If you’re one of the millions of people who have plantar fasciitis, staying active and pain-free throughout the day is incredibly challenging, especially if you’re day to day is physically demanding.
Whether you’re on your feet for work and need quality work boots or have struggled to find work boots that give you the support and comfort you need, this article has you covered.
In this guide, we’ll look at why choosing the right work boots is so important, as well as what you should look for when purchasing your new pair of work boots. We’ll also explore some of the best options on the market today to help you make your choice.
What you should look for when buying work boots for plantar fasciitis
While there has been an increase in work boots designed specifically for those with plantar fasciitis over the years, the reality is, it can still be difficult to find the right work boots for your needs. Unfortunately, this is especially true for women, whose options are limited in style and comfort compared to those created for men.
While work boots (or any shoes for that matter) in of themselves should not be considered complete treatment options for plantar fasciitis, work boots offering arch support, comfort, and durability can play a large part in your overall plan of attack. Given, we’re on our feet most of the day, choosing the right work books is a decision you shouldn’t take lightly.
Here are a few important things to consider before buying a new pair of work boots.
1. Arch support
Ideally, any shoe you invest in should have extra arch support if you have plantar fasciitis. But for work boots, in particular, you’ll want to make arch support a high priority, given you’ll be using them heavily throughout the workday.
“Shoes with anatomical arch support located at the correct position under the arch helps relieve pain by supporting the foot, reducing overpronation, and thus reducing the tension on the fascia,” says Orthofeet
Without enough arch support, you’re at risk of your feet absorbing too much impact, which can lead to increased discomfort resulting from your plantar fasciitis.
When doing your research, look for work boots that specifically state they offer arch support, as this will provide extra relief and comfort to reduce the strain of the muscles in your feet.
2. Orthotic friendly
In addition to looking for work boots with extra arch support, you’ll want to consider boots that are orthotic friendly. Orthotics have proven to be an effective way to provide additional relief for plantar fasciitis.
What does it mean for shoes to be orthotic friendly?
Orthotic friendly work boots will ideally have a firm midsole, wide foot support, and easily removed footbeds.
Firm midsoles will provide the needed support for your feet; a wider work boot will allow for orthotics to fit snugly inside your shoe. Of course, being able to remove the footbed of your work boot easily will make it more convenient to insert your orthotic, whether that be a custom insole or a generic orthotic.
The good news is, according to one study, “prefabricated orthotics are less costly and provide similar relief to more expensive custom orthotics,” so don’t be afraid to experiment first with a general orthotic to start.
When choosing the size of your work boots, be sure to give yourself a little extra space, perhaps ½ a size larger, to work with to ensure the orthotic fits well with your choice. Many online retailers have lenient return policies, so you don’t have to settle for anything less than the perfect fit.
3. Quality construction
While quality is ultimately subjective, you’ll definitely want to err on the side of quality materials and construction when choosing your work boot. Although the more affordable option may be tempting, poor construction and quality can exacerbate your plantar fasciitis.
For example, in one study, a running shoe manufacturing defect was found that possibly contributed to the development of plantar fasciitis. Consider choosing well-known brands with a large number of quality reviews.
Additionally, work boots with a steel toe tend to be considered high quality, given the increased need for safety on the job. While your needs may vary, you’ll also want to consider work boots that are slip-resistant to reduce accidents while on your feet. If within your budget, double-stitched boots are known to be high quality as well.
Although a higher price doesn’t always mean better quality, choosing the highest quality, durable work boot you can is a safe bet. In the long run, a poorly constructed boot can cause long-term harm and you’ll quickly find yourself needing another pair if they don’t hold up under heavy use.
The best work boots for plantar fasciitis
One of the most difficult parts of choosing the right work boots is their sheer amount of options. A quick Google search will reveal hundreds of results to consider.
We did the hard work for you, and reviewed some of the highest rated options as well as the most respected brands. In this section, we’ll share some of the best work boots for those with plantar fasciitis and give you a great starting point for your search.
They have good arch support, good insoles, and plenty of width. Super comfortable.”– Review
- Meet Ansi safety standards
- Slip, oil, and abrasion resistant.
- Designed to reduce foot fatigue and extra arch support.
- Timberland is one of the most iconic work boot brands in the world.
- According to some reviews online, they can take a few days to “break in.”
- Not as lightweight as other work boots
Starting at $99
Cat Footwear Diagnostic Steel-Toe Waterproof Boot
“I highly recommend these boots to anyone that suffers from plantar fasciitis.”– Review
- Removable EVA foam insert with gel technology.
- Very easy to break in.
- Lightweight, yet sturdy.
- Not as water resistant as other work boot options.
- May have to choose a slightly smaller size than you normally would.
Starting at $149
KEEN Utility Steel Toe Waterproof Work Boot
“These Keen Pittsburgh boots combined with the Spenco total arch supports are the most comfortable wearing boots I have ever owned. I have plantar fasciitis in my feet. After spending lots of money from store bought insoles… nothing has worked until now.”– Review
- Incredibly comfortable.
- True to size fit.
- Quality all weather work boot.
- Not as long lasting as other work boot options.
- According to some reviews, they can be stiff to wear at first.
Starting at $151
Granite Black Work Boots
“So I’m dealing with lots of water and sand, and other nasty things. I was having many foot/leg problems- (plantar fasciitis, bunions, gout, IT Band, Sciatica pain) walking 10-15,000 steps everyday on concrete in steel toe boots. Most problems were caused by my steel toe boot. This shoe has eliminated many of those problems. In fact, my limp has gone away as well. The waterproofing of the shoe is also excellent for my job. So happy I found these shoes on the net.”– Review
- Premium orthotic insoles with anatomical arch support
- Slip resistant
- Cushioning ergonomic EVA midsole.
- According to some reviews, they are a bit big, so consider starting with a smaller size.
- Limited style options.
Starting at $132
Work boot brands to consider
While finding the right work boot or you might take some trial and error, here are a few popular brands that show up often when searching for work boots for those with plantar fasciitis.
- OrthoFeet: A popular brand that offers orthotics and work boots designed specifically for those with foot issues, including plantar fasciitis.
- Alegria Shoes: A shoe brand designed specifically for active and working women, Alegria Shoes has a wide variety of options for all your footwear needs.
- ECCO: A premium shoe brand for both men and women, ECCO invests heavily in the quality and craftsmanship of their shoes and offers great options for those needing extra foot support.
- Lucky Feet Shoes: A one stop shop for finding the perfect footwear, Lucky Feet Shoes carries some of the most reputable footwear brands designed with comfort and support in mind.
Finding the right work boots for your needs can be one of the best things you can do for helping deal with your plantar fasciitis. While it may take time to find the perfect fit, it’s well worth the effort.
But your plantar fasciitis journey doesn’t stop with choosing the right footwear. Massage, scraping, and using the right tools for plantar fasciitis relief also plays a large role in your recovery efforts.
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