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How to Choose the Right Walking and Running Shoes

Tuesday, 16 April 2024 00:00

Selecting the appropriate footwear for physical activity is critical for support and protection. Knowing when to choose walking shoes versus running shoes depends on various factors, including foot mechanics, activity level, and personal comfort. Walking shoes are designed with a flexible sole, providing cushioning and support for the foot's natural rolling motion during each step. In contrast, running shoes feature additional cushioning in the heel and forefoot to absorb impact forces and support higher-intensity activities. Key distinctions between the two types of shoes include differences in shape, support, heel drop, and arch support. Also important to consider are flexibility and durability. If you are trying to determine the best shoe type for you, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist who can assess foot biomechanics, recommend appropriate shoe types, and provide custom orthotic devices to enhance comfort and prevent injuries during walking or running activities.

For more information about walking shoes versus running shoes, consult with one of our podiatrists from North Bay Ankle & Foot Center. Our doctors can measure your feet to determine what your needs are and help you find an appropriate pair of footwear.

Foot Health: The Differences between Walking & Running Shoes

There are great ways to stay in shape: running and walking are two great exercises to a healthy lifestyle. It is important to know that running shoes and walking shoes are not interchangeable. There is a key difference on how the feet hit the ground when someone is running or walking. This is why one should be aware that a shoe is designed differently for each activity.

You may be asking yourself what the real differences are between walking and running shoes and the answers may shock you.


Walking doesn’t involve as much stress or impact on the feet as running does. However, this doesn’t mean that you should be any less prepared. When you’re walking, you land on your heels and have your foot roll forward. This rolling motion requires additional support to the feet.

Flexibility – Walking shoes are designed to have soft, flexible soles. This allows the walker to push off easily with each step.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Petaluma and Sonoma, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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