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7 Best Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain (2020 Review)

If you don’t have time to read the entire review and just want to find out what the Best Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain (2020 Review) is, then we recommend the Brooks Addiction Walker 2 as the best choice.

According to the World Health Organization, up to 70% of people in industrialized countries experience lower back pain during their lifetimes. While back pain is a common reason for inactivity and avoiding exercise, walking can often help alleviate and reduce back pain. Walking is a simple, free, everyday activity that helps to reduce lower back pain, provided you take care of your body and wear the right shoes. Today we are reviewing the best walking shoes for lower back pain in 2020. 

In this post, we’ve reviewed the Best Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain (2020 Review). These are:

Can People with Lower Back Pain Walk for Exercise?

The short answer is, yes! In fact, current medical guidelines actually recommend moderate exercise like walking to help ease chronic low back pain, and even help speed recovery from back surgery. Walking helps to strengthen the core muscles that support your spine, improving your posture and taking pressure off the lower back, and helps to maintain a healthy weight that makes the body more flexible and resilient

If you have lower back pain and want to start a safe and healthy walking routine, check out our guide to starting a walking exercise program, and invest in walking shoes that provide excellent cushioning and impact protection to prevent stress and strain on your lower back. 

Best Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain 2020 Reviews

1. Best Overall Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain in 2020: Brooks Addiction Walker 2

Brooks was founded in Philadelphia in 1914, and was a famous American athletic footwear company throughout the 20th century. In 2001, the company focused themselves exclusively on running and walking shoes, applying their experience and the latest technologies to make shoes that embrace and enhance the natural biometric performance of the body. 

The Brooks Addiction Walker 2 has a full-grain leather upper that is comfortable and durable, embracing the foot.  The midsole has Brooks’ Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar support system, which strategically positions the arch support to guide and support the body throughout its natural path of motion. 

BioMoGo DNA proprietary cushioning technology adapts to your stride, weight, and speed to protect the feet and reduce impact on the joints. The innovative outsole has been certified SATRA TM144:2011 for slip resistance and traction. 

Men’s Brooks Addiction Walker 2

  • Available in black or white, and widths up to extra wide. 

Women’s Brooks Addiction Walker 2

  • Available in black or white, and in wide widths.

PROS

  • High quality, durable materials are built to last
  • Comfortable leather upper
  • Biomechanical support throughout the sole
  • Comfortable cushioning 
  • Certified nonslip sole

CONS

  • Leather upper and internal support structures make these shoes heavier than other athletic shoes

2. Best Professional Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain: Dansko Slip-on Clog

While we don’t always think of clogs as excellent walking shoes, generations of nurses and service workers will say otherwise. Clogs are not only comfortable and durable footwear, but they are also incredibly easy to put on and take off for people with limited mobility in the spine, and Dansko makes some of the best clogs in the world. 

Modeled on the clogs worn every day in Europe, the company is employee owned and a registered B corp, recognized as one of the best employers in the country. These clogs are recognized all over the world as being the best shoes for people who need to walk all day in the workplace. For a deeper dive into great shoes for people who walk all day at work, check out our review here

Dansko clogs have anatomically contoured arch support and a slightly raised heel that work together to  ease pain in the leg and back muscles. They have a padded collar that reduces rubbing and improves comfort while walking, and a roomy reinforced toe box that provides space for the toes while protecting them at the same time. 

The PU outsole has a rocker bottom that helps to propel the foot forward and fight fatigue while improving shock absorption, with a wide heel for improved stability.  

Men’s Dansko Slip-on Clog

  • Available in black, brown, or brown distressed.

Women’s Dansko Slip-on Clog

  • Available in over 100 colors and patterns, in widths from narrow to wide.

PROS

  • Incredibly comfortable shoes
  • Durable and protective
  • Anatomical arch support
  • Rocker sole reduces impact and fatigue
  • Cushioned collar for comfort
  • Roomy toe box
  • Women’s style has more than 100 color and pattern options

CONS

  • Heavier than most modern walking shoes

3. Best Therapeutic Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain and Foot Conditions: Drew Walking Shoes

Drew makes some of the best orthopedic and medical shoes in the world. They have 130 years’ experience, combined with the latest design and technology to support feet and health, inspired by the most current fashions, to make shoes that look great as well as feeling great. 

Every Drew shoe has added depth for orthotics and inserts, removable insoles that inhibit bacteria and odor, and wide toe boxes that keep their shape over time. These shoes are so medically beneficial that over 100 different styles of Drew shoes qualify for reimbursement under the US Therapeutic Shoe Bill.  

Drew Surge and Flare Walking Shoes have a breathable leather upper that helps keep the shoes dry and comfortable, with ample room in the toe. Soft, foam-padded tongues and collars reduce rubbing and friction inside the shoe. They are lined with an anti-microbial shield that reduces odor and stains and have two removable footbeds to create a custom fit and space for inserts and orthotics. 

The Tri-support insole has a tempered steel shank for support, and an extended medial heel stabilizer to provide control and stability. A built-in heel cushion pad absorbs impact, and an EVA midsole provides cushioning The sole has a wide shank and a rocker bottom to ease the motion of each step, and the rubber outsole is durable and provides traction.   

Men’s Surge Athletic Walking Shoe

  • Available in white, and in widths up to 3X

Women’s Flare Walking Shoe

  • Available in white/blue, white, black, bone/combo, bone calf/bone sporty, and white/combo, and in widths up to XX.Line 1

PROS

  • Sporty, athletic style
  • Breathable leather upper
  • Interior padding for comfort
  • Tempered steel shank for support and stability
  • Removable insoles for custom fit or custom orthotics and inserts
  • Additional cushioning in the heel
  • Durable rubber outsole

CONS

  • Leather upper and steel supports make these heavier than other walking shoes

4. Best Fitting Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain: Propét Stability Walker

Propét specializes in comfortable footwear for hard-to-fit feet, with an incredible range of sizes that make their shoes fit perfectly right out of the box. They use the highest quality materials and latest fashion designs to make shoes sized for large, small, wide, and narrow feet, making them a great choice for people with foot conditions and back pain that can’t take the time to “break in” new walking shoes. 

The bestselling Propét Stability Walker is a comfortable, cushioned walking shoe that has a wider forefoot and wider heel base for ultimate stability. They have a full-grain perforated leather upper that conforms comfortably to the shape of the foot, with a padded collar and tongue and a simple speed-lacing system. 

They have a removable PU footbed for additional cushioning and a custom fit. The rigid heel counter provides extra stability with every step, and the EVA midsole supports the arch of the foot. The durable rubber sole has been tested and approved for slip resistance. These are Medicare approved shoes.  

Men’s Propét Stability Walker

  • Available in black, white, chocolate/black nubuck, brown suede, denim suede, and grey/black nubuck, and in widths up to XX.

Women’s Propét Stability Walker

  • Available in white and in widths up to XX.

PROS

  • Quality materials and athletic style
  • Removable footbed for custom fit or custom orthotics
  • Wide heel and forefoot for added stability
  • Speed lacing and padded tongue
  • Rigid heel counter for even more stability
  • Slip resistant rubber sole

CONS

  • Sizing runs a bit small and narrow

5. Best Fashion Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain: Rockport Oxfords

Founded in 1971, Rockport has grown from a tiny, father/son business to a brand that is sold in more than 60 countries around the world. Rockport was one of the first companies to design a shoe specifically for walking, and the company became famous for shoes that combine the comfort and performance of athletic shoes with the look of fashion shoes.

In 1990, company vice president Tony Post completed the New York City Marathon wearing Rockport DresSport shoes, to show that Rockport loafers both look and feel great.  

The Rockport Oxford has a stylish, casual look and a high quality leather upper with fine detailing that can go from the boardroom to the boat without missing a beat. While these shoes have the look of casual oxfords, they have the heart of an athletic shoe, with a sleek silhouette and modern appeal and rugged strobel construction. 

These oxfords have comfortable fabric lining for extra breathability, and Rockford’s truTECH technology for lightweight shock absorption. The EVA outsole is light weight but cushioned and shock absorbing while also being durable. 

Men’s Zaden Plain Toe Oxford

  • Has a rugged EVA heel cup and comes with a removable EVA and memory foam footbed for comfort and support. Available in black nubuck/mesh, Breen perforated, navy nubuck/mesh, pewter nubuck/mesh, Boston tan leather, Boston tan perforated, or dark shadow, and in wide widths. 

Women’s Ayva Oxford

  • Comes with a removable Ortholite footbed for light, lasting cushioning. Available in blush, light grey, silver, or black, and in wide widths.

PROS

  • Built like an athletic shoe, with more classic contemporary style
  • High quality materials and rugged construction
  • Lightweight and cushioned
  • Removable supportive insoles
  • Fabric lining
  • Shock absorbing

CONS

  • Sizing and fit on these shoes runs a bit large

6. Best Hiking Shoes for Lower Back Pain and Overpronation: Apex Sierra Trail Runner Hiking Shoe

Apex shoes have been designed by foot health experts, and recommended by foot health professionals, for nearly fifty years. Apex Foot Health specializes in designing shoes that relieve pain, and their shoes are full of innovative features to promote foot health. Apex makes premium quality therapeutic shoes that feel good, look good, and help relieve pain in the feet and the whole body.

The Apex Sierra Trail Runner is a rugged hiking shoe with Apex’s V-Last technology, designed to enhance stability and control for overpronation. The multi-density midsole has firmer materials underneath the arch of the foot to provide comfortable support, while a shank improves stability and control. 

The V-Last design comfortably keeps the foot in a neutral position during each stride, which reduces fatigue and pain in the lower body. The Sierra Trail Runners have a lightweight Nylon Cordura mesh upper, with nubuck leather supports that improve torsional rigidity. They have Scotchguard protection for water resistance. They have two depth spacers that can be removed for customized fit or for adding your own insoles and orthotics. And the aggressive sole lug improves traction in rugged outdoor conditions   

Men’s Apex Sierra Trail Runner Hiking Shoe

  • Available in wide widths. 

Women’s Apex Sierra Trail Runner Hiking Shoe

  • Available in brown/pink or grey/purple, and in widths up to extra wide

PROS

  • Designed and built to reduce foot and body pain
  • Reduces overpronation and keeps the foot neutral
  • Rugged design and deep lugs for adventurous hiking
  • Water resistant upper
  • Removable spacers for fit or orthotics
  • Multi-density midsole for arch support and stability

CONS

  • These are hiking shoes, so they aren’t as flexible and cushioned as casual walking shoes

7. Most Comfortable Walking Shoes for Lower Back Pain: Sketchers GOWalk

Skechers is one of the largest athletic footwear companies in the US, and they are known for shoes that are fun, fashionable, and comfortable. The Skechers GOWalk line incorporates the latest technologies for innovative comfort and stylish convenience, in shoes that are casual and easy to wear. 

These shoes are lightweight and flexible, gently hugging the foot and providing superior cushioning. They are incredibly comfortable walking shoes with high rebound technologies that fight fatigue and keep you comfortable all day long. 

The Skechers GOWalk sneakers have a super lightweight breathable mesh fabric upper with solid weave mesh fabric in the toe and heel for improved stability. The Max midsole has 5GEN technology with memory retention for shock absorption, cushioning, and support. 

The Goga Max insole provides even more support and cushioning, with responsive feel and high rebound. Padding at the collar and inside the heel protects from friction and rubbing and improves comfort. These shoes are machine washable.   

Men’s Sketchers GOWalk

  • Available in black, navy/grey, charcoal, navy/white, charcoal/orange, light grey, taupe, and black/white, and in widths from narrow to x-wide.

Women’s Sketchers GOWalk

  • Available in taupe, black, navy/white, black/white, charcoal, white, natural, light grey, red, black/charcoal, black/grey, grey/light pink, grey/light blue, navy/grey, coral, and turquoise, and in widths from narrow to wide. 

PROS

  • Incredibly lightweight and flexible
  • Superior cushioning 
  • Shock absorption and support
  • High rebound fights fatigue 
  • Soft padded lining
  • Machine washable

CONS

  • Soles aren’t very durable

Conclusion

If you have severe lower back pain and are walking for exercise, your best choice is the Brooks Addiction Walker 2. They have adaptive cushioning, excellent support, and are built to help care for your body. The biometric support helps to care for your body with every step. 

For milder or occasional lower back pain, the Skechers GOWalk are an excellent choice. They have incredible cushioning and a light weight that fights fatigue and keeps you walking comfortably anywhere you want to go. 

If you want a more fashionable walking shoe that will look great when you are running errands and managing daily life, while still supporting your feet and back in health and comfort, consider a pair of Rockport Oxfords. They have a light, comfortable, casual feel that challenges what you expect healthy, supportive shoes to look like, and removable insoles that let you add your own orthotics or simply customize your fit. 

Lower back pain doesn’t have to prevent you from getting healthy exercise and making the most of your days. Choose the right shoes and get on your feet while protecting your back.

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