How to Choose a Shoe for Walking for Fitness

With Boulder being the touristy, outdoorsy town that it is, there are many places to walk. Whether it’ s for
fun while shopping at Pearl Street Mall, fitness walking along Boulder Creek Path or on one of our town’s
many beautiful open space trails; there are always scenic and fun places to walk and enjoy the view.

If you do, in fact, decide to visit one of these beautiful places you will need the proper footwear. That is
where we at Pedestrian Shops come in. We know what to help our customers look for in the perfect shoe.
We can guide you in the right direction. Before you shop for your next fitness walking shoe take a look at
these guidelines to help with your decision.

First, look for a shoe that is flexible. You will want something that moves naturally with your foot. This
is very important in a walking shoe. You will want something that flexes with your ” heel-toe” motion.
Natural foot strikes keep the bones in you feet aligned and strong.

Second, look for a flat heel. If you have a shoe with a heel that is raised in any way, it could change the
alignment of the bones in your feet. Your feet support your whole body and if they are out of alignment the
rest of your body will be as well.

Since walkers strike the ground heel first you will want to stay away from a flared heel. Having a flared
heel could potentially misalign your entire body. An even better ” way to go” is to look for a slightly
undercut heel.

Shock absorbency is another important thing to look for in a walking shoe. Having a shoe with good shock
absorbing materials will help to protect the bones and joints in the foot and knees.

All-over support is very important when looking for a great walking shoe, and specifically looking for great
arch support should be high on the list of things to look for. Good arch support could help prevent muscle
and bone damage in the foot.

Now, getting into specifics, there are 2 main types of feet. There are pronating feet and supinating feet.
Pronators are people who excessively roll their feet inward when the foot should be pushing off. For this
we recommend finding a shoe with a motion control device in the midsole and a reinforced heel. Supinators
are people who do just the opposite and their feet excessively roll outward after landing. For all the
supinators out there we recommend looking for a shoe with a lot of stability and a sturdy outer sole.

Along with the many, many waking shoes we carry at Pedestrian shops, these are a few of our favorite shoes for walking for fitness.

First, for the ladies, we really like the New Balance WW926WT. It has the flat heel we mentioned along
with great stability, arch support, and wonderful all-over support for the foot. The same reasons as listed for
the WW926WT we love the men’ s version, which is the New Balance MW926BK.

Another excellent option for a great walking shoe for both men and women is the Saucony Progrid Ride 3.
This shoe is made for running but great for fitness walking. It has significant shock absorption, ventilated
mesh to keep your feet cool and comfy and it has that flat non-flared heel we mentioned as well.

We also love the Women’ s New Balance 850 True Balance here at Pedestrian Shops. Yes, it is one of those
trendy toning shoes, but this one is great. One look at it and you will see why we love it. These shoes will
have your legs and ” bottoms” toned ladies! The best part is, they have maximum shock absorbency for a
toning shoe!

So if you live in, or are just visiting Boulder, Colorado and would like to try out some new walking shoes,
come in and visit us at Pedestrian Shops, we’ ll get you started on finding the perfect walking shoe for you!


Boulder, Colorado is well known for having great spots to climb, and there are many! One of the
advantages of being a climber in Boulder is there are many indoor and outdoor places to climb. There
is Boulder Rock Club & Colorado Mountain School, as well as Colorado Athletic Training School,
Movement Climbing & Fitness, and The Spot just to name a few indoor places. As far as outdoor climbing
spots, there are places like Bastille Crack on the north face of the Bastille in Eldorado Springs, The Three
Tiers of Avalon about 8.2 miles up Boulder Canyon, and The Flatirons with 3 climbs and over 1,000
feet of slab on each climb! Here in Boulder anyone from the novice to advanced climber can always find
something to do!

Before climbing, you have to make sure you have the right equipment, and part of that equipment is having
the proper shoes. There are a lot of factors to consider when buying the right climbing shoe for you. Just
like we mentioned in the blog for hiking, personal preference is a huge factor in finding the correct shoe.
We do have some general guidelines to get you started.

If you are buying your first pair of climbing shoes, the most important thing is to ask questions. So, you will want to talk to someone knowledgeable, like the staff at the Pedestrian Shops, who can answer any questions or concerns you may have.

A stiff sole for optimal foot support is extremely important. You will need that support as you become a
more advanced climber. The tougher the terrain, the more support you will need.

Look for a shoe that has a high cut upper. It can be extremely important to have ankle support when in
sticky situations. You will especially need the ankle support if you are just starting out.

You will also want a shoe that has a snug, but comfortable fit. The rule of thumb is, if it feels like the
shoe was specifically made for your foot, then it’s probably the one you want to get. You don’t want any
blisters, or to lose a shoe while climbing. If you’re climbing indoors it’s probably not a big deal, but when
out in the mountains that shoe would be lost forever.

The final big thing you will want to look for is that the shoe you get doesn’t stretch width wise. If it does
this, there is a good chance you could experience either blisters or losing your shoe forever. As I mentioned
above, I am sure that is something you would want to prevent.

Pedestrian Shops #1 recommended shoe for climbing is the Vibram Trek Sport. We carry this particular
shoe in both men’s and women’s sizes. The Trek Sport was designed for outdoor sports. One look at
it and you can plainly see why we recommend this one for climbing! It is lightly cleated for a good
grip, it’s breathable, lightweight, and is specifically designed to promote a more natural foot strike.
It as close to climbing barefoot as you can get without taking your shoes off! How cool is that?!

So, come to Pedestrian Shops and let our friendly, knowledgeable staff help you find the right shoe for
whatever sport, or occasion you may need them for.

Part 3, walking”¦

Hiking Shoe Recommendations

Pedestrian Shops is located in the heart of one of the most outdoor activity driven cities in the United
States. Since we love the outdoors and sell footwear that is appropriate for just about any activity Boulder,
Colorado has to offer, we thought a 5 part blog series on the 5 “biggies” would be informative and helpful.

First up, Hiking”¦

Here in Boulder, there are many options to choose from when looking for a nice trail to hike. From
Chatauqua park beneath the Flatirons, with it’s varied terrain (meadows, hills and forest land) to Bald
Mountain overlooking the eastern plains and the continental divide; anyone can find the perfect trail for

Now, when choosing the best shoe for hiking, in the end it’s entirely up to your personal taste. However,
there are factors you should consider before committing to “just any” shoe.

The first choice you have to make is “Shoes or boots?” There are advantages and disadvantages to both.
Below is a list of pros and cons of each”¦a basic “check list” if you will.

Advantages of shoes over boots:

-Shoes are lighter in weight which comes in handy if you are making a shorter hike.

-Wearing a boot can make you tired quicker. It can be more strain and stiffness on your ankle
which can tire you out much quicker.

- Shoes are always better ventilated. Keeping feet cool in warmer weather is always a plus!

-They are much more flexible. If you have to do a little climbing your shoes will bend a little
more like your feet.

-If you get shoes wet, they will dry quicker. It’s really just that simple. You don’t want your
feet soaked throughout your hike.

-In the end a shoe will be more comfortable because of all these factors.

Advantages of boots over shoes:

-When hiking through water, boots will keep your feet drier. The higher the ankle on your boots,
the higher the water level you can walk through without your feet getting wet.

-A thicker sole will get better traction through mud.

-The higher ankle will also protect better from brush and ground debris.

-Boots tend to keep rocks, and dirt out better. Who wants a pebble in their shoe?

-A more substantial sole can keep sensitive feet from bruising.

-When it comes down to it, boots can last longer than shoes.

So you may be asking yourself, “What shoes or boots would you recommend?” I was just about to get to
that. Here at Pedestrian Shops we have many hiking shoes to choose from and it could be overwhelming,
which is why we have a few of our favorites below.

For the ladies we recommend Keen’s Voyager, Keen’s Redrock, and Merrell’s Kinetic. Listed below are
the things we like about this footwear for hiking.

Keen’s Voyager


Keen’s Redrock


Merrell’s Kinetic


For the gentlemen we recommend Merrell’s Moab Ventilator, and Ecco’s Track II-High GTX. Advantages
of the men’s footwear are listed below.

Merrell’s Moab Ventilator

-Supportive Sole
-Flexiblity of a shoe
-Supportive ankle height of a boot

Ecco’s Track II-High GTX

-Substantial Sole
-Flexible for a boot
-High quality, durable leather

We also have a recommendation for both men and women. Patagonia’s Release for men and for women.
Why do we like these? There is another list below to answer just that question.

Patagonia’s Release (Men’s, Women’s)

-Quick Drying
-Water resistant
-Forefoot shock stability.

If you ask yourself what you are looking for in a hiking shoe and take in to consideration everything we
have listed for you; we are sure you can find the perfect shoe (or boot) for your hiking trips across Boulder.

Stay tuned for part 2, “Climbing””¦