It usually takes a few days for new running shoes to adapt to your feet and soften up. There may be times when you purchase a pair that is too tight for your feet. When this happens, you have two options: replace them or stretch them.

Stretching running shoes is an effective way to make them more comfortable for wide feet. There are a few different ways to stretch running shoes, and the best method will vary depending on the materials of the shoe. 

Here are some tips on how to stretch running shoes for wide feet. Follow these steps to ensure a proper fit for your next run!

Methods How To Stretch Running Shoes For Wide Feet:

To accommodate wide feet, running shoes can be safely stretched in a variety of ways. The best five are listed below:

Method 1: Buy Them In The Evening:

One of the best ways to stretch running shoes is by purchasing a pair that are slightly too small for your feet. This method only works if you purchase your running shoes in the evening, as this is when your feet will be at their largest. Because your feet are smallest in the morning, you might purchase a pair that isn’t a true fit for you. 

When you wear them in the evening or at night, they may not fit you well. It is always recommended to buy shoes late in the late afternoon or late evening. Before trying on the shoes, wear thick socks if you need to buy them in the morning.

Method 2: Use A Hairdryer With Thick Socks:

Another way to stretch running shoes for wide feet is by using a hairdryer with thick socks. This method works especially well on leather and synthetic materials, which have a tendency to stretch over time.

To use this method, the hairdryer is turned on. Put the dryer on the “low” setting and put your shoes on with thick socks inside of them. Next, hold the hairdryer about 6 inches away from your shoes and move it back and forth to make sure that the heat is evenly distributed.

Method 3: Replace The Insoles:

If you find that the insoles of your running shoes are too thick or not supportive enough, consider replacing them. Some brands of running shoes offer a thicker insole that can be easily removed and replaced with an alternative.

This is one of the easiest methods for stretching running shoes for wide feet, as most insoles are made from lightweight materials that can be stretched using your hands. Simply remove the insoles from your shoes and replace them with a thinner or more supportive insole of your choice.

Method 4: Freeze Up Your Shoes:

A more unconventional method for stretching running shoes is to freeze them. This works especially well on leather and synthetic materials, which tend to stretch when they are cold.

Stretching your running shoes is made easier by utilizing the special properties of water. There is something interesting about water. In the transition from liquid to solid state, it expands somewhat. 

To use this method, fill a plastic bag with water and place it inside your shoes. Allow the water to freeze overnight and remove the frozen water from your shoes in the morning.

Method 5: Use A Shoe Tree:

If you have access to a shoe tree, this is one of the best methods for stretching running shoes for wide feet. A shoe tree is a wooden or plastic device that is inserted into the toe box of your shoes to stretch and maintain their shape over time.

To use this method, insert your shoe tree into the toe box of your running shoes and leave it there for a few hours. When you remove the shoe tree, your shoes should be slightly stretched and ready to wear.


I hope these tips have helped you to stretch running shoes for wide feet. You can find a way to comfortably accommodate wide feet. Always take the time to find a proper fit for your next run, and enjoy getting out there on the pavement! Be sure to consider these methods and others that might work best for your feet! Best of luck in all your future runs!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Athletic Shoes Stretch Out?

Yes, athletic shoes can stretch out over time. There are several different methods you can use to stretch running shoes.

Can I Stretch Shoes by A Half Size?

Yes, you can stretch shoes a half size by using methods such as freezing your shoes, wearing thick socks while trying on new shoes, or switching out the insoles.

Are Leather Running Shoes More Flexible?

Leather running shoes are often more flexible than other types of athletic shoes due to their material properties.

Sara Kelley
I am Sara Kelley, the owner of Shoecoaster and dedicated to providing comprehensive detail, buying guides, tips, tricks to make your decision easier. With over 10 years of experience in the footwear industry, I have extensive knowledge and insight into the latest trends and products. My goal is to provide you with the information you need to find the perfect pair of shoes for your needs.