Walking shoes are attractive, comfortable, and supportive styles of sneakers, and the best of 2012 are made to improve upon the cardiovascular benefit of walking for the best fitness experience. Finding a pair that suits your routine and your personal aesthetic can sometimes seem aggravating, what with all the new styles available in 2012. Be sure of your purchase by taking into consideration your plans for use before deciding and buying a pair of walking shoes. To help narrow down the field, here are some of the best choices for a variety of walking styles and price points so you can invest wisely, in both your health and your style.
New Balance always makes quality footwear for athletic individuals, and this model offers fast walkers a ton of benefits, including toe flexibility for fast push off, ankle padding for plenty of support and comfort, and a lined mesh upper for weather protection. It comes in two chic colors: bright pink and blue, and the shoe costs around $90. For the quick paced who use their shoes purely for walking exercise, this is the best option on the market. You cannot beat the brand or the comfort!
If trail hiking is more your style than circumambulating a park or sidewalk, then you need a specialized hiking shoe that can double as a regular sneaker. Hiking boots tend to be cumbersome and unattractive, but the Rockridge is sleek, high performing, and lightweight. Rugged soles and a reinforced toe ensure you can handle rocks and both inclines and declines, but the flexibility also speeds you through flat areas. The Rockridge comes in three colors and costs around $100.
If style is the most pressing concern, and your sneakers are made for walking around malls, picking up dry cleaning, and attending your children’s athletic events, you want something that provides plenty of support but will not make you feel overly utilitarian. The Saucony Bullet is gorgeous in nine fun colors. However, it is practical, as well, with full coverage, a lightweight body, and just enough arch support to stay comfortable all day. Also, they are an inexpensive choice, going for about $60.
Overweight consumers are going to want a little more support, a wider width, and better cushioning from their walking shoes than the average person. Fortunately, the DMX Max ReeDirect offers air pockets for cushioning that even slender people will love. These shoes are ideal for longer walks that can be fatiguing with other models. The mesh upper provides breathability to keep you cool. They cost only $70, and the shoes come in two colors.
If you prefer the feeling of being barefoot over strap-on sneakers, but realize you have to protect your vulnerable soles, the BIOM Walk is a great compromise. Minimal padding, a narrow sole, and extreme flexibility make this shoe pretty close to going au naturel without the risk of injury from bare feet. They can tire your feet muscles quickly, though, so try walking in short bursts and slowly building up your endurance. These fancy kicks cost a more pricey $175, but they are uniquely healthy for your feet.