5 Best Shoes for Standing All Day – Reviews & Buying Guide
If your days involve standing for a long time, then your shoe is the most important prop. Sneakers are the highly rated shoes for standing all day. It is the snuggly fit, extra support and the cushioning that makes them helpful in maintaining a healthy pressure balance on long hours of standing.
‘Sitting is bad for your heart,’ doctors declared after rigorous research that unveiled just how sitting increases the risk of death even if you maintain a healthy lifestyle.
I am a 31-year-old nature photographer that spends most of my days on my feet. I also consider myself fit so this new gravely finding didn’t scare me. Then another one followed suit, ‘standing all day is as bad for your heart as sitting is.’ This one hit closer home, for I am always constantly on my feet.
As I came to find out, I was putting myself into significant risks when I spent my days snapping stunning photos of Mother Nature. I consulted with a podiatrist. He talked about oxidative stress, blood pooling in the legs, back pain, arthritis and high blood pressure as the side effects of long hours of standing. At the rate I was going, without proper shoes, I would fall victim to countless disorders.
I knew I had to address the problem. Life was finally falling into place, and I didn’t want any downtimes due to illnesses. I immediately began to research ways to make my long hours of standing comfortable and safe. I have shared some of the tips in this post.
Five Best Shoes for Standing All Day.
How to Choose the Best Shoes for Standing the All Day
It’s not easy to pick the best shoes for standing all the day at your local shoe store. Most brands would want you to make a hard choice between affordability, comfort, and safety. These factors should never be mutually exclusive. Before you end up putting your feet into a new pair of shoes, it would be helpful to familiarize yourself with the details of shoe anatomy.
Outsole needs to have a high grip
The outsole is the part that meets the road and is what many of us forget to examine when buying shoes. For your standing shoes, it would be best to find one that has thick rubber or foam on the outsole to improve traction and cushioning on all floors types.
Midsole should have extra cushioning
The midsole is the cushioning material found between the outsole and the upper. The midsole takes in most of your body pressure when standing. The thickness of the foam material should be ideal for preventing aching arches and inflamed heels. The midsole should be neither too firm nor too soft.
Upper should be smooth and snug
The upper refers to everything that is above the sole. The upper often entails sewn or glued fabrics. New shoe models are now increasingly using printing and knitting to improve flexibility and breathability of the shoes. The best shoe for standing should have an upper that is spacious enough for foot splay. It should be smooth and not too binding.
Ankle collar should be smooth and comfortable too
Ankle collar refers to the wrap near the opening of the shoe opening which holds the heel in a good place. Most shoes use some thick padding on this part. When buying shoes for long hours of standing or walking, therapists advise finding a model that does not irritate the Achilles tendon. The padding should have a smooth and comfortable interaction with your ankles.
Saddle should be proper fitting
The saddle is the shoe part around the instep that houses the arch of your foot between the ball as well as the ankle. The saddle works together with the laces to securely hold the shoe on the foot. Today, many shoemakers use a variety of overlays and the lacing systems to conform the saddle around the shape of your foot.
When out shopping, the saddle on your shoe of interest needs to be well fitting to hold your foot in the boot. It should allow for your arch to naturally dome when you walk. Have in mind that improper fitting saddles can cause corns. These are plugs of hard and dead skin on the ankle joints caused by prolonged pressure when you slide and rubs in your shoe.
The heels should be flat and wide
When shopping for shoes for standing, ensure that the heel is low and comfortable to minimize the risk of lumbar injuries. Over a prolonged period wearing shoes with improperly designed heels can lead to back problems. Heel counters are a bonus. This is the solidly layered cup inside the back foot to cradle and support your heel.
Heel cushioning is another bonus
Heel cushioning is the midsole material at the back of the shoe. It helps to minimize the pressure on the heels through a shock absorbent crash pad. When shopping, find a shoe that has the right balance of heel cushioning for stability and comfort.
With insufficient cushioning at the heels, your knees will be forced to bend to reduce the pressure down on your feet. The muscles on your thighs will also feel the strain. Ultimately these problems can lead to knee pain and arthritis.
Forefoot Cushioning is an added advantage
Forefoot cushioning is the midsole layering at the front of the shoe. It helps to absorb impact at the forefoot. This padding is responsible for protecting the structure of the foot. You might be interested in a shoe with high energy return on the forefoot if you move around a lot as I do.
Common mistakes when shopping for shoes
Shopping and in a hurry
Take your time to try on several pairs before you decide. Foot sizes change with time and what fit before might not fit again. Be sure about the comfort levels and the protection before sealing the deal.
Trying on shoes without socks
You will probably not be using the shoes without socks. Therefore to get a perfect fit ensure that you try them on with socks.
Shopping for aesthetics
For healthiness, aesthetics should take a back seat. Function comes first. Ask questions about the ergonomic design and the benefits of each feature before buying feet shoes for standing.
5 Best Shoes for Standing All Day
#1. Nike Epic React Flyknit V2
The main highlights of the Epic React include a smooth fitting upper which reduces the risks of corns and blisters and energy return foam that absorbs all the pressure from the feet and lower back. The cushioning foam, in this case, is called React, made from thermoplastic elastomer (TPE). Allegedly, it performs better than EVA foam.
The outsole is made of textured rubber to increase traction and grip. The rubber rebound will give you that extra bounce when walking, and the heels will withstand long hours of standing without bottoming out. The midsole features React Foam which works well to disperse body weight. The midsole feels soft and not too mushy. It helps to shield your feet from rough terrains.
It can be hard to work when your feet are aching due to soreness. Nike Epic React Flyknit V2 solves this with a sizeable forefoot that takes the strain out of the balls of your feet. There is also a plastic plate around the heel for extra support.
The upper is designed to fit comfortably, riding on the Fly Knit fabric. The top also features perforations that improve breathability. The Flyknit material is light and stretchy, and can stays comfortable for a full day of standing.
#2. Skechers GoRun MaxRoad 3 Ultra
This is both a sports and casual footwear that I found to be very flexible and comfortable. If your work or hobby entails being on your feet all day, you will appreciate the extra cushioning on this shoe model. The web outsole offers decent traction too.
The midsole is pillowed and springy, riding on the patented Ultra Flight Cushion. The forefoot has sufficient wiggle room for your toes to play around when standing. What’s more, there is some ventilation on the midsole for breathability all day long. The breathability helps in preventing a nasty case of athlete’s feet.
The full design of the whole shoe is helpful for extra stability on those long days of standing. The heel and the mid-foot are sizeable for maximum support. The included heel counter helps to back your body weight without exerting too much pressure on the calcaneus and Achilles tendon.
The upper is a snug fit. The mesh upper allows for sufficient toe room to prevent toe and nail injuries. The fabric is soft on the skin. With the Skechers GoRun Max Road 3 Ultra, you can expect reduced density around the forefoot.
#3. Brooks Addiction Walker
You can choose from either brown leather upper or black milled and all white leather versions. For my work that involves a considerable amount of trekking, I found this model to be particularly ideal. The Hydroflow cushioning technology works by using fluid-filled pouches in the midsole. The midsole is thick and responsive. This cushioning relieved my discomfort and leg pains from long hours of walking and standing.
The makers promise a shoe that relieves knee and back pain and corrects gait when walking. I found that to be true when standing too because of a few factors. First, it is the slip resistant outsole that generates a lot of traction on both wet and dry ground/floor. This outsole is made of rubber that can withstand long duration of use.
The forefoot has what they call an MC Pod design. This feature enables grounding of your feet all through its entire length, helping to maintain a straight and steady posture. The design helps to reduce the risk of lumbar injuries from long hours of standing.
As mentioned, the midsole is a layer thicker than most of the competition. The cushioning fluid, patented as BioMoGo DNA changes are viscosity depending on the pressure in the midsole. As you stand for longer, the liquid will firm up to protect your feet from hurting. The fluid is primarily responsive and biodegradable foam
The upper comprises of full grain leather and a few stitched overlays. The leather is soft, but still, the inside of the upper is lined with fluffy material. This plush-like material works to prevent irritation and itching around the ankle area.
#4. New Balance Men’s MW411v2 Walking Shoe
The upper blends leather and mesh. The mesh improves the breathability of the shoe while the leather bit is for durability. The mesh goes all around the boot for ventilation on both sides of the feet. The collar features considerable padding for extra support on the ankle. This is what makes it recommendable for those long days of standing.
The New Balance Men’s MW411v2 appears to be a bit bulkier. That stems from the wide sole and the pressure absorbing systems incorporated in the midsole. The outsole is pure rubber with pronounced contours for traction.
The midsole cushioning rides on the IMEVA technology that is light and flexible enough to protect your feet from hurting when you stand all day. The heel and forefoot area feature extra cushioning with Abzorb material. You will also get a secure fit using the lacing enclosure.
#5. Saucony Omni Walker
Saucony Omni Walker is ideal for increased stability on the arch. Even though it’s not usually ranked with high-end models, the Omni Walker has features that make it a standing-friendly shoe. The highlights include the motion control capabilities made specifically for those suffering from overpronation and collapsed arches.
Although overpronation mostly occurs while running and walking, you can also experience pronation when standing. In this case, the excessive pressure on the arch makes it to collapse inwards. All the body weight is put down on the ball of the feet. Saucony tries to solve this health dilemma with a high durometer rubber sole.
The asymmetry on the Omni Walker sole also works perfectly to keep the body weight off the balls of the feet. The shoe is designed to align with the foot’s natural shape. The Omni Walker has a wide forefoot and a heel height of 17mm.
The cushioning in the midsole is soft and adaptable. The stability and comfort are ideal for long standing. The inside of the Omni Walker is super soft, to counter any risks of bruising and blistering.
The bottom line
Prolonged standing is part and parcel of our lives. Nonetheless, you don’t have to put up with the pain and suffering. On a long period, you could be putting yourself at risk of heart conditions, leg pain and lower back pains. You can reduce these risks by finding the right fitting shoe to take off some of the pressure. Cushion, support and a flat wide heel are the critical factors you should consider when buying shoes for long hours of standing.