Walking Shoe and Boot Reviews

Top Picks and Where to Find User Reviews

Mixed race runner tying shoelaces
JGI/Tom Grill/Blend/Getty

What shoes and boots do walkers wear and recommend? How you get feedback from other walkers has changed significantly over the years. You can check expert reviews and top picks lists that narrow the wide range of choices. You can also see user reviews and ratings when you shop for shoes online.

Current Top Picks for Walking Shoes - 2017

Where Can You Find User Reviews?

You can use the feedback given by walkers who bought the shoes at most manufacturer's online sales sites and trusted online shoe sales sites. Check the shoes in the top picks lists to see how users on Amazon.com rated the shoes, and the comments they made.

Another site that is valuable for fitness walkers is Roadrunnersports.com. They carry a variety of athletic shoes for people who are serious about walking and running. You can check their own expert ratings as well as those of people who bought the shoes. Zappos.com is another major online athletic and comfort shoe retailer where there may be a good number of reviews for each model of shoe.

It's a good idea to go to an athletic shoe store to get fitted for your fitness walking shoes and use the knowledge and expertise of the shoe experts there.

But not everyone has access to a top quality athletic shoe store, so online sales and reviews can be helpful.

1995 Shoe Poll - What Did Walkers Wear Back Then?

Let's take a step back to what is now walking history from the past century. The subscribers of the Walklist email group contributed to a poll in November, 1995 about what kinds of shoes they wear walking and why.

The poll questions:
1. What kind of shoes (brand and style) do you wear walking?
2. What do you look for in a walking shoe?

What do they look for?

  • Comfort is number one by a wide margin.
  • Good toe room is highly important.
  • Sturdiness and support
  • Durability
  • Price
  • Availability of wide or narrow sizes.
  • Appearance is distant but still a factor. Several mentioned liking shoes they could use both for walking and for working/shopping.
  • Those with lots of technical reasons to like the shoes preferred New Balance, Ryka, and Asics.

96 responses were tallied. For each brand, any specific styles are listed afterwards.


  • 16 SAS. 2 SAS Freetime, 1 SAS Hill Country walkers, 1 SAS Time Out
  • 11 New Balance, 1 New Balance 650, 1 New Balance 580, 1 New Balance 590, 2 New Balance 800, 1 New Balance Postal Walkers. New Balance Homepage
  • 10 Nike. 1 Nike Air Boulder high top hiking boots, 2 Nike Air Walkers, 2 Nike Air Pegagus, 1 Nike Air Mada Plus, 1 Nike canvas/nylon crosstrainer, 2 Nike Run/Walk, 1 Nike Air
  • 10 Rockport. 1 Rockport dress shoes, 4 Rockport Pro-Walkers, 1 Rockport hikers
  • 10 Reebok. 1 Reebok "Walk Reebok"s, 1 Reebok DMX walking shoe, 1 Reebok aerobic shoes, 1 Reebok mid-tops, 1 Reebok crosstrainers, 1 Reebok Fitness Walker or Ultra Fitness Walker, 1 Reebok hexalites leather walkers, 1 Reebok hiking hightops, 1 Reebok running shoe. Reebok Homepage
  • 6 Avia, 1 Avia Ariels
  • 5 Vasque boots. 1 Vasque Lightweight hiking boots, 1 Vasque Skywalk II, 3 Vasque Clarion Hightop Hiking Boots
  • 4 Asics. 1 Asics 123 gel. 1 Asics GEL-MORO.
  • 3 Merrell. 1 Merrell air cushion high tops, 1 Merrell Day Hikers, 1 Merrell All Terrain walking sandals. Merrell Homepage.
  • 2 Etonic, 1Etonic Trans Walkers
  • 2 Saucony, 1 Saucony jogging shoes. Saucony Homepage
  • 2 Ryka "Fitness Walking 580". Ryka Homepage
  • 2 Birkenstocks. Also visit: Birkenstocks Homepage
  • 1 Danner boots
  • 1 Guessheavy walking shoe
  • 1 Propet boots
  • 1 Hushpuppies
  • 1 Teva sandals
  • 1 Vittorio Ricci soft black leather shoe boots
  • 1 Adidas Walking Boots.
  • 1 Clarks Naturveldt
  • 1 Easy Spirit Mach 1
  • 1 running shoes
  • 1 Leather work boots
  • 1 Low cut hiking boot
  • 1 Waterproof duck boots

What else?

  • Judging by the spelling errors (and I didn't catch all of them to correct), Asics and Reebok need a simpler name! Merrell is also tough to spell right (good thing I had a pair in the closet to check the spelling!)
  • Many walkers had multiple shoes they used for different purposes - sidewalks vs. trails, warm vs. cold, dry vs. wet.