Walking is among one of the best exercises for any fitness level. While not as beneficial as running for quick weight loss, it is far less jarring and easier to develop a positive habit due to its low impact nature. Walking requires no special gym equipment or pre-requisite fitness training. But in order to avoid pain and potential foot health problems, you will need the right shoes. Proper support and padding is essential to getting the most out of your walking fitness plan. The following shoes are among the most comfortable walking shoes you can get with good cushioning.
Walk all Day in Comfort with the Best Cushioned Shoes
1. New Balance 1080v11
As the latest iteration of its equally popular predecessor, New Balance 1080 embodies cushioning and plushness in a single attractive combo that is bound to deliver well on track. It features a brand-new mesh on the upper, in order to even out the fit and feel in the midfoot area, as well as redesigned flex grooves on the outsole for better traction. Additionally, the entire geometry of the shoe has been altered to ensure a smoother ride.
After reviewing the features, the New Balance 1080 comes across as a minor upgrade with no significant improvements in comfort or quality. If you have already tried and liked the previous New Balance model, you will most probably like this one as well, and even appreciate some of its new modifications.
2. Hoka One One Bondi 7
Being the sixth version of Hoka One One, the Bondi 7 is also the most cushioned shoe of this brand, promising a pillowy soft comfort for any distance you walk. With a redesigned upper and seamless construction, this shoe incorporates thoughtful detailing with firm rubber soles to provide superior grip over track, while keeping your feet secure from the vagaries of the elements.
Overall, the Bondi 7 is a high-quality walking shoe that incorporates maximum cushioning for a smooth and comfortable ride. While it isn't the typical multi-purpose shoe, it is certainly suitable for lengthy runs and recovery runs, and thus worth your money. Whatever be your style of running or training, Bondi 7 has got you covered!
3. Brooks Glycerin 20
Brooks hit it out of the ballpark with their Glycerin models. These shoes are available in men’s and women’s options, although the women’s is often sold out or on back order. This is in large part due to the demand for the feminine, but not overly girly purple/blue color option. Men’s model comes in black with green and blue accents or blue/silver. Beyond looking great, these shoes are meant to help those with a neutral gait feel great as well. 3D print and synthetic materials work together to secure feet in the upper like a saddle. This cuts the weight significantly, making these shoes less than 11 ounces.
Nitrogen-infused DNA LOFT v3 midsole is a step up from Brooks’ Previous model. It provides 20% more cushioning than previous models for a more comfortable walk. Pressure zone technology easily distributes weight across the entire shoe for easier shock absorbing power and a smoother glide. And since 96% of customers say it’s a true-fit walker, you can feel secure ordering them in your natural size. But if you swell or have width issues at all, consider ordering up a half size.
4. Altra Torin 5 Plush
The newest edition from Altra's sleek running shoes, Torin comes with significant improvements in tread design, weight and traction. Touted as one of the most reliable trail runners of modern times, this sturdy shoe combines a fuss-free, lightweight design with good cushioning to give you the feeling of literally walking on a cloud. Whether you are aiming to cover muddy trails, or traverse along wet pavements, Torin 5 has got you covered!
Despite its flaws, the Torin is built to impress. Its minimalistic and fuss-free design makes for a lightweight shoe that offers a snug fit and pillowy feel, even at those times when you are at your breaking point. Just like any high-quality runner, it features sufficient foam padding for premium comfort and gives the traction to ace dry and wet paths alike.
5. ASICS Gel Kayano 28
The ASICS Gel Kayano is one of the most comfortable walking sneakers you can get your feet in. Made specifically for mild pronators, these walker/runners come in men’s and women’s options. Skeletal crossing synthetic material over the breathable mesh upper creates a stretch fit. The Ortholite sock liner wicks moisture away and is antimicrobial treated to resist bacteria and odor. FluidRide cushioning differs depending on gender foot shape.
Raised heel and guidance lines in the grip sole ensure proper foot placement as correction and healing occur. Rear and forefoot gel cushioning aids in healing Plantar Fasciitis. And the toe box is comfortable for most users. However, if you suffer from edema or other swelling concerns, ordering up at least a half size (and possibly a full size depending on your swelling needs) can offset the issue. Otherwise, most customers say these are true-fit ASICS shoes that offer stability and all day comfort.
6. Hoka One One Clifton 8
A quick look at the sales photos alone of the Hoka Clifton 8 running shoe shows that this sure to be a comfortable shoe with plenty of padding and cushioning. There is no doubt that there is a thick sole underneath that wide shoe, a feature that is accentuated by the stripes. This big rubber sole contains an impressive amount of cushioning from the heel right down into the toes. This, along with the lightweight materials and the breathable linings over the foot, means that walkers should have no problem handling long distances without foot pain or blisters. There is also a wider toe box than previous models, which has helped many keen fans.
The Clifton also lives up to expectations, and arguably surpasses the models before it, because of the look. This is a good looking shoe despite all that material and width. The sole and upper are usually found in contrasting colors, often a bright white on the bottom and selection of bold colors on the top. Again, there are plenty of color choices out there that should suit all kinds of tastes.
7. Saucony Liberty ISO 2
The newest revamp version of the Liberty line of walking sneakers, Saucony Liverty ISO 2 combines the best of both worlds: cushioning and light body weight. It is comfortable right of the box, and features an aesthetic design that is sure to complement with your sportswear. The sole is even and thickly padded, to allow even distribution of your body weight across your feet, and preventing residual soreness and fatigue in the process.
Liberty ISO2 is a nice choice for a neutral footed walker who prefers shoes that incorporate premium cushioning and comfort, while sporting a lightweight framework. While the price is slightly on the higher side, it comes with the promise of long-lasting durability and dependable performance, the two things that you would trade for any amount of money in the world.
8. New Balance 1260V7
New Balance is well known for their stability shoes. The comfort enhanced correction plan of this model incorporates an 8mm toe-heel drop to provide a better stride for overpronators. While the 1260 isn't heavily padded, but T-Beam arch support is among the best new technology for flat feet.
This model is considered to be one of the most comfortable walking shoes from New Balance. Synthetic material over soft mesh ensure proper support and breathability. Men’s and women’s options are addressed with bright color choices to combine fitness form with function. The shoe runs true-to-size for most. But if your feet are wide or you need to add personal orthotics, ordering up in size can be beneficial. ABZORB heel cushioning and technologically advanced sole structure provide reliable support and stability for hours on end.
Walking Shoe Tips to Help you Make the Right Choice
Walking is a great way to stay healthy and has been proven to lessen the chances of developing heart disease and diabetes in adults. So why not start today? If your answer is you don’t have a good pair of walking shoes, we have some simple tips to make sure you get exactly what you need. Let’s talk about things you should consider when shopping for walking shoes.
The most essential thing to look for in walking shoes is support. Very rarely are shoes designed with a footbed that matches your foot exactly. That’s why it’s crucial that the shoes you buy have a removable insole, that way you can insert a customized insole if you need one. Sometimes store-bought insoles are fine if you don’t have any major foot problems. If you do have issues with your feet, you can visit the podiatrist. He can prescribe custom inserts that match your feet perfectly and give you the precise support you need while walking.
Another thing to consider is finding a waterproof walking shoe. Walking on a treadmill can be very mundane. It’s much more fun to exercise outdoors. With that said, weather conditions aren’t always perfect and puddles can hide in shaded areas for a couple days after a heavy rain. It’s good for athletes to look for shoes that are waterproof so they don’t get ruined due to rain or mud.
Two Good Pairs
It’s great to have two pairs of walking shoes especially during the break-in period. Most shoes take a while to conform to your feet and aren’t as comfortable to wear at first as they will be in a week or two. Being able to alternate pairs of shoes during the first couple weeks can be a relief for your feet. It’s also good to have two pairs because it limits your down time. Obviously shoes you exercise in are going to get dirty. Having a second pair to wear when you are washing and drying out the other will keep you in the habit of daily walking.
Almost every physical activity under the sun will cause you to sweat. Unfortunately some pairs of walking shoes are not breathable and will let sweat pool into the shoes. This becomes a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi to thrive. Some brands of walking shoes now have moisture wicking properties designs to rid the shoe of unwanted moisture. While shopping you’ll definitely want to see if you can find a pair proven to wick sweat away from your feet.
The walking shoes that keep your feet feeling nice and breezy during summer months are probably not the same pair you want to wear on a chilly winter morning. A shoe composed almost entirely of leather is sure to keep your feet insulated when it is cold outside. Shoes with breathable mesh uppers will keep your feet cooler during hotter weather which is always a plus. Keep in mind the season you need shoes for when shopping.
An ideal outsole for walking should have good traction. You’ll likely face different terrains when walking outdoors. In case you run into loose gravel or slick sidewalks you’ll want to make sure your feet have enough grab on the ground so that you don’t go sliding. It’s also important that the outsoles be thick. Minimalist shoes are all the hype right now and are a good fit for some individuals who exercise indoors. For walking outdoors the soles do need to be relatively thick, or you may feel each pebble you step on.
If the doctor recommended you start walking because you are overweight, it’s best to look for a sturdy, durable shoe. The shoes will have to support your weight and flimsy walking shoes can fall apart quick. Be sure to read verified customer reviews to see what owners of each shoe have to say about how long the shoes stayed in tact.
In addition to new walking shoes, you may also want to get a few pairs of compression socks. Compression socks can support healthy blood flow to your muscles. Because muscles need oxygen to thrive, having better circulation can mean you can walk for longer and experience less muscular fatigue and fewer cramps.
Resource Links to Other Types of Walking Shoes on findmyfootwear.com
Walking Shoes for Overpronation
There are different types of foot gait issues, caused in large part by overworking the body, wearing improper footwear, being overweight/obese for too long, or even genetics. Overpronation is the most common foot gait condition in those who suffer from non-neutral arch. In most cases, severe overpronation is caused by flat arches. In any case, the wrong type or too much pressure on the feet tend to change them and force the structure to adjust to accept the extra stress.
In overpronation, the feet turn inward towards the big toe. While it wears out the inside of the shoe, it’s far more than a nuisance to common footwear. It predominantly affects joints. So once the ankle weakens, the rest of the body follows. And before you know it, you have knee, hip, and back pain as well. The right shoes for overpronation have stability, low heel cups, and good arch support to help correct the issue and allow you to regain a neutral foot gait.
Walking Shoes For Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar Fasciitis is one of the most common and most painful foot health conditions this year or any other year. It’s caused by a number of reasons. But overpronation, obesity, and over-exercising are among the more likely options. The condition is often exacerbated upon rising out of bed when the plantar fascia, the band of tissue that stretches from the heel to the ball of the foot, is stretched and planted onto the floor. There are several treatment options for Plantar Fasciitis, but none will work without proper footwear. The right shoes will have overpronation support, extra cushioning, and be wide enough to slide the foot in without jarring it.
Walking Shoes For Flat Feet
Millions of Americans have flat feet, a condition which can be extremely painful and negatively affect the quality of life. 90% of all non-neutral foot gait concerns deal with overpronation, which is the tendency for feet to roll inward. Those with flat arches are most likely to overpronate. And as that happens, the body adjusts to accept the brunt of the pressure.
Ankle joints turn inward, knees and hips follow. And eventually the back collapses. Flat feet lead to the development of bunions, corns, calluses, plantar fasciitis, and tendonitis. Proper footwear is necessary to correct this condition. Those with flat feet require shoes for mild pronation. This includes moderate arch support and extra cushioning.
Walking Shoes With Memory Foam
Memory foam is known as a miracle cure to those who use it as a pain-relieving sleeping aid. And now, it’s been labeled as the same for those with foot issues. Memory foam emulates the feeling and support of stepping in wet sand. In the event you suffer from an array of painful foot health conditions, memory foam can ease pain, offer proper support and stability, and anchor the foot in the correct position as time and proper care cure the issue.
As the number 1 walking shoe brand in the world, Skechers tends to the needs of its customers by offering diabetic and foot health–friendly memory foam inserts in many of its most popular styles. Why simply rely on form or function when you can have both?
Comfortable Walking Shoes for Over Weight Walkers
Men and women are made differently. They have completely different fitness needs and body structures. So it only makes sense that they requires different things in footwear as well. As men are designed to weigh more than women in most natural cases, they generally have wider heels to absorb the force of that weight.
Women, on the other hand, tend to have wider ankles and calves, and have higher arches. The changes, while seeming slight, can lead to serious foot gait issues or chronic pain conditions if unisex footwear or the wrong shoes entirely are used for fitness needs. The correct walking shoes need to be gender targeted and comfortable for any given foot gait need or painful foot health issue in order to address and correct various needs during extended use.
janice preece says
looking for a good shoe to help me. I stand on concrete floors for 12 hours a night.. I have memory foam skechers. my feet still hurt
Hi, please do have a look at some of the options in the post about shoes for concrete floors here- findmyfootwear.com/best-work-shoes-for-standing-on-concrete-floors/
i had that problem too working on a standing all night job til I bought the HOKA shoes, the soles are thicker for those hard concrete and wood floors like at the post office and dock when we unload mail trucks and tracktor-trailers and hundreds of mail sacks on cement docks onto conveyor belts all night….but these HOKA’s with the the thcker soles and cushiony insoles are like standing all day on balloon-pillows, massaging my feet all night. Try em, and you’re sold for life. (costs more and are worth it)