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Whether you’re logging miles at the park or just taking a stroll around the neighborhood, a comfy pair of walking shoes is an absolute must. But if you’re planning to walk on a hard surface like concrete, you might need a more supportive pair to keep your feet pain-free—which is where the best shoes for walking on concrete come in.
But what makes concrete so different from other surfaces? “Walking on concrete, especially if you are doing it everyday at work, leads to a large amount of increased pressure on the feet,” says Timothy Oldani, D.P.M., F.A.C.F.A.S., a podiatrist at Missouri Foot and Ankle. “Concrete is an unforgiving surface that, because of its rigidity, can cause pain, especially to the highly sensitive areas of the heel and across the ball of the foot.” More specifically, the increased pressure from the hard surface of concrete “translates into increased shock and stress on joints, particularly the feet,” explains Anne Sharkey, D.P.M., a podiatrist at North Austin Foot & Ankle Institute.
This can lead to foot pain issues and conditions like plantar fasciitis. It can also cause knee, hip, and back pain in the long-term, says Oldani. To prevent this, you’ll want to look for specific features in your walking shoes. The best pairs for walking on concrete, according to Sharkey and Oldani, will provide maximum cushioning and shock absorption, evenly distribute pressure, and have a supportive sole. To help you find the perfect pair, we’ve rounded up the best top-rated shoes recommended by podiatrists below, from cushioned running shoes to comfy walking sandals.
Ready to feel like you’re walking on clouds? Ahead, find top-rated, podiatrist-approved picks that will keep your feet comfy while you’re hitting the pavement.
Oldani recommends this pick from popular running shoe brand Hoka, which he says is a great all-purpose shoe. “There is balanced cushioning and shock absorption extending all the way from the heel to the toes,” he says. “These are also available in wide sizes to help accommodate bunion and hammertoe deformities.”
In fact, the Bondi 8 sneakers have earned the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) Seal of Acceptance for promoting good foot health. They have a removable cushioned insole, breathable mesh construction, and an internal heel counter for a locked-in, supportive fit.
“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,” Prevention’s senior commerce editor, Christie Calucchia, previously said. “They feel supportive and balanced and don’t agitate my injury.”
With soft, cloud-like gel cushioning in the midsole, the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 shoes have the stamp of approval from Sharkey. These neutral running shoes are constructed with a breathable knit upper that wraps the feet with a soft, comfy feel, as well as a flexible knit tongue that extends around the ankle. All these features (and more!) make these shoes especially great for long-distance runs and walks.
“I walk five miles a day and this shoe is the best for walking. Cushioned, comfortable, and light, and I can’t feel the pavement! Like walking on air,” one Amazon shopper said. It’s also a favorite of Prevention’s senior commerce editor, who is an avid long-distance runner and tested out the shoes while training for a marathon.
The Brooks Ghost 15 running shoes are beloved for a reason. Great for both running and walking, these neutral shoes are constructed with the brand’s special “DNA Loft” cushioning, which offers great shock absorption and a super-plush and lightweight feel—meaning they’ll provide you with soft, supportive comfort while walking on an unforgiving surface like concrete. They not only come in a wide range of colors but also multiple width options (including medium, wide, narrow, and extra wide) to fit many types of feet.
What’s more, these Brooks are a go-to pair for Samantha Jones, a commerce editor for Prevention. “After wearing them while logging thousands of miles on concrete, dirt, gravel, and even the treadmill, I’ve found they’re some of the most versatile sneakers on the market—whether you’re an experienced runner, avid walker, or someone who spends hours on your feet,” she said. “Within the first few strides, I noticed that the shoe felt incredibly natural...It simply feels like a natural extension of your foot.”
If you’re looking for a pair of casual, everyday sneakers, you can’t go wrong with Naot’s Adonis, which comes in a slip-on style. Oldai recommends the pick for its 1.25-inch rubber and foam sole that provides great shock absorption, as well as the comfortable cork and latex footbed.
“There is a heel indentation and a raised footbed that both specifically reduce the high pressure areas associated with walking on concrete,” he explains. “As an added bonus, these shoes are orthotic friendly, so if you wear custom orthotics, the footbed can be removed and replaced with your custom orthotics.”
Go Walk Joy Sneaker
This popular Skechers pick is Amazon’s best-selling walking shoe (it’s racked up over 62,000 five-star ratings!), and for good reason. Specifically designed for walking, this comfy, easy-to-wear pair offers a lightweight and responsive midsole with high-rebound cushioning, a breathable mesh upper, and a flexible traction outsole. Bonus: They’re also machine-washable.
“These were amazing. I’m super picky and I felt like I was walking on air. By the end of each day, not one single pain... Haven’t found a sneaker or sandal yet to offer such comfort,” raved one reviewer. “My husband got tired of me telling him [our] whole trip how great my feet felt after eight hours of walking on concrete, cobble stones, and rocky dirt.”
Ora Recovery Slide 3
“Recovery shoes are great for hard surfaces because of their construction with foam materials specially manufactured to absorb shock,” says Sharkey. They’re a great option for taking short walks, running errands, or even while you’re up on your feet around the house. She recommends these top-rated recovery slides from Hoka, which offer foot-cradling comfort with a molded EVA midsole and four air flow channels for maximum breathability. They also have the AMPA Seal of Acceptance and come in a wide array of colorful shades as well as unisex sizing.
“I’ve been struggling with plantar fasciitis (due to standing on concrete all day at work). The floors in my home are also concrete, so I got these to slip on while I’m on my feet in the house (cooking, cleaning, etc),” said one Zappos shopper. “They make a big difference, and I’m in less pain and my plantar fasciitis is healing.”
Looking for a pair of comfy sandals to wear while hitting the pavement? These top-rated strappy sandals from Naot have you covered. Not only are they stylish and come in over 45 different colors, they also provide comfort in every step thanks to a lightweight EVA rubber sole and a contoured cork footbed that molds to the shape of your foot.
Reviewers also love that these shoes offer “excellent” arch support. “Amazingly comfortable... I walk on concrete a lot and this shoe takes it all away, feels like walking on grass,” one Amazon shopper wrote. “Hands down the best walking shoes—worth every penny! I bought these for a backpacking trip where we’d be walking 10-plus miles a day, and these sandals held up great and never hurt my feet,” said another customer.
Women's Professional Clog
If you have a job that requires you to stand and work on concrete all day, these Dansko clogs are a great choice. Specifically designed to keep your feet comfy for long hours, these shoes feature an anti-fatigue rocker bottom that provides shock absorption, as well as a contoured footbed with a padded instep collar, a roomy toe box, and a protective heel counter.
They’ve racked up over 11,000 five-star ratings on Amazon, with people who are nurses—or otherwise on their feet all day—swearing by them for long hours at work. “Love these shoes! I work in a dental office and in catering so I am on my feet on concrete hours on end and have no leg pain after wearing them...They are well worth the price,” wrote one shopper. Bonus: They come in over 80 different colors and styles, including leather and suede options.
How to choose the best shoes for walking on concrete
✔️ Look for cushioning and shock absorption. According to both Oldani and Sharkey, the best shoes for walking on concrete will have maximum cushioning as well as a good level of shock absorption. “A shoe that evenly distributes pressure and provides maximum shock absorption is ideal for walking on concrete,” says Oldani. “It’s essential to have adequate shock absorption on the bottom of the heel and across the ball of the foot.”
✔️ Check for a supportive sole. Oldani also recommends looking for a shoe that has a “supportive, fairly stiff sole” to keep your feet comfy during long hours of standing or walking.
✔️ Consider the type of shoe. Sneakers are generally a great choice for walking shoes, but you may also want breathable, open-toed options—like sandals—for walking during the warmer seasons, or even slip-on clogs for work. “For athletic shoes, you want to look for a shoe with cushioning in the midsole. This is typically done with foam or EVA materials,” says Sharkey. “For casual shoes, look for those with a cushioned or padded insole.” Recovery shoes are also a great option for hard surfaces, notes Sharkey, due to their construction with foam materials that’s specifically manufactured to absorb shock.
What’s the best shoe for walking on concrete all day?
The right shoe for walking on concrete will depend on your preferred fit, comfort, style, and many more factors, but generally, the ideal pair will offer maximum cushioning and shock absorption to keep your feet comfy and pain-free for miles. Most running shoes and walking shoes are designed for wearing on hard surfaces like concrete and asphalt, making them a great choice. Popular options for shoes to wear on concrete include picks from comfortable running shoe brands like Hoka, Brooks, Skechers, Asics, and more.
How we chose the best shoes for walking on concrete
We consulted Timothy Oldani, D.P.M., F.A.C.F.A.S, a podiatrist at Missouri Foot and Ankle, and Anne Sharkey, D.P.M., a podiatrist at North Austin Foot & Ankle Institute, on what to look for when buying the best shoes for walking on concrete. Additionally, we combed through countless online reviews, ratings, and product specs to find the best, top-rated pairs, taking into account editor experience with select styles.
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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