Top 10 Walking Sandals for 2017

Enjoy These Fitness Walking Sandals

Walkers choose walking sandals or trail sandals for both short and long distance walks. As with any walking shoe, it is important to find a good fit and to test the walking sandals at shorter distances and with or without socks. Look for stability, motion control, and cushioning features needed for longer walks. Some designs have a closed toe for more protection against rocks and roots, while others are open-toed as with traditional sandals. Popular brands of walking sandals include Teva, Keen, and Birkenstock. Flip flops are usually a less-recommended choice, but if you prefer them, see these tips and picks for healthier flip flops

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The Keen Newport outdoor sandal design gets excellent reviews from wearers for everything from hiking to all-day city touring. The straps are made from waterproof leather, so you can wear them in a variety of conditions. It has an enclosed toe to provide protection against rocks and roots and it has an adjustable lacing strap. This would be a good choice for a sandal you want to do solid duty on the trail when you don't want to wear hiking shoes, such as on the Camino de Santiago.

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Are you looking for sandals you can wear for both work and walking? The Cobb Hill RevSoothe fit the bill with both fashion and function. Their technology comes from New Balance athletic shoes, to give you both lightweight cushion, responsiveness, and good support throughout your walking stride. They have an anatomic footbed that supports your foot, and makes your foot feel cradled and pampered. The midsole uses REVlite technology for cushion without weight. The Dri-Lex® lining keeps moisture away. The come in narrow, regular and wide but only in full sizes. They have adjustable straps for getting just the right fit. These are sandals you can wear for travel, shopping, or work while still enjoying brisk walks. They come in four different colors: black, white, stone, and red so you can match them with your walking clothing.

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FitFlop sandals have a microwobbleboard in the sole helps relieve pressure points. That can be a welcome feature for the walkers who love this brand. You may want to choose their designs that have a heel strap so you can get a good walking stride. These are sandals that can be worn them all day for walking while traveling, as well as at work. Many of their designs have a toe post, for those who like flip flops, as well as a few designs without.

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ABEO Capistrano Sandal full
ABEO Capistrano Sandal. © The Walking Company

The Walking Company designs and sells these sandals that feature a built-in orthotic. At the store, they scan your feet and then give you a semi-custom fitting to best suit your arch and foot pressure points. They come in a variety of designs including slides, flip flops, hiking sandals and dress sandals. Their outdoor models are suitable for fitness walking. Often, their designs come in model variations that include one for neutral gait, one with a metatarsal pad footbed, and one with a posted footbed for overpronators. ABEO B.I.O.system® sandals carry the Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association.

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The Chaco Z/2 Unaweep has minimalist straps, yet wearers love the arch support and traction. It has an anatomic footbed that provides motion control. Wearers report the Vibram sole seems to last forever and the webbing still looks great after years of wear. The webbing comes in a variety of colors so you can choose the one that suits you best, or have different pairs for different ensembles.

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The Ahnu Tilden sandal is lightweight and has a flexible sole. The toe guard looks like it will do its job. You can adjust the fit easily with the single-pull lacing system. The design of the strap at the back of the heel may be a concern in that it might rub some people wrong and give you a blister until you have gotten used to it. It can be smart to lubricate your feet before wearing a new pair of sandals until you see where they might rub you wrong.

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For those who want their toes to breathe free, the Teva Neota has no toe cover. The sole is flexible for easy walking. The wide cover on the heel strap, as well as the fabric protecting your feet from the rubbing of the other straps, should reduce the risk of chafing.

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Birkenstocks are highly favored by their many converts for city walking, to the point where some Birkenstock-lovers wear no other shoes. They have have their ups and downs in popularity but always seem to make a comeback. The deep heel cup is the reason. It provides a "barefoot experience" that may take some getting used to, but once converted, few go back to other footwear. If you dare take the first step towards this cult, give Birks a try. You may become part of their longstanding (and long walking) following.

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OESH Athena Sandal
OESH Athena Sandal. OESH

The OESH design has a perfectly flat footbed that sinks and rises as you walk. It 3-D printed honeycombed cushion is enough for standing all day with no discomfort. It has minimal webbing straps in a variety of colors that are happy in wet or dry conditions. They come in a wide variety of colors to enjoy.

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Sandals with heel straps are necessary for a good walking stride. But many other walkers want something fashionable or they are unwilling to wear anything but flip flops. If you insist on wearing flip flops, at least get a brand that has good foot support. Orthaheel sandals have motion control elements and arch support. If you overpronate but still want to slide into a pair of flip flops, look into these. Maybe you still won't be walking right to suit my tastes, but you won't be completely ruining your feet and gait. Meanwhile, Vionic also has models with straps.

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