You may not realize it, but anytime you intend to go on a lengthy walk or plan to be standing up for a long time, you should protect your feet. Many women trust walking shoes for these reasons. The best walking shoes for women will be lightweight, comfortable, and offer good traction.
What to Look For
Not all walking shoes are created equal. When you’re looking for a pair that is just right for you, there are a few features that you should keep in mind.
Memory foam inserts: Numerous models of shoes have memory foam in them. The purpose of this is to make them able to accommodate different shaped feet in an easy way. Look for shoes with a memory foam insert if you want them to be softer. They will have a bit of give instead of being rigid.
Rugged outsole: The outside of the shoe should be more or less solid. This means the outside sole should be sturdy and made of either rubber or high-density foam. This will support your weight and keep you comfortable on different types of terrain.
Flexibility: Walking shoes should be flexible. This will keep your feet from having to do too much work with each step. When you look at the shoe, see if you can move it around and fold it up at all. If you can’t, it may not be a good walking shoe.
Overall quality: Even though most walking shoes won’t see the impact of other types of athletic shoes, they still need to be high quality. Many women wear their walking shoes practically every day. Look at the seams and soles of the shoes, which may tell you if they will hold up well over time. If you see spots that are poorly glued or stitched, this is a sign that they could wear out quicker than you want them to.
Consider Your Feet
It is especially important to know all about your feet when you are purchasing any type of shoes. In other words, there are questions you should be able to answer about your feet. This will help you find a good fit and identify any problem areas. Answer these questions:
Do you have arches? If you have arches, you’ll need extra protection in the foot bed of the shoe.
Do you suffer from foot problems? If you have something like plantar fasciitis, you’ll need to find shoes that have extra protection in the heels. Other foot problems may call for other specialized features to be present.
Are your feet wide? Shoes come in many different widths, so you’ll want to know which one is the right one for you.
What size do you wear? This may seem straightforward, but it isn’t a bad idea to keep checking. Feet can actually change in size as you age and grow, or can be two different sizes.
How much room do your toes need? Check how much your toes spread out in the shoes you normally wear. If they spread out a lot, you’ll need a wider toe box than if they don’t.
Do you need extra protection for your ankles? If you have any ankle problems, you may have to find shoes with a supported ankle feature to lessen possible strain.
Ask for Help
Once you know all about your feet, you may still be unsure of what to buy. If you don’t trust yourself to make a decision, there’s no harm in asking someone. You can go to a local shoe store and ask for recommendations, or even inquire around your circle of friends to see what types of shoes they wear when they go walking. Some of them may even have some of the same issues as you, which could lead to you finding the perfect shoe suggestion.
Even though some shoes don’t feel like they need to be broken in, it is a good idea that you still try. You don’t want to be somewhere with aching feet because you didn’t take the time to try them on and walk around in them first.
It is also important to remember that walking shoes shouldn’t be worn all day, every day. Give your feet a chance to breathe and relax from time to time.
You should always check your feet for blisters and bumps. This will let you know if there is a problem with your shoes or socks. Doing this can allow you to fix the problem before it becomes something major.
Look at your shoes each day as well. When they start wearing out, they probably aren’t offering you good protection anymore and need to be discarded. Don’t hesitate to throw them out and shop for new shoes that will comfort your feet.
RYKA Women’s Sky Walking Shoe
- Has rubber soles: These shoes have a real rubber sole, which is great for traction. They also keep you from sliding around a lot while walking.
- Features memory foam liner: There is a memory foam liner in the bottom of the shoes, to lessen pain and keep the foot protected. This could come in handy if you need to wear them for long periods of time.
- Breathable mesh sides: The upper parts of the shoe have mesh sides. This allows for airflow to keep your feet cool.
- Good arch support: If you have an arch in your feet, these are good for making sure that you are supported. They offer comfort for all the parts of your feet.
- Not good for winter months: Since the sides are breathable, you may have an issue if you plan on wearing them in the winter months. Your feet might get too cold to be comfortable.
- May need a larger size than normal: Since this shoe company only makes women’s shoes, the sizing may be a bit different than you are used to. It’s likely helpful to order a half size up if you decide to purchase them.
Skechers Performance Go Walk 3 Slip-On Walking Shoe
- No laces: These have no laces to worry about, so you can just slip them on and go. This is a positive feature if you have problems with your feet or sometimes have trouble finding athletic shoes that you don’t have to tie.
- Very lightweight: The weight is less than 5 ounces, so they shouldn’t weigh you down.
- Stretchy tops: The entire top of the shoe is made out of a breathable mesh material. This also allows it to expand to accommodate your foot, for the best fit.
- Liner is antimicrobial: The bottom liner has antimicrobial protection. This kills germs and blocks odors from occurring.
- Cushioned heel: There is special memory foam in the heel portion. This can help prevent some of the most common types of pain people experience when wearing shoes.
- Special bottoms: On the bottom of the shoes, there is shock absorbing protection. These large orbs or circles are designed to protect the most vulnerable parts of feet.
May rub on top of feet: Since it is easy not to wear socks with these shoes, rubbing across the top of the foot may be a problem. This could lead to blisters or sores.
Saucony Women’s ProGrid Integrity ST2 Walking Shoe
- Made of leather and rubber: The upper parts are made of leather. The bottom part is made of rubber. This means most of the shoe is made of natural materials.
- Solid design: There is no mesh in these shoes, so they are enclosed and will protect your feet. They can even be good to wear when you’re working, or are on your feet for hours at a time.
- Special cushioning all around: Each section of the shoe has specific cushioning. This means every part of the foot is protected, including the heel and forefoot.
- No need to break in:. You are able to wear these shoes right out of the box. It is unlikely that you will need to break them in before you wear them in public.
- Roomy toe box: There is a lot of room around the toes for feet to spread out. You shouldn’t have to have your toes bunched up in these.
- Not a lot of color options: There are only 3 color options available. This means you may not be able to get your favorite color.
- No arch support: There is no arch support in these shoes. You might need to get arch supporting insoles if you have problems with falling arches.
Adidas NEO Women’s Lite Racer W Casual Sneaker
- Sole has good grip: The outer sole has a honeycomb shape, which allows a good amount of grip when you’re walking.
- Removable insole: There is a special cushioned insole in each shoe, which can be removed. This is beneficial if you need to place a different insert into them.
- Reinforced heel: The outside heel is large and strong, so it should be able to hold up well over time. It can also help keep the foot stable.
- Easy to take care of: They are easy to keep clean. A little spot treatment and some wiping down should do the trick.
- Conform to your feet: When you put these on, they pretty much conform to your feet. You may feel like you are just wearing socks at times. There is even a special liner on the inside, which is made of textiles.
- Come in cool designs: These shoes come in different designs and color schemes. All of them are unique, so you won’t find any plain looking styles.
May run large: You may have to order a half size down on these, especially if your feet are not wide. Keep that in mind when you are looking at sizes.
New Balance Women’s WW577 Walking Shoe
- Have a padded collar: There is a padded collar on the back of these shoes. This should protect the back of your feet, ankles, and Achilles from injury.
- Comes in many different widths and sizes: If you normally have trouble finding your size, these may be what you’re looking for. They come in different widths, including narrow and extra wide.
- Helps with many types of foot problems: You can help correct certain foot problems with these shoes, including arch issues and underpronation.
- Good for many age groups: These shoes offer a lot of support, so they are great for women of all ages. This includes teenagers and senior citizens alike.
- Heavier than other shoes: If you are used to lightweight shoes, these may feel heavier than others. This is likely due to the fact that they are not mesh and are made of leather and rubber.
- Not attractive: Since these shoes are highly functional, they are not very attractive. If you want your shoes to look good, you probably won’t care for these.
In my opinion, the clear winner is the Skechers Performance Go Walk 3 Slip-On Walking Shoe. Not only do they come in many colors, but they are also a breeze to put on. You don’t even have to wear socks with them, unless you want to. These shoes are a bonus for people with issues that keep them from wearing socks or those that can’t tie their own shoes. Besides that, the fact that they have a microbial liner and a special exterior that helps keep you light on your feet make them memorable. They even have good traction and are lightweight.