With the nice summer days and autumn just around the corner, you might want to take advantage and go out for a nice walk or hike.
It’s time to lace up your walking boots and get walking, but how do you check you have the best walking boots for your feet? Here are some helpful tips you can use to ensure your walking boots are the perfect fit.
Walking Helps to Protect Your Health
Walking has numerous health benefits, both physical and mental. Regular exercise can improve your circulation, help you to manage your weight, reduce stress, and promote peaceful sleep.
Walking can be a great way to enjoy the outdoors, especially when you are surrounded by nature. Even in a busy city, you can find parks and other green spaces where you can take a stroll.
If you want to stay on top of your walking goals, the Active 10 app is a great option. The NHS recommends it – it’s like having a personal trainer in your pocket!
What Makes a Great Pair of Walking Boots?
When you’re gearing up for a hike, make sure your walking boots are up to the task. If they’re not, it’s time to invest in a new pair. While getting your feet professionally measured at a shoe shop is ideal, it’s not the only option; you can measure your feet at home by tracing your foot on a piece of paper and then measure the length using a ruler or measuring tape. You can then measure the width using a tape measure. We recommend always measuring your feet before buying your shoes from a reputable brand. Clarks is a great place to start: it offers men’s and women’s walking boots in standard sizes, half-sizes, and different width fittings.
Walking is an excellent way to stay active and improve your overall health, but it’s important to take care of your feet while doing so. Blisters and other foot complaints can easily occur if you don’t wear the proper footwear. Look for walking boots with the following features to help prevent these issues:
Designed for Your Chosen Terrain
When it comes to even footing, synthetic fabrics make for the lightest and most flexible boots possible. You can easily bend these types of boots, making them ideal for those who need a little extra give in their stride.
If you’re planning on tackling some tougher terrain, you’ll need a good pair of boots. Go for something made from leather – it’ll be more durable and supportive. Look for a high cuff to keep your ankles stable, and a sole with deep ridges for better grip. A rubber band around the edge is also a nice feature, as it acts as a buffer against bumps.
Suitable for the Particular Shape of Your Feet
Your boots should fit snugly, not be too tight or too loose. Small variations in the design of the toe box and heel counter can make a big difference in the fit. You should try on a range of styles to find the right one for you.
To ensure the insoles fit well, remove them and compare their shape to your feet. Make sure there is enough room for your toes and that they are wide enough to accommodate expansion when you stand up.
It’s important to try on boots with the socks you plan to wear while walking, as they can affect the fit. Moisture-wicking socks that keep your feet cosy and dry are ideal for walks.
Allow Your Skin to Breathe
Wearing moisture-wicking socks will not be effective if your boots trap sweat. To avoid this, choose breathable footwear. Leather is a good choice because it is naturally breathable. Some synthetic boots also have ventilation panels to help with the airflow.
If you’re looking for a way to keep your feet dry in wet weather, consider investing in a pair of gaiters. Gaiters are designed to go over the top of your boots and provide extra protection from the elements.
Provide Cushioning And Support
Boots are an essential part of any hiker’s gear, and comfort is paramount. A good pair of boots should support your ankles and cushion your feet, absorbing shock and making walking pleasurable. If you’re not satisfied with the level of comfort your current boots provide, consider replacing the insoles with a better-cushioned pair.
Walking boots are only as good as their laces and eyelets. Make sure the tongue of your boot is sitting straight and without creases before lacing up your shoes; otherwise, you will create pressure points that will be quite uncomfortable.
So with all of this in mind, make sure you’ve got the right fit and have a great time out there!