Best Long Distance Walking Shoes Reviewed & Rated

Long distance walks are not only great for our physical health, but they are mentally uplifting. You may go on long walks by yourself to think, or just take in nature. Maybe you go on long walks with a friend once a week and use that time to catch up or ask advice. Others may walk very long distances over the course of their workday. In any case, long distances of walking require a great shoe that will not distract you from the reason you are on that walk.

Last Updated: June 20, 2018
By Himmatpreet Kaur:

Our most recent update looked at our best list, criteria and frequently asked questions sections. We promoted some of our shoes to higher positions on the list, added the most current version of a number of shoes and some of the shoes, while still great shoes of long-distance walking, were demoted. Our criteria section was updated as well to improve readability and to ensure that the most current, most relevant information was included to help you make the most informed decision when it comes to purchasing a long-distance walking shoe.

From long hikes, distance races, or simply walking all day for work, you need a shoe that will reflect that need to get you from start to finish. The last thing you want to think about during your long distance walk is how much your feet are hurting. While a regular pair of sneakers will work just fine for a quick walk down the street, they won’t provide the structure or comfort needed to keep your feet at ease during long distance walking. Proper walking shoes come equipped with functional features that aid in the supportive structure and relieve pressure away from the foot.

Featured Recommendations

Skechers Go Walk 4
  • Skechers Go Walk 4
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Rubber sole
  • Slip on
  • Price: See Here
New Balance MW411v2
  • New Balance MW411v2
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Padded tongue and collar
  • Lace up
  • Price: See Here
ASICS Gel Venture 6
  • ASICS Gel Venture 6
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Convenient heel-pull loop
  • Gel cushioning
  • Price: See Here

With so many styles and brands to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? If you start by considering the intended use of the shoes, you’ll be able to narrow down some selective styles. The rest is all about comfort and how your foot feels inside the shoes. Since comfort is key for long distance walking, we’ll make sure to go in-depth into every item so you can understand why each shoe makes a quality choice.

Our following best list includes the top 10 shoes currently known for providing the relief and comfort needed during long distance walks. From the classic leather appearance, classy enough for work settings and innovative mesh uppers for breathability and moisture control, all the functionality you need in a good pair of shoes is right here.


10 Best Long Distance Walking Shoes


1. Skechers Go Walk 4

Sketchers is a widely known brand making function, fashionable and affordable shoe styles. This slip-on shoe provides the lightweight feel, similar to a sock, while also being durable in construction and providing proper support. The fabric upper is created with breathable mesh materials while the outsole comes equipped with light traction dots to prevent slipping on sleek surfaces. This shoe makes an excellent choice for someone who works on their feet all day and needs something easy to wear, while still providing great comfort.
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Slip On Convenience
You don’t even need to mess around with laces. This shoe has a heel-pull loop and slides on and off with ease. The fabric is created with breathable mesh and the lining is treated with an Agion odor-prevention. Enjoy the convenience of hardly ever needing to wash this shoe or worry about the longevity of its lifespan due to smells or the appearance.

Comfortable Cushioning
The Skechers Go Walk 2 Slip-On has an Ortholite footbed and very comfortable Resalyte™ cushioning. By the end of the day, you will forget you are even wearing shoes. The Resalyte™ midsole and man-made outsole provide traction for most climates and add stabilization for even more comfort during your movements.

Cost and Value
Sketchers is known for their affordable pricing and relevant styles and these slip-on shoes deliver just that. Providing comfort and convenience, these easy to wear shoes provide comfort for long days at work in the constant movement. The value is great and the price is outstanding, overall these shoes make a great choice for those in active indoor settings.

2. New Balance MW411v2

For more than 100 years, New Balance has been working hard to create innovative shoes for all types of athletes. These sneakers are a perfect example of the quality features and materials this company uses in the creation of their shoes. This minimalist athletic style features a combination of leather and mesh to create a durable yet breathable shoe structure. Equipped with complete cushioning, the tongue, ankle collar and removable insoles are all created with comfortable padding.
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Durable Materials
From the inside to the out, these shoes are created with quality materials which help to increase the overall lifespan. The durable rubber outsole is created with light traction and grip, versatile for use on a variety of surfaces, from natural to man-made. The real leather upper combined with the mesh creates a fit that is comfortable throughout its entire use and also helps keep your feet dry and cool.

Complete Comfort
The insides of these shoes are created with soft fabric lining and a padded tongue and ankle collar. These features help to ensure the protection and comfort of your feet, even during your longest walks. These shoes also come equipped with removable insoles that are made with form-fitting cushions which helps form to the shape of your foot. All around, these shoes were designed for keeping the pressure off your feet.

Cost and Value
Considering the high brand name reputation and the quality construction of the shoe, these sneakers are priced at a very fair and affordable cost. The shoe style is highly versatile and is created for long-lasting comfort, a great choice for those who are planning to spend a lot of time on their feet.
  • Real leather and mesh upper
  • Padded tongue and ankle collar
  • Lace up closure
  • Removable foam insole
  • Durable rubber outsole
  • Midsole cushioning
  • Long lasting comfort
  • Sizes run small
  • Made for narrow feet

3. Ariat Terrain H2O

For over 20 years, Ariat has been working hard to create high performance footwear for a variety of settings and activities. These shoes are a perfect choice for specific hiking trips and everyday outdoor walks in rugged nature. Featuring a fully grained waterproof leather upper and moisture-wicking lining, these lower cut boots are attractive in style and durable in functionality. Enjoy all of the great long-distance hiking shoe features you need with this stylish and timeless design.
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A very important aspect of long-distance walking is the fact that you may want your entire foot and ankle to be supported. This fact can lead to uncomfortable rubbing and can cut right into your ankle bone. This shoe has a padded collar and the oiled full-grain leather provides great comfort. You will need to wear thick socks with this shoe, but it will not take nearly as long to break in as most hiking shoes. This shoe also has a moisture-wicking lining and waterproof membrane to keep your feet dry.

Enjoy the Duratread™ outsole on your long hikes and know you will be able to tackle all terrains and obstacles. This outsole is also very easy to clean so you can enjoy this shoe on many upcoming hikes. The waterproof features also ensure that you won't risk slipping in wet areas.

Cost and Value
If you are a casual hiker or hike less than 5 miles at a time, this shoe may be on the more expensive side. If you hike over 5 miles or are planning an extended hiking trip, this shoe is of incredible value. Ariat is known for creating high-quality shoes so the higher price is going to come with a guarantee in quality construction and long-lasting comfort.
  • Waterproof
  • Full grain leather upper
  • Protective toe cap
  • Padded tongue and ankle collar
  • Moisture wicking lining
  • Lower cut boot
  • Durable outsole
  • Classic and rugged design
  • Longer Break In Time 
  • Sizes run small

4. Ahnu Sugarpine Air Mesh

4. Ahnu Sugarpine Air Mesh
You may not have heard of the brand Ahnu before, but their innovative technology and relevant designs have already made them widely known within the 10 years the company has been in business. Combining the look of athletic and hiking shoes, these sneakers offer all-around protection with their durable structure and materials. The combination of mesh, suede, and leather in the shoes upper helps to provide breathability and long-lasting support. Enhanced with arch support and shock absorption, these shoes are a great choice for those on long walks looking to stay in style.
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Breathable Structure
Ahnu uses mesh material on the inside and outside of these shoes to create all around breathability and comfort. The mesh upper helps to provide proper air circulation towards the inside of the shoe while the inside mesh lining helps to wick away moisture and keep your feet dry. Not only are these materials extremely breathable, but they’re also durable and long lasting.

Functional Features
So much research and innovative technology have gone into the creation of these shoes. On the outside, waterproof leather and suede help to keep the shoes intact and dry during wet weather. The rubber toe cap and built-in shock dispersal plate keep your feet protected and stable. On the inside, a nylon shank and EVA footbed help provide a form fit and comfortable arch support. All around, these shoes are created for long-lasting comfort and protection.

Cost and Value
It’s hard to imagine a shoe with this many features being so affordable. While the overall price depends on your color and size selections, the average price is still extremely affordable. A truly functional shoe with a great price range, you won’t want to miss out on this opportunity for long-lasting comfort.
  • Mesh upper and lining
  • Waterproof leather and suede
  • TPU heel clip for stability
  • Nylon shank and arch support
  • Moisture wicking
  • EVA shock absorption
  • Protected rubber toe cap
  • Slip resistant outsole
  • Not completely water resistant
  • Sizes run small

5. Saucony ProGrid Integrity ST2

5. Saucony ProGrid Integrity ST2
Saucony is another reliable company that has more than a century of experience in the creation of athletic shoes. Their in-depth knowledge and innovative technology are used to create durable, comfortable shoes like these pair of walking sneakers. This athletic style sneaker is created with a full grain leather upper and PROGRID cushioning outsoles. The non-marking rubber outsole is versatile for use in both the indoors or outdoors, absorbing shock and providing lightweight grip along the way. The forefoot is also equipped with a stretch zone that provides more flexibility and ease during movements.
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Fully Functional Outsole
The rubber outsoles of these shoes are extremely durable and are made to provide lightweight cushioning and impact protection. Equipped with a slight curve and non-marking cut out traction, these outsoles will help provide an ease of movements on all types of surfaces, indoors or outdoors. The feel of these shoes will keep your feet protected and relaxed during all your walking adventures.

Form Fitting
These sneakers are designed with a slightly higher structure around the ankles to provide a more secure fit. The padded tongue and ankle collar helps to provide a comfortable, cushioning barrier between your foot and the shoes. The lace-up closure also helps to ensure a form fit that is able to be adjusted to your foot shape.

Cost and Value
These shoes are relatively affordable considering the quality construction and durable materials used in the shoes. Saucony is known for providing long-lasting, quality comfort to all of their users who wear their shoes, you can guarantee if you purchase these shoes, your feet will stay in comfort no matter how many miles you walk on them.
  • Full grain leather upper
  • Padded tongue and ankle collar
  • Flexible forefoot
  • Light traction for indoor or outdoor use
  • PROGRID cushioning outsole
  • Non-marking durable rubber
  • Lightweight cushioning
  • Not much arch support
  • Stiff leather may need to be broken in

6. Brooks Addiction Walker

6. Brooks Addiction Walker
For over a century, Brooks has been a leading brand in high-performance athletic gear. These cushioned walking shoes are a perfect example of the quality features Brook’s uses in the making of their shoes. The thick, synthetic outsole is created with MoGo and MC Pod technology to enhance shock absorption and flexibility. The fabric lining is soft and comes equipped with a removable sockliner for easy cleaning. These shoes are made to maximize motion control and balance. These features combined with comfortable cushioning makes for a great choice for long distance walking at work or in the neighborhood.
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Durable Structure
The full-grain leather and the synthetic outsole are both created with high quality that helps to extend the lifespan of the shoes. The midsole and outsole are both equipped with HydroFlow, MoGo and MC Pod technology to create support in the most vital areas of the shoe. The thick cushioning around the shoe protects your feet while you wear them, creating an overall durable structure.

Innovative Technology
The Brooks team listens to all their user and does constant in-depth research to provide the most functional features you can have in your shoes. These features help to ease the pressure away from the foot with comfortable cushioning and shock absorption. You won’t just find one use for these shoes, with so many features in one design, these shoes are truly versatile.

Cost and Value
Depending on your color and size selections, these shoes can be on the pricey side. Although the average price still ranges quite high, it’s important to consider the functionality of the shoe. With so many features equipped in this shoe style, the long-term comfort and reliability is completely worth the initial cost.
  • Full grain leather upper
  • Removable sockliner
  • MoGo midsole
  • Shock absorbing outsole
  • Soft fabric lining
  • Flexible cushioning
  • Wet-dry traction
  • Not for high arches

7. Skechers Go-Walk 3 Lace-Up

7.  Skechers Go-Walk 3 Lace-Up
If you describe yourself as a bright personality, or just need some great walking shoes to brighten your mood, look no further than the Skechers Go-Walk Lace-Ups. These great walking shoes will put a pep in your step with both the comfortable construction and the appearance. Equipped with a breathable mesh upper and synthetic gripping outsoles, these shoes are made to keep your feet cool, dry and protected against hard surfaces.
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This shoe is on the lighter weight side and comes with a full-length goga mat energy insole. The insole features a two-piece midsole that was constructed from Resalyte foam and has Skechers “go pillars” for extra support. These functional features help to provide long-lasting comfort and support during repetitive movements.

A great benefit to having a lace-up shoe is that you can have it as tight as you find comfortable. The padded tongue will make sure your feet stay comfortable no matter how loose or tight you prefer to tie your shoes. Also, a little runner/walker trick if you forget to wear a pocket and find you need to have your car or house key on you, just tie it into your shoe.

Cost and Value
This shoe can be on the more expensive side if you are just looking for a casual walking shoe. However, if you are looking for a shoe that will last a long time and you know you will wear it on a regular basis, this shoe will be a great value to you.
  • Breathable mesh upper
  • Lace up enclosure
  • Energy returning insole
  • Two-piece Resalyte foam midsole
  • Stability and support
  • Synthetic soles
  • Lightweight traction and grip
  • Higher priced
  • May need extra insole support depending on your foot needs

8. ASICS Gel Venture 6

8. ASICS Gel Venture 6
With over 65 years of experience, ASICS has worked hard to create a reliable brand name using their innovative technology and shoe designs. Mesh and synthetic overlays combine to create a comfortable upper that provides breathability and keeps your feet cool and dry. The durable rubber outsole comes equipped with reverse traction designed for long walks on outdoor trails. The removable sock liner provides enough space for additional insoles if needed, but also comes with built-in gel cushioning for extra comfort. All around, this is a great choice for long walks in nature.
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Sturdy Outsole
The trail-specific outsole has reversed traction lugs to help you with all your traction needs. You will not have to worry if you walk through a wet spot or up loose dirt paths, your shoes will provide great traction no matter where you decide to walk. Equipped with AHAR technology, the outsoles are also enhanced with extra durability in the critical high wear areas. This is another great feature for eliminating impact and pressure away from your feet.

Durable Appearance
It is always so disappointing when you are trying to keep your shoes looking nice and within the first year, there are stains or scuffs. This shoe has an outdoor-ready mesh outside and very neutral colors to disguise any dirt or marks. The rubber outsole is also made to last and placed specifically in high-wear areas. You will be able to wear this shoe for days on end before needing to clean them.

Cost and Value
While the overall cost depends on your color and size selections, the average price is decently affordable for the functionality that the shoe provides. ASICS has a high brand name reputation that delivers only quality made shoes, so overall the value is great and the shoes are completely worth the cost.
  • Rearfoot GEL cushioning
  • Low cut style
  • Breathable mesh upper
  • Synthetic overlays
  • Protective toe cap
  • Removable sockliner
  • Traction outsoles
  • May need additional support after a few months of wear
  • Sizes run small

9. Merrell Moab Vent 2

9. Merrell Moab Vent 2
Merrell is a reliable brand that is known for making quality shoes for the outdoors and this pair is a perfect example. The combination of waterproof leather and mesh materials in the upper create an all-around breathable fit that also provides extra durability as well. If you are doing any long distance walking in the outdoors in warm to very hot climates, this is your ideal shoe. The design and features are created for support, but also for keeping you cool and your feet feeling free and less constricted.
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The shoe is built very durable, so if you constantly kick rocks, hard surfaces, or wear the shoes regularly on long hikes, it will hold up to that wear and tear. The water-resistant leather and mesh upper protect you from any weather-related obstacles and keep your feet dry and comfortable. The M Select Fresh prevents moisture and sweat to affect your shoes. The antimicrobial agents prevent any reproduction of odor.

An air cushioned midsole supports a range of arch needs and keeps you comfortable during your long walks. This shoe also has Vibram lugs that provide great stability. These lugs are located under your arch so your foot can flex more naturally.

Cost and Value
If you are looking for a cooler climate shoe, or to go through a range of terrains, this may not be the best value. However, if you are mainly hiking or walking in warm climates and do not need extra ankle support, this shoe is very reasonable and excellent value.
  • Breathable mesh upper
  • Waterproof leather
  • Protective toe area
  • Padded tongue and ankle collar
  • Vibram sole
  • EVA foot frame
  • Rubber outsoles with traction
  • Not completely waterproof
  • Not suited for wide feet

10. ON Cloud

10. ON Cloud
If you haven’t familiarized yourself with this brand, you are truly missing out. They make fantastic running and walking shoe for a variety of needs. Featuring synthetic and mesh materials in the upper, these shoes are durable and provide proper air circulation needed to keep your feet dry and cool. The ON Cloud has a range of color combinations to fit all styles and will provide comfort for long hours on your feet or long walks outside.
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Glove Like Fit
The design is for a slip-on and speed-lace fit that blends in perfectly with a fast-paced lifestyle. When you are on your feet for long hours, you will forget you even have shoes on. The form fit and complete cushioning will make your feet feel like they're walking on clouds even during your longest days.

Maybe you can only get outside and on your walks in the early mornings or when as the sun is setting. This shoe has reflective qualities so you will be safe and any car headlights will bounce off and alert the driver to give you room. This is a really important safety feature that helps to prevent all types of injuries.

Cost and Value
This is an excellent investment for someone who is on their feet all day. It is also an incredible outdoor walking shoe and with the range of color combinations, you will be sure to find one that fits your style. ON is a newer brand, but they already have a high-quality reputation for creating comfortable shoes. Although you may be paying a higher price, the functionality of these shoes is completely worth it.
  • 16 Cloud-pods in the speedboard
  • CloudTec sole
  • Flexible heel
  • Breathable mesh upper
  • Easy close lace system
  • Padded ankle collar
  • Protective toe cap
  • Sizes run small
  • Not the best traction

Whether you spend long days on your feet at work or like to push yourself to do long distance hikes, the shoes featured in this list will help to provide you with long-lasting durability and comfort. You may have noticed that many of these styles are versatile in their use, allowing the user to wear the shoes indoor and outdoors. It’s features like this that help to increase the reliability of the shoes.

Now that you’re equipped with proper knowledge and information finding shoes to fit your activities should be much easier. Long distance walking shoes are great for creating a comfortable barrier around the foot, all you have to do now is decide which style which best for your environment.

Criteria For Evaluating the Best Long Distance Walking Shoes

Form Fit

Walking sounds easy when it’s just down the street, but when you’re spending long hours on your feet at work or hiking long distances in rugged areas of nature, your feet can tire out much more easily. For those of us who don’t have enough time to try on every pair of shoes, it’s important to make sure the fit of the shoe is still going to be comfortable and form fitting.  A number of features affect the fit of a shoe:

  • Size – You may know your shoe size but since all walking shoes are created to be different, the size that may fit you in one brand may not fit you in another. When choosing the proper long-distance walking, you’ll want to take a close look at the shape of your feet so you can find the perfect fit.
  • Tightness – Too loose or too tight isn’t an option for those looking to stay steady and consistent in their movements. A form fit is a must for keeping your feet comfortable for long hours at a time inside your shoes. Shoes that are too tight can cut off circulation to the foot and create irritation or blisters in the main points of contact. Shoes that are too loose will cause your foot to slide around in the shoes creating a potential for blisters and sprained ankles, which is something nobody wants.
  • Foot shape – When trying to find a proper fit for your shoes, the shape of your foot is what should dictate the shape of the shoes. Take a look at the shape of your toes; are they squared, rounded or pointed? The shape of your toes will help you to figure out how much space you need in the toe area. Square shaped toes should stay away from shoes with a narrow toe box and may require more width in the shoes.
  • Arch shape – Along with the shape of your toes comes the depth of your arch. Walking evenly distributes your weight against the bottoms of your feet so it’s important to find shoes that fit your arch shape and provide a stable structure. Those of you with flatter feet or light arches won’t need to focus too much on arch support, however, if you have deep arches, you’ll want to look closely at the shape of the insole. The arch of your foot should come in direct contact with the arch of the shoe, so if you’re unable to find a comfortable fit, you may want to look into adding extra insoles.
  • Other factors – A form fit can even be found in the outside shape of the shoes and the way the material sits around the foot. Some people prefer over the ankles shoes for extra security while others prefer lower cut styles that provide a lightweight feel. Regardless of your preferences, if you pay close attention to the shapes of your feet, you’ll be able to find shoes that provide form-fitting features.


Comfort is a must-have feature in any good quality shoe, but for those of you who spend long hours moving on your feet, the amount of comfort provided in your shoes will either make it or break it in terms of reliability. Our feet’s ability to carry all of our body weight (and then some) is an amazing capability that shouldn’t be as overlooked as it is.

While it is intriguing how much pressure your feet can withstand, it’s important to provide them with the proper amounts of comfort to keep your feet healthy and happy, so to speak. While your feet won’t ever tell you when they’re comfortable and feeling good, you’ll sure notice when they’re in discomfort. Uncomfortable shoes can make your feet feel like they’re screaming in pain and when spending your hard earned money for a pair of long-distance running shoes, you want to make sure they’re reliable and provide long-lasting comfort.

The first thing people think of when it comes to providing comfort in your shoes is cushioning. Usually located in the insole of the shoe, the cushioning provides a form fit and soft, resilient feel. The insole padding helps to create an ease of pressure that can become built up against the foot. Cushioning is also beneficial in other areas of the shoe as well. A padded tongue or ankle collars are also a great choice for providing a cushioned barrier between your foot and the shoe.

Comfort isn’t only found on the inside of the shoes, it’s found throughout the entire shoe structure. Inside and outside, the shoe’s materials should be durable and comfortable. Materials that are too tough can irritate your skin and materials that are too soft may not provide enough protection. Even the outsoles can provide comfort to your feet. Since they absorb most of the impact from movements against hard surfaces, it’s important to make sure the soles are sturdy and strong. Weak soles that wear down easily can cause damage to your feet and warp the overall shape of the shoes.

When spending long days on your feet, it’s important to make sure that your shoes provide you with long-lasting comfort. While a padded insole may seem to provide you with enough comfort in your shoes, during movement the overall shape or structure may cause discomfort. Take a look at all aspects when choosing proper long distance walking shoes. From the materials to the cushioning and even the shape, every detail is important for creating all-around comfort.

Intended Use

Walking may seem like a simple activity with only one way to approach it, but shoe companies and athletes beg to differ. Walking is something that almost every single person is able to do on a daily basis. When walking long distances, the types of terrain or impact from the surfaces may differ and require different needs.

When trying to find the best long distance walking shoes, it’s really important to consider the intended use of the shoe before narrowing down your choices. Not all long distance walkers are all athletes, some people walk constantly on their feet for work. From indoors to outdoors, the features you need in your shoes are going to be based on your intended use.

If you’re someone who stays active on their feet during long work shifts, these long distance walking shoes may be a great choice for providing your feet with extra support and comfort. For the work setting, we’ve included a few casual styles that stray away from the typical athletic style in our best list. Long distance walking shoes for the work setting are going to be more simple in design and paired with an attractive material like leather to keep the professional tone. You’ll also find comfortable cushioning and lightweight gripping soles with this style shoe.

If you’re looking for more of the typical outdoor shoe for walking long distances on trails or in nature, you’ll easily be able to find this. Most of these styles embody the regular athletic shoe appearance with extra features like traction and comfortable cushioning. For the outdoors, your walking shoes are going to need to be more durable in structure and materials.

If you’re walking outside, the type of surface is also going to play a large role in your experience. Walking uphill or at an incline can create uncomfortable movements without the proper shoes. Most outsoles are going to be created for versatile use on flat surfaces and may provide lightweight grip underneath. When walking outside, you may want the structure of the shoes to be more secure by forming over the ankles. Traction, durable soles and thicker materials are also a good choice.

Overall, when trying to decide between shoe styles, if you consider your intended use you’ll be able to easily select a shoe that fits all of your needs. All walking isn’t all the same, so think twice before you click ‘buy’.

Long-Term Reliability

Long-term reliability should automatically come equipped in all long distance walking shoes, but since it doesn’t, it’s important to take a look at the overall structure of the shoe. A high price tag may mean the shoes are created with higher quality but for those who are on a budget, the price needs to go hand in hand with the reliability. Since most good quality walking shoes are going to be more towards the pricey side, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the proper value you deserve.

Reliability can be found in many aspects of the shoe. Using materials that help to increase durability is great for creating a long-lasting structure. Once the shoe starts to wear down or holes start to form in the materials, it’s recommended to stop wearing the shoes and replace them immediately. Having shoes that are built to withstand all types of use is great for getting your money’s worth, especially outdoors.

The outsole is also extremely important for long-term reliability. The soles of your shoes are what helps to absorb the impact against solid surfaces and are vital for providing proper comfort. Once the soles start to separate from the shoes, that’s the end, so when choosing between shoe styles, take a close look at the quality of the outsoles and the stitching that holds them to the shoes.

Sometimes the materials may be perfect but it’s the stitching the ends the life of the shoes. Small details like seams create a simple structure that holds the shoe altogether. Some shoe companies also use welding to create a more secure structure; either way, the shoe needs to be able to hold together throughout its entire use.

When looking to wear a single pair of shoes for multiple hours at a time, comfort is truly key to success. Reliability isn’t just about how long the shoes last, but also what they do for the user. When walking long distances, the pressure put against your feet can be very tiring or uncomfortable. When your shoes are able to provide comfort during all types of use, the reliability increases and you’ll be more likely to want to wear the shoes. Versatility is just another great example of reliable walking shoes.

Extra Features

Every type of walking shoe is created to be different. Each shoe comes equipped with different features that aid in the overall level of comfort. After you figure out your intended use, it’s much easier to figure out the features you need in your shoes. While there are some features that work well for everyone, there are also some others that are more specialized in your intended use.

One extra feature that is great for providing extra comfort and protection around your feet is padded ankle collars. This lightweight cushioning creates a soft barrier between the sturdy structure of the shoe and your vulnerable skin. To avoid your shoes from rubbing against your ankles and causing blisters, this padding is a great feature to have.

For those of you who spend most of your long walks outside, there are a few features that make for a more reliable and durable shoe choice. The first feature is waterproof materials. Don’t let the wet weather or rainy seasons keep you trapped in your house anymore. With the waterproof materials equipped in your shoes, your feet will be able to stay dry and comfortable.

Traction is also a very important feature for those who like to hike or walk long distances in nature or off-trail. Shoes without any midsole or cushioning aren’t going to be any good for walking on dirt paths or steep inclines. Traction and grip can be found in the outsoles of your shoes. Good quality walking shoes will have a slight curve and cut out patterns on the outsoles to help provide grip and ease your movements. If your long distance walking is on man-made surfaces you won’t need to worry about traction as much.

There are a couple other features that aren’t as important for reliability but provide more of a comfortable feel or make the shoe more easy to use. Shoelaces that don’t need to be tied and come with an innovative pull system are great for easy on and off wear. Protective toe areas are another good feature for protecting the outer materials of the shoe and increasing durability. Last but not least, mesh ventilation is also another great feature that helps to add breathability and keep your feet cool and dry. Overall, no matter what extra features you have in your shoes, make sure that structure is comfortable and form fitting. Extra features are great for adding small details of functionality and it also helps to prove that every detail in the make of the shoe counts for comfort.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What are the differences between running and walking shoes?
A. While they may seem very similar, running and walking shoes are actually quite different from each other. While running, the weight of your body is shifted through uneven movements that can put large amounts of pressure against the heels of your feet. Walking provides more of an even distribution of weight through slower heel-to-toe movements. To aid in the ease of steady movements, most walking shoes are created with a slight curve at the outsole and the materials are usually more flexible. Running shoes tend to have more cushioning around the heel area to ease impact and since your feet tend to get hotter from the faster movements, these shoes are usually created with more lightweight, breathable materials to provide proper moisture management.

Q. Will any type of sneaker work as a good walking shoe?
A. Some shoes that you already own may work well as walking shoes as long as they provide the proper comfort and structure. If your shoes are lightweight, flexible and provide all-around cushioning, then you’re off to a good start. The soles of your walking shoes should come equipped with light grip or traction and provide a slight curve to ease the flow of movements. Wearing shoes that are fully enclosed around the foot with some form of arch support is also good for providing a secure fit that is much needed for long walks. While your shoes may look like a good fit for long distance walking, they probably aren’t going to provide the proper comfort or structure needed. It’s always best for your health and safety to buy shoes that are specified for your type of activities, rather than going the cheaper route and using what you already have.

Q. How much of a difference is there between walking and long distance walking?
A. It’s not the walking that’s different but more the length of time spent walking and the impact the terrain has against your feet. A quick walk down the street doesn’t have nearly the same impact as an 8-hour shift on your feet or a 5-mile uphill hike. Long distance walking can tire out your feet, create hot spots and cause uncomfortable amounts of pressure in your shoes. This type of walking requires shoes that provide long-lasting comfort and a support structure. The soles of your shoes should be durable and provide some form of impact protection or offer resilience to help keep the foot relaxed. If you’re walking shorter distances, you won’t need to worry as much about the overall fit of the shoe but with long distances, every detail counts for creating complete comfort.

Q. Can good quality walking shoes be beneficial for your health?
A. During any physical activity, the types of shoes, clothing, and equipment you choose to wear can either be beneficial or detrimental to your health. Poorly made shoes can cause a variety of uncomfortable health concerns from blisters to athlete’s foot. To protect your feet from any damage, it’s always important to do the extra research and come prepared with the proper gear. Good quality walking shoes will not only leave your feet feeling relaxed and comfortable, but they should also keep your feet protected with a sturdy structure and durable materials. Even sweat can be damaging to your health, so when it comes to staying in shape and avoiding health concerns, you’ll want to make sure you’re only wearing the best.

Q. What features are important to look for in long distance walking shoes?

A. Long distance walking puts the pressure of your body weight against the bottoms of your feet for long periods at a time; this is something that can tire out your feet very easily and make you want to sit down or stop moving. During long work shifts or walks in nature, that isn’t always an option so instead, it’s important to look for quality features in your walking shoes to provide long-lasting comfort. All around cushioning is a great first choice for providing comfort and easing the pressure. Durable outsoles that are flexible and slightly curved are key for easing the flow of your movements to your natural strides. Removable insoles, cushioned ankle collars, and breathable uppers are also good quality features to look for in the making of your walking shoes.

Q. Do walking shoes provide breathability or moisture control?
A. Walking shoes are not prided on their breathability as much as running shoes are. Running is known to make your feet hotter due to the quicker, fast-paced movements, but since walking is a much more relaxing form of exercise, it’s not as common for the focus to be on wicking away moisture. If this is a feature you’re specifically looking to have in your walking shoes, you’ll want to look for mesh materials in the lining of the upper. This lightweight material is great for creating a proper airflow that helps to manage moisture inside and outside of the shoes. If you’re unable to a style of walking shoes for breathability, it’s probably a good idea to check out moisture wicking socks. Socks are just as important for creating a comfortable feel inside the shoe so if sweaty feet is a concern for you, these type of socks are a great choice for keeping your feet dry and cool.

Q. How long will my walking shoes last, on average, before needing to be replaced?
A. The overall lifespan of your walking shoes depends on the type of use, how often the shoes are worn and the type of care provided. On average, it is said that most shoes will last between 300-500 miles before showing signs of damage. Depending on how often you’re using the shoes and how much you walk in them, your shoes can last anywhere between three to eight months; some extremely durable shoes may even last up to a year. If you take proper care of your shoes and stay away from damaging terrains like mud and rocks, the quality of your shoes should stay very similar to how they were during the original use.

Q. Can long-distance running shoes be used for everyday use?
A. If you’re someone who spends long days on your feet, whether at work or at home taking care of kids, these types of shoes may make a great companion for your long days on the job. The stability and comfort provided in the structure of the shoes are great for keeping your feet at ease during simple movements and everyday activities. If you stand on your feet often without moving, these long distance walking shoes may not be the best choice for everyday apparel. If you’re looking to wear these shoes every day, it’s important to keep the intended use of the shoes similar to your activities, so since these types of shoes are created for long distances and repetitive movements you’ll want to make sure your everyday activities are similar if you want to stay comfortable.


  1. NY Mag, The Strategist, The Best Walking Shoes for Men and Women, Feb 01, 2018
  2. New Balance, Walking Shoes vs. Running Shoes,

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