The Best Walking Shoes For 2019

The best walking shoes for your feet depend on your foot type. Do you have high arches? Or flat feet? Do you overpronate or underpronate?

Beware of any shoe list that recommends one style for every walker. Sneakers are not one size fits all.

Sneakers are made for different foot types. Specifically, they are made for different arch types and pronation types.

You may not know what type of arches you have or if your feet roll inward or outward (yet!) but you may know what pain feels like when your arches ache or your heels or toes hurt after a long walk.

Here is the good news…your feet never have to hurt! Really, it’s true. If your new shoes are causing your feet pain, it means they aren’t the right type for your feet.

You just have to find the pair of sneakers that provides the proper support and cushioning for your feet. It’s simple once you know what type of feet you have. And I am going to give you some quick, easy steps to find your foot type.

Athletic shoes are designed for different types of feet (high arches, flat feet, overpronation, supination) and wearing the wrong type can lead to injuries and pain in your feet, knees, shins and hips.

There are three different types of sneakers – neutral, stability and motion control. Each type provides a different amount of cushioning and control of your pronation.

Already know your foot type? Click here for my recommendations:

  • Best walking shoes for women can be found here
  • Best walking shoes for men can be found here

Changing your shoe type can change everything! I once bought a pair of neutral sneakers. I wore them for a few minutes and my arches were aching! Why? Because I overpronate and need a shoe with more stability to control that.

I exchanged those neutral sneakers for a stability sneaker and my arch pain was gone.

Find the best walking shoes for your feet with the step-by-step guide I created below.

"Wow! I have been researching the web for a while trying to learn about my Supination. Your site is by far the best and most informative I have found. Thank you."

You can find out what type of shoe you need in two easy steps. You’ll need to know what kind of arch your feet have (normal, flat or high) and what level of pronation you have (normal, under or over). With this information, you can select a shoe that will provide maximum comfort and minimize or eliminate injury.

The best rated walking shoes by pros and walkers alike are Saucony, New Balance, Asics and Brooks. You'll find lists below that include all of these brands as well as how walkers rated them and how comfortable and durable they really are.

Step 1: Determine Your Arch Type

All you’ll need is a piece of colored paper, a brown paper bag or cardboard. Get one foot wet and stand on the paper. Take a look at the imprint your foot leaves.

Determine which category your foot falls into:

Normal Arches

Normal – Your imprint will show most of your foot and you’ll notice a large band on the outside of your foot imprint, connecting the ball of your foot to your heel.

You have a normal size arch and the most common foot type. Also known as a normal pronator, which means your foot collapses inward slightly to help absorb shock.

You can wear almost any shoe, but one with some stability is recommended to give you some arch support.

Shoe recommendation: Stability shoe, moderate flexibility.

Flat Feet

Flat – If you can see nearly the entire imprint of your foot, it means you a low arch, or flat feet. This is common for those weighing over 165 pounds. Also known as an overpronator, your feet roll excessively inward when they land, which can cause pain in your knees and shins.

You’ll need a shoe that offers stability and support.

Shoe recommendation:

Stability or Motion Control shoes, depending on the severity of overpronation.

High Arches

High Arched Feet – If your imprint shows a thin band on the outside of your foot connecting your ball to your heel, you have high arches, the least common foot type.

Most likely, you’re an underpronator or supinator, meaning your feet tend to roll outward as they land and you can develop problems with your knees if you don't wear the right shoes to help with this issue.

Shoe recommendation: Neutral-cushioned shoe, maximum flexibility

Q: How do you know when it's time for a new pair of walking shoes?

A: You should replace your current pair every 300 to 500 miles. Even though your shoes may still look nice, the materials inside that help provide shock absorbency to your feet and legs begin to break down.

Chances are, your body will tell you when it's time to replace your current sneakers. If you start to feel aches and pains in your feet and/or legs and you haven't replaced your shoes in awhile, that's a good indication it's time for a new pair.

Step 2: Determine Your Level Of Pronation

The Shoe Test

The wear pattern on your shoes can help you determine how much you pronate when walking. Pronation is how much your feet roll either inward or outward as they strike the ground.

Athletic shoes are made to support different types of pronation. For example, a neutral shoe is the most flexible, a stability shoe offers some degree of support for your feet and motion control offers maximum support.

Take a look at the shoes you’ve been walking in. Turn them over and examine the wear pattern.

It’s normal for the outside border of the heel to have some wear.

Example of overpronation

If the inside area of the heel is more worn than the outside of the heel, you are an overpronator (your feet tend to roll inward too much as you walk).

Shoe recommendation: Stability or Motion Control shoes, depending on the severity of overpronation.

Example of underpronation

If the outside of the heel is more worn than the inside, you are an underpronator or supinator (your feel roll outward as you walk.)

Shoe recommendation: Neutral-cushioned shoe, maximum flexibility.

Example of normal pronation

If the wear on the heel is about the same, you probably are a normal pronator.

Shoe recommendation:

Stability shoe, moderate flexibility.

Step 3: Select the Best Walking Shoes for Your Feet

  • Best women's walking shoes for 2019 can be found here.
  • Best men's walking shoes for 2019 can be found here.
  • Best narrow walking shoes for 2019 can be found here.
  • Best wide walking shoes for 2019 can be found here.

  • Best walking shoes for 2019 can be found here.
  • The best rated walking shoes list is an all-inclusive list of the very best walking shoes for 2019. You can find that here
  • Did you know it's best to shop for shoes later in the day? I've put together my best tips for shoe shopping in my guide on how to choose comfortable walking shoes here.
  • And after you buy your new shoes, don't forget to buy a pair of walking socks. Believe it or not, athletic socks, made of synthetic material, help to keep your fit dry when exercising, which helps prevent blisters. They also fit your feet better than cotton socks that tend to bunch up and rub against your shoes.
  • If you'd like to learn more about the features that make up a shoe, have a look at this article on the best shoes for walking so that you can choose a pair with the right qualities for comfort and durability.
  • Have you heard the buzz about MBT's? Find out if they really are a wonder shoe in my review of MBT Walking Shoes.
  • If you are Diabetic, selecting a good walking shoe is a very important decision for foot pain management and prevention. This helpful article on walking shoes for Diabetics will help you select the most comfortable pair of shoes that will prevent future foot problems and alleviate current foot pain.
  • Learn more about what makes up the best shoes for walking and how they differ from a running shoe.
  • If you live in San Diego, I've compiled a list of best walking shoes stores in San Diego. These quick and easy tips will help you select the best walking shoes for your feet.
  • If you'd like to explore the options available to you in each brand of shoe, I've done the research to help you determine which is the best walking shoe for you. For more information on Nike Walking Shoes, click here. To find the best New Balance walking shoes, click here.  Click here to find the best Asics Walking Shoes.
  • Looking for pink walking shoes? I've got the pinkest styles that are great for fitness walking. See them here.

You can find many great recommendations that I've given to fans of this site on the best walking shoe. Find recommendations for those with high arches, plantar fasciitis and more on my list of Best Walking Shoe FAQs here.

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