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Best Walking Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis in 2022

 

When you have plantar fasciitis, even short walks can cause pain. Although the pain is more noticeable in the morning when you get out of bed, it’s always there and can make moving around uncomfortable.

Sometimes doctors treat it with steroid injections or even surgery if it’s bad enough. But a simpler step can help immensely—investing in a pair of the best walking shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Our first choice is the Hoka Bondi 8. It has a full-length EVA midsole, a molded Ortholite footbed, and an internal heel counter to keep your foot locked in place and supported.

But we’ve found many other great options that fit within a range of styles and budgets. Read on to see them all…

Top 3 Best and Favorites

 

Hoka Bondi 8

 

  • Ortholite sockliner
  • Breathable mesh upper
  • Generous layer of EVA foam
CHECK MEN’S PRICECHECK WOMEN’S PRICE

 

Nike Revolution 6 Next Nature

 

  • Firm heel
  • Rubber outsole
  • Minimum of 20 percent recycled material
CHECK MEN’S PRICECHECK WOMEN’S PRICE

 

Brooks Addiction Walker 2

 

  • BioMoGo DNA
  • Heel cup
  • Padded collar and tongue
CHECK MEN’S PRICECHECK WOMEN’S PRICE

Best Overall

1. Hoka Bondi 8

Hoka’s beloved Bondi is now on its 8th version, and it’s every bit as cushioned and comfortable as Hoka lovers have come to expect. It’s also great for plantar fasciitis, thanks to the generous cushioning and arch support.

What We Like

The Bondi 8 is an excellent upgrade from the 7; while still being a max-cushioned, plush shoe, the midsole foam now features noticeably more energy return than before, taking the shoe from being a comfortable pillow-like experience to giving you a bit more pep in your step.

The midsole also flares out a little in the heel, offering a more stable landing platform, especially for heel strikers. For those with plantar fasciitis, this prevents any extra aggravation to the heel, which can be a weak point.

A breathable mesh upper and semi-gusseted tongue allows you to get a solid lockdown on the foot. This means the arch support in the shoe stays in the right place even as you walk and your foot flexes.

The generous cushion and strong arch support are great for taking the strain off the plantar fascia, as your foot can relax into the support and is protected from impact.

With the zonal rubber on the outsole now covering more of the exposed EVA foam, you can also expect this version of the Bondi to last longer.

Why We Like It

The Bondi is a much-loved shoe, and the 8 offers everything that you’d need to stay comfortable and supported while walking, with a little more spring in your step than the previous Bondi model.

What to Consider

Although weight matters less if you aren’t doing any kind of competitive walking, the Bondi 8 is fairly heavy. For an average-sized men’s shoe, you’re looking at over 10 ounces, which is on the heavier side for a walking shoe.

What’s New

The Bondi 8’s midsole material has been replaced with a more responsive one. It still feels soft, but there’s noticeably more energy return than before. Also, the midsole flares out a little under the heel for a more stable landing.

There are more sustainable materials in the upper and more rubber on the outsole for better durability and traction.

PROS:

  • Ortholite sockliner offers step-in comfort that keeps you comfortable for hours
  • Breathable engineered mesh upper with partially-gusseted tongue provides an excellent lockdown on the foot
  • Generous layer of EVA foam provides an ideal balance of cushioning and responsiveness as well as good arch support
  • Durabrasion rubber outsole features enhanced coverage for great grip

CONS:

  • The shoe is a little heavy, at over 10 ounces
 

Top Value

2. Nike Revolution 6 Next Nature

If you’re looking for excellent value for money, Nike Revolution 6 Next Nature is our top recommendation. It offers all the Nike tech with a very nice price tag.

What We Like

Technically, this shoe is labeled as an “athleisure” shoe rather than a specific sport shoe. However, Nike’s website indicates that it’s great for every day running on road surfaces, so we’re certain it would make an excellent walking shoe.

It features a light, airy, eco-friendly upper with a typical Nike “narrow midfoot and toe box” fit. It’s very breathable, so hot summer walks won’t be a problem.

The midsole is unique and has a computer-generated design that, according to Nike, offers a “piston effect”. This propels you forward with less muscle fatigue while also providing good support for the plantar fascia at the same time.

A sturdy heel counter helps to prevent lateral movement of the heel. There’s also a good bit of cushioning in the heel, which is excellent for those with plantar fasciitis as it absorbs shock and protects a vulnerable part of your foot.

There’s some debate as to whether the outsole lugs provide good or bad traction for running. However, when walking, they offer great grip on many different surfaces, keeping you safe and stopping you from accidentally stretching or tweaking your plantar fascia if you slip.

Why We Like It

The Nike Revolution 6 Next Nature is an amazing budget shoe. It’s soft but responsive, offers good support for the plantar fascia, and has a firm heel counter to keep your foot properly in place as you walk. All at a great price point!

What to Consider

Nike shoes have a reputation of running narrow, and the Revolution 6 is no exception. It’s noticeably narrow and tight in the midfoot running to the toe box.

If you have wider feet, you may find it difficult to get the right size, as they’re available in regular and extra wide.

What’s New

The midsole of the 6 is softer than on the 5. The shoe also uses more recycled material.

PROS:

  • Midsole features unique computer-generated design for better responsiveness
  • Firm heel keeps your foot in place and is cushioned for shock absorption
  • Rubber outsole offers good grip while walking at a moderate pace
  • Contains a minimum of 20 percent recycled material

CONS:

  • Like many Nike shoes, these ones run a little narrow
 

Best Stability

3. Brooks Addiction Walker 2

If you overpronate, the Brooks Addiction Walker 2 is the best shoe to protect your feet from any kind of hurt or harm. It looks great, too!

What We Like

The Brooks Addiction Walker 2 is a great choice for those who need support for overpronation and suffer from plantar fasciitis at the same time.

BioMoGo DNA foam in the midsole provides excellent support for the arch, taking the strain off the plantar fascia. Even better, if it doesn’t quite provide enough support for your feet, you can remove the insole and add a custom one.

As well as the strong arch support, there’s an Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar in the midsole, which is a medial post that offers extra support in the arch to stop your foot from falling over as you walk.

This support also provides excellent shock absorption, which takes a lot of stress off the plantar fascia as you walk and can reduce pain.

Another feature that helps to keep your feet safe is the slip-resistant outsole. This prevents accidental slips that could overstretch the plantar fascia.

A sleek black or white leather outsole also means that there’s subtle support from the outside of the shoe.

Why We Like It

This shoe offers excellent support and stability for both overpronation and plantar fasciitis. This is thanks to the rollbar—medial post—and the adaptive cushioning, which fight against unnatural movement and reduce pressure on the painful part of the foot.

What to Consider

The rollbar in the midsole of these shoes makes them quite firm, which could be uncomfortable for some. However, it should feel better with some breaking in.

PROS:

  • Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar prevents overpronation
  • BioMoGo DNA foam provides contoured arch support and shock absorption
  • Slip-resistant outsole reduces accidental slips that could hurt the plantar fascia
  • Sleek leather upper for durability and subtle support from the outside

CONS:

  • The shoes may feel more firm thanks to the rollbar
 

Top Running Shoe for Walking

4. Brooks Ghost 15

The Brooks Ghost 15 is an excellent daily running shoe. Its soft midsole is great for those with plantar fasciitis and extremely comfortable. If you want to upgrade from walking to running at some point, this shoe is a great choice.

What We Like

If you’re currently walking but want to progress to running at some point, we recommend the Brooks Ghost 15.

The shoe offers excellent, noticeable arch support, which does an effective job of easing any strain on the plantar fascia. Stretchable mesh in the upper helps you to get a great lockdown and make the most of the arch support.

The DNA Loft midsole offers cloud-like cushioning throughout the foot. A 12 mm drop concentrates cushioning in the heel, where shock absorption is essential for those with plantar fasciitis.

Adding to the shock absorption is a Segmented Crash Pad on the outsole, which is in the forefoot but helps ease shock throughout the entire foot. Blown rubber on the outsole helps you to stay safe no matter where you walk.

If you find that the support isn’t quite enough or that the strong arch support is too much for your feet, you can remove the insole and add a different one that’s more suitable for you.

Why We Like It

This shoe offers softness and comfort underfoot, with good cushioning under the heel to protect from impact and strong arch support to ease the strain on the plantar fascia.

What to Consider

The Brooks Ghost 15 is a wider-than-average shoe, so if you have narrow feet, you might not be able to get a good fit.

What’s New

The new version of the Ghost has slightly updated the lacing system and upper. There’s also no BioMoGo foam in this version; instead, the midsole consists entirely of DNA Loft foam.

PROS:

  • Soft, responsive DNA Loft foam provides both comfort and support for the foot
  • Strong arch support reduces pressure on the plantar fascia
  • A 12 mm drop offers good cushioning in the heel for shock absorption
  • Removable insole allows you to add custom support if necessary

CONS:

  • This shoe may be too wide for those with narrow feet
 

Best All-White

5. Saucony Grid Omni Walker 3

As its name suggests, this shoe is specifically a walking shoe, designed to protect the foot at lower speeds. It’s also only available in classic white or black.

What We Like

If all-white shoes are your favorite kind, we highly recommend these ones for plantar fasciitis.

The PWRRUN midsole offers a good combination of softness and energy return, which allows you to walk with a spring in your step but still cushions your arches and relieves strain on the PF.

In the midsole, you’ll find a midfoot bridge, which offers unobtrusive support against excessive pronation. This also reduces pressure on the plantar fascia, as your foot remains supported throughout its range of movement.

A slip-resistant WalkTrac outsole guides the foot gently through its gait while allowing you to walk confidently on several different surfaces without the risk of slipping and hurting the plantar fascia.

The leather upper offers some external support and looks smart enough for wearing to the office and out to the park. It’s also moderately water-resistant.

Why We Like It

The all-white or all-black design of this shoe is classic and smart. Aside from looking good, it offers excellent support for the plantar fascia and comfort thanks to the lightweight midsole and midfoot bridge.

What to Consider

The leather upper of this shoe is not the most breathable. This might not be the best choice for walking in hot weather! It’s also quite heavy for a walking shoe.

PROS:

  • PWRRUN midsole supports and cushions the plantar fascia as you walk
  • Midfoot support bridge enhances stability and gently guides your foot
  • WalkTrac slip-resistant outsole keeps you safe from slips
  • Leather upper is water-resistant and offers light support for the feet

CONS:

  • This shoe isn’t very breathable
  • The shoe is a little heavy for a walking shoe
 

Top Shoe With Velcro Straps

6. New Balance 928v3

Regardless of your reason for choosing Velcro over regular laces, the New Balance 928v3 is our top choice. It’s an excellent stability shoe that offers support for the foot and comfortable cushioning that absorbs shock.

What We Like

The easy hook-and-loop Velcro strap system makes these shoes extremely adjustable. These shoes are accommodating if you struggle with laces or your feet swell.

They also come in multiple widths, so even if you have naturally wide feet, you should be able to get a good fit.

In the midsole of this shoe, you’ll find ABZORB cushioning, which is soft enough to absorb shock that would otherwise aggravate the painful plantar fascia.

The foam also offers good arch support, but if it’s not quite enough for you, the insole is removable so you can add another more suitable one.

A ROLLBAR system in the midsole includes a medial and a lateral post, effectively preventing any kind of shoe or foot twisting. This plays a large role in protecting the sensitive plantar fascia.

Walking Strike Path technology on the outsole helps to gently guide the foot through its natural range of motion as you walk.

Why We Like It

This shoe is practical and smart-looking, and the added support features and comfortable cushioning provide great protection against straining the plantar fascia.

What to Consider

The tongue of this shoe is unusually short. Some may find that this causes a hotspot on the bridge of the foot, depending on their foot shape.

What’s New

There are only small changes to this shoe; the tongue has been shortened, and the toe box has been made slightly roomier.

PROS:

  • ABZORB cushioning offers contoured arch support and is removable to allow for custom orthotics
  • ROLLBAR system provides additional support on both the medial and lateral sides of the midsole
  • Easily adjustable hook-and-loop straps allow you to get a comfortable lockdown
  • Comes in multiple widths to accommodate wide feet

CONS:

  • The short tongue on this shoe may aggravate the bridge of the foot
 

Best Women’s Shoe

7. Orthofeet Breeze Stretchable

Orthofeet shoes are made specifically to relieve foot pain and these ones are excellent for plantar fasciitis.

What We Like

Designed to ease foot pain, every part of this shoe is made for comfort. The upper is soft and non-binding and can stretch to accommodate swollen feet, bunions, hammertoes, and other conditions.

This shoe features unique cushioning. There’s a contoured insole with anatomical arch support that does a great job of providing support to the plantar fascia. But between that and the outsole, there are two extra spacers.

You can keep both spacers in the shoe for extra cushioning or remove one or both if you need more space in the shoe. Regardless of the spacers, additional cushioning is built into the heel of the shoe, reducing shock and relieving pain.

You can also remove the insole and add your own if you want more specific support. However, the shoe does come with an additional arch booster.

Why We Like It

These shoes are pretty and practical, even though there aren’t many colors available. They’re lightweight, ergonomically designed, and supportive.

What to Consider

These shoes stretch, but they can lose their shape and stop fitting so well after some time. This is unlikely but may happen after some time of wearing the shoes.

PROS:

  • Insole and two spacers allow you to customize the cushioning in this shoe
  • Extra heel cushioning absorbs impact and keep your feet pain-free
  • Anatomical arch support offers excellent protection of the plantar fascia
  • Non-binding, flexible uppers hold your foot lightly in place

CONS:

  • The shoe may fail to return to its normal shape after being stretched for some time
 

Top for Wide Feet

8. New Balance 840v3

Those with wide feet will appreciate the extra width of the New Balance 840v3. It’s an athletic style but offers everything you need to protect your feet.

What We Like

With a leather upper, these shoes are supportive from the outside in. Flat laces help you cinch down and get a strong lockdown on your foot, ensuring that the shoe’s support is always in the right place.

A full-length piece of ABZORB foam in the midsole supports the arch and reduces the shock that might otherwise aggravate the plantar fascia. However, it’s soft enough to offer comfort as well.

A thick layer of Ndurance rubber on the outsole makes these shoes extremely durable. It also keeps you safe on multiple different surfaces and provides extra shock absorption to protect the plantar fascia.

The shoe has a naturally wide fit. But even if your feet are unusually wide, it also comes in wide and extra wide sizes.

The women’s shoes are also available in a mesh upper, which is handy if you live in a warm area and need more breathability.

Why We Like It

These shoes have a naturally wide fit and come in multiple widths to accommodate every foot width. They provide great support for the plantar fascia.

What to Consider

These shoes are not going to work for those with regular-width or narrow feet. You won’t find a good fit even if you like the style.

What’s New

The changes from the 2 to the 3 are minor but important. The heel was redesigned to provide a more snug fit, and the upper was made more flexible. There’s also more cushioning in the midsole and deeper flex grooves in the outsole.

PROS:

  • Full-length ABZORB midsole offers support and comfort underfoot
  • Flat laces allow you to get a solid lockdown on the foot, so the support is always in the right place
  • Thick Ndurance rubber on the sole keeps you safe on your feet and makes these shoes durable
  • Available in regular, wide, and extra wide

CONS:

  • Not a good fit for regular width feet
 

Best for Hiking

9. Salomon X Ultra 4 Gore-Tex

If you’re a hiker who suffers from plantar fasciitis, these hiking shoes will protect your feet from the trails while stabilizing the plantar fascia.

What We Like

This hiking shoe is not only good-looking, but it’s one of the best choices you’ll find for hitting the trails. Designed for mixed or technical trails, the shoe offers all the support and cushioning you’d need for a safe and enjoyable hike, even with plantar fasciitis.

The waterproof Gore-Tex upper allows you to tackle trails in all weather, even when it’s wet outside. Your feet will stay dry and warm throughout your hike, even more so if you use them with gaiters.

An EnergyCell midsole provides excellent cushioning and support in a surprisingly lightweight package. This high-performance EVA foam provides good responsiveness but is great at absorbing shock that may otherwise hurt your foot.

Advanced Support Wings and Advanced Chassis technology hold the foot in place and effectively prevent any kind of lateral movement. They work with the midsole arch support to cradle the midfoot, keeping the plantar fascia safe in position and reducing pressure on the painful area.

Salomon’s All Terrain Contagrip outsole is the final piece of the puzzle. Deep, multi-directional chevron lugs grip well on many different surfaces, keeping you safe from slips, jarring, and overstretching during your hike.

Why We Like It

The Salomon X Ultra 4 Gore-Tex offers everything you need to hike safely and easily, with features that also protect the plantar fascia from pain and jarring.

What to Consider

These shoes take time to break in. You may find they feel stiff and uncomfortable initially—although Salomon’s have a naturally narrow fit. It should take a few weeks for them to loosen up and become comfortable.

What’s New

The shoe has been redesigned aesthetically, for a sleeker look. In the midsole, the Advanced Chassis is a new addition for heel stability, control, and protection.

There’s a new rubber compound on the sole for extra stickiness. The shoe weighs about half an ounce less than the 3.

PROS:

  • Advanced Chassis and Advanced Support Wings offer lateral support and cradle the plantar fascia
  • EnergyCell midsole foam contours to the foot for support and pain-relief
  • Waterproof Gore-Tex upper allows you to hike in all weather
  • All Terrain Contagrip outsole delivers exceptional grip and keeps your feet safe

CONS:

  • These shoes require a break-in period
 

Top Sandal

10. Birkenstock Milano

Birkenstocks are known for their excellent support and high comfort level in a stylish sandal design. These should support your plantar fascia adequately.

What We Like

Sandals often have no support, so these ones are a welcome change. With an anatomically-designed cork footbed, they mold to your foot the more you wear them, giving you almost customized support for your arch.

With a deep heel cup and metatarsal bar in the forefoot, you’ll find that your feet remain aligned and pain-free throughout the day.

Cork is naturally shock-absorbing, but it’s helped by a latex cushion embedded in the midsole. These sandals are effective at reducing jarring to the sensitive plantar fascia.

For even more impact absorption, there’s an EVA outsole. This dampens shock but also provides a good grip on multiple different surfaces.

Soft leather straps feel comfortable on the foot and are weather-resistant. They help you to get a good lockdown without hotspots or pressure points, so your feet can stay properly in position as you walk.

Why We Like It

These sandals are an excellent, supportive choice for plantar fasciitis. They also look good in smart and casual settings and are highly durable.

What to Consider

Birkenstock sandals often require a break-in period before they start to feel comfortable. You may need anything from a few days to a few weeks before these mold to your feet and start to provide the comfort they’re known for.

PROS:

  • Anatomically-designed footbed molds to the shape of your foot for the best possible support
  • Latex cushion in the footbed offers excellent cushioning and shock absorption
  • EVA midsole increases impact absorption and provides great grip
  • Three adjustable straps allow you to get a comfortable and effective lockdown

CONS:

  • These shoes may require a break-in period
 

Buyers Guide – Walking Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis

Comfort

The shoe you wear needs to be comfortable enough for you to wear it for long periods of time. You shouldn’t feel any hotspots or chafing and the shoe shouldn’t be too tight or too loose.

Cushioning

Good cushioning will reduce the shock of impact and lower the effect of vibrations on your plantar fascia. There should be enough cushioning for the shoe to feel comfortable—but don’t choose a max cushioned shoe if you aren’t comfortable with it.

Midsole

The midsole should be lightly flexible, enough for your foot to flex naturally as you walk. There should be enough support and stability in the midsole without it being too soft.

Firm Heel Counter

The shoe should have a firm, stable heel counter to keep the heel in position. This will help to prevent twisting of the foot that could stretch and hurt the plantar fascia.

Toe Box

A wider toe box will allow the toes plenty of space to move and flex naturally. There will be no chafing, hotspots, or pressure points that could force you to alter your gait, affecting the plantar fascia.

Arch Support

The shoe you choose should have the ideal arch support for your foot. If you overpronate, you will need a stability shoe. But even if you don’t overpronate, you will still need to match your arch support to your foot.

If you have high arches, you will need strong arch support to prevent your arches from collapsing and hurting your plantar fascia. If you have flat feet or a low arch, you will also need enough support to stop your feet from falling over and causing pain and strain.

Removable Insole

A removable insole is essential in the event that the existing insole doesn’t offer enough support for your foot. If the insole is removable, you can take it out and add a custom orthotic to provide better support for your arches.

Durability

Even if you’re just walking and not running in these shoes, they should be durable enough to last a long time. Choose a pair of shoes that is well-made and strong.

FAQs

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

There is a thick section of tissue running down the bottom of the foot that connects the heel bone to the toes. This band of tissue is called the plantar fascia. When it becomes inflamed, it’s known as plantar fasciitis.

One of the most common signs of plantar fasciitis is a stabbing pain close to the heel, which is often worse in the morning when you first wake up and put your feet onto the ground.

How can I treat Plantar Fasciitis myself?

There are no specific ways to cure plantar fasciitis, but you can treat it and ease the symptoms by taking steroid injections, having physical therapy, or even having surgery in extreme cases.

With mild cases, it’s a matter of resting your foot and managing the inflammation. A number of self-massage tools, such as massage balls, can be used. If you’re the DIY type, a frozen water bottle rolled under your foot is effective treatment for mild inflammtion.

Other things you can do to help ease plantar fasciitis:

Shoe modification

Make sure you’re wearing the right kind of shoes. This can sound like a silly thing, but your shoes need to support your arch and fit without chafing anywhere.

Physical exercise

Exercising more often and stretching that underfoot can have a positive effect. It’s suggested to exercise 3 to 5 times a week for 20 minutes to half an hour. Don’t forget to stretch first. Plantar fasciitis is an overuse injury, and can develop if you increase distance or intensity too quickly.

Adjust intensity

If you keep having heel pain after you get back from your speed walking group, it may be time to reevaluate.

As much as you may feel good otherwise, slowing down can actually help. Try:

  • Walking shorter distances
  • Slowing down
  • Avoiding hills
  • Rest if you feel you need to

What features does a good walking shoe need?

The best walking shoes for plantar fasciitis will depend on you and your feet. But these are some things you need to look at:

  • Generous cushioning
  • Flexible but not soft midsole
  • A removable insole (if necessary)

Ben Drew

Ben Drew

Ben is an avid road and trail runner, and has completed multiple marathons and ultras. A former running store owner, he now shares his knowledge and experience writing these articles.

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