The weather is balmy, the days are longer, and it’s time to get outside—but not before picking up a pair of the best walking shoes you can find. If you’ve ever tried out a flashy new pair of shoes just to wind up with aching, nagging foot pain, you already know that supportive, comfortable shoes are key for your feet (and your mood, for that matter). Strolling, hiking, running errands, or trying a new walking workout call for a pair of walking shoes that fit and feel comfy and supportive step after step (after step).
What should you look for in a high-quality walking shoe?
As SELF has previously reported, there are many benefits of walking, but ill-fitting shoes can put your legs, ankles, and feet at risk of injury, so it’s important to shop for walking shoes that’ll suit your foot. People with wide feet, for example, should choose walking sneakers with a wide toe box. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, you never want your toes to feel cramped (or like they can’t wiggle) when you’re wearing shoes. Besides plenty of toe room, SELF’s Sneaker Buying Guide recommends taking a shoe’s level of arch support and cushioning into consideration too, whether you have flat feet or high arches. Ultimately, you don’t want to feel like your foot is fighting against the structure of the shoe—rather, you want a pair of shoes that’ll map and mimic the shape of your foot.
When shopping for shoes that you’ll wear for long distances or periods of time, not just any old pair will do. If it’s time to find a new set of sneaks that you’ll be excited to lace up and go walk in, we’ve selected some of the very best walking shoes for you. These shoes are all expert-recommended, SELF award-winning, or top-rated shoe brands like Reebok, Ryka, Hoka One One, New Balance, and many more.
All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.