Nobody likes to hurt. No matter what it is, a person is always going to be looking for solutions to correct the problem that is in front of them. With foot pain, we certainly hope that is the case. There is a myriad of factors that cause foot pain, from the severe to the very minor, but all of them hinder us greatly. Whether it’s affecting your fitness routine or ruining your workday, you need to figure out something that can help ease the pain and get you through the day. Today, we are going to help you do just that by breaking down all you need to know about the issue our buying guide and then reviewing some of the top shoes out there to help ease your foot pain. So, let’s get it going so we can get you feeling better!
Top Shoes for Foot Pain Comparison Chart
|Product||Material||Price||Where to Buy?|
|1. Vionic Women’s Tide II Toe Post Sandals||Leather||$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|2. Propet Women’s Travelactiv Mary Jane Fashion Sneakers||Textile||$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|3. Adidas Men’s Adipower Weightlift Shoes||Leather||$$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|4. Brooks Men’s Ghost 11 Running Shoes||Manmade||$$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|5. Hoka One One Men’s Bondi 5 Running Shoes||Synthetic||$$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|6. Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 19 Running Shoes||Mesh||$$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|7. Gravity Defyer Women’s G-Defy Mighty Walk Shoes||Fabric & Synthetic||$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|8. Skechers Women’s Go Walk Joy Slip On Sneakers||Synthetic||$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|9. Orthofeet Men’s Edgewater Walking Shoes||Fabric||$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
|10. Asics Women’s Gel Nimbus 20 Running Shoes||Textile & Synthetic||$$$$||Check Price On Amazon|
Shoes for Foot Pain Buying Guide
Types of Foot Pain
There are a number of reasons that you may find yourself in pain. This guide is going to do its best to have a wide range of options to help you out with at least one of these problems, if not more, but you can’t expect every choice to fix every single problem you might possibly have. Here is a look at some of the things that might be causing you, from the acute and severe to the fairly minor. We’ll look at each area of the foot to help you, beginning with the heels.
The heels are a common place for pain to occur at and radiate in and around, so let’s start here. There are two main causes of pain here, though they are not the only ones. One of them is Plantar Fasciitis, which is downright awful if you have ever had it or know anyone that has. It’s inflammation in the tissue of the heels that typically happens due to a lack of support in their feet and hard work on them. The other is known as ‘spurs,’ which many refer to as ‘bone spurs.’ This can happen as a result of having poor posture or gait, having poorly made shoes, or from hard physical activity.
The ball of the foot is the part of the foot that is right in the middle. If you have ever been active, you probably know what this is. You want to make contact, in a perfect world, with the ground with this area of the foot, rather than the heels or the toes. That said, that’s usually a well thought of, pie in the sky thing since we’re all different and won’t just land on them. The balls of the foot, like the heels, can get inflamed as well, leading to a condition called ‘Metatarsalgia.’ It’s very similar to Plantar Fasciitis, only in the middle of the foot, so many of the same factors can contribute to it occurring and to helping to fix it. Another condition you could face is in the tendons near the big toes. This is called ‘Sesamoiditis. It’s another case of inflammation that afflicts a lot of active people but mainly runners and dancers, too.
The toes are another place where a lot of pain can occur in as well. There are a lot things that can be going on, from blisters, to corns, to nerve pain. These things can all be caused by poorly fit and equipped shoes, or they could occur due to the walk in which you walk or the rough manner in which you have treated your body.
Edema is a condition in which the feet, or any other part of the body for that matter, become swollen due to fluid being trapped beneath the surface of the foot and in the tissues. This can be caused by a change in medicine, pregnancy, or other very serious medical conditions. In Diabetic patients, this can be very dangerous if left untreated, so what you need is a shoe that has plenty of room so that you don’t bump into anything and get skin ulcers that can have long lasting damage to you and your health.
Must-Haves for Foot Pain
Foot pain is not something to be messed around with. We’ve looked at some of the causes above, but now is where we are going to take a look at what you need in order to help curb some, if not all, of it once and for all. Each section will detail a part of the puzzle, and you must have these in order to prevent this from happening time and time again, regardless of what kind of foot pain you might be experiencing.
This is a really, really big one that we have to talk about. Support is a pie in the sky idea to many and is not something they know much about. They certainly can’t explain it if asked. Basically, what support amounts to is having a pair of shoes that don’t leave you aching at the end of the day. Comfort is a major part of picking out a pair of shoes, and we wouldn’t suggest it isn’t. But you can have comfort without support. What you can’t have, however, is long-lasting comfort without support. You may feel awesome, terrific even with your new pair of shoes on only to go home and be writhing in pain. Support is what can fight against that. There are a couple of aspects to support to take a closer look at.
One of them is cushioning. Cushioning is either located in the midsole or on the outsole, in most occasions, but it can also be found in the sole itself on some models of shoes. Cushioning is not what you feel when you push in on an insert, but it is something that’s not always visible. Due to modern technology and aesthetics, you can see these ‘units’ much more than you used to be able to.
The other part of the equation has to do with the arches. A good deal of foot pain is going to come as a result of not having support in the arches. Some shoes will be heavily cushioned but will not have a lot of arch support. Shoes that are very flat to the ground are almost always going to lack any arch support. For a so-called ‘neutral’ foot, this is not a huge problem. But if you have either high arches or flat feet, this can create quite the issue. What it does is force you to strike at improper angles, and it can lead to more serious problems besides just foot pain.
So, in short, support is absolutely huge, and you have to find it in order to be as comfortable as you can be.
Some of these concepts are tough to grasp and sound very similar, but they do have their own nuances. Tiny as they may be, you can really see through them and tell a difference. Another one of them is that of protection. You can have a highly supportive pair of shoes that offer little to no protection to you as well. Protection is not a catch-all term that everyone needs. It just depends on what you are doing. For example, if you are wanting a decent travel shoe but won’t be on your feet as much, this isn’t going to apply quite as much to you. With that said, though, you need to think about the overall weight of the shoes you are looking to purchase. A pair of shoes that are super light is going to be easier to carry around, sure, and they will make you much less tired over the day. But they will not have as much support or protection available to you. This means they will break down earlier. This doesn’t seem to be a big deal, but it’s the breaking down that you don’t see that ends up hurting you and causing you aches and pains in the foot. Protection can be a lot of things from shoes. One of them could be that the shoes have a higher cut or top to them. They could have a thicker sole to help give you more shock absorption. They also could include things like a toe guard that keep you from hitting your toes and getting injured that way. They also could have a very simple thing known as space to them. For some conditions, you’ll just need a ton of room to make sure you don’t hurt yourself, basically. Protection helps keep you and your feet safe, either through active or indirect action. All shoes need to have a modicum of protection, otherwise, you’d just be going barefoot, wouldn’t you?!
The next thing you have to talk about is fit. A great deal of foot pain centers around this very idea here. A lot of people just don’t know how to fit themselves. They see a pair of shiny new shoes that they have to have and they just let common sense go right out the window by forcing their way into them. Even if you don’t go to such extremes, there is a good chance that you are doing it all wrong. A poor fit can cause a multitude of problems. Shoes that are too small can cause blisters to force, they can cause your toes to ball up after prolonged use, and they can cause you to begin to develop a totally different walking pattern (gait). Shoes that are too big are just as, if not more, dangerous. They can cause you to slip both inside and outside of the shoes and they can also see the formation of blisters occur. On top of that, you really can see a poor pattern of walking start, so it’s imperative that you have the right fit to make sure you don’t end up hurting your feet, knees, back, and neck. Here are some things to do as you fit yourself:
– Don’t just look at the size on the shoes. Shoes lie. There. We said it. Shoes are not that great at giving you a universal sizing system. They just aren’t. This is contrary to what a lot of people believe. With shoes being made in so many countries by various companies, there are bound to be differences. Your size 8 in a tennis shoe might not be the same as a size 8 in a dress shoe. It’s crucial that you look at individual sizing charts, when looking online, read reviews to see what people are generally saying about them, and then try them on.
– Buying online is tough, so try to find shoes that will allow easy returns for free. We know that returning products is a big pain to you, but this whole situation is critical to both your happiness and your well being. If you don’t address the problems by at least having the best fit, then you’re not doing yourself any favors. If a shoe, for any reason, does not fit well or doesn’t feel good on, it’s best to pick something else. You don’t go, or wouldn’t go, to a store and try on a pair only to hate them and then buy them.
– Look for a good fit on all three levels. We oftentimes overlooked the need to have a good length, a good width, and a good height to our shoes. But that’s what you need to have. Length and width are no brainers to you, but the height is a relative unknown. The height is referring to the space between your foot and the upper. You need to have some wiggle room there, too, especially if you have Diabetes or another condition that requires a lot of space. The other two are pretty textbook. You need to have some room in between the toes and the ends of the shoes, but you also need a bit of room laterally to splay your feet. Make sure to balance these. Don’t go too far in one direction, or you could find yourself aching very badly unnecessarily.
– Swelling is a such a big concern or should be for you, and such a big cause of foot pain, that you really need to be aware of that. No matter who you are or what condition is afflicting you, you need to make sure that you account for swelling. The best way to do this is to try on shoes for the first time, whether in-store or post-delivery to your house after you have done some sort of exercise. If you can’t manage to do that you should try them on at the end of your day. Many people forget to account for swelling and they think a pair feels great on them only to realize later on that they are not so comfortable after all. This can cause a ton of pain and might just be what’s causing your unknown foot pain to occur. You should also wear, or not wear, the same pair of socks on your feet that you’ll be using when wearing those shoes. That way, you’ll have no surprises and be ready to go about your day.
Comfort is one of those things that you absolutely have to have, but it does actually need to come after support and protection, as well as the absolute perfect fit. That’s because if you look into comfort first and foremost, you’ll end up glancing over what you really need and might end up being uncomfortable later on. With that said, comfort is very important, and it’s one of the things that you should never negotiate on with a pair of shoes. If you don’t like how they feel, you’ll want to ditch them immediately. It’s good, common sense for you to use. Some of the things that you should look at for comfort include:
– Support. We touched on that above.
– Protection. We also touched on that, but you want to make sure you won’t get hurt!
– Fit. See above.
– The laces and tongue. These two are huge. The laces, or whatever the closure system is going to be for your chosen pair of shoes, are there to aid you. Any pair of shoes that have laces that constrict you are not good. The best ones, in fact, are not only easy to adjust but offer a lot of options. Sometimes, this can come in the form of Velcro. Sometimes, shoes will be slip ons and won’t have anything to technically hold you in, so you’ll need a strong heel system.
– Check the heel counter. Some pairs of shoes will be nearly perfect, but the backs of them will just not be right. Maybe your feet move up and down while you are in them, or you just don’t like how they scrape up against you and cause irritation. Either way, this area is essential at keeping you happy, especially if you have ankle or heel problems.
– Examine how flexible the shoes are. While it’s far from ideal to have shoes that can be easily bent, since this means they are at a risk of being flimsy and not all that supportive, you also don’t want shoes that are so rigid that you can’t move. This is different for each person as we all have different tastes, so you should examine it for yourself.
– Breathability is a factor closely linked to flexibility. If you have a flexible shoe, you’re probably going to see quite a bit of breathability, too, but this is not always the case. You want to have some airflow in and out of your shoes, particularly if you are active and on the move. You may not need this as much as the next person, so if not that’s fine, too. Just keep in mind that durability does diminish significantly if you have a super breathable pair of shoes in front of you.
Types of Shoes NOT To Wear
We don’t like being a negative Nancy, so to speak, but there are certain types of shoes that you should be avoiding if you want to keep from hurting your feet. These types can be worn by people that don’t have foot pain, but just by wearing them your chances of pain being caused in the area goes up. If you must wear shoes like this, then try to do so for limited amounts of time.
– High heels. These place so much pressure on different muscles and joints that it’s no shock to see that they cause a ton of pain for you. If you have to wear them, make sure to do so in limited spurts.
– Flats with no support. Flats are awesome ladies, we are well aware. But they are not always so good for you, especially if you have been battling against pain in the foot. If that’s you, then you’ll need to steer clear and look for flats that are a little more supportive in nature.
– Flip flops are another example of shoes that just don’t offer you very much at all. They are usually just slabs of material right on the ground, giving you no support at all.
– Shoes with pointed toes are also not conducive to good foot health. They may look stylish, but those are forcing your toes to fit into a space that they are not supposed to be in. That puts incredible strain on them, and if the toes don’t hurt, then you can expect something else to hurt since the pain will be passed on elsewhere.
It will depend on where you are going to be headed and what you are doing, but style is also going to depend on what you like to wear and how you want to look. If you are going to be working, then you won’t always be able to wear those house slippers or those tennis shoes. Maybe you can, but most likely you will be prevented from doing so. Maybe you have a more formal event to attend. Regardless of where you are going or what you are doing, there are options out there. You just have to remember to pick something that will help your feet hold up!
The price you pay is seemingly always going to be a concern, and while you need to not blow your own personal budget here, we also want you to know that buying a pair of shoes that are actually good for your feet will not be the cheapest thing you have ever done. There is a decent chance that you are in the situation you are in due to a poor pair of shoes, and most of the time those are cheaply made shoes. With that being said, you can find deals on good pairs out there. You just have to look and get a little bit lucky with it. Don’t leave yourself unprotected or unsupported over this. Please!
The Top Ten Shoes for Foot Pain in 2019 Reviews
Vionic Women’s Tide II Toe Post Sandals
Sandals and flip flops are not generally a good pick, but there are exceptions that prove the rule. These from Vionic are one such example of just that. Vionic takes a normal good looking shoe and adds an orthotic insert to the mix. It’s a two-in-one that gives you great value and is sure to give you the cushioned feel you need for a variety of foot conditions. All the while, you get a great pair of casual shoes to wear that will be just dandy for airing out your feet and going out on the beach or out in the warm summer weather. These are all leather, so they will be very durable and comfy, thanks to the use of EVA all over to help provide support to you. The traction is also much better than you’d think, using a TPR outsole to give you confidence. Just a nice, casual pair of shoes for you to wear and stand out in all the while feeling great!
- Shoe and orthotic in one
- Very stylish
- Super cushioned and durable
Propet Women’s Travelactiv Mary Jane Fashion Sneakers
If you’re looking to have something lightweight yet still supportive and adjustable to wear, then these are a good choice. Propet is known for making shoes for Diabetes patients, but they go beyond and show here that they can do more than just that. These shoes look great in a few colors and are super flexible. They give you a lot of ability to adjust thanks to the strap that they use, all the while utilizing EVA in the insole to make you both comfortable and cushioned as you walk and travel. With plenty of mesh to go around, you’ll be breathable. Plus, they are laced with scotchgard to make sure they are resistant to waters and stains. The thing you have to be careful with here is that they don’t offer a ton of support, due to their lightness, so that’s a bummer to be careful of.
- Light and flexible
- Breathes well and resistant to stains
- Cushioned insole
- Not super supportive
Adidas Men’s Adipower Weightlift Shoes
You had to know some outside the box types of shoes would make the list, and this is one of those for sure. These shoes are made for weightlifting, but it makes total sense why they are here due to the way they lock you in and support you. These are meant to do all sorts of heavy duty exercise moves with, so they definitely can take you walking with them on. The strap across them locks you in and gives you more support than many with that alone, while there is plenty of protection, since they are meant to help in the event of weights getting dropped and the such. The outsides are super strong, so they can help with pain that radiates outward as well. These are a little bit stiff when you are getting used to them, but that’s normal since you’d want to be locked in really well when lifting.
- Hook and straps lock you in
- Built for heavy duty use
- Super protective
- Slightly stiff to some users
Brooks Men’s Ghost 11 Running Shoes
Running shoes, contrary to popular opinion, are not always the proper answer, but this is a pair that can do the job, thanks to Brooks’ commitment to you. Even if you aren’t using them for running, as they are intended to be used for, they offer a ton of neutral support and cushioning to make them viable for a wide base of people. These shoes utilize high energizing cushioning in the midsoles, but where they really stand out is in the soles. Unlike the vast majority of shoes out there, in any sector of the market, these have what is called a segmented crash pad beneath them. This pad helps absorb the shocks even more than they already would have, causing you to have even more relief taken off of the balls and heels. This is a massive innovation that really makes them stand out. On top of that, they have flex grooves that promote natural movement and are friendly to the earth, too. If you are fairly active, then you’ll have a hard time doing better than these!
- Crash pad adds to cushioning
- Great for active wearers
- Helps encourage more natural movement
Hoka One One Men’s Bondi 5 Running Shoes
Hoka is another brand that generally makes good shoes, albeit running ones, for foot pain, and it’s all done to them alleviating pressure more evenly. The way that many of their pairs do it, like the Bondi 5, is by using a rocker like design. This design makes the shoe curve upward in the front and in the back so the energy and shocks are more evenly displaced. With a toe guard in front and a 3D printed upper to boot, these are durable and protective for you all the while being plenty breathable for you as well. The midsole has EVA in it, but it’s not going to be so thick that the shoes are too cumbersome to move in. With an ortholite insole, these inserts will feel like a doctor had ordered you an orthotic to use such is their usefulness for giving you arch support. As far as being active and up on the go, it’s gonna be hard to surpass these. They are very expensive, however, so that is a possible strike against them.
- Durable and protective
- Support all throughout
- Evenly distributes shocks
- Very expensive pair of shoes
Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 19 Running Shoes
Brooks makes it two offerings on the list here with the GTS 19, which is yet another example of a pair of shoes that can go the distance for you both on the pavement and off. These shoes are made to be more streamlined than in their past iterations yet still provide the support and cushioning you desperately crave to fight those foot pains. With the DNA Loft crash pad beneath them, you get even more of an ability to have those shocks displaced from the body. In the mean time, they have developed a ‘guiderail’ system that is meant to give you entire support all over, rather than in just one or two ‘key’ spots. This is in great contrast to what many shoes on the market do, so it is very nice to see that. As far as running shoes go, they are not super light so you can count on them being supportive and protective of your feet.
- Helps protect feet and knees
- Cushions shocks all over
- Not too light
Gravity Defyer Women’s G-Defy Mighty Walk Shoes
Much like the Hoka, these shoes seek to take pressure off the foot by also evenly distributing it throughout them rather than concentrating totally in one area. Using Versoshock technology, these shoes’ patented springs work to absorb shocks from the ground up and then seek to turn it into energy for you, helping you get less tired and keep on going for longer. The rocker sole setup makes them highly relieving to the heels and the toes and helps you avoid things like Plantar Fasciitis in the process. The toes are extremely roomy, making for a great pair of shoes to help you try and avoid bunions, corns, and the like. They might be slightly tough for Diabetic patients, but they sure would do a much better job than most at giving you ample room to move around. These are not the best looking shoes out there, so be ready for that. They also are extremely expensive as well, so that’s something to think about.
- Very roomy in the toes
- Rocker bottom helps heel strikers
- Absorbs shocks and gives energy back
- Very expensive
- Not superior in the looks department
Skechers Women’s Go Walk Joy Slip On Sneakers
If you want something that’s easy to manage and light for your walk, then there aren’t going to be a ton of competitors to these shoes from Skechers. They are well known for bringing comfort into play, and that continues with these slip on shoes. Though labeled sneakers, these are basically a cross between a more athletic shoe and a flat, giving you a ton of versatility and chance to mix and match. By using lightweight 5Gen cushioning, which is also going to help them be responsive, these shoes are able to give you the support that you so badly need in a pair of shoes. Even if they don’t give you the utmost in support and protection, they do a much better job than most shoes and are an excellent choice as you try to ‘take a break’ and turn to something lighter. With a ton of breathability built in, both in the upper and in the soft, cushy liner, it’s just hard to pass on these very comfy shoes.
- Cushioned and light
- Great for strolls
- Very breathable and cooling
Orthofeet Men’s Edgewater Walking Shoes
If you are a hiker or a big walker, you’ll be rejoicing with these shoes from Orthofeet, who try and bring you an orthotic feel along with a pair of shoes. These athletic shoes are made to help alleviate all sorts of foot pain thanks to giving you anatomical arch support. With multiple layers of cushioning, rather than just one or maybe two, these are able to be a more perfect fit for you, giving you legs and feet a chance to align more properly. The soles have air cushioning, much like Nike perfected in their basketball shoes a long time ago, and they are not going to bind you up. This means you’ll have extra room to maneuver in, helping protect sensitive feet and skin, a sure fire cause for joy for a lot of folks out there. On top of all of that, they do put their money where their mouth is by giving you a money back guarantee. So try them out and give it a shot!
- Great customer service
- Air cushioned soles
- Anatomical arch support
Asics Women’s Gel Nimbus 20 Running Shoes
It’s very hard to go against Asics. Much like Brooks, they are one of the few companies out there that make running shoes that are strong enough to be supportive for you in everyday usage. These are no different, and they are built upon the gel cushioning that has been their hallmark for the better part of four decades now. These shoes also have their flytefoam midsole, which is going to give you bounce back, helping you to reserve your energy while walking or running. It is a more aggressive foam than most, but that helps it to battle back and give the support you need to help those feet feel just a bit better. They are able to do this, too, without ratcheting up the weight considerably, making them just as viable an option as many walking shoes but without the additional weight that typically comes along with them. Plus, they have really done well with their colors, so that’s a plus that deserves praise!
- Aggressive foam bounces back well
- Light and cushioned
- Gel supports extremely well
Conclusion And Final Shoes for Foot Pain Recommendations
The human body is made to be worked extremely hard. We are a resilient bunch. But that doesn’t mean we are perfect and will always stand up to the test. There are mitigating factors that can cause us to hurt, and a big one is foot pain. Individuals all over can understand this, since we have all been through something of the sort at one time or another. Pushing through the pain is one way to treat yourself, but that’s not really the kind of thing that lends itself to good, long term health. Instead, getting yourself a pair of shoes that addresses, or at least attempts to do so, is a good start. If that doesn’t seem to help, you may need to lean on professional help to eradicate the issue. So, there you have it. Get to shopping and get those dogs to stop barking!
FAQ’s About Shoes for Foot Pain
Shouldn’t I Just Go to the Doctor?
This is a tough question to answer. For one, some people don’t like going to the doctor. For another, there is a group of people that will have already been, or will already know what their issue is. If this is you, you are at least trying to find something to correct the problem. If it becomes very persistent, or if it worsens considerably, you should go see one. But doing so automatically isn’t necessarily the best course of action. Even if it seems as such.
Will Inserts Correct The Problem?
Inserts could very well be the ultimate answer to your problem, but that is not always going to be the case. It just depends on the kind of pain you are having. If it’s pain in the soles of the feet, then there is a pretty high chance that inserts will be the best course of action, at first. After that, though, you might need to take a long, hard look at some better shoes. That may be the thing you’ve been missing.
Can the Right Shoes Really Help My Pain?
They most certainly can. It may not seem like it right now, but your foot pain can be aided- if not fixed entirely- by a good, supportive pair of shoes that offer plenty of protection. This may not be the answer for some people, but most of the time this is going to be enough to help you get better. Not only do shoes help with your feet, but they can also help prevent knee, back, and neck pain. So, if they can do that, they most definitely help fight against foot pain!