11 Best Hoka Shoes of 2020 [Buying Guide]

Best Hoka Shoes

Hoka, or Hoka One One for those that love to be very specific and proper, are one of the top brands in the world that you may not have heard of for footwear.  When it comes to shoes, there are truly few better than them because of their willingness to meet the expectations of various groups of people.  Whether you are a runner or a walker, they have something for you.  In addition to that, they also have shoes that are made for all kinds of different gaits and patterns, making it very possible for you to finally find exactly the perfect shoe for you.  Today, our buying guide is going to delve into all you need to know about Hoka shoes in a bid to find you that pair you have always been craving for- whether you knew it or not.  We’ll also be looking at some of the best and most popular pairs they have on the market as well so that you’ll have an idea of where to begin your search.  So, let’s get it started then!

Top Hoka Shoes Comparison Chart

ProductMaterialSolePriceWhere to Buy?
1. Hoka Women’s Cavu Running ShoesSyntheticRubber$$$$Check Price On Amazon
2. Hoka Women’s Vanquish 2 Running ShoesFabric & syntheticRubber$$$$Check Price On Amazon
3. Hoka Women’s Bondi 6 Running ShoesSyntheticRubber$$$$$Check Price On Amazon
4. Hoka Men’s Clifton 5 Running ShoesNylonRubber$$$$$Check Price On Amazon
5. Hoka Women’s Mach Running ShoesSynthetic Mesh$$$$$Check Price On Amazon
6. Hoka Women’s Arahi 2 Running ShoesSyntheticRubber$$$$$Check Price On Amazon
7. Hoka Women’s Speedgoat 2 Trail Running ShoesSynthetic & MeshRubber$$$$Check Price On Amazon
8. Hoka Women’s Gaviota Running ShoesSynthetic$$$$$Check Price On Amazon
9. Hoka Women’s Challenger ATR 4 Trail Running ShoesMesh$$$$Check Price On Amazon
10. Hoka Men’s Hupana Running ShoesFabric/RubberRubber$$$Check Price On Amazon
11. Hoka Men’s Tor Tech Mid Waterproof BootsNylonRubber$$$$$Check Price On Amazon

Hoka Shoes Buying Guide

A Quick History

To understand where Hoka is coming from and why you might want to turn to them the next time you buy a pair of shoes, we first have to look at their history a bit.  Founded very recently, in 2009, by Nicolas Mermoud and Jean-Luc Diard, the company has quickly made its mark on the world of running.  The two founders were both former employees of another shoe company, known as Salomon, and they had a pretty simple idea at the heart of it.  They wanted to help runners go faster and do so a bit more comfortably.  The way they decided to go about this was by adding cushion to the shoes.  Four years after it was brought into existence, a parent company known as Deckers, who also owns the likes of UGG and Teva, brought them on board.

Revolution or Evolution?

Running shoes have changed drastically since they first burst onto the scene about a century ago now.  If one thing in life can be called constant, it has to be said change.  At any rate, the change in recent years is one that Hoka has decided to go directly head to head with.  The likes of Nike, Adidas, and even the aforementioned Salomon, among others, have been moving into a more minimalist type of shoe for years now.  Everyone wants their shoe to be lighter.  However, there are going to be draw backs with that.  First of all, you have much less material in the shoes.  This means that support goes down considerably for you.  That’s just the way it is.  You have pluses and minuses in life, pros and cons, and one action is bound to cause a reaction.  Rather than deciding to come out with a pair of shoes that were made to be worn for pure speed, Hoka instead went in the other direction.  They decided to go with more cushion instead of competing to see who could take out the most.  This ‘maximialist’ approach, as many have labeled it, has seen them become quite popular as a result.  Initially they had come onto the radar for marathon runners and others that did long distances.  It made perfect sense, since they needed all of that cushioning to sustain themselves through very long, hard runs.  But, much to some people’s surprise, others began to take notice of this.  It turned out that other people also valued cushion for their runs, even if they weren’t going to be doing 26 or 50 miles at a time.  This has led to the company being as widespread as it now is, which is a definite proof of concept.  This is the oversight that a lot of brands didn’t spot, and it’s what has allowed Hoka to get a foothold in the industry that they don’t look like they are willing to or going to relinquish anytime soon.

Diversity

In case you were worried that Hoka is all about the maximialist style, you can rest assured.  Hoka has not stuck to just that sort of thing alone, though it is still a huge part of their brand and their commitment to its consumers and fans.  Rather than feel like you are ‘stuck’ with a bigger, more well cushioned shoe than you need, you can also turn to a number of other options.  They are also making lighter weight shoes nowadays, too, so if you are running shorter distances and looking for that, you can certainly find it.  Hoka also offers trail running shoes and even shoes made for track, with spikes and all on them.  Look hard enough and you can even find a pair of boots offered by the company as well!  Such is the diversity and the number of options on hand.  Don’t feel like you are confined because you definitely are not.

The Rocker Difference

Along with the use of more cushioning in their shoes, Hoka also is unique because they have brought the use of a ‘rocker’ design to prominence in the world of running.  A rocker, if you are unaware, is a design that shoes have that makes them have a bit of a boat or a ‘U’ shape to them.  This rocker design allows less pressure to be placed on one specific area of the foot, instead making sure that weight is much more evenly distributed.  As a result of this, people that experience pains in the fore foot or in the heels can find a much more enjoyable run than they had ever been able to do so.  While the rocker is not all that new, it’s seen a new breathe of life due to being incorporated into running shoes and not only those that are made for more of a ‘prescription’ kind of audience.  Not all Hoka shoes have a rocker to them, but a ton of them do, and that makes them stand out.  If you aren’t interested in a rocker, it’s understandable, but just let it be known that this company is going to make it harder than others to totally avoid them.

Comfort and Support

One of the chief reasons why Hoka has been able to stake out a place in the running market is because they have been able to provide lasing comfort to their customer base.  Comfort and support work hand in hand, but they are each concepts that take a little bit of understanding to fully grasp.  Comfort is something each of us know deep down.  It’s super easy to tell if something is comfortable or not.  You put it on and feel it.  Most things, and especially shoes, are either going to be comfortable for us or they won’t.  That’s all there is to it.  However, support is not so easy to find or judge.  Even experienced runners and athletes alike will disagree on this.  Some of us need more support than others, while some pairs of shoes just won’t work as well as others will for different people.  Support, though, is the thing that you have to do your best to judge.  The way that you do this is by seeing if the pair of shoes in question is better- or worse- for you than the pair you are used to wearing.  If they don’t hurt when you are finished, that’s what we call lasting comfort.  that’s what you want to shoot for.  One of the reasons Hoka has been able to make such a charge in the industry is due to this ability to give you something different.  A ton of people have complained about the trend of minimizing shoes.  They have been shown to increase people’s fatigue and soreness.  If those issues have been present for you, and you don’t know what to do, then you can turn to Hoka to bail you out.  It’s worth a try, especially if it’s going to mean you giving up running or just having to suffer through drudgery and pain.

Stability: Ease Your Way In

One of the greatest aspects of Hoka is that they are able to bring even the hardest of runners a smooth, stable ride.  This has everything to do with their commitment to bringing you more cushion, typically, than the ordinary shoes you are used to wearing while you run.  With this being said, it’s going to be very wise that you take some time to get accustomed to this phenomenon.  Shoes that have extra cushion to them can take a toll on the ankles to begin with.  This stress is not a huge deal for many, but it can be very overwhelming to you at first.  The best way that you can combat this to take it slowly.  Don’t rush right into wearing them for an extended period of time.  Sure, Hoka’s are generally made for longer distances, but that does not mean you have to jump into the deep end of the pool to begin with.  You can work your way into by running shorter distances to prepare yourself some.  This is especially going to be vital for those of us that have experienced some ankle injuries in the past.  It’s always a good idea to work your way up slowly, rather than forcing it to be a great fit right away.  Moderation is key, even with an awesome pair of Hoka’s that you love.

Responsiveness

One very big and oftentimes confusing word that can clog your mind up and lead to a lo of consternation is that of responsiveness.  This word is one of those buzzwords in the running world, and it can mean a lot of different things to different people, so it’s a smart idea to try and cut through that and get right to the heart of what we mean.  By responsiveness what we mean is the ‘spring’ you feel as you run.  A lot of people refer to this as the concept of “energy return.”  Energy return supposes that a shoe will take the energy from your stride and then supply it back to you, rather than losing it.  One thing that many people assume with this is that if you have a thicker, more well cushioned shoe that responsiveness is reduced.  However, this is not always the case.  It’s thought that if you have a lot of cushion that you will lose the spring, but that really makes no sense.  A lot of folks tend to think lighter shoes are the ticket for this abstract idea, but that’s not the case.  You can find it with just about anything.  Our recommendation is that you find something that that you feel is a good feel on your feet.  It’s really that simple.  Don’t pick something that feels bad on you, for any one reason.  Don’t worry about these big pie in the sky ideas.  They just don’t matter that much at the end of the day!

Weight

A lot of people will have reservations about how well these cushioned shoes will work because they will assume that the weight is going to hold them back.  While it is true that most Hoka shoes are not made to be super light like the others hitting the market, it’s also well worth noting that this does not make them cumbersome and impossible to move in.  They are not all that much heavier at all.  It may not seem like it, but a couple ounces are not that huge of a deal.  They do add up, especially over time, sure, but it’s also interesting to think about it from another point of view.  If you have two ounces more of weight that gave more support and the like, are you really going to feel it?  If that’s what makes or breaks the entire pair for you, then it’s well worth the additional weight.  We are not talking pounds here.  In fact, a lot of times we are talking just half an ounce here or there.  In the grand scheme, it’s not much of anything.  Hoka’s will not be super heavy, so you will not have that to contend with.

Sizing

Regardless of the brand or type of shoes you turn to, you are going to need to be on the correct page when it relates to sizing.  Ill fitting clothes are never a good idea, but shoes are the worst when they don’t fit you well.  They can cause all sorts of problems.  From knee and hip pain to blisters, you can run the literal gambit when it comes to issues that come with poor sizing.  With Hoka, you have to get this right, so here are a few tips related to sizing them and some general tips as well:

– First off, take a look at the Hoka sizing chart.  If you don’t find that information available to you where you are buying them from, then go to their website and find it.

– Many people that have been in the ‘business’ think that going up a half a size or maybe a whole one is the way to go.  Again, we encourage you to check the charts and to also read the rest of these tips, but that is one opinion that could prove to be quite valuable to you as you try to decide what to go with.

– Make sure to try and understand how others feel they run.  If the size is said to be too big or small, then there is a good chance that they do indeed run that way.  While one or two people may lie about a product, it’s hard to imagine a ton of people making complaints just to disparage a pair of shoes or a brand.

– Try and balance your width with the length.  Some people feel that Hoka’s run a little bit narrow, but it’s going to be a challenge for you to find the perfect fit if you don’t try and get the length and width just right.  Only getting one is not the way you should go, so be smart and select one that feels good with both.

– Send back any pairs you don’t like when you try them on.  We know it’s a hassle to send things back and forth in the mail or parcel carriers, but it sure does beat trying to force yourself to wear a pair of uncomfortable shoes that just don’t line up well for you.  If you cut out the step of trying and buying in store, you still need to try your shoes on (more on that below) and make sure they are up to the standard that you have set.  If you feel they are wholly uncomfortable, the best choice for you is to go ahead and choose something else. Breaking in shoes is different with each pair, but taking time to break them in is not going to guarantee you that they will feel good on you.

– When you try your shoes on for the first time, in store or at home, you need to do so in a setting similar to the one in which you will be running in.  This means you should wear the same kind of socks, or something similar, to them and that you need to be a little ‘warm.’  This means that you absolutely have to have done some exercise so that you have the blood flowing to allow for swelling of the ankles and feet.  Without factoring these things in, it is very possible that you could end up having a pair that feels good when you are ‘cold’ and downright terrible when you are ‘warm’ and in the middle of a long run.  There’s nothing that will end your use of shoes faster than this, so take the time to size yourself properly.  It’s the only way to guarantee success.

Price

One of the unfortunate sides of the Hoka emergence is the fact that it is not going to be the cheapest option out there.  While each company, even the minimalist leaning ones we have mentioned, have higher priced goods and products for you to buy, Hoka is going to typically come in relatively expensive on the scale.  The reason for this is pretty simple.  Hoka are a specialty brand, like it or not.  They are not customized, per se, as they have not measured each shoe specifically for you, but they are very special in that they are constructed much differently than ‘regular’ running shoes.  Because there is more padding, or whatever their target goal is, they are going to naturally end up costing you a little bit more.  With that said, this price is more than worth it to a lot of people, as it keeps them from sitting around doing nothing or even prevent them from going to the doctor with pains.  Even one trip to the doctor could cost you as much as a pair of new shoes from Hoka, so it’s well worth your time and energy to at least consider giving them a go.  If it helps, you’ll be the winner, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Men’s vs Women’s

When it comes to women’s and men’s shoes, there are some differences to be aware of.  There are anatomical differences between the two sexes.  Women are typically smaller and have more narrow feet, so that’s one reason why there are such distinctions.  It’s not just a random set of numbers that are changed, nor does it have to do with colors being presented, though there are different ones for the two genders in most shoes.  At any rate, the main thing we wanted to point out with men’s and women’s shoe is that many of Hoka’s offerings have models for both genders.  In our list below, we will not touch on the same model in both women’s and men’s.  The features within the shoes will be the same regardless of the gender, so you can safely pick one and be safe in the knowledge that they will be up to the standard you have read about.

The Top 11 Hoka Shoes of 2019 Reviews

  1. Hoka Women’s Cavu Running Shoes

The Cavu takes the top spot on our list, and just a little bit of looking into shows why. These fully synthetic shoes are tremendous when it comes to support. And not just the normal arch support that you’re used to hearing about.  Runners, people who walk a lot, and those that stand all tend to agree that these do not hurt you while you are on your feet.  That means your hips, knees, and back get a load off, too.  One of the main differences that you have to examine and realize about the Cavu is that it’s one of their lighter models.  This is a more flexible pair of shoes that gives more, because of the weight that they have taken off of them.  They are still very comfortable, though, and for that reason a lot of people have turned to them.  Perhaps they are more served toward running shorter distances than the other Hoka’s, but that will ultimately be left up to you to decide for yourself.

Pros:

  • Lighter and more flexible
  • Offers great support for whole body
  • Good for short runs

Cons:

  • Transition from stiffer Hoka’s could be tough
  1. Hoka Women’s Vanquish 2 Running Shoes

The Vanquish 2 hits the charts next, and it does so in a very, very flashy way. The colors are one thing that appeal to the eyes and stand out, but it’s also the design of them that is going to catch your glance. These are made into a rocker design, helping take the pain off those heels for a change.  On top of that, they have a huge amount of cushion in the midsole and outsole, allowing you to be so much more comfortable as you run and when you finish up for the day.  With overlays that are not made with any seams, you have reduced weight up top while even more support is offered to you.  Made from synthetics on the upper, they are flexible while not penalizing you.  The tongue is padded lightly so that is not obtrusive.  The main purpose of these shoes is to help promote you to using the proper running technique.  This is one area where a lot of shoes fail, so it’s nice to see corrective measures being taken up so well by a pair.

Pros:

  • Corrects poor form
  • Huge amount of cushion
  • Supportive but reduced weight
  1. Hoka Women’s Bondi 6 Running Shoes

Another pair with a rocker design comes in here, and that’s one reason why the Bondi have become so popular. The sixth iteration of the shoe, these are made to be super cushioned and comfortable though they are less flashy, much less so, than the Vanquish 2. These have a lot of cushion on the outsoles, though in an entirely different manner, while the front toe area is also heavily padded and protected as well.  With EVA all throughout the entirety of the midsole, the weight is reduced while giving you crucial support.  These have a lot more mesh than the Vanquish 2 did as well, leading them to be a slightly better option when you are running in the warmer months of the year.  With a framework in the heel composed of Lycra and a heel counter that locks you into place, you’ll never be concerned about a lack of support.  For a smooth ride, you will be hard pressed to find better.

Pros:

  • Protective toe area
  • Rocker design for easing heel pain
  • EVA is super light and supportive
  1. Hoka Men’s Clifton 5 Running Shoes

Up next is one of the big staples of the entire brand in the form of the Clifton. The fifth version of them has something for everyone. The looks are great, first of all.  Then come the benefits that aren’t as ‘shallow,’ shall we say.  The midsole is brilliant thanks to the use of their RMAT cushioning that runs throughout the whole shoe.  This makes a more smooth ride possible, even for those of us that tend to be quite clunky when we run.  Not only does that material work in the midsole, but it also does well by doubling up as an outsole compound, giving you a ton of durability and responsiveness as well.  This basically amounts to them not feeling clunk, all the while helping them last longer than they once did before.  The upper is great for warm weather, utilizing knit that makes them breathe well and add to your comfort level by flexing a ton.  These are among their hits, and it’s just so easy to see why that’s the case because of all of this.

Pros:

  • No more clunky running
  • Superior cushioning in midsole and outsole
  • Flexible and breathable
  1. Hoka Women’s Mach Running Shoes

In the Mach you have one of the more ‘normal’ pairs of running shoes from the Hoka brand. While these do plenty to help you get through hard runs, they are a regulation kind of look. They are relatively flat to the ground without a rocker style, which is going to be what some prefer to have.  They do, though, have a ton of cushioning built into the midsole, and it’s obvious when you look at the outsole and see how much of that is there.  Up top on the upper, one glimpse lets you know that you are going to be taken care of very well in terms of breathability.  There is a plethora of mesh placed around them, making them ideal for warm runs and for those of us than run ‘hot’ compared to others.  Like many of the others you’ll find on this list, there are no seams, utilizing a strong bond of materials that also support and lock you in throughout the foot and including both the heels and arches.  These do take a bit of transition time, so be ready to exercise patience in preparing to wear them regularly.

Pros:

  • Very breathable with maximum flexibility
  • More normal look with lots of cushion
  • Strong reinforced upper

Cons:

  • Patience needed to break them in
  1. Hoka Women’s Arahi 2 Running Shoes

If you don’t prefer a more normative sort of look, then the Arahi 2 is one that will make you happy. These shoes stand out not only in their design but also their colors. The designs that really pop out aren’t just there for looks, though, as it’s clear to see that they are put there in order to deliver maximum cushion to you.  While they are not as flat as the previous pair are, they don’t have as much of a rocker design.  This could be seen as a great transition shoe, or just one that allows you to get slightly more support to that heel that is taking such a beating in your other shoes.  With a synthetic and mesh overlay up top, you get a nice blend of durability, flexibility, and breathability all in one package.  If you are someone that is needing a nice neutral level of support, then this is the way to go for you, like so many others in the realm of Hoka.

Pros:

  • Flexible and breathable
  • Very well cushioned
  • In between rocker style
  1. Hoka Women’s Speedgoat 2 Trail Running Shoes

Perhaps these are the most traditional looking ‘sneaker’s you will find under the umbrella of the Hoka brand. However, that doesn’t lend itself to the full story at all. These shoes are made that way for a reason, and that’s because they are designed for the trail, where a ton of cushioning like some of the others would only serve to get in the way.  These shoes use synthetics and mesh up top to create a flexible and breathable platform on which you can attack from.  Even if they don’t have the ridiculously crazy amount of cushioning that the ‘road’ shoes may have, they sure do have plenty, particularly placed in the heel areas.  It’s really tough to find trail runners that hold up and offer stability like their road counterparts, so it is nice to see that Hoka have been able to do that by introducing the Speedgoat 2 to the market.

Pros:

  • Very responsive and flexible
  • Breathes well for varied runs
  • Plenty of cushioning for the trail
  1. Hoka Women’s Gaviota Running Shoes

If you or anyone you know has pain in the middle of the foot, then this could be just the right pair to help repair that. The Gaviota are brilliant in the way they support the mid foot area, utilizing what they call “arch lock wings,” to provide that stability needed. With the upper using a 3D printed frame, it’s super strong yet going to be lightweight and no longer too taxing upon your feet.  They are made with a slight rocker design, a meta rocker if you will, which is also going to be helpful toward the heels.  If you want your feet to absolutely be locked in for a change, then this is the pair for you to turn to.  On top of that, they also have the added bonus of being quite wide in the toe box, making them exquisite if you just can’t stand being hemmed in way too much.  Many have been so enamored with them as standing-only shoes as well, making them a great option if you’re used to long shifts on your feet.

Pros:

  • Good runner and standing shoe
  • Light and durable
  • Superior mid foot support
  1. Hoka Women’s Challenger ATR 4 Trail Running Shoes

If you want an alternative to the Speedgoat, then these are going to be well worth a look. These trail running shoes have the slightest of rockers to them, putting a meta rocker to use that will help to make for a smoother ride. With two layers of mesh on them, you get plenty of breathability while also being sure that you have the durability and support you so desperately crave.  One of the best things we can say about them is that the heel counter really does what it’s supposed to do.  No matter the rough terrain, it does not dig into you, all the while ensuring you stay put where you are intended to be.  With EVA- oversized at that- running all the way throughout the midsole for cushioning and a toe cap that is extended further than most, you get the utmost in support and protection, too.  On top of that, we really love the looks of these, so that deserves a mention as well!

Pros:

  • Superbly nice looks
  • Very breathable and durable
  • Hugely cushioned and protective
  1. Hoka Men’s Hupana Running Shoes

Like some of the others so far, this pair of shoes is more of a traditional look for the guys out there. These don’t have a rocker to them at all, while the colors are pretty understated relatively speaking with just a couple of tones to them. Meanwhile, they still have plenty of cushioning, as you would expect from this brand, which is going to be just what’s needed to get you through a long-ish run or day.  It has the RMAT midsole- and outsole, too- that makes responsiveness a priority to you.  Because of that and the abundance of breathability provided by the mesh up top, this is truly a pair of shoes that you could find yourself comfortably wearing all day long.  That’s not something you can say about very many shoes, and is one of the biggest compliments you can give them.  It’s also going to be more versatile than many of the Hoka’s, meaning you could theoretically work out in them, run, or just stroll through town with them on.

Pros:

  • Thoroughly cushioned
  • Abundantly breathable
  • Extreme versatility
  1. Hoka Men’s Tor Tech Mid Waterproof Boots

Rounding out our list here is a rarity as these are a pair of boots, something that will give hikers and other outdoorsmen a lot of joy. These boots are waterproof, making it possible to trudge through some truly terrible conditions. On top of that, an all Nylon makeup sees them be very durable and flexible, while plenty of mesh is around to give you breathability.  They have a rocker design to them, at least a bit, and a generous amount of cushioning, too, which is not all that common when it relates to boots.  They are a mid cut as well, which is going to help reduce the weight when compared to a full high top design while also giving you plenty of protection and support.  The other thing we really like about them is that they look a lot like tennis shoes, too, so you don’t have to worry about them not looking like the kind of style you usually go for.

Pros:

  • Won’t let water in
  • Protective and supportive
  • Not too heavy but does its job

Conclusion And Final Hoka Shoes Recommendations

In today’s world, there is not easy way to find the right footwear.  Shoes are really, really difficult to find, at least the right pair of shoes.  It’s easy to find and a buy a pair of them, sure, but are they truly what you need or deserve?  Hoka may not be the right ones for you, but for many folks they have found they are.  If you have ever found yourself needing more cushioning, and not less like so many of the companies out there are moving in, then this is the spot where you need to find yourself landing.  Hoka may not be the most popular brand on the marketplace today, but none of that will matter if you find yourself pampered and properly taken care of.  So, find a great pair and never look back!

FAQ’s About Hoka Shoes

What Does ‘Hoka’ Mean?

The name “Hoka” is derived from a word in the Maori language, and it means to “fly over the earth.”  A pretty apt name for a pair of running shoes, it must be said, right?

Do Hoka’s Take a Long Time To Break In?

Each model of shoes is different, and it does depend on the person to a degree as well, but by and large, Hoka shoes are not ones that need a ton of break in time.  We’d still recommend that you wear them a little in the house and work your way up to running in them first, but you should be good to go much earlier than many shoes out there.  A big part of this is the generous, ample cushioning that a lot of the pairs have, as it’s not like you have to become accustomed to a lack of it like so many others.

Do I Really Need a Running Shoe?

If you are going to be running routinely, the answer here is a very clear “yes.”  Running shoes, and good ones, are very necessary if you are intending on running regularly.  The reason why is because they are designed to get you moving forward and keep you doing so.  With tennis shoes and other types of shoes, you do not get the correct amount of support needed.  Tennis shoes may not look all that different, but they are not designed to handle all of the loads placed upon the feet and joints like running shoes are.  You may not favor Hoka for one reason or another, but it’s very wise of you to not make the mistake of turning to a pair of shoes that just can’t handle the pressures of running.  Once or twice might be justified, but anything more than that and you are placing your own health at risk.

When Should I Replace My Shoes?

Replacing your shoes is not something you want to do, but it’s very much a necessity and should be done regularly.  Knowing when to do it is tough, though.  Here are a few things to look for that indicate you need to make a change:

– You are seeing tears of the upper fabric.  This is a no-brainer, or it should be.  If you see tears, then you are susceptible to a lot of things you wouldn’t normally would be.  You could fall or stub your toe and have no protection at all.

– The soles are no longer sticky to the ground.  If the soles are constantly sliding on surfaces, or if the soles are coming ‘unglued’ from the shoes, then you have a real problem.  You need a stable foundation, and without it you could end up seriously harmed.

– Keep track of mileage.  This is not a perfect system, since all shoes are different, but if you are somewhere between 400 and 600 miles in your shoes, then you should really be considering a change. This DOES include walking, too, so don’t forget that. You can do more walking, sure, but you still have to factor in all of that wear and tear to fairly judge it.

– Your support is waning.  This is the big one you need to keep an eye on.  If you are hurting more than you are used to hurting while wearing the shoes, it’s likely due to you losing support.  This is natural.  As you wear your shoes, they will get more and more broken down.  Over time you are going to tax them, and at some point you have to make sure that you take care of yourself by making a change.  Even the best pairs run out of usefulness eventually, so don’t feel there is a default.  Judging when it’s time to change because of support is tough, as you will notice some shifting over time.  At a certain stage, you just have to make a decision for yourself.

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