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Walking Shoes For Plantar Fasciitis

By Eric Leckie, PT

Plantar fasciitis, also known as plantar heel pain, is an inflammatory condition that affects the thick band running along the bottom of the foot. With this condition, it’s important to know the best walking shoes for plantar fascitis to ensure your feet are properly supported. This condition can be extremely debilitating to whomever it affects with symptoms including intense pain at the base of the heel, difficulty walking, and painful steps in the morning.

People with plantar fasciitis often complain that they just want to get back to their normal, daily pain-free life. As a physiotherapist, one of my top recommendations to patients with plantar fasciitis is to change their footwear to a more high quality shoe. This can make a huge difference in their pain management! Since the plantar fascia (the thick band that becomes inflamed during plantar fasciitis) runs along the bottom of the foot, it makes sense to think that there should be a variety of footwear options to help decrease the amount of pain.

And it’s true! Here’s my list of walking shoes for plantar fasciitis

Flip Flops with Arch Support

Shoes are an easy change to make after being diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. Most people spend a lot of time walking around barefoot or with socks, but when the plantar fascia band is inflamed, walking around unsupported like this will only aggravate the injury.

You don’t often find flip flops on lists about supportive footwear, but in this case the Orthotic Recovery Sandals have arch support which is important for plantar fasciitis. Arch support and some added cushion will make walking around the house much more comfortable.

Photo Credit: Amazon

Books Levitate 2 Sneakers

Modern day shoe technology has come a long way in the past 10 years. So if you’re still rocking the same sneakers from back in the day and they’re getting a little worn out, it might be time to get an updated version. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how comfortable running shoes are made now! When it comes to the best walking shoes for plantar fasciitis, Brooks Levitate 2 Sneakers are the best option.

These shoes rank among the best because they provide ample polyurethane foam underneath the heel where the plantar fascia attached to the heel bone (the spot where a large portion of the pain is located). That, in combination with good arch support and plenty of support underneath the forefoot section of the shoe allows puts the foot more at ease while standing.

Photo Credit: Amazon

Naturalizer Women’s Banks Pump

Just like flip flops, high heels aren’t usually on any lists for supportive footwear, but we’re being realistic here! Many women need to wear high heels for their everyday work outfit, or at least like to have the option. Don’t let plantar fasciitis stop that! Usually, high heels don’t mix well with this condition because the higher the heel is raised, the more the achilles tendon pulls on the plantar fascia band increasing the pain. The key is to find a good pair of heels that are the proper height but also have good arch support to cushion the foot throughout the day without making the pain worse.

I like to recommend Naturalizer Women’s Banks Pump because it has a 1 1/4″ heel that limits the amount of pull through the calf muscle and achilles tendon, while still giving the appearance of a high heel shoe. It also offers lots of cushion through the midsole and just enough arch support to put those achy feet at ease during the work day.

Photo Credit: Amazon

Vionic Women’s North Willa Slip On Flat

For women who prefer to wear flats which again, are among the worst shoes when it comes to support, we’ve got the perfect pair! The Vionic Women’s North Willa Slip On Flat has great arch support which is super important for plantar fasciitis. By choosing a shoe that has a good amount of concealed cushion and good arch support, you’ll be able to look and feel good while your plantar fasciitis recovers.

The Vionic Women’s North Willa Slip On Flat is notorious for its use with plantar fasciitis. Especially for those women who are looking to continue wearing flat shoes, but don’t want to be in agony after a long day on their feet. This shoe offers plenty of concealed cushion through the sole and a good amount of arch support while providing a very minimalist look.

Photo Credit: Amazon

DPT, Doctor of Physiotherapy

Eric Leckie is a men's health Physiotherapist specializing in prostate cancer treatment. He completed his studies in Australia earning his Doctor of Physiotherapy from the University of Melbourne. He currently works in a private practice, in addition to owning his own Telehealth Physiotherapy clinic which focuses on treating men with prostate cancer.

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