Most people do not think of walking as a form of exercise. Well, just like running or jogging, walking also has its own share of benefits. Women who go for daily walks are usually in a much better shape than those who don’t.
To ensure that you get the right walking shoes, we have reviewed for you the best walking sneakers for women.
10 Best Walking Sneakers for Women 2020
New Balance 1080v9
ASICS Gel Quantum 360
Best Premium Sneaker
Xero Shoes Prio
Best Budget Option
Saucony ProGrid Integrity ST2
Best Neutral Sneaker
Saucony Grid Omni
Best for Overpronators
ASICS GEL-Tech Neo 4
Best Durable Shoe
Best Flexible Sneaker
Ryka Devotion Plus 2
Best Lightweight Sneaker
ASICS Gel-DS Trainer 24
Brooks Launch 6
Best for Multidirectional Movement
1. New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v9 – Best Editors Pick
The 1080v9 is the latest update of the New Balance 1080v series. As a result, it is a modified version from its outsole to the upper. These improvements are aimed to provide women with a walking experience that is not only comfortable but also satisfying.
The Fresh Foam 1080v9 is designed for neutral walkers, thanks to its new midsole design. Although it still employs a Fresh Foam midsole, it has been tweaked to achieve a comfortable and softer underfoot cushioning.
The Fresh Foam 1080v9 features a modified outsole with slightly redesigned flex grooves. These grooves make the outsole flexible and durable. The grooves also enable a smoother foot transition as your foot bends while walking. The outsole is made with blown rubber that covers the entire length of the outsole. Besides being flexible and durable, the outsole is also comfortable and responsive enough to cushion your feet while walking on hard surfaces.
When it comes to the outsole, the Fresh Foam 1080v9 employs an innovative Fresh Foam technology that gives you plush cushioning on the underfoot. The upper features a double jacquard mesh that covers most of the upper section. The heel section of the upper features a Lycra-like material. This mesh upper is flexible and will comfortably wrap around your foot.
- Upper delivers unmatched comfort and breathability.
- Smooth and irritation-free upper thanks to its no-sew design.
- Traditional lace-up system to securely hold your foot.
- Plush collar and tongue for extra comfort.
- Runs true to size.
- Significantly lighter than its previous versions.
- Looks stylish.
- Available in both wide and extra wide options.
- Has deep cushioning for longer walks.
- Quite expensive.
- Heel support is not excellent.
- Requires a break-in period.
2. Asics Gel-Quantum 360 – Best Premium Sneaker
Praised for its reliable performance and comfortable cushioning, the Asics Gel-Quantum is a sneaker that every woman would be happy to walk in. It is the latest version of the Quantum series. It still features the Asics Gel cushioning signature that makes it springy while offering support and endurance that loyal Asics users are familiar with.
The Gel-Quantum features a high abrasion rubber outsole that is reinforced at the heel and forefoot section. The AHAR rubber protects such high-wear areas while still giving the shoes maximum gripping on a wide variety of surfaces. Inside the sneaker’s cushioning border, the shoe brand uses a Solyte material that gives it a premium feel.
That’s not all, the Gel Quantum 360 4 employs a Trusstic system that prevents the shoes from twisting and turning unnecessarily. The Trusstic system also gives the shoes structural integrity. The Impact Guiding System of the shoes also ensures that the shoe stays stable. Another important component of the midsole is the Ortholite X-40 sockliner that makes the shoes responsive due to its high-rebound property.
The Quantum’s upper employs a combination of stretch mesh that gives it a contoured fit. The Heel Clutching System offers enhanced heel support and also prevents your foot from slipping out of the sneaker.
- Uppers are seamlessly constructed to reduce friction and skin irritation.
- Sockliner gives the shoe antibacterial properties.
- It’s more durable as compared to its predecessors.
- Thick upper material makes it perfect for walking in cold areas.
- Comfortable thanks to its gel cushioning.
- Features a trendy design.
- Provides a responsive and springy walking experience.
- Woven upper gives it a supportive fit.
- Some users complained about the high price.
- The seams that run on the sides are a bit tight and squish the little toes.
3. Xero Shoes Prio – Best Budget Option
If you are looking for a walking sneaker with a wider toe box, then you will not be disappointed with the Xero Shoes Prio Women’s Minimalist Trail Sneakers. Besides the spacious forefoot, the Xero Shoes Prio has a lot of other features to offer. It is a superbly lightweight sneaker that will provide you with tons of comfort when you walk in it.
Its FeelTrue rubber outsole is designed to deliver maximum slip resistance on any surface. On the surface of the outsole, V-shaped lugs are designed at opposing angles. These lugs give you the right amount of grip on any terrain, including wet surfaces.
The midsole of the Xero Shoes Prio are engineered with a cupped heel in order to center your heel as much as possible. The shoes also come with removable insoles that are 2mm thick. It offers extra underfoot cushioning so that you can comfortably walk even on the roughest terrains.
When it comes to the upper, the Xero Shoes Prior has a flexible and lightweight low-top upper that is made of synthetic material. The flexible upper gives you a snug fit when you wear the shoes. The Prio also has perforations on the sides for breathability. A sturdy rand on the front tip of the shoe’s upper gives you extra protection on your toes.
- Reflective straps on the upper to make you visible in the dark.
- Roomy toe box allows the toes to splay normally.
- Shockingly light hence can be worn for extended periods without foot fatigue.
- Makes you feel more connected to the ground when walking.
- Excellent heel support.
- Flexible outsole.
- Maximum traction on all surface types.
- Some users noted that it runs a bit small.
- Its outsole does not shed mud effectively.
4. Saucony Women’s ProGrid Integrity ST2 – Best Neutral Sneaker
The Saucony Women’s ProGrid ST2 has become a walking shoe brand of choice for most women thanks to its support and comfort. It has also been praised for the pleasant and reliable walking experience that it offers. It’s a neutral walking shoe brand that is suitable for women with normal pronation.
Its outsole uses a blown rubber as the main material. The blown rubber makes the outsole to be hardwearing without adding a lot of weight to the shoes. Even better, the blown rubber gives the outsole a bouncy feel which adds to the midsole cushioning. The rubber outsole is also non-marking so that it does not leave any markings on the floor.
To enhance the shoe’s traction and make it more abrasion resistant, a patented XT-900 compound is also added throughout the outsole. The midfoot section is designed with the Walk Trac technology to unintruisively guide your foot as it transitions throughout your gait cycle. The outsole also has flex grooves in its forefoot section that enhances your foot’s natural bending as you walk.
The Saucony ST2 features lightweight CMEVA layer as the main cushioning material. It is a durable and responsive cushioning platform. On the heel section of the midsole, there is a ProGrid cassette. It functions in a similar way as a tennis racket by centering the impact whenever your heel strikes the ground and then bouncing back.
When it comes to the upper, the Saucony ST2 features a snug and secure full-grain lather upper. The upper has reinforced overlays on the rearfoot, midfoot and toe cap. These areas are prone to high abrasion hence need to be reinforced with overlays for protection.
- Spacious forefoot area that allows your toes to comfortably splay.
- Plush collar prevents heel slippage and eliminates skin irritation.
- Padded tongue shields your insteps from pressure caused by shoelaces.
- Comfortable for prolonged walking and standing.
- Does not require break-in period.
- Soothes various foot pains.
- Feels light on the foot.
- Available in wide width options.
- Many users wish it was available in more color schemes.
- Lacks good traction on wet surfaces.
- Produces squeaking noise.
5. Saucony Women’s Grid Omni Walker Sneaker – Best for Overpronators
If you are looking for a walking shoe brand with pronation control capabilities, then the Saucony Women’s Grid Omni Walker is the right shoe type for you. Several women have praised it for its excellent arch support and its fit. Besides that, it is also durable, comfortable and well cushioned.
The Omni Walker’s outsole features the XT-900, which is a proprietary outsole material made of carbon rubber compound. The outsole material delivers lasting protection and maximum traction. Even better, the outsole is non-marking so that you can walk with a peace of mind knowing that you will leave no marking on the floors.
On the midfoot of the outsole, Walk Trac lines extend to the forefoot section from the midfoot section for a smooth foot transition. The forefoot area also has flex grooves to make the outsole unit more flexible. When it comes to the midsole unit, there is a multitude of technologies and features that provide stability and cushioning to the shoes.
What we loved about the Omni Walker’s midsole unit is its GRID cassette feature. It comprises of interwoven Hytrel thermoplastic elastomer filaments. These filaments are embedded into the foam in the shoe’s heel section. This GRID cassette gives you better control of your movement by centering the impact whenever your heel strikes the ground.
The upper unit is made of full-grain leather with extra leather overlays. These overlays provide extra support in the key areas and make the shoes durable.
- Adjustable fit thanks to its conventional lace-up system.
- Padded tongue to cushion your insteps.
- Padded collar to secure your rearfoot.
- Ample cushioning for a comfortable walking experience.
- True to size, including width.
- Supplies excellent support to the arch.
- Prevents overpronation.
- Can accommodate custom orthotics.
- Durable enough and is well constructed.
- Not suitable for rainy weather since it’s not water proof.
- Leather upper is not breathable.
- Causes blisters and chaffing in the rearfoot.
6. ASICS Women’s GEL-Tech Neo 4 Walking Shoe – Best Durable Shoe
The ASICS GEL-Tech Neo 4 has received a lot of positive reviews from a diverse range of women who have lauded it for its breathable upper, excellent arch support, cushioning, durability, comfortable feel and medial window. It is an improved version of its predecessor since it is more comfortable and better-fitting.
Its outsole leverages the AHAR technology for a powerful traction on a variety of surfaces. The AHAR outsole is also durable since it has high resistance to abrasion. To maintain the outsole’s structural integrity, the Gel-Tech Walker Neo 4 uses the Space Trusstic System. It stabilizes the foot by preventing the outsole unit from unnecessary twisting whenever you make any dynamic movements.
For comfort, the Neo 4 walker employs the Solyte midsole. It is not only plush but is also lightweight and responsive. The midsoles also employ the DuoMax Support System, which is a double-density platform that prevents overpronation by stabilizing your foot. In the forefoot and rearfoot section of the midsole, the GEL cushioning system offers propulsion boost and shock attenuation so as to protect your foot from impact that may result to foot injuries.
The design of the Neo 4 upper implements the IGS blueprint to support natural foot flexion so as to achieve dynamic stability. Its Biomorphic fit conforms to the shape of your foot so that it can support your foot’s natural movement.
- Reflective overlays on the upper make the shoes visible in the dark.
- Medial window lacks overlays to accommodate bunions.
- Collar is made of moldable foam to prevent blisters and accidental heel slippage.
- Low-cut profile to encourage natural flexion.
- ComforDry liner has moisture-wicking properties to keep your foot dry.
- Suitable for people with plantar fasciitis thanks to its adequate arch support.
- Medial window alleviates the pressure exerted on bunions.
- Narrow toe box.
- Its off-center lacing system is not gentle to the skin.
7. Vionic Women’s Walker – Best Flexible Sneaker
The Vionic Women’s Walker is one of the best walking shoes for women, thanks to its support, fit, comfort and performance. Majority of the women who have tried it were delighted with it. It is designed to be an everyday walking companion for women.
When it comes to the outsole, the Vionic Women’s Walker uses a durable rubber compound as the base component of the unit. The outsole feature several pods of different sizes and shapes that work to deliver excellent traction where you need it the most. That’s not all as far as the outsole is concerned. The shoe brand also has flex grooves placed on the outsole’s forefoot section. These grooves allow the outsole to be flexible.
The Walker’s midsoles are made of flexible yet firm EVA foam. This EVA foam attenuates impact by absorbing the shock from your feet and joints whenever your heel strikes the ground. The midsole unit is raised and reinforced in the midfoot section using a thermoplastic brace. This brace prevents excessive rolling of the foot inwards.
The heel section of the midsole also has a thermoplastic component that aims to make the foot more stable. An orthaheel insert offers arch support by keeping your feet and legs naturally aligned. This eliminates overpronation.
The Vionic Walker has an upper made of premium full-grain leather to support your foot throughout your gait cycle. The upper is also water resistant so that your feet can stay dry even during wet conditions. To keep the shoe’s interior ventilated; a mesh liner complements the leather upper.
- Action lacing system for an adjustable and secure fit.
- True to size right out of the box.
- Excellent support.
- Helps to alleviate foot pains such as arthritis and plantar fasciitis.
- Good for women with flat feet.
- Footbed is designed by podiatrists for stability.
- Accommodates orthopedic inserts.
- Great design.
- The outsole wears out after some weeks.
- The stitching comes apart after a few months of use.
8. Ryka Women’s Devotion Plus 2 Walking Shoe – Best Lightweight Sneaker
Thanks to its comfortable, supportive and lightweight build, the Ryka Devotion Plus 2 is a favorite walking sneakers for women. It also has excellent arch support, making it a great walking companion for women with high arches. As compared to its predecessor, there exist subtle differences. It features a low cut profile with an understated design.
When it comes to the Ryka Devotion Plus 2 outsole, it is covered in rubber throughout its surface. This rubber delivers traction on several types of surfaces. The rubber is also durable to protect the outsole against damage as a result of abrasion. The outsole also has treads with a skeletal pattern for flexibility and steadiness.
On the midsole, the Ryka employs the Anatomical Precise-Return footbed. It provides underfoot cushioning to deliver a smooth and comfortable feel. To further enhance the cushioning offered by these shoes, an EVA midsole is placed under the footbed. The EVA midsoles consist of a proprietary technology, the RE-ZORB platform. It consists of a foam compound that provides responsive cushioning and shock absorption.
The mesh upper of the Ryka Devolution Plus 2 ensures that the sneaker stays ventilated. It is also lightweight and comprises of overlays in the heel section to reinforce it. The shoes are also stylish; thanks to their four-way grade print that highlights its entire upper. High stress areas like the toe cap are made of synthetic leather for added durability.
- Traditional lace-up for a more customized and secure fit.
- Enhanced foot lockdown thanks to its padded collar and tongue.
- Lycra lining to prevent skin irritation.
- It’s lightweight hence perfect for long distance walking.
- Fits perfectly.
- Excellent arch support.
- Plush cushioning.
- Have guider rails to prevent overpronation.
- A few users noted that it is made of inferior material that breaks down after a short use.
- Insufficient lateral support.
9. ASICS Gel-DS Trainer 24 Women’s Shoe – Best Stylish Sneaker
What we liked about the Gel-DS Trainer 24 is its slip-on sock construction that makes it hug your ankles for a perfect fit. If you are a commuter, then this shoe brand is perfect for you. Its upper is also light, accommodating and flexible. It is also designed with several features that support a person’s underfoot and eliminates instability.
Just like other Asics sneakers, the Gel-DS Trainer 24 is also made of AHAR rubber outsole. The high abrasion rubber compound prevents the midsole foam from getting damaged by the abrasion effects of hard surface contact. The rubber material is generously layered to give the shoes durability. Since the rubber has a lot of grip, you will have great control over your movement on surfaces.
When it comes to the midsole, the Gel-DS Trainer features Flytefoam Lyte which makes up the bulk of the midsole unit. The Flytefoam Lyte material is made of organic nanofibers, which are environmentally friendly materials. This material gives the sneakers springy and lightweight ride.
The rear section of the midsole is made with a silicon Gel that absorbs shock during your heel’s landing phase. As a result, the forces that may result in foot injuries will be dispersed. When it comes to the upper of the Asics Gel-DS Trainer 24 sneakers, a seamless and stretchy material acts as the main upper material. It is breathable to ensure that your foot stays dry and cool even when you are walking under hot weather.
- Padded tongue and collar to cushion your heel.
- Seamlessly constructed upper to eliminate skin irritation.
- Light enough hence can be comfortably worn for extended periods.
- Knitted upper for a soft fitting.
- Medial stability alleviates overpornations.
- Vibrant color schemes for visual flair.
- Excellent outsole grip on all surfaces.
- Average foot support.
- Quite expensive.
10. Brooks Women’s Launch 6 – Best for Multidirectional Movement
It is the 6th generation of the Brooks Women’s sneakers. If you are looking for a comfortable shoe brand that will offer you a breezy walking experience, then the Brooks Women’s Launch 6 is the right option. Its updated design makes it an attractive sneaker at a price-point that is better than most sneakers.
The Brooks Launch 6 outsole is enhanced by wider decoupling grooves. These grooves make the outsole flexible by allowing it to bend along an axis. As a result, the grooves make it easy for your heel to transition off during the foot landing phase.
The front end of the outsole also consists of four flex grooves to complement to enhance the performance of the Transition Zone of the Midfoot. A durable rubber is used as the main outsole material to guarantee many miles of walking. The Launch 6 midsole is designed to make your walking experience much energizing, thanks to the additional foam in the midsole.
Besides that, Brooks have still maintained their BioMoGo DNA cushioning on these sneakers. The DNA foam gives you a springy underfoot response and makes the shoe adaptive to all the impact on the ground. When it comes to the upper, this is where most of the enhancements were made.
Unlike its previous versions, the Brooks Launch 6 now features a one-piece engineered mesh upper. This upper design not only makes the shoe brand comfortable but also makes it lightweight. Despite the tongue being less puffy than the previous versions, it still has ample cushioning to give you the right level of comfort. The padding in the Achilles and ankle has also been slightly reduced to ensure that the shoe stays more fitted.
- One-piece upper secures the foot.
- Light and breezy thanks to the one-piece upper designer.
- Mesh upper makes the shoe breathable.
- DNA cushioning offers a responsive and springy walking experience.
- Fits true to size.
- Newly designed midfoot for a quick heel to toe transition.
- Sleek design.
- Quite narrow hence not suitable for women with wide feet.
- Some users found it to be quite heavier than its predecessor.
Features to Look for in a Walking Sneaker
1. Flexibility and Weight
If you want to have the best walking experience and walk for long distances without foot fatigue, you need to buy walking sneakers that are both flexible and lightweight. To check whether a sneaker is flexible enough, try twisting the sole. When it comes to weight of the shoes, it should range between 10 to 30 ounces.
2. Breathability and Fit
You need a sneaker that will fit perfectly even after walking for long distance. A shoe brand with the right fit should leave at least 1.3 centimeter between the tip of your shoe and your toes. Breathability is also an important factor.
You should buy a sneaker with mesh upper or with perforations on the upper. Breathability ensures that your feet stays ventilated so that even under hot weather, your feet stay cool and dry.
Walking sneakers should have some type of padding inside them for comfort. The padding protects your feet from blisters, bruises and injuries when walking on rough terrains. Cushioning also helps in absorbing shock from your feet thereby preventing foot injuries.
4. Arch Type
Different walking shoes are designed for different types of arches. Your arch type is determined by how your bones, ligaments, muscles and tendons are intricately aligned on your feet. When you walk, your arches work to evenly distribute your weight across your feet. As a result, you need to choose walking shoes that will accommodate your arch type. Generally speaking, there are three types of arches. They include; neutral arches, low arches and high arches.
5. Sock liners
You can add padding to your shoe’s interior to make it more comfortable. A sockliner also enables you to have a snug fit. This helps to prevent calluses and blisters.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are several types of women sneakers available out there. Knowing the best choice for you can be quite hard. To make it easy for you to choose the best walking sneaker for you, we will share with you some of the most commonly asked questions and answers about walking sneakers.
Q: Are Walking Shoes Different from Regular Sneakers?
A: Yes. There exist a lot of differences between walking sneakers and regular sneakers. Walking sneakers are built with several desirable features that aim to make your walking experience as comfortable as possible.
Q: Are Walking Sneakers Good for People Who Spend Most of their Day on their Feet?
A: Yes. Walking sneakers are recommended for people who spend most of their day at work on their feet. When buying a sneaker, go for a pair that will offer you the best arch support.
Q: Are All Walking Shoes the Same?
A: Most people think that all walking shoes are basically the same. Well, we disagree. Different walking sneakers have different styles that offer different benefits. Although there might be similarities, no two walking sneakers brands are the same.
Q: Does Buying a Popular Walking Sneaker Matter?
A: Yes. Well known manufacturers have been around for many years and as a result have a lot more to offer. They have also invested a lot of money and time studying various types of feet to help them come up with quality sneakers for women.
There are several walking sneakers for women available in the market. You can choose one that suits you based on what type of feet you have. Since it’s easy for someone to get overwhelmed in choosing the right sneaker, we have reviewed for you the best walking sneakers. You can choose one that you feel will suit your needs and your budget.
When it comes to our pick, we would like to recommend the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v9. It offers unmatched level of comfort so that you can wear it for long hours without experiencing any irritation. It is also breathable to make your feet ventilated throughout. It is the best shoe brand for walking thanks to its deep cushioning and lighter weight profile.