Get Pain Relief with the Best Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis - SI Showcase - Sports Illustrated

2022-12-04 22:26:38 By : Mr. Bo M

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Every year, millions of Americans experience foot pain including plantar fasciitis, a condition that is the most common cause of heel pain. This condition can make everyday activities like walking, exercising and even just standing around excruciatingly uncomfortable. On top of that, about 50 percent of people with plantar fasciitis also experience foot spurs which can result in further inflammation to plantar fascia (the fibrous tissue that connects the calcaneus—your heel bone—to the base of your toes). Caged Sandals

Get Pain Relief with the Best Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis - SI Showcase - Sports Illustrated

If you are experiencing plantar fasciitis, practicing good foot care and wearing the right pair of shoes can be transformative for your aches and pain. Whether you’re dressing up for a special event, going on an outdoor adventure or looking for a casual pair of everyday shoes, the right shoes can make a huge difference in reducing your plantar fasciitis symptoms. We’ve put together a list of the best shoes for plantar fasciitis to help you feel comfortable, even when you’re on your feet all day.

These loafers from Clarks can be dressed up or down and are super lightweight while managing to provide comfortable, cushioned support. This makes them ideal for those who suffer from plantar fasciitis but don't want to sacrifice style for relief. Plus, these shoes feature an easy slip-on style also making them a solid choice for those on-the-go.

One reviewer notes that these shoes are comfortable straight out of the box and require no break in period while another described how they feel as "walking on a cloud." One downside is that if worn without socks, these shoes can cause blistering in the toe box area. This can be remedied by wearing low, no-show socks, though. At less than $60, these shoes are budget-friendly and come in a variety of colors and prints to match every style.

Purchase Clarks' Sharon Dolly Loafers

These lightweight men’s running shoes are designed with consideration of those with shin splints, plantar fasciitis, bunions and heel spurs. The shoes feature the latest technology from Asics to help provide a stable, supported stride. The Dynamic DuoMax support system helps enhance stability while FF BLAST technology offers light, responsive cushioning. The shoes are also made with a redesigned heel and an OrthoLite X-55 sockliner for improved comfort. Meanwhile, 3D Space Construction is a unit under the heel that helps keep the shoes lightweight, adding to the overall cushioning and stability of this shoe.

Several reviewers on the Asics website say these shoes are a comfortable choice that have helped with their plantar fasciitis. “I suffer from plantar fasciitis and have had no pain since finding these sneakers! I work on my feet all day, too!” shares one reviewer.

These stylish and versatile clogs are created for people who are on their feet all day, giving customers a comfortable alternative to athletic shoes. Though the shoe style features a clog aesthetic, a rocker bottom provides shock absorption similar to athletic footwear. Significant arch support, contours in the footbed and a padded instep collar offer comfort with firm support.

These shoes come in narrow, medium and wide to offer options for a variety of foot types. The brand recommends sizing up if you are a half size. For the right fit with these shoes, the toe box should be roomy enough for you to comfortably wiggle your toes and you should be able to fit your pinky between your heel and the shoe.

Amazon reviewers give these shoes 4.4 out of five stars overall. Out of over 16,000 reviewers, 74 percent of people loved these shoes enough to give them five stars. Reviewers consistently say they get lots of compliments on these shoes and many say these shoes are great for plantar fasciitis. One reviewer comments, “No breaking these in, no blisters. And best of all, no heel pain! I can't wear flats or even sneakers currently because of the plantar fasciitis pain in my right heel, but the arch support and the thickness of the heel on these are perfect.”

These Brooks Addiction Walker shoes are made to provide maximum support for everyday walking and running, while also offering a lightweight, responsive design. The shoes feature an Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar (PDRB) for support in your stride and are soft enough to offer all day comfort. BioMoGo DNA provides you with cushioning that adapts as you move to reduce impact on joints. These Brooks Addiction Walker shoes are also certified for slip-resistance, giving you effective traction.

Reviewers on Amazon say that these shoes are comfortable for all day standing and jobs that require you to be on your feet. One reviewer commented, “Excellent quality. Very comfortable and give great support on the arch.”

Purchase Brooks Addiction Walker 

Hoka One One Bondi 7 is a popular ultra-cushioned running shoe available in a variety of colors in both men’s and women’s sizes. The shoe features “meta-rocker” technology for a smooth stride and extra soft memory foam in the collar that cradles the ankle for cushy support. The breathable shoe also offers a supportive midsole fit. This shoe has received the APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) Seal of Acceptance, a designation that means the shoe helps promote good foot health.

Reviewers on the Dick’s Sporting Goods website say that this shoe is comfortable and offers extra cushioning. One reviewer says, “Maybe the best running shoe I've ever purchased. I'm feeling a lot of relief from plantar fasciitis with these shoes.”

Purchase Hoka One One Bondi 7 Women’s | Men’s

If you’re looking for something trendy, professional and comfortable at the same time, these luxe loafers check all the boxes. They come in a wide variety of colors and styles to match any outfit. The Willa Slip On Flats are podiatrist-designed to offer stability and natural alignment while helping to ease plantar fasciitis. Vionic shoes feature “three-zone comfort,” technology that provides cushioning, arch support in the midsole and a deep heel cup.

Reviewers on Amazon say these shoes are comfy and look classy. One elated reviewer shared, “Oh my word, I could cry with joy. For real. I care about cute shoes and have spent a fortune on them over the years. I have suffered from flat feet since birth and plantar fasciitis in the past 15 years or so since having children. If that weren't sexy enough, I now have a bunion. I finally caved in and tried a "sensible" shoe because the pain has gotten to be too much. My feet are in heaven!!! These shoes are so comfortable!”

Purchase Vionic Willa Slip On Flat 

Since the brand launched in the 1970s, Rockport has earned a reputation for comfortable, lightweight and durable casual shoes. These classic men’s walking shoes are made from San Crispino leather and come in three color choices on Amazon. A latex-foam footbed is designed to offer cushioning while reducing fatigue. The shoes also feature an impact-absorbing EVA midsole to offer impact absorption without adding heaviness. Mesh lining provides moisture wicking and breathability.

Rockport's Ridgefield Eureka Walking Shoes have received over 20,000 reviews on Amazon with an overall rating of 4.4 out of five stars. Several reviewers comment that these shoes have been good for plantar fasciitis. One reviewer says, “Whenever I wear these, the pain goes away, even if I am walking all day. Maybe it's just because they fit me perfectly, who knows, but I liked them so well that I ordered a pair in black too.”

Purchase Rockport Ridgefield Eureka Walking Shoe

LifeStride is famous for its chic and elegant high heel pumps that are actually comfortable. Every LifeStride shoe is made with the brand’s “Soft System,” a construction that prioritizes comfortable support with cushy breathable foam, extra arch and heel support and a flexible outsole. These shoes feature a 2.75-inch heel and come in four color choices on Amazon.

Reviewers say they are a comfortable dressy option for work or special events where you need to be on your feet all day and want to wear high heels. One reviewer shared, “They were the absolute most comfortable heels I ever bought! I wore them all night and didn’t have any pains in my feet! Love them!”

Purchase LifeStride Saldana Pump 

Cole Haan is known for classic men’s footwear with luxury craftsmanship and these Original Grand Shortwing Oxford Shoes offer a sophisticated 1920s inspired design. These versatile business casual shoes come in a wide variety of colors, offering both comfort and style. The shoes feature responsive energy foam cushioning and “Grand.ØS” technology in the footbed and outsole for a form-hugging, adaptable fit.

Reviewers on Amazon say that these shoes are extremely comfortable and lightweight. “These are great shoes. Feels like I am walking around the office with slippers on. Most comfortable work shoes I have had, ever,” says one reviewer. Another reviewer with plantar fasciitis shares, “Very comfortable for feet with severe plantar fasciitis. I will buy more in different colors.”

Purchase Cole Haan Grand Shortwing Oxford 

Teva is a popular brand amongst outdoors enthusiasts and is known for their sporty sandals. The brand was started by a Colorado River Guide in the 1980s who wanted to create a sandal that wouldn’t float away in the river, so he added watch band straps to a pair of flip-flops. The brand continues to provide innovative outdoor footwear for wherever your adventures take you, while prioritizing sustainability. These sandals feature Shoc Pad shock-absorbing technology, an EVA midsole, adjustable straps and a water-ready design.

Reviewers on Amazon say these shoes are cushioned and supportive. “I have plantar fasciitis and LOVE these sandals. They provide just the right amount of support for me,” shares one reviewer.

Orthofeet Cambria sandals are designed with pain relief technology to help offer a solution for a variety of foot conditions including plantar fasciitis, bunions, swollen feet and more. The brand’s ortho-cushion system is made with premium orthotic insoles, featuring pillow-like support created from multiple layers of cushioning. A padded heel seat, anatomical arch support and an ergonomic sole are aspects of the shoe that help contribute to pain relief. These shoes are also lightweight with a rocker design to help enhance stability through your stride. Soft straps with foam padding are gentle on sensitive feet.

Reviewers on Amazon say that these shoes provide good arch support and some reviewers comment that they like the adjustable straps. One reviewer says, “Best sandals ever. I can comfortably wear them all day. The orthopedic support was great. My plantar fasciitis was greatly improved in days.”

Superfeet is best known for its green insoles, firm insoles that provide professional-grade orthotic support to help keep you comfortable when you’re on your feet all day long. The insoles feature high density foam, a deep heel cup and arch support. Their sculpted shape helps provide stability to reduce stress on your foot while also improving comfort and relieving pain.

The insoles come in size ranges that work for multiple foot sizes (such as men's 5.5 to seven/ women's 6.5 to eight) and should be trimmed with a pair of scissors to customize the shape and size for your shoe. The brand recommends removing your shoe’s original insole and lining it up with the Superfeet insole, tracing the Superfeet insole along the edges of the original insole. Then you can trim your Superfeet insole along the tracing lines to get the best fit.

Several reviewers on the Amazon website say Superfeet were recommended to them by their podiatrist to help with pain. One reviewer says, “I know why my podiatrist recommended them—because they work. They felt strange at first, but my feet did not ache after a couple of hours. My feet feel much better overall after a few day's continuous use.” Many reviewers say that these inserts are comfortable and offer good arch support.

Purchase Superfeet Orthotic Shoe Inserts

Keen’s Targhee hiking boots are versatile shoes that are both durable and comfortable. These shoes are made to give you all day comfort while being able to handle a variety of terrains from muddy to rocky surfaces. Targhee’s technology features “External Support Shank” (ESS) to help give you support on all types of surfaces. A contoured heel adds to your stability and mesh lining enhances breathability. The footbed provides arch support with a metatomical design that cradles the natural contours of your foot. These shoes are also waterproof and made with eco anti-odor technology. Keen’s Targhee boots come in a variety of colors in both men’s and women’s sizes.

Reviewers on Amazon say these shoes are a good, comfortable choice for the outdoors and rough terrain. “These are the most comfortable shoes I have ever owned for serious walking and hiking. They have basically helped eliminate chronic foot pain and plantar fasciitis,” says one reviewer. While many reviewers rave about these shoes, some reviewers say that the soles fall apart after regular use.

Purchase Keen Targhee Women’s | Men’s

Gemma Mule Slippers are podiatrist-designed to be cozy and comfy while offering serious support for everyday home wear. These spa-style slippers give you contoured arch support and a deep heel cup to help provide alignment while also reducing excessive overpronation. A flexible EVA midsole helps reduce stress on feet while also absorbing shock. The shoes have durable soles, a soft polyester terry cloth upper and come in a variety of colors.

Reviewers on Amazon say that these shoes provided a comfortable, supportive option for wearing around the house to help with plantar fasciitis. “These slippers are perfect for plantar fasciitis. My feet do not hurt at all after wearing them around the house for several hours. Highly recommend,” says one reviewer.

Purchase Vionic Gemma Mule Slippers

The Alfons Mule slippers from Vionic offer solid arch support and come in seven different colors and patterns. A rubber outsole helps prevent slips and doubles as a heavy duty layer that protects the slipper so it's durable and lasts wear after wear. These slippers tend to run a bit on the larger side so if you wear a half size, consider sizing down.

In addition to loving the arch support in these slippers, reviewers also note that they provide plantar fasciitis relief and are comfortable, especially for extended use. One issue a few reviewers mention is that the Alfons mules are on the heavier side and do a great job of retaining heat which might not be ideal for those living in warmer climates.

Related Post: The Best Training Shoes for Every Workout

“Plantar fasciitis is inflammation and degeneration of the plantar fascia and its origin on the heel bone. Generally, there is a mechanical overload and excessive strain which causes small tears in the fascia which then leads to the inflammatory response. Repetitive heel strikes can inhibit the normal healing process which then results in chronic pain inflammation and degeneration,” explains David M. Walton, M.D., orthopaedic surgeon at University of Michigan Health specializing in disorders of the foot and ankle and clinical assistant professor of orthopaedic surgery at University of Michigan Medical School.

Dr. Walton shares that those with plantar fasciitis often experience “start-up pain” after long periods of rest such as first thing in the morning. “One of the most common causes of this mechanical overload is tightness in the posterior chain which includes the low back, hamstrings and calf muscles which increase the demand of the plantar fascia during walking,” says Dr. Walton.

Though plantar fasciitis can be a frustrating condition, Dr. Walton shares that getting into a routine of good foot care can help resolve problems. “People should understand there is generally a waxing and waning of symptoms. As the symptoms resolve, diligence to exercises, stretching and general good foot care generally subside and patients often have a recurrence of symptoms,” says Dr. Walton. To help alleviate plantar fasciitis symptoms and reduce flare ups Dr. Walton recommends:

It’s important to consult with your medical care provider to determine the best measures to take for your specific condition.

You’ll want to think about what features you need most out of a shoe. Dr. Walton says, “First and foremost, a shoe should be comfortable. Arch support is somewhat dependent on individual foot shape.” Next, you should consider the type and relief a shoe can provide for plantar fasciitis. According to Dr. Walton, there is some evidence that firm foam pre-fabricated arch support is better than a non-contoured insert. Then you’ll want to think about how light or heavy a shoe is since this can vary widely from shoe to shoe. Many of the shoes on this list are designed to be lightweight, while still offering support and cushioning.

One of the most important factors to consider is fit. The right fit can make a huge difference in your everyday comfort. Since everyone’s feet are different, fits that work well for some people, such as wide widths, may not be a good match for others. Many manufacturers will provide tips for finding the best fit for their specific shoes such as how much room there should be in the heel or toe box. Then, consider what you’ll be using your shoes for—for example, do you need a formal pair of shoes for an event or are you looking for a comfortable pair of walking shoes to hit your step goals? The shoes on this list are designed to support a wide range of activities from slippers to wear around the house to outdoor exercise. While some shoes on this list are designed for a variety of surfaces and activities, others are better suited for casual everyday wear. Finally, you’ll want to think about your budget and what you’re able to spend on shoes that’ll help alleviate your plantar fasciitis symptoms. The prices of our top picks range from around $50 to $150.

Related Post: The Best Nike Shoes for Men

While Dr. Walton tells us that support for the arch of the foot is dependent on foot shape, he says that there is evidence to support a firm foam pre-fabricated arch support is better than a non-contoured insert.

The Birkenstock footbed features a cork and latex design that is made to provide support and relieve pressure. The shoes also feature a soft footbed padded with an anatomically shaped insert to help create comfort for the bottom of the foot. Several reviewers on Amazon share that they like Birkenstock Milanos for plantar fasciitis. One reviewer says, “I have worn Birkenstock sandals for many years on the recommendation of my podiatrist. The arch support helps with my plantar fasciitis. Every pair I have owned lasted many years.”

Dr. Walton shares that shoes with cushioning are best for those with plantar fasciitis, helping to decrease the repetitive impact of the heel. “When determining a harder or softer shoe, there are often patient specific factors. A patient with a flexible flatfoot generally benefits from a more stiff supportive shoe while a rigid bony foot can benefit from a soft accommodating shoe with more shock absorption,” say Dr. Walton.

Dr. Walton does not recommend compression socks for all patients with plantar fasciitis, but says they can help certain patients. “There are a subset of patients who have nerve compression (which includes numbness tingling and burning on the plantar aspect of the foot) along with plantar fasciitis. Oftentimes, these patients can benefit from use of a compression stocking,” he says.

Memory foam can provide cushioning which may help offer relief for repetitive impact of the heel.

The APMA Seal of Acceptance is a seal of approval from the American Podiatric Medical Association that can be awarded to products promoting good foot health. Products are evaluated by APMA podiatrists for safety, quality, and other factors. This seal can be granted to products including shoes, socks, insoles and more.

Plantar fasciitis can cause stabbing pain, but the right shoes may help provide relief. Finding the best plantar fasciitis shoes for you will vary based on your personal preferences, size, activities you plan to use them for and medical needs. If you think you may have plantar fasciitis, consult with your podiatrist or medical care provider to determine the best ways to care for your condition.

Prices are accurate and items in stock as of publish time.

Get Pain Relief with the Best Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis - SI Showcase - Sports Illustrated

Via Beach Sandals Lizzy Sherman is an award-winning digital content writer and editor. This author is writing sponsored content paid for by Pillar4 and not affiliated with Sports Illustrated.