Good Content from: Team Saucony
If you’re on your feet often—whether you’re working, walking the dog, commuting, hiking, or exploring a new city—you need a shoe that will support you all day long. While walking shoes may seem similar in shape and style to running shoes, they actually have key components that are specially suited for walking.
First, a quick biomechanics lesson: when we walk, we land on our heels and push off from our toes in a rolling motion, with our midfoot absorbing the most force. To help protect the midfoot and lessen stress on the joints, walking shoes are designed with advanced arch support, ample cushioning, and roomy toe boxes that allow for greater range of movement.
At Saucony, we make our walking shoes with comfort and durability in mind, so you can walk the walk without worrying about aches or pains holding you up. Here, we’ll share a few recs for walking shoes to get you moving for good.
Best shoes for walking on concrete
If you live in the concrete jungle or habitually stand and walk on hard surfaces, it’s important to protect your feet and legs from the pounding. Walking on concrete often without the proper footwear can cause pain in your feet, back, and joints, or something even more serious, such as a metatarsal stress fracture.
Frequent concrete walkers should try the Integrity ST 2, which hits all the marks in comfort, durability, and flexibility. The shoe features comfy cushioning from heel to toe, a sturdy upper, plus a roomy toe box and extra stretch in the forefoot for a perfect fit.
Walking shoes with arch support
Since the midfoot takes the brunt of the landing force when walking, wearing shoes with proper arch support is critical. Before you choose your perfect pair, you should first determine the amount of arch support you need. If you have lower arches (or flat feet), a shoe constructed with more support will help stabilize your feet and relieve muscle and joint stress.
Our shoe pick for those looking for elevated arch support is the Omni Walker, which features a durable leather upper, plush cushioning from heel to toe, and a moderate medial post for enhanced ankle stability. The Omni Walker also has a higher offset than most running shoes (12mm), which helps relieve strain on the Achilles.
Is a running shoe good for walking?
Running shoes can be used for walking, but there are a few key differences in running and walking shoes to be aware of before you decide which pair works best for you.
Compared to walking shoes, running shoes are lighter, more responsive, and made with more breathable materials, which enable us to pick up the tempo without our feet dragging or overheating. Because our feet spend less time on the ground when we run, running shoes have less cushioning in the midsole than walking shoes. Running shoes also tend to have a lower offset and less arch support than walking shoes.
All that said, if you prefer a running shoe to walk in, we suggest trying the Echelon 7, which has a spacious toe box and extra heel support to keep your feet secure whether you’re walking or running. Another all-activity option is the Liberty Iso 2, which features plush cushioning, a breathable knitted upper, and a subtle medial post for stability. You can also try the Omni Iso 2, which offers similar arch support as the Omni Walker, but with the benefits of a running shoe—lightweight, with a mesh upper and responsive midsole foam.
Best women’s walking shoes
- Women’s Omni Walker
- Women’s Integrity ST 2
- Women’s Omni ISO 2
- Women’s Guide 13
- Women’s Liberty Iso 2
Best men’s walking shoes
Ready, set, walk!
We want to outfit you in shoes that will allow you to walk and stand comfortably all day long. If you need help choosing the right ones for you, tell us a little more about yourself via our Shoe Advisor tool, which will help match you with a pair. You can also visit your local running store for more suggestions on walking shoes.
Want more Saucony scoop? Be sure to keep checking our blog at Saucony.com for tips and insights about shoes, training, racing, and more.