How to Choose the Perfect Walking Shoe

Updated on January 30, 2019
FloridaFootAnkle profile image

I am an online health writer, as well as a board certified reconstructive foot surgeon .

The perfect walking shoes require the right fit and comfort.
The perfect walking shoes require the right fit and comfort.

There are various features to look for when selecting the perfect pair of walking or running shoes. If they do not have certain features, then shoes can hurt your feet due to an improper fit. Above all else, wearing walking shoes should feel comfortable. This will help you avoid a nasty blister or painful callus. In addition, the shoes should be sturdy. They should not feel heavy. They should have the ability to absorb shock to help you avoid developing foot pain. It is important to note that not every walking shoe is made the same. It may take time for you to find the right features for your individual needs.

Tips on Choosing Walking Shoes

  1. Consider which features you'll need.
  2. Consider the materials it's made from.
  3. Pay attention to the shape and width of your feet.
  4. Take precautions to get the best fitting experience possible.

1. Consider Which Features You'll Need.

To get the correct fit, look for shoes that cushion and support your feet. One of the best features to look for is a gel or foam pad. Gel and foam pads help cushion your feet and can lessen the impact. An air midsole is another feature to consider that can also help soften impact and offer sufficient padding for your feet.

Insoles can also cushion your feet, support your feet, and provide arch support. It is best to select a shoe that has removable insoles, so you take them out whenever you wish. You may also want to consider a shoe with a heel collar, because you'll want to protect and pad your ankles and have a better fit. Another great feature to look for is a shield. This helps reduce stress on your Achilles tendon by holding the shoe firmly in place. You may also want to consider a shoe with a round toe area, which makes the area around the toes roomier and can prevent calluses from forming. Make sure you have room to wiggle your toes, if your toes are cramped, bunions and hammertoe may develop.

2. Consider the Materials It's Made From.

The material of the upper sole should also be considered, because it keeps the shoe in place on your foot. Typically, the upper soles are made of leather, mesh, or some form of man-made material. If you want extra ventilation, you may want to pick a mesh toe box. Mesh materials are also lighter than leather and synthetic materials. Also, look for shoes with grooves and treads to help improve your footing or traction when walking.

Remember to replace shoes when they become worn to prevent injury.

3. Pay Attention to the Shape and Width of Your Feet.

Good walking shoes should never feel cramped. If your shoes are snug, you may experience pain and discomfort. It is important to pay attention to your foot's size and shape when purchasing a pair of shoes. The shoe should mold to the size and shape of your feet and should never feel excessively tight. In addition, your walking shoes should properly fit the width of your foot and not be overly narrow or extra wide. Shoes that do not fit properly can cause blisters and calluses to grow.

4. Tips to Achieve the Best Fit Possible

Having the right shoes can help you prevent injury. This is why it's so important to be prepared when going into a fitting. Use these tips to help avoid making mistakes when buying your next pair of walking shoes.

  • Wear the same type of socks you normally wear when trying on your new shoes.
  • Purchase shoes from an athletic store with a wide selection of styles and sizes.
  • Have a professional salesperson measure your feet or measure them yourself.
  • Be sure to try on both shoes and walk around inside the shoe store to make sure they feel comfortable.
  • Your shoes should not feel loose or tight and should not slip when you walk.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Florida Foot Ankle


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