Plantar Fasciitis is a problem that affects millions of people a year. It’s an easy problem for plantar fasciitis. The onset of my plantar fasciitis was caused by slight pronation, poor foot structure, and worn shoes. My first idea was to buy cheap arch support insoles to deal with the pain, it was ineffective because the treatment of plantar fasciitis is not best done solely through arch support.
Plantar fasciitis is a condition caused by overloading the plantar fascia, the connective tissue that runs from your heel to the base of your toes, the result is heel pain as the tendon becomes swollen and can come away from the heel. It is a series of tendons that are made from collagen and overuse results in tiny tears which can cause pain.
The problem with tendons and the location in your foot is the lack of blood flow to the area so the plantar fascia tends to heal very slowly. However, with proper shoes, rest, and coping strategies you can either cope or altogether heal plantar fasciitis. I am not a doctor, but I have suffered from plantar fasciitis personally and had numerous friends and family deal with the pain as well.
How Can Shoes Help Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis can feel debilitating, especially if you’re used to standing on your feet for long periods or are an athlete who’s constantly on the move. Whether you’re seeking foot relief to do your job or are planning for a vacation when you know you’ll be active, getting shoes that are specifically designed to help relieve pain from plantar fasciitis is one of the simplest and most effective steps you can take to help your situation.
Shoes made for people with plantar fasciitis are designed to give your heel and arch more support, which solves the problem at its root. While medications and pain relief can provide a temporary solution, if you don’t take care of the cause of your plantar fasciitis, the pain will continue. Before trying other treatment methods, getting a new pair of shoes might be the only step you need to take!
To make it easier for you, we’ve put together this list of some of the top, reputable brands of shoes designed for people suffering from plantar fasciitis. From running shoes to work boots, everyone can find something to fit their situation and needs. In the long term, find a way to combat plantar fasciitis as many, ourselves, included have managed to mitigate if not cure plantar fasciitis with time.
The Best Shoes For Plantar Fasciitis
All-around Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis
Whether you’re out running errands or at an office meeting, having good shoes to support your feet is crucial. Here are shoes suitable for everything from birthday parties to an afternoon walk in the park!
Olukai Nalukai or Nohea
These shoes originate from Hawaii and set on making a premium product that’s all about comfort. Their company ethos aims to have a minimal production footprint which we love! The footbeds of these shoes are designed to anatomically fit your feet and offer superior support for slip-on shoes.
I love these shoes because they’re lightweight, versatile, and provide exceptional comfort, which makes them one of the perfect shoes for women. The only thing to note would be these shoes are slightly narrow, which may present a problem if you have wide feet. The women’s style is the Penhuea and the men’s is the Nohea.
Allbirds Wool Runners
If you’re shopping for a new pair of travel shoes, likely, you’ve already come across Allbirds on the internet. They’ve billed themselves as the most comfortable shoes in the world, made to fight odor, be worn without socks, and generally handle the demands of travel exceptionally. Those are all some tall claims.
While you can undoubtedly contest the most comfortable shoe on earth claim, they are amazing. Allbirds try their best to source sustainable materials for their shoes, which we love. The style is also great, and they look even better in person than online with high-quality details.
They’re a great all-around shoe that feels comfortable in a multitude of environments from the beaches of Indonesia to the streets of Venice. If you’re worried about the heat you can try out their latest line of shoes called Tree Breezers made from eucalyptus pulp. If you have severe plantar fasciitis I would recommend pairing these with a more robust insole as the ones supplied are rather weak, but they are removable.
Saucony ProGrid Omni Walker Sneaker
Available in men’s and women’s sizes, the Omni Walker and Progrid from Saucony is a great comfort sneaker for everyday use. Whether you need a pair of shoes to clean the house, walk the dog, or run errands, these comfy shoes will do the trick!
The shoes are made with a supportive bridge structure to prevent unnecessary stress and strain on your arch, which helps alleviate pain from plantar fasciitis.
Designed for heel stability, the Omni Walker shoes also help keep your feet in their natural position, which is helpful – especially if your plantar fasciitis comes from unbalanced weight placement on your feet.
New Balance M1540v3
A great, all-purpose shoe suitable for daily use or athletics, the New Balance M1540v3 is one of the brand’s leading comfort and support shoes.
Using ROLLBAR technology, the shoe provides extra support to your foot on the sides and arch to help alleviate any plantar fasciitis pain you may be experiencing.
The sides of the shoe are made from a breathable mesh material, giving your feet plenty of air, whether you’re running errands or playing sports.
The rubber sole and EVA midsole of the Vionic shoes give your feet the extra support and comfort you need to get through the day. The company specializes in a wide range of shoes designed to offer support.
The Orthaheel design of the Vionic shoes provides a deeper heel cup with more cushion than standard shoe styles; this keeps your feet in their natural shape and prevents unnecessary strain on the arch.
Casually styled, you can use these shoes for a variety of occasions, and the lightweight material makes them easy to pack as a second pair of shoes if needed.
Formal Shoe For Plantar Fasciitis
You can’t spend all your time in clunky running shoes or sneakers. For those moments in a more formal or professional setting, it’s a good idea to find a supportive formal shoe to help with plantar fasciitis.
ECCO Helsinki Slip-On
These are so comfortable and appropriate for formal occasions. They’re perfect for a travel shoe that is affordable and provides excellent support.
The color is a nice rich brown or dark black, and the leather quality looks good enough for dress shoes. They look great with a pair of slacks, jeans, or a suit. The seam line and toe on the shoes are attractive with a slight round rectangle shape.
Quite obviously a pair of heels is not the best idea if you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis. The next best thing is a simple flat, but many are weak and unsportive. Finding a comfortable pair of flats can seem like a mission sometimes. I’ve always had a problem with flats since I have a bunion, but then I found these shoes.
They’re super comfortable and I would feel comfortable in them for hours of standing. They’re great flats for women with plantar fasciitis due to their excellent arch support.
Alegria Women’s Caiti Shoe
Comfortable enough to feel casual but stylish enough to look professional, the Alegria Pesca Shoe is also designed for extra foot support if you’re struggling with plantar fasciitis.
The combination of a memory foam sole and a cork footbed provide extra cushion to the foot, making it a great shoe choice if you’re looking for something that can be used in formal settings without hurting your feet.
Best Running Shoes For Plantar Fasciitis
The Mizuno Wave was my first supportive running shoe and it was a tremendous choice. Up until that moment, I had always run in cheap shoes, but as I got more into fitness during college I got my first signs of Plantar Fasciitis. I ran in a lot of cheap shoes in preparation for a marathon and the result was a lot of pain.
With that in mind, I went to a triathlon store. After a gait diagnosis, we came to the conclusion it was time for proper neutral running shoes with arch support. I ended choosing a pair of Mizuno Waves with custom insoles for support.
Ever since then I’ve always opted for supportive running shoes for Plantar Fasciitis to avoid the problem. After years of running, I’ve found several favorites and managed to mitigate the problem entirely. The key to a great running shoe for plantar fasciitis is to seek out a shoe that encourages a neutral run, provides heel cushion, and arch support.
These are a go-to running shoe for serious runners and have been so reliable they’re now in their eleventh version. The newest version comes with the Brooks DNA Loft midsole for a smooth ride that aids foot health. The cushioned soles are wonderful for aiding plantar fasciitis.
I am a pretty avid runner, and I’ve tried out a number of the top brands. I’ve settled on a pair of Ghosts and rank them as one of my favorite cushioned running shoes. The Ghost 12 is a beautiful cushioned shoe that offers excellent support and allows for marathon mileage coverage that leaves your knees and feet feeling fresh.
Ghost 12 is a road running shoe, so it’s a good fit for those who are looking to hit the pavement running while abroad. Given that many streets around the world are uneven, we recommend a cushioned shoe like these as the best women’s running shoes for travel. Running on cobblestone makes it easy to pronate or supinate so opt for a shoe like this on rough surfaces.
Mizuno Wave Inspire 15 Running Shoe
The Mizuno Wave Inspire is their most affordable shoe option with their specialty wave technology. The Wave Inspire is designed for runners who suffer from flat feet and
I find them not as cushioned as Brook’s Ghost, but instead, the wave plate allows them to feel more responsive underfoot. The wave plate technology is also great for those looking for an aggressive running shoe that still supplies support. This would be my choice for athletes.
Hoka One One Clifton 6
Hoka One One Clifton 6 is a great running shoe for plantar fasciitis. I recently upgraded to the Speedgoat 3, which has been named the Editors Choice by Runner’s World, and they are great for traveling. First, they are lightweight saving you weight in your precious airline luggage.
Merrell Moab 2
These aren’t the poshest shoes in the world, but they retain some style for hiking shoes. These shoes are built tough, built to last, and are just in general good women’s travel shoes. I have probably put over 500 miles, and they got me through a year of bushwalking in Africa – I still haven’t thrown them out. They are well padded, extremely comfortable, and for about a $20 different you can get the Gortex version (waterproof).
Natasha had wide feet along with plantar fasciitis and could easily walk all day in these shoes through all different terrains. Seriously Moab Ventilator, you are some of the best women’s walking shoes for ladies that love the outdoors.
ASICS Gel-Nimbus 22 Running Shoes
ASICS has produced a long line of comfortable and supportive athletic footwear and continue to develop and improve their products with new technology.
As the name suggests, these running shoes are equipped with a special gel unit in each heal to provide the maximum level of cushion and support for your feet.
The Gel-Nimbus 22 is also made with a material called FlyteFoam, which is positioned in the heel and forefoot areas, giving the shoes extra lightness and spring. The continuous hard impact of running can be painful for people with plantar fasciitis, and this added level of cushioning can help relieve that.
To keep the shoes comfortable even when you’re working up a sweat running, they are made with mesh uppers to provide more airflow.
Sandals for Plantar Fasciitis
You can still stay cool and comfortable in the summer heat even if you’re struggling with plantar fasciitis! There are plenty of sandals which are specifically designed to give your feet more support. Ditch your flip-flops, which are probably just making the pain worse, and try out a pair of these sandals instead.
Widely considered one of the best and most comfortable sandals and shoes along with being hideous crocs have quite the name. They have developed past the original footwear to create some comfortable sandals that also look decent. They come in a variety of styles, all designed to give your feet maximum comfort and support.
A croc sandal is what you might consider a highly upgraded flip-flop; in exchange for the formless flat bottoms of most flip-flop sandals, they’re made from a thick foam base, which cushions your foot and provides structure.
Birkenstocks have long been associated with hippy culture and free-living ideology, so naturally, they would make phenomenal sandals for travel! However, Birkenstock Arizonas is much more than a name. They feature the patented cork footbed that contours to your foot, giving you amazing arch support and comfort.
This footbed also gives them an excellent shock absorption quality that your joints will thank you for. Keep in mind though that these sandals are lined with suede, which means they are best suited for dry urban environments. The sandals are unisex and only vary by size.
Teva Terra Fi-4
Teva owns a well-deserved reputation for producing some of the most rugged hiking sandals in the business, and the Terra Fi-4 is an excellent example. Constructed as a classic open-toe sandal, this footwear hides a few important tricks under the hood to make it a powerhouse on the trail.
The outsole features Teva’s ‘Spider Original’ rubber which provides reliable and long-lasting traction in nearly every environment. The sole itself is cushioned with Teva’s ‘Shoc Pad’, giving superb heel cushioning for those long days on the trail. Durable and quick-drying polyester webbing and odor protection round off the ensemble for an excellent light hiking sandal.
Vionic is known for its comfort shoes, and with the “orthaheel” line of products, the shoes also provide the necessary amount of support if you’re dealing with plantar fasciitis.
They have a range of simple but stylish women’s sandals with rubber soles designed to cushion your foot and keep your feet in their natural position. Most of which can be adjusted to help the shoe fit correctly for the size and shape of your feet.
You can ditch your old, flat, formless sandals for these to give your feet good support even when it’s hot outside!
Insoles For Plantar Fasciitis
If you have weak arches or problematic feet a pair of insoles can help make any pair of shoes work for you. I have a bunion and have found that in my athletic shoes help with walking long days.
The sandals are listed above, but the same tech can be used to create a pair of insoles custom molded to your feet. Wiivv used images of your feet to custom map your feet and then ship you specialty insoles to your home. We love our insoles and use them in our hiking boots as we cover a lot of miles in them. Of course, you can pull them out of shoes and swap them around as you need them.
This is a great affordable option for insoles if you have mild foot pain. I don’t know if I’d recommend them for someone with plantar fasciitis. They don’t operate like those cheap gel insets you find at the drug store but focus on distributing your weight across your feet properly.
The result is better comfort, foot health, and even back health in the long run. The Superfeet Green is by far the most popular option. The only negative of Superfeet is. They may not be robust enough as they do not custom mold to your feet like Sole or Wiivv.
Soles are a cross between Superfeet and Wiivv as they are affordable and custom mold to your feet. Instead of a custom mapping, they are heat molded which you do at home. We’ve used their sandals, and they are some of the most comfortable sandals we’ve ever worn.
Summary on Plantar Fasciitis Shoes
So, there you have it! Some of the best shoes on the market if you happen to be struggling with plantar fasciitis and are in search of a solution. Depending on your lifestyle, you can pick one or more of these shoes to give your feet the structure and support they need to keep you up and moving without experiencing pain in all your daily activities!
What to look for in a pair of shoes?
There are thousands of shoes, sandals, and boots out there that can cover the three points described below. But the very best travel shoes can accomplish that goal and more by presenting them in a stylish and attractive manner. The style is one of the most important things I look for while in a pair of women’s travel shoes.
Style varies so much between the different shoe types, but my one tip is to look for versatility and opt for prints or colors that work with a multitude of outfits. You won’t be able to take a whole closet of shoes with you when you travel.
A sad reality of traveling is that you won’t have room to bring several different pairs of shoes to fit every occasion. Whatever pair of shoes or boots you settle on, you’re bound to spend a lot of time in them and cover a fair number of miles. So, as you may have guessed, it’s absolutely crucial that those boots be comfortable and supportive!
Pay special attention to the outsole and footbed material to gauge its comfort and durability. We are particularly fond of Vibram outsoles as they provide a nice comfortable ride, but they also hold up very well to wear and tear and allow the boots to last as long as possible.
Your specific travel goals will of course also play a role in the type of travel boot that best suits your needs. Perhaps you’re planning on spending most of your days jetting from sight to sight in the big city. Maybe some time in galleries and museums, interspersed with street walking to find the best eateries and views. Or perhaps you have a certain proclivity for remote mountain trails and exploring the great outdoors in every country you visit.
Whatever your preference, take the time to consider your future activities and pick a shoe that will offer the highest level of utility in that department. A black flat may not serve you well for rock scrambling, and a heavy-duty boot may raise a few eyebrows at your luxurious dinner after a day of exploring.
So, you get the idea, make your travel shoes agree with your activities. Or better yet, opt for a shoe that can be at home almost anywhere! It’s about finding the greatest versatility for you! Everyone is different.
Regardless of your activity of choice, one essential characteristic that we highly recommend for any travel boot or actives shoe worth its salt, is waterproofing. A stylish boot aimed for city travel is not immune from the occasional rainfall, and there’s nothing worse than sloshing around town on your vacation with wet boots!
This is equally true if you’re out in the countryside soaking up the views. So, take the time to ensure that your travel boot of choice incorporates some form of waterproofing treatment. At the very least, treat the boots yourself with one of the many waterproofing agents that you can purchase online or at a sporting goods store.
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