If you don’t have time to read the entire review and just want to find out what the best shoes for treadmill walking are, we recommend the ASICS GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoe for Men and Women as the best choice.
The treadmill is one of the most commonly used machines for physical fitness, regardless of age. This isn’t a surprise as users don’t need to rely on weather conditions or time of day to schedule a session. Also, walking on a treadmill is relatively easier on your joints.
Still, you should focus on finding the right kind of footwear as it can influence how your session will go. Finding the best shoes for treadmill walking takes a bit of knowledge, so we’ve rounded up our top picks to help you choose.
What to Look for When Buying Shoes for Treadmill Walking
While walking causes less impact on your body than running, using the same shoes for both activities isn’t always the best option. There are key differences in how your feet hit the ground when walking, so it would be best to own a separate pair of shoes. There are several factors to consider when choosing the best shoes for treadmill walking.
Although the treadmill offers extra comfort while exercising, using the right pair of walking shoes will maximize your experience. A good walking shoe should be comfortable as soon as you put it on. If you feel discomfort when trying on the shoe for the first time, it’s not the right fit for you.
Walking in uncomfortable shoes can result in painful blisters. Finding a comfortable pair of walking shoes affects your performance and motivation to exercise and burn calories.
However, you shouldn’t walk barefoot on your treadmill either. Although a popular trend, the treadmill generates heat, which can lead to burns and a myriad of injuries to unprotected feet. Blisters are also a common consequence of walking barefoot.
Walking shoes should be soft and flexible. Pay special attention to the toe box. A good toe box should be spacious enough for every step to feel comfortable.
There should be a suitable space to flex your toes while walking, but not too much. As a rule of thumb, ensure 1/2 inch of space is between the front of the shoe and your big toe.
The best walking shoes also feature elements that help you adjust the fit to your liking, making them flexible for many feet types.
Heavy shoes can drag your feet down and cause you to get tired more quickly. The ideal walking shoes should be lightweight. However, shoe manufacturers sometimes sacrifice cushioning to achieve the desired lightness.
With that in mind, ultra-lightweight shoes shouldn’t be your top pick if your feet require enough padding to avoid the painful consequences. The ideal walking shoe should strike a balance between lightness and cushion.
While treadmills themselves provide extra cushioning, your walking shoes should still have an adequate amount of cushioning on their own. The right amount of cushioning reduces the stress placed on your feet and can go a long way in helping you meet your exercise goals.
Walking shoes generally require less cushioning than running shoes. However, the cushioning amount is also a personal preference. Some people go for a more minimal style of shoes, which offers almost no cushioning. Others gravitate more towards feeling like walking on air, which is only possible with a thicker sole.
Your foot arch provides support by distributing pressure evenly across your foot. However, not all foot arches are the same. Make sure to choose a walking shoe with adequate arch support for your feet. If this is not possible, look for shoes with removable insoles that you can customize to your liking.
Burning feet and perspiration are frequent side-effects of exercising, regardless of the activity. The breathability of your shoes is one of the most important factors in keeping your feet comfortable, especially considering that treadmills are used inside. You’re likely to get more out of exercising with the proper airflow going through your shoes.
The more you walk in your shoes, the more their performance degrades. Generally speaking, you should look for new shoes after walking 300 to 500 miles. While the treadmill provides an even and repetitive surface, it still takes a toll on your walking shoes. When purchasing a pair, make sure your shoes are durable to make the most of them.
Best Shoes for Treadmill Walking
1. The Best Option for People Who Use a Medical Orthotic | ASICS GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoe
Backed by a long tradition of producing athletic footwear, ASICS stays true to its mission of providing the best footwear for an active lifestyle. Their walking shoe range confirms this commitment. Although marketed as trail running shoes, these ASICS shoes are a great option for walking the treadmill.
The GEL-Venture 5 shoe provides the ultimate support for walking on a treadmill. It features Rearfoot GEL Cushioning System, promoting increased cushioning and comfort, especially over long distances. The shoe hugs your feet, and the cushioning feels like walking on air. It also provides arch support to keep your feet in good shape while hitting the treadmill, even if you have a high arch.
One of the most significant advantages of the GEL-Venture 5 is its functional toe space. There’s enough wiggle room for your toes to ensure every step is comfortable. These shoes have a removable insole to accommodate a medical orthotic or necessary customizations.
GEL-Venture 5’s ease of wear further enhances the comfort. The shoes feature a loop in the back and lesser lacing options, making them easy to slip on and off.
Another great feature is that these shoes have an outsole made from high abrasion rubber, providing exceptional durability for long-term use.
We’re well aware that you’re not likely to be seen in your walking shoes if you only stick to the treadmill. However, it never hurts to look good. If you’d like your shoes to be functional and fashionable, this ASICS pair is the right choice. The shoes feature a striking design, and you can choose from an excellent variety of vibrant colors, both for men and women.
The only downside is that the GEL-Venture 5 offers little slip resistance. Although you may not come across wet ground when exercising on your treadmill, be careful around tile and laminate floors.
2. Best Overall Option for Walkers Who Need Plenty of Cushioning | Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38
The Nike Pegasus shoes have been around for almost four decades. During that time, the Pegasus became Nike’s best-selling running shoe. Its name is indicative of its features – the ease of movement, quickness, and a feeling like you’re flying. These features are what make Pegasus the perfect shoe for treadmill walking.
It features Nike’s react midsole offering more softness and bounce. However, the Pegasus 38 also includes a Zoom Air unit in the forefoot, perfect for pushing off on the treadmill.
What’s more, the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38 offers plenty of cushioned support to ensure the ultimate comfort. The tongue is stuffed with more foam, providing a soft feel.
They feature a wider fit at the toes while controlling the overall fit using the webbing around the midfoot. It makes for a perfectly tuned fit while keeping your foot secure.
Another cool feature about the Pegasus 38 is the breathable and plush mesh. It stretches with your foot, making each step nothing but comfortable.
As far as design goes, you can choose from an excellent range of colors, including some bold shades celebrating sports unity. The Pegasus 38 has a more inviting look without looking out of place as a general training shoe.
Unfortunately, all the extra steps taken to ensure that wearing Pegasus 38 feels like flying increased the overall weight of the shoes. This might significantly reduce your mileage on the treadmill.
3. The Safest Option for Beginners | Brooks Ghost 14
The Ghost has accumulated quite a loyal fan base over the years as it constantly delivers on smoothness, consistency, and stability. There’s never a risk in picking up a new model, as you can be sure it will perform similarly to its predecessor. This might be your go-to walking shoe if you’re just getting into exercising.
What makes the Ghost 14 such a safe option is its upper area. Made with Brooks’ signature 3D Fit Print technology, it hugs your foot and provides structure. This neutral shoe is not too soft or too firm, and it will suit whatever foot type you might have.
However, there is substantial midsole foam and generous padding in the tongue, collar, and heel. This balanced cushioning makes the Ghost 14 a great treadmill shoe and one of the most comfortable daily trainers. All in all, your feet will be supported and your strides consistent.
If you have trouble finding the perfect walking shoes due to wider or frequently swollen feet, the Ghost 14 might be your solution. It offers plenty of room in the toe box and an overall wider fit.
Brooks went all out with the design of these shoes. There are over 25 color combinations for men, including some brightly colored options. As for women, they might have an even harder time deciding because the Ghost 14 comes in over 40 color styles.
When it comes to breathability, the Ghost 14 features a thinner mesh than its predecessors, allowing for more airflow. Still, the shoe tends to get hot, so they may be more appropriate for better-ventilated workout spaces.
Another drawback to keep in mind is its durability. Many claim the Ghost 14’s outsole deteriorates quicker than its fellow daily trainers.
4. The Best Option for Going the Distance | Adidas Adizero Adios 4
Adidas has been one of the leading manufacturers of sporting equipment for years. They’ve produced footwear for every possible athletic use, and walking on a treadmill is no different. While Adidas Adizero Adios 4 has been hailed as one of the best-performing running shoes, it also features everything you’ll need from a walking shoe.
First of all, the Adizero Adios 4 boasts a locked-down fit that provides enhanced levels of stability while walking on a treadmill. The shoe was made primarily with speed in mind, so it’s incredibly lightweight. However, this doesn’t come at the cost of cushioning.
The Adizero Adios 4 features Adidas’ Boost technology which combines soft and responsive cushioning. The former makes you feel like walking on a tiny cloud. At the same time, the latter provides pushback to make exercising more efficient.
Next, this model offers support in all the right places. The upper area is made from textile, mesh, and synthetic materials, providing a perfect balance between breathability and support.
What’s also great about the Adidas Adizero Adios 4 is its versatility.
While they’ll serve you great on the treadmill, you can wear them if you decide to transition to outdoor walking. Its outer sole is quality rubber, enabling good traction on different surfaces. The Adizero Adios 4 is a well-rounded option for indoors and outdoors, making it an excellent universal walking shoe choice for men and women.
Unfortunately, the tight fit of the shoe means you might need to go up a size when purchasing Adidas Adizero Adios 4. Many people claim they’ve never had an issue with Adidas sizing before trying this model. Adizero Adios 4 might not be the best choice if you have wider feet.
Another thing to keep in mind is its durability. Even though Adidas Adizero Adios 4 was made with top running performance in mind, these shoes don’t seem to last that long. This is especially disappointing considering their high price.
5. The Familiar Favorite | New Balance 880v11
New Balance has been the go-to brand for many walkers for decades. The brand offers a full range of walking shoes, and the 880 line is a particular fan favorite. You probably wouldn’t be disappointed with any of the models. However, if you’re looking for the best option for treadmill walking, you might like their 880v11 model.
The upper area is incredibly soft yet bouncy, for starters, made possible by Fresh Foam X in the midsole. This combination makes 880v11 the perfect shoe for everyday use for men and women. You can customize the lock-down and further improve the fit. Additionally, 880v11 features a toe bumper that gives it structure and height and a slightly flared heel that alleviates pressure on your Achilles.
When discussing the fit, the double-engineered Jacquard mesh upper is another thing to keep in mind. Apart from being soft, it’s also breathable and provides just the right amount of structure around your foot. You can walk for a long time without feeling constricted by your shoes.
This New Balance model is pretty stable due to an outsole made with blown rubber delivering superb traction. You won’t have to avoid certain surfaces because of potential slippage risks. Another cool thing about this sturdy outsole is that it increases durability.
Unfortunately, unlike previous New Balance shoes, 880v11 seems to run smaller. Many long-time New Balance customers were disappointed to find out their regular size doesn’t fit them. Also, the shoe offers little arch support and severely lacks cushioning in the metatarsal area. These factors eliminate many walkers who deal with pain in this sensitive area.
Venture Out With the Best Shoes for Treadmill Walking
All of the mentioned models are great for walking on a treadmill. However, our top recommendation is the ASICS GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoe. They are the only option that includes a removable sole which opens many more possibilities for people with feet problems. It’s also incredibly comfortable without being heavy on the feet.
This model shares many similarities with the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38, but the crucial difference is their weight. A good running shoe should be lightweight.
Brooks Ghost 14 is more beginner-friendly than the GEL-Venture 5. However, its breathability greatly depends on your workspace’s ventilation.
Adidas Adizero Adios 4 and New Balance 880v11 are overall great contenders. However, their sizing runs small. The proper fit is crucial for performance and motivation, so the ASICS model comes out on top.