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There are loads of benefits to walking regularly: It helps boost your mood, burn calories, improve heart health, reduce stress, kickstart your immune system, and so much more. Whether you enjoy trail hiking or hitting the sidewalk at the end of the day, the right gear can keep you comfortable and protect you from injuries. And there’s one sneaker brand that you’ve likely spotted on fellow walkers lately: Hoka. But what are the best Hoka shoes for walking?
The brand is known for its highly cushioned, supportive shoes. It launched in 2009 and has since exploded as a go-to brand for everyone from marathon runners to people with foot injuries to celebrities. Hilary Swank was recently spotted in a yellow pair of Clifton 9s and Carrie Underwood swears by the brand for gym sessions.
Meet the expert: Priya Parthasarathy D.P.M., a podiatrist and a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA).
Beloved by style-seekers and podiatrists alike, the brand has a wide range of models to choose from, all of which fit expert recommendations for supportive footwear: They won’t fold in half if you try to bend them, they have removable insoles, and they have firm heel counters. As for which Hokas are best for walking, Priya Parthasarathy D.P.M., a podiatrist and a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA), has a few suggestions. She points out that some styles, such as the Arahi, offer greater stability, which is ideal for those who overpronate, while others, like the Clifton, are just fine for those with a neutral foot type.
Along with her expertise, we tapped Prevention’s team of editors (who love getting their steps in), to weigh in on the best Hoka shoes for walking.
Our top picks:
Keep scrolling to shop the best Hoka sneakers and sandals in the game. These offer support and stability, no matter how you like to move.
Ideal for walking and everyday running, these sneakers offer balanced cushioning and a frame designed to prevent feet from rolling inward as you step. “I overpronate, so I prefer the Hoka Arahi for its additional stability,” says Dr. Parthasarathy. The latest version of the Arahi has a plusher tongue, lighter upper, and more colors options than previous models.
When Dr. Parthasarathy isn’t wearing her Arahi sneakers, she’s in her Cliftons. They “are a very popular model for a neutral foot type,” she says, noting that she likes to remove the included insole and swap in her own custom orthotics for additional support. These are lightweight with more stack height for a plush feel.
“I recommend the Hoka Bondi for patients that need max cushioning, such as older patients that have fat pad atrophy (where the fat on the bottom of your foot thins) or arthritis,” says Dr. Parthasarathy. These have “a more bouncy, cushioned feel.” They also have a memory foam collar to cradle the ankle, a water-resistant leather upper, and a rubber outsole for traction.
Anacapa 2 Low GTX
Dr. Parthasarathy recommends this style “because it is lighter weight than most hiking boots but still provides stability with a Vibram sole that provides great traction.” It offers neutral stability with balanced cushioning and has an abrasion-resistant toe cap to keep your feet comfy when shuffling down hill. This model features more recycled materials than the previous one, too.
“The Mach X style has a high-rebound cushion and a layer of foam for a soft impact as you walk,” says Isabella Cavallo, Prevention’s editorial assistant, who regularly wears this style for morning runs and evening walks. “The design of the shoe makes each step feel smooth with a bit of a bounce to help me run or walk faster. This sneaker is great if you’re trying to pick up the pace or walk a 5K!”
The Bondi 8 comes with an extended heel to cushion each step, a memory foam collar, and bouncy foam. Ideal for running and walking, these make a great staple in any active person’s closet.
“I recently injured my tailbone and haven’t be able to go on my usual runs. Instead, I’ve been easing back into exercise by walking in these comfortable sneakers,” says Prevention’s senior commerce editor, Christie Calucchia. “They feel supportive and balanced and don’t agitate my injury.”
Ora Recovery Slide 3
“As soon as I get home I slip into my Hoka Ora Recovery slides, which I have used for the past year,” says Dr. Parthasarathy. “I love the lightweight, cushioned arch support, especially when carrying my newborn around the house.” Our senior commerce editor has an older version of this slide and also uses them for walking around the house on hardwood floors. “My high arches love these!” she says.
The latest model has more air flow channels to keep things breezy with the same injection-molded outsole as the original. They’re extremely plush with an early stage meta-rocker to make every step easier and more comfortable.
How to choose the best shoes for walking
✔️ Look for quality construction. You shouldn’t be able to fold a shoe in half if you try to bend it, Dr. Parthasarathy point out. This shows how sturdy and durable it is.
✔️ Consider your usual route. The type of terrain you typically walk on will help you determine the best walking shoes for you. For instance, if you regularly hit the trails, you’ll need more traction, grip, and ankle support than someone who typically sticks to the sidewalk and paved roads.
✔️ Check for removable insoles. This allows you to add your own custom orthotics into a shoe for custom support, which Dr. Parthasarathy recommends.
✔️ Make sure they fit. Fit is key to a comfortable walking shoe. Make sure you’re wearing a pair in your size to prevent blisters caused by rubbing on the heel or toe jamming in front. The best way to figure out which one is right for you is to try them on and see which feels the most comfortable.
✔️ Scope out the heel. A good walking shoe “should have a firm supportive, heel counter,” says Dr. Parthasarathy.
Do podiatrists recommend Hoka?
Many of Hoka’s shoes have earned the APMA Seal of Acceptance. That means they were reviewed by the APMA Podiatric Seals Committee and proved to allow for normal foot function and promote foot health, Dr. Parthasarathy explains.
“I recommend them due to their superior cushioning, stability, and their rocker-like bottom all combined in a lightweight shoe,” she says. “They also appeal to a wide range of foot types and age groups.”
She’s even a fan herself, noting that she wore Hokas throughout her most recent pregnancy and postpartum period. “I have to say this was the first pregnancy (out of three) where I did not develop plantar fasciitis,” she adds.
Benefits of Hoka shoes for walking
Hoka shoes are great for walking because they are lightweight but provide cushioning and stability, according to Dr. Parthasarathy. She also points out the rocker-like bottom of the shoes, which help propel you forward while walking.
“What I have noticed in my practice is the wide age range of patients that wear Hoka shoes,” she says. “From my 23-year-old medical assistant to my 77-year-old Dad! I think it’s quite impressive to appeal to a wide range of foot types and ages.”
How we chose the best Hoka shoes for walking
We interviewed Priya Parthasarathy D.P.M., a podiatrist and a spokesperson for the APMA to get her insights on walking shoes in general, as well as why Hoka makes some of the best around. We took her personal favorites into consideration as well as picks from our team of editors, who have collectively tested many walking shoes, including styles from Hoka. Lastly, we checked out customer reviews and researched the newest models of Hoka’s most popular shoes to determine the best Hoka walking shoes.
Why trust us
For more than 70 years, Prevention has been a leading provider of trustworthy health information, empowering readers with practical strategies to improve their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Our editors interview medical experts to help guide our health-focused product selections. Additionally, Prevention also examines hundreds of reviews—and often conducts personal testing done by our staff—to help you make informed decisions.
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