How to Get the Best Fitting Walking Shoe
Walking shoes are categorized into two different uses: fitness walking and leisure walking. The key elements of finding the best fitting walking shoe are the same for both uses.
Fitness walking shoes are made out of knitting or mesh. These shoes are more flexible and breathable for higher levels of activities. They are less durable and have a more casual appearance. Leisure walking shoes have a leather upper and are less flexible and breathable. The leather holds up better than knit/mesh so they will last longer.
The best way to find an ideal fit for walking shoes is by going to a shoe store and measuring your foot accurately in a Brannock or on a 3D scan. This measurement will give the ideal size and width.
When trying on new shoes, a good rule of thumb is to bring the socks you plan to wear with that shoe. Trying on new shoes with no-show socks typically will not fit accurately. Always wear a sock that comes above the heel collar to prevent heel blisters. Wool socks are proven to keep feet cooler but are thicker. Wool socks are thicker and are a great option to help prevent blisters.
New shoes should always have wiggle room for your feet to expand out and up. If there is no acceptable wiggle room, your feet will be cramped. This can potentially cause harmful issues such as hammertoes and bunions.
If you plan on wearing orthotics in your new shoes, always try on the shoe with the orthotics before purchasing. Most shoes come with a removable insole that can be replaced with a more structured orthotic. If the insole is not removable, a ½ size increase might be helpful for an accurate fit. Orthotics with arch support take up more room than the insole included with the shoe.