The 9 Best Cushioned Shoes for Walkers to Buy in 2019

Cushioning for long walks and hard surfaces

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Walkers generally have less need for cushioning than runners, because they strike the ground with less force. But if you are doing a lot of walking on concrete or doing high mileage days in training for a half marathon or marathon walk, you need enough cushioning. These shoes are designed for those who have no more than mild overpronation, they do not correct for rotation. These shoes have maximum midsole cushioning with minimum support.

Our Top Picks


Best Overall: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34

Take a look at this running shoe from the side and you can see immediately a feature that is good for walkers. The heel is slightly up off the ground, which is what a walker needs to allow a good roll through a step from heel to toe. The Air Zoom is built for speed by being lightweight, yet it also has plenty of cushioning to get you through longer miles in comfort.

The upper is made of lightweight mesh for maximum airflow and it has a partial mesh bootie, which hugs your feet. Many people love the way that feels, but if you are a heavier walker you may not feel this gives your foot enough support. This shoe comes in wide in some of the color combinations. The fit and feel are impressive and are a reason this shoe has been a favorite for many years, garnering top marks from buyers on Amazon as well as other shoe sites.


Best Budget: Saucony Ride 10

The Saucony Ride has been a favorite for many years, especially for those with a neutral gait who want a lightweight, cushioned shoe.  Many women compliment the wide toe box, which is appreciated by those who have a ​bunion.

Saucony has redesigned the cushioning in this version to make it longer-lasting—all the better for reducing your fatigue on longer walks or runs. They also made the heel counter more supportive so your heel should stay in the shoe better, which can decrease the risk of heel blisters. The forefoot is even more flexible than previous versions, which is just what walkers need for a powerful stride. If you need a narrow or wide shoe, some of the colors come in those widths, but not all. Some wearers will want the wide version because Saucony has a narrow mid-foot shape compared to many other shoes.


Best for Long Walks: Brooks Glycerin

Brooks Glycerin
Brooks Glycerin. Courtesy of

These shoes are flexible, lightweight, and have plenty of cushioning for the walker who has a neutral gait. They work great to reduce fatigue for walks from six miles through half marathon distance (13.1 miles) and even the marathon. They have enough cushioning for distance training, yet are light enough for walking at a faster pace.

You can maintain a good fast-paced stride while wearing them, with correct heel landing and roll through of my step. They are also durable, with cushioning remaining intact through months of training and racing at the half marathon distance. Typically, you should replace the shoes after four months of intense use.


Best for Neutral-Gait Walkers: New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v8

The 1080 is a lightweight performance training shoe that is also a cushioned shoe made for people with a neutral gait (no overpronation or supination). Their fresh foam technology provides maximum cushioning for minimum weight. You should try this shoe if you are looking for a shoe that will get you through a long walk or run such as the 10K, half-marathon, or marathon with less foot and leg fatigue. It also can work well for a full day on your feet when working or traveling.

The no-sew upper design ensures there are no seams which might rub and increase your risk of blisters. New Balance has been changing its lasts, which provide the overall shape of the shoe. The 1080v8 features a wide toe box that some wearers love but others don’t. If you've been happy with previous versions, be sure to try on the current version to ensure the last still provides the best shoe shape for you. As with most New Balance styles, this shoe comes in narrow, regular, wide, and extra wide.


Best Lightweight: Mizuno Wave Rider

Mizuno Wave Rider 19
Mizuno Wave Rider 19. Courtesy of Amazon

The Mizuno Wave Rider is cushioned yet lightweight, with a low heel. It works great for long distance, including the marathon. The Wave Rider comes in widths and has both a wide toe box and a narrow heel. After 20 years of production, it's still getting five stars from runners and walkers. It earned the Best Neutral Shoe from The Running Network.


Best Style: Asics Gel Cumulus

Asics Gel Cumulus
Asics Gel Cumulus. Courtesy of

The Cumulus offers good cushioning at a good price. It has a flexible forefoot and is designed for those with a neutral gait. They trimmed the weight, in keeping with trends and the development of better materials that provide cushioning with less weight. They have a memory foam collar that provides you with a personal heel fit. It earned the Runner's World Editor's Choice Award.


Best for Stability: Asics Gel Nimbus

Asics Gel Nimbus
Asics Gel Nimbus. Courtesy of

The Asics Gel Nimbus is flexible but also is stable enough in the forefoot for heavier people. It gives the softest, most cushioned ride for ASICS. It has a one-piece upper, eliminating seams. They come in a variety of color combinations, including a black version if you don't want a flashy shoe.


Best Minimalist Design: SAS Freetime

SAS Shoes
SAS Shoes. Wendy Bumgardner ©

This shoe has been a favorite of volksmarch walkers for decades. It is a full leather shoe that has a flexible sole and lots of cushion. It's the only shoe you will want for standing in lines, and also good and durable for the trail. It's a great choice for traveling and walking tours. It isn't flashy and your feet will thank you after a day of sightseeing and museum touring.


Best for Overpronators: New Balance 1260 v5

New Balance 1260v5
New Balance 1260v5. Courtesy of

This stability shoe also has great cushioning. It has a minimal heel drop, which is better for walkers. It provides a little motion control for overpronators. It comes in narrow, regular, and wide widths.

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