If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site
Gregory Loo, DPM Board Certified Podiatrist and Surgeon

Choosing Walking Versus Running Shoes

Tuesday, 28 May 2024 00:00

When it comes to walking versus running, the distinction goes beyond just pace and intensity. As experts note, the mechanics of each activity necessitate specific footwear for walking and running. For walkers, shoes with soft, flexible soles are recommended to absorb the impact of each step and facilitate the rolling motion from heel to toe. Runners require thicker-soled shoes for ample shock absorption, given the varied striking points on the foot during a run. It is important to remember that while running shoes can serve for walking, the reverse is not recommended by experts. Footwear plays a critical role in preventing foot injuries like plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis, but shoes alone cannot resolve existing issues. Seeking guidance from a podiatrist is essential if foot discomfort persists. To ensure the right shoe fit, have your arch and gait evaluated. For advice with foot pain related to either walking or running, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a full exam and diagnosis. The appropriate treatment options will follow, including suggestions on the right type footwear for the activity. 

For more information about walking shoes versus running shoes, consult with Gregory T. Loo, DPM from Elite Podiatry. Our doctor can measure your feet to determine what your needs are and help you find an appropriate pair of footwear.

Foot Health: The Differences between Walking & Running Shoes

There are great ways to stay in shape: running and walking are two great exercises to a healthy lifestyle. It is important to know that running shoes and walking shoes are not interchangeable. There is a key difference on how the feet hit the ground when someone is running or walking. This is why one should be aware that a shoe is designed differently for each activity.

You may be asking yourself what the real differences are between walking and running shoes and the answers may shock you.


Walking doesn’t involve as much stress or impact on the feet as running does. However, this doesn’t mean that you should be any less prepared. When you’re walking, you land on your heels and have your foot roll forward. This rolling motion requires additional support to the feet.

Flexibility – Walking shoes are designed to have soft, flexible soles. This allows the walker to push off easily with each step.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Ahwatukee, and Phoenix, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Differences between Walking and Running Shoes
Connect with us

our recent articles