame
- Early stage Meta-Rocker
- Molded foam insole
- Flat-Waisted Geometry
- Some may find that the sole isn’t as durable as others
Best for Standing All Day
3. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22
If you do a job that requires you to be on your feet for much of the day, you will need a stability shoe that keeps your foot secure for an extended period of time. It should also be well-cushioned enough to not cause fatigue to your feet.
The Brooks Adrenaline GTS has features that are very effective for keeping the foot stable when standing all day.
GuideRails in the midfoot support the foot and prevent any unnecessary side-to-side movement that could affect the knees.
A 3D Fit Print upper delivers a snug fit that adds more structure to the shoe. The midsole is made from a mix of BioMoGo and DNA LOFT, which is a combination of foam, rubber, and air for an enhanced energy return and softness.
Some users may find that the toe box is narrower than they expected and their toes chafe or cause holes in the mesh.
- GuideRails support system
- BioMoGo DNA and DNA Loft midsole
- Progressive Diagonal Rollbar
- 3D Fit Print
- Some may find the tow box to be too narrow and cause chafing or holes in the toe of the shoe
Top Stability Shoe
4. Mizuno Wave Horizon 5
The Mizuno Wave Horizon is a feature-packed stability shoe that provides a smooth ride whether you’re running, walking, or just moving around the house.
The AIRmesh upper with AeroHug construction technology creates an adaptive fit that moves with your foot. Synthetic overlays add extra support from the outside of the shoe.
The midsole is a mix of U4icX and XPOP PU foam. This makes it a very smooth ride that is soft on your feet. It also uses SmoothRide midsole engineering to help with the heel-to-toe transition.
A Mizuno Wave Plate is an innovative piece of technology that absorbs shock and disperses it over a large surface area, to prevent pain in the feet and knees.
Just keep in mind that some people may find that the arch doesn’t have enough support.
- Mizuno Wave Plate
- Combination of U4icX and XPOP PU foam midsole
- SmoothRide midsole
- AIRmesh upper
- Some people may find that the shoe doesn’t have enough arch support
5. ASICS GT-2000 10
If you need a shoe that keeps your feet cool, this could be the one for you. The upper is made from mesh to allow for hot air to escape and cool air to get in and circulate around your feet.
The ASICS GT-2000s are also great shoes to help with knock knees. The cushioning effectively absorbs impact, with an Ortholite sockliner and a SpevaFoam midsole.
The midsole is enhanced with FlyteFoam Lyte Technology to keep the cushioning plump and supportive underfoot, so it doesn’t flatten easily. You’ll also find GEL cushioning pods in the forefoot and rearfoot to more effectively absorb the vibration of impact, so your feet and knees won’t take much of a knock.
The cushioning system also works together with other support features to keep your feet properly aligned and prevent your arches from falling in and your knees leaning inward.
Their Dynamic DuoMax Support System is made specifically to counter overpronation and it’s raised higher on the medial side of the midsole than the lateral side. This causes the foot to be positioned more naturally and prevents it completely from falling over.
This is a cushioned shoe, but some people may feel that the cushioning is too firm and not soft enough.
- FlyteFoam Lyte Technology midsole
- I.G.S (Impact Guidance System)
- Dynamic DuoMax Support System
- Guidance Trusstic System
- Some may find the cushioning to be too firm
Best With Wide Toe Box
6. Brooks Addiction 15 GTS
Making sure you have enough room in the toe box is an important consideration for those with knock knees.
The Brooks Addiction has a wide enough toe box to allow your toes to spread out naturally and improve your balance. For overpronators, GuideRail support holds the foot in place and doesn’t allow it to roll over, keeping the gait neutral.
Other features that contribute to keeping the motion of the feet natural are the engineered mesh upper that has synthetic overlays for added stability. And the Heel Crash Pad, which spreads impact shock across a wider surface area to reduce pain and keep you secure with each step.
A BioMoGo DNA foam midsole is long-lasting and soft under your feet, and it is also biodegradable and environmentally friendly.
Individuals who have worn older versions of the Addiction may find that the support is less on this shoe.
- Progressive Diagonal Rollbar (PDRB)
- BioMoGo DNA midsole
- Heel Segmented Crash Pad
- Engineered mesh upper
- Some may find that the support isn’t the same as previous versions
Top Low Drop
7. Altra Provision 6
A low-drop shoe can help you feel more sturdy and secure on your feet and like you have a better stance on the ground. Most shoes have a drop between 4 and 12 mm, but the Provision from Altra is a zero-drop shoe.
This means your heel and forefoot are at the same height, so there’s no leaning forward, which happens slightly with most shoes. This helps to stabilize you on the floor, and the FootShape toe box lets your toes splay in a natural way so they can help balance you properly.
An EVA midsole with InnerFlex grooves makes you faster and increases performance without compromising on your foot’s form. INNOVARCH arch technology supports and encourages natural foot placement.
The STABILIPOD feature has enhanced support and structure in the three main zones in your foot where it needs stability the most.
These shoes also use Fit4Her technology to make small changes based on the shape of the female foot, like a narrower midfoot and heel and a longer arch.
- FootShape toe box
- Innovarch arch feature
- Stabilipod for extra support
- Altra Zero Drop Platform
- Some may find that there’s not enough heel cushion
Best Men’s Dress Shoes
8. Dunham Jake
These burnished leather waterproof boots can be worn in all weather and still look smart enough for formal use.
Unlike many other dress shoes or boots, they offer some extra stability in the form of a steel shank, which adds structure and support.
A memory foam footbed molds to your feet for optimal comfort. They’re pull-on style and have a warm flannel lining so your feet stay comfortable in all ways.
- Waterproof construction
- Steel shank
- Removable TPE and memory foam footbed
- Warm flannel lining
- Some people may find that shoes look long on their feet
9. Orthofeet Gramercy
These smart shoes use a unique Ortho-Cushion System that has Ergonomic-Stride cushioning which lessens impact so every step is smooth and easy. It also helps to propel you forward, saving your energy so you don’t fatigue as quickly.
These shoes also come with an orthotic insole, which offers arch support that gently keeps your foot in the right place. A deep heel cup reduces shock on the step and locks your heel in place.
You also get two sets of spacers that can be easily added and removed to make the shoes a perfect fit for your feet.
- Ergonomic-Stride design
- Ortho-Cushion System
- Deep heel cup
- Some may find that the grip is not very good on smooth surfaces
10. Xelero Milan
These multi-purpose leather shoes are good-looking and would fit in perfectly at formal events or in the office.
But apart from looking good, they also have some good stability features that you don’t often find in a dress shoe.
A sturdy leather upper already offers good structure. In the Xelero EVA midsole, XPS technology supports your feet in a natural gait. It’s designed to propel you forward with less effort on your part while keeping your foot planted firmly on the ground from all sides.
There are also gel pads located in both the rearfoot and forefoot, for extra shock absorption, and Dri-Lex technology in the lining to keep the feet dry.
These shoes are Medicare-approved for walking, but not suitable for running.
- Gel pads in the forefoot and heel
- Xelero EVA midsole
- Patented XPS technology
- Dri-lex lining
- Some people may find that the shoe isn’t comfortable for wide feet
Best Women’s Dress Shoes
11. Orthofeet Celina
If you prefer a simple dress shoe but something that will still offer good support and help to improve knock knees, the Orthofeet Celina could be the shoe for you.
They’re therapeutic shoes designed to relieve pain from a variety of foot conditions. A spacious toe box keeps the foot naturally splayed and improves balance. This helps to align the foot and prevent the knees from touching.
The shoes come with orthotic insoles that offer anatomical arch support. It also has extra depth inside so you can add another custom insole if you need extra support.
- Orthotic insoles
- Multiple cushioning layers
- Extended widths
- Extra-depth for insoles
- Some find that the sole isn’t very durable
12. Apis Mt. Emey 9205
These shoes are very light on the feet but remain supportive.
A wider toe, extra depth, and added ankle support – plus the extra-length Velcro strap – allow you to get the right fit for your own foot.
The uppers are made from soft leather and have an EVA midsole. A lateral and medial counter are both elongated for extra structural support. The added depth makes it easy to add other orthotics, and you will get three sets of inserts with the shoe.
- Elongated medial and lateral counter
- Removable inserts
- Soft leather uppers
- Injected EVA sole
- The Velcro strap may be too long for some
13. Vionic Minna
This feminine shoe has been biomechanically designed for the female foot, and hugs the arches, providing firm but effective support that aligns your legs from the ground up.
An EVA footbed plus a removable EVA insert keeps the underside of your feet comfortable and reduces shock from the impact of every step.
Vio-Motion technology prevents the foot from moving out of its natural plane of movement so it stays properly aligned.
This shoe has received the APMA Seal of Acceptance, stating that it’s a high-quality shoe that improves foot health.
- Vio-Motion Technology
- EVA orthotic insert
- APMA Seal of Acceptance
- Slip-on design
- Some people may find that these shoes run narrow in the toe box
What are knock knees (also called genu valgum)?
Knock knees which is also known as Genu Valgum is when the knee isn’t in its correct alignment and it turns the knees inwards.
You’ll notice that people who have knocked knees tend to have a large gap between their feet when their knees are together.
What are the causes?
While knock knees can be part of a child’s normal development, the bones of the legs normally straighten at around the age of 6 or 7. However, knock knees can continue into adulthood and may not cause any issues.
That being said, knock knees can develop in adults for a number of reasons like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or an injury. But it can also be caused by an unnatural walking gait like overpronation while in a weight-bearing position.
You may find that the angle of the hips are wider than the knees which could be due to how a person’s body developed, and this would alter your gait which could lead to knock-knees.
Knock knees can also develop in adults due to obesity which places excessive pressure on the knees or if the ligaments in the knees are loose.
Sometimes there can be an underlying cause like osteomalacia which causes the bones to become soft due to a severe vitamin D deficiency.
Knock knees can be linked to rare genetic conditions like Ehlers Danlos Syndrome—which can cause unstable or loose joints.
How do you fix knock knees?
The first step to fixing knock knees is to treat the underlying issue such as a severe Vitamin D deficiency with medication and supplements.
Once the underlying cause has been treated the next step would be to correct the alignment of the knee and your medical practitioner may refer you to a physical therapist.
The physical therapist would then take you through exercises and stretches that will help to align the leg.
A weight loss program could be put together to help a person shed excess weight that places load stress on the bones. Sometimes your doctor may refer you to a dietician and you’ll follow an eating plan while doing the exercises with your physical therapist to help shed those extra pounds.
Wearing shoes that provide adequate support and stability will help to align your legs and allow for a natural gait. Orthotics can also be used to help correct the leg’s alignment and improve a person’s gait while they run or walk.
In severe cases of knock knee a person may have to undergo Osteotomy surgery in order to correct the leg’s alignment.
What features should a shoe have?
There are a number of important factors that you need to look for when buying a shoe if you have knock knees.
The shoe needs to be lightweight, provide stability and have a little bit of flexibility as this will help prevent your legs and feet from becoming fatigued.
The shoe must have a firm heel counter as this is going to help align your ankles correctly and this will help to straighten out your legs.
The shoe’s arch support has to be adequate for your foot shape as this will distribute your body weight evenly and promote a natural foot motion.
Make sure that the shoe has depth so that you can insert an orthotic if you need it. This will also prevent any pressure points from being created on the bridge of your foot and reduce the risk of arch collapse.
The midsole needs to be firm as this will help to keep your foot in its natural alignment.
There needs to be a thick rubber outsole that will help absorb and reduce the impact of your foot strike when you run or walk. The shoe should help prevent pronation and excessive motion when you’re walking or running.
What exercises are recommended?
When you’re looking at doing exercises to help correct knock knees you’d need to make sure that you strengthen the following muscles:
- Hip muscles
Exercises like the Wall Abductor Squeeze, Side Lunges, Single leg Hinge, The Clamshell, and leg raises; will help to strengthen the muscles and help to correct the alignment of the leg.