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Difference Between Running And Walking Shoes

Running and walking are two sports that you can pick at any point in your life. However, It may not be as simple as just getting up from your bed and starting running or walking. Being different sports, they both require different types of shoes. You can’t just go around walking or running in your flip-flops. The difference between running and walking shoes is significant.

While they all look the same there are actually a lot of differences between running and walking shoes. Many individuals make the mistake of having a shoe that does it all; however, there is no such shoe in existence in all reality. 

The same is the case with running. Although both have overlapping similarities, they aren’t actually the same thing. Also, you can’t wear the same shoes for both sports. The significant difference between running and walking shoes lies in their designs. 

Where walking shoes are strictly designed with comfort in mind, Runners usually deviate from that path in favor of performance.

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1. New Balance Men’s 481 V3 Trail Running Shoe:

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Comfort:

As with all NBs, comfort is out of the box. The Shoe provides excellent comfort to its wearer. Much like other shoes where you have to break in to feel the softness, the NBs Men 481s show their comfiness as soon as your feet touch the Shoe. The heel padding provides added comfort to each landing stride.

Lightweight:

Weight is the major difference between running and walking shoes. The NBs Men 481s are very lightweight. This makes them an excellent choice for customers looking for something light for jogging or to use in the gym. The NBs Men 481s, though they are running shoes, can also be used as your everyday walking pair due to their excellent combo of comfort and lightweight.

Sturdy:

The NBs Men’s 481 V3s are very sturdy and make a good everyday wear investment. A lot of Leather has been used to make the Shoe, and that paired with the excellent stitching makes the 481s extremely durable. You can’t be sure whether the path coming up next is going to be flat or rocky but what you can be sure of is that your Shoe will hold up.

Outsole:

Need a grippier outsole? No worries! As NB likes to call it, the 481 V3 trail running shoes feature 

an all-terrain outsole. The excellent tread on the outsole ensures you have maximum grip whether you are hiking, running, or at your local gym.

Breathable:

The NBs Men 481 V3s are highly breathable to prevent your feet from soaking in sweat on hot days. Even though the shoes are water-resistant, they provide excellent breathability to your feet to ensure you don’t acquire foot infections like athlete’s foot.

Pros:

  • They are very sturdy
  • They have excellent breathability
  • Great tread on the outsole

Cons:

  • Laces form a tiny knot.

2.WHITIN Men’s Minimalist Trail Running Shoe:

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Next up on our list is the WHITIN Men’s Trail Running Shoes. These are zero-drop minimalist shoes inspired by bare feet. You may find them different from a lot of running and walking shoes. Here’s what we think of it:

Barefoot comfort:

Being barefoot shoes, there is a chance you may be skeptical about the Shoe’s comfort levels. Your worries end here as we are happy to confirm that the WHITIN Men’s Trail Running shoes provide great comfort to their wearer. The Shoe Features decent padding to ensure your feet stay comfy during your runs. 

Another feature contributing to comfort levels is the rubber insole which provides high levels of comfort and does an excellent job of providing feedback from the ground. In case you were wondering, the shoes also offer a ton of wiggling room for your toe.

Ground Feedback:

One of the key differences between running and walking shoes is responsiveness. Since the WHITIN Men’s Trail running shoes are inspired by bare feet, prepare to feel the ground a lot more as the WHITIN Men’s Trail Running Shoes provide excellent sensory feedback from the ground. You can practically feel the earth with these on your feet. 

The shoes disappear on your feet and make you feel like your feet gained some extra strength.

The outsole:

The WHITIN Men’s Trail Running shoes feature an amazing outsole, which provides excellent grip on all surfaces thanks to the tread on the outsole. The excellent tread ensures your feet stay glued to the track, whether it be a rocky or a wet surface.

As suggested by many customer reviews, the tread on these shoes can last you a long time. Some happy customers have even reported having the tread in perfect shape after putting north of 200miles on the Shoe.

Your New Everyday Pair:

The WHITIN Men’s Trail Running Shoe, with its zero-drop, minimalist design, and excellent comfort, has the potential to become your new everyday wear. We would actually recommend it as what’s stopping it from not becoming your favorite pair. 

The WHITIN Men’s Trail Running shoes have it all. For those looking over to buy a new pair of running and walking shoes, The WHITIN Men’s Trail Running Shoes can be a great option to consider as it offers an excellent middle ground. The difference between running and walking shoes practically disappears with them.

Pros: 

  • They are very comfortable.
  • It can be used as an everyday pair on top of running.
  • The feedback from the ground is insane.

Cons:

  • The Velcro Strap looks like a design flaw.

3. ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 27 Running Shoes:

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The next entry on our list is from ASICS with their Gel-Kayano 27 Running Shoes.

Light and comfortable:

The Gel-Kayano 27s are very comfy and surprisingly lightweight for the support they offer. It is all attributed to the new iteration of the DuoMax Support System. The DuoMax serves to lower the Shoe’s overall weight and aids in the stability department. 

Lighter weight, better cushion, and more natural fit make these shoes leaps and bounds better.

“GEL” Kayano:

One difference between running and walking shoes is the technology used in them for comfort and performance. Of course, there is no way we were going to mention Gel-Kayanos without talking about the Gel. 

With the Gel-Kayano 27s, ASICS integrates their Gel on Both the front and rear of the Shoe. This makes the Gel-Kayano 27s absorb all kinds of shocks that may have resulted from landing strides or rough terrains to ensure a comfy ride.

Feet can breathe:

The Shoe is also very breathable, which is credited to the excellent job that ASICS has performed with their best-in-class engineered mesh upper. This ensures your feet stay cool wherever you choose to wear them.

Bounce more with FlyteFoam:

The bounce is one of the differences between running and walking shoes. The Gel-Kayano 27s features ASICS FlyteFoam, a staple for the manufacturer. Taking advantage of the FlyteFoam Propel technology, the Shoe provides superior bounces and a squishier ride. Responsiveness is further enhanced with the FlyteFoam Midsole Technology, which provides a soft landing each time you land on your feet. 

The bounce is more regular and seamless as compared to standard foam. Also, the Shoe retains its squishiness over time, so if that’s your favorite part, don’t worry; it’s here to stay.

Pros:

  • They are reasonably light.
  • They are squishy and responsive.
  • Provides excellent ventilation to your feet

Cons:

  • The toe box may be stiff for a few days.

For those of you after walking shoes, don’t worry, we got something for everyone.

4. Saucony Men’s Cohesion 13 Walking Shoe:

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The first entry for walking shoes is from Saucony with the Saucony Men’s Cohesion 13 Walking Shoe.

Extreme Comfort:

For the individuals who dig comfort in their shoes, you can’t go wrong with The Saucony Men’s Walking Shoes. The Shoe features Saucony’s Versafoam technology, which is basically a cushioning system to ensure maximum comfort during your walks. The cushion gets rid of all of your landing shocks to promote a comfortable ride.

On top of the cushioning, heavy-padded collars and soft tongues ensure a secure fit and added comfort under the ankle. The Shoe also provides ample wiggling space for your toe.

Have your feet problems solved:

The Saucony Men’s Cohesion 13s are an amazing buy for those suffering from foot problems.

Have knee pain? Suffering from Arthritis or osteoarthritis? 

Don’t worry; the Cohesion 13s got you. The cushioning in the Shoe will make sure your foot stays nice and comfy and without the horrors of pain. Still not sold? The Shoe is regularly recommended to foot patients by doctors around the world.

Breathable and lightweight:

If you are someone whose feet heat up quickly, your search for a cool and comfy shoe ends here. The Saucony Men’s Cohesion 13s features a stylish synthetic mesh upper, allowing a safe and snug fit with plenty of airflow.

The Shoe is pretty flexible and lightweight. Since they don’t weigh a lot underfoot, this makes them your go-to walking pair. So if you are on the look for a basic, comfortable and lightweight option to kick around with; This may do the trick for you.

Pros:

  • The shoes are Lightweight
  • They are very shock absorbent
  • The pair is very breathable and sturdy

Cons:

  • They are not waterproof.

5. konhill Men’s Athletic Walking Shoes:

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The second entry on our list is a lightweight and casual slip-on from Konhill.

Slip-On Design:

Another difference between running and walking shoes is the slip-on design. The konhills have a slip-on design enabling you to quickly get into action. For those of you who are skeptical about the Shoe’s fit, we are happy to confirm that although these are slip-on, they fit as well as any other shoe you’ve got. 

The shoes feature an elastic topline that gently wraps around your feet to secure a fit, so you don’t accidentally walk out of them.

Breathable and flexible:

The Konhills Men’s Athletic Walking shoes particularly excel in the ventilation department. A breathable mesh upper and a sock-like vamp makes sure you get plenty of air flowing between your toes.

Want something that can bear a twist? No worries there too! The konhills are as flexible as rubber. Both the upper and the outsole are soft and can handle all sorts of bends and twists and make you move around much more freely.

Grippy and comfortable:

The Konhills are very comfortable and grip the road. The tread on the outsole promotes friction between the Shoe and the earth, so you can be confident walking on wet and irregular surfaces. 

Konhills Men’s Athletic Walking Shoe also features the soft MD sole, which provides lasting comfort to your feet throughout the day.

Pros: 

  • They are easy to wear thanks to the slip-on design
  • The Shoe is very breathable
  • Minimal Design

Cons:

  • They are not waterproof.

Comparison Chart – Difference Between Running And Walking Shoes

Product Name Manufacturer Sole type Build Weight Special Features

1. Men’s 481 V3

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New Balance Rubber sole 50% rubber 50%textile 0.843 pounds Cush+ midsole

2. Minimalist Men’s Trail running

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WHITIN Rubber sole Fabric 1.17 pounds Inspired by barefoot

3. Gel-Kayano 27

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ASICS Foam sole Synthetic and mesh 2 pounds Gel and FlyteFoamtechnology

4. Cohesion 13

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Saucony Synthetic sole Synthetic and mesh 0.75 pounds Grid and VersaFoam technology

5. Athletic walking shoe

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Konhill Rubber sole Textile 0.650 pounds Slip-on and antiskid

Buying Guide – Difference Between Running And Walking Shoes

Whether you are a running enthusiast looking to buy a new pair of running shoes or need something casual to wear for your walks, We are here to help you decide what your next pair is going to be. We have spent countless hours scouring the web, searching and compiling the features of the best-selling walking and running shoes to prepare our buying guide. We are sure you’ll eventually find the pair that works for you by knowing what qualities to look out for.

Know What You Need:

There are a ton of differences between running and walking shoes. The first step is to identify what you want with your new pair. If you are in need of something comfortable to wear at home or at your workplace, then buy a pair of walking shoes. If you are athletic and need something for regular runs and jogs, then cash in on a good pair of running shoes. 

This is important as not all shoes are meant to be used for running-they are just not designed that way. If you want something in the middle, you are better off with a running shoe as it nails most of the fundamentals that make a shoe a good walking pair.

Comfort or performance:

One of the most significant differences between running and walking shoes is cushioning. The two have different cushioning strategies, where one favors comfort, and the other usually trade it off for performance. A good running pair has a ton of cushioning in the heel and forefoot to maximize the absorption of shocks resulting from landing strides. 

This cushioning is much needed as runners exert a large force on the ground while running; having no protective measures could result in an injury.

On the other hand, Walking shoes are specialized for simple motion. They tend to be more lightweight and cater to comfort and stability. A lot of cushioning in running shoes may sound comfortable, but remember that rubber and foam contribute to weight and what ends up being a comparatively heavier shoe.

Hence there is not a ton of cushioning in the heels and forefront, which is fine considering you don’t run with them and is enough to keep your feet nice and comfy throughout the day.

The difference between running and walking shoes weight is a significant factor and should definitely affect your choice. If you are a fitness walker planning to put more than 5 miles a day on your new pair, consider buying a good walking shoe that has adequate cushioning and is very lightweight. This will ensure your feet don’t feel beat up at the end of your long walks.

Toe box:

What’s not the difference between running and walking shoes is a big toe box. Always go for a shoe that provides adequate space for your toe to wiggle.

Difference between running and walking shoe flexibility:

Another major difference between walking and running shoes is the difference in flexibility. Just so you know, both need to be flexible, to begin with. Since both sports bend your feet to some extent, a non-flexing shoe is totally unacceptable.

For those looking to buy a pair of runners, prioritize the flexibility at the midfoot and the arch. The flexibility in these spots enables a runner to dash with a natural running gait.

Walking shoes should also allow some flexing, particularly at the forefoot. Good flexibility at the base of your toes will only contribute to a more comfortable walking experience.

Breathability:

Breathability is another factor to take into consideration. Cash in on the pair that provides more breathability, whether it be for walking or running; especially for runners, your feet can heat up very quickly during runs, so buy a pair that provides cool air between your toes to keep cool and prevent foot infections such as athlete’s foot.

Should You Choose a Running Shoe Or a Walking Shoe?

Why A Walking Shoe?:

Walking is the simplest form of exercise you can do right now. It provides countless benefits to your health, including better cardiovascular health and improved sleep, to name a few. Buying a walking pair is highly recommended if you are a fitness walker or planning to jump on the sport. 

It comes integrated with all the bells and whistles specialized for the sport. This will maximize the benefits of exercise walking.

Although there are a lot of overlapping qualities between running and walking shoes, It isn’t really advised to use your running shoes for walking. There are a few reasons why you should buy a walking pair as opposed to using your running shoes.

  • Sole: Walking Shoes tend to have a thicker sole that supports the feet more during walking.
  • Flexing: Another difference between running and walking shoes is flexibility. Although running shoes are more flexible, they don’t flex in the right places required for walking. Walking shoes are flexible under the toes to promote a more natural toe-off movement.
  • Catered towards Comfort: Walking shoes are catered more towards comfort and provide more structure and support to their wearer.
  • Waterproof: Another key difference between running and walking shoes is waterproofing, as it is more common to walk on wet surfaces as compared to running on them.

Why Buy A Running Shoe?

Running is a great exercise and exercises many muscles and helps strengthen your core elements. However, to obtain all the benefits that running has to offer, you need the right gear. In fact, Running without the proper equipment would most likely feel wrong. It is advised to buy a good pair of runners to fully embrace the sport.

Although it isn’t recommended for fitness walkers, casual walkers can use running shoes for walking. The reverse may not be true as there are many differences between running and walking shoes. During running, an individual exerts three times their body weight on the ground. 

Without the specialized gear, you may find the experience uncomfortable or, to make matters worse, downright painful. In addition to comfort, walking shoes also don’t have the right amount of flexibility in the midsole and heels to encourage a natural running gait.

Some of the differences between running and walking shoes are:

  • Lightweight: Running Shoes are lightweight to promote quick movements involved in running.
  • Breathable: Another difference between walking and running shoes is the breathability they offer. Running shoes provide a lot of ventilation, so your feet keep cool during the exercise.
  • Traction: Grip is a major factor in ensuring safety during your runs and is a major difference between running and walking shoes. The tread on running shoes offers maximum friction between the runner and the terrain to maximize traction.

Now you know what’s the difference between running and walking shoes. Need a pair? No worries, whether you are a runner or a fitness walker, we got something for both of you.

Should You Choose a Running Shoe Or a Walking Shoe?

Why A Walking Shoe?:

Walking is the simplest form of exercise you can do right now. It provides countless benefits to your health, including better cardiovascular health and improved sleep, to name a few. Buying a walking pair is highly recommended if you are a fitness walker or planning to jump on the sport. 

It comes integrated with all the bells and whistles specialized for the sport. This will maximize the benefits of exercise walking.

Although there are a lot of overlapping qualities between running and walking shoes, It isn’t really advised to use your running shoes for walking. There are a few reasons why you should buy a walking pair as opposed to using your running shoes.

  • Sole: Walking Shoes tend to have a thicker sole that supports the feet more during walking.
  • Flexing: Another difference between running and walking shoes is flexibility. Although running shoes are more flexible, they don’t flex in the right places required for walking. Walking shoes are flexible under the toes to promote a more natural toe-off movement.
  • Catered towards Comfort: Walking shoes are catered more towards comfort and provide more structure and support to their wearer.
  • Waterproof: Another key difference between running and walking shoes is waterproofing, as it is more common to walk on wet surfaces as compared to running on them.

Why Buy A Running Shoe?

Running is a great exercise and exercises many muscles and helps strengthen your core elements. However, to obtain all the benefits that running has to offer, you need the right gear. In fact, Running without the proper equipment would most likely feel wrong. It is advised to buy a good pair of runners to fully embrace the sport.

Although it isn’t recommended for fitness walkers, casual walkers can use running shoes for walking. The reverse may not be true as there are many differences between running and walking shoes. During running, an individual exerts three times their body weight on the ground. 

Without the specialized gear, you may find the experience uncomfortable or, to make matters worse, downright painful. In addition to comfort, walking shoes also don’t have the right amount of flexibility in the midsole and heels to encourage a natural running gait.

Some of the differences between running and walking shoes are:

  • Lightweight: Running Shoes are lightweight to promote quick movements involved in running.
  • Breathable: Another difference between walking and running shoes is the breathability they offer. Running shoes provide a lot of ventilation, so your feet keep cool during the exercise.
  • Traction: Grip is a major factor in ensuring safety during your runs and is a major difference between running and walking shoes. The tread on running shoes offers maximum friction between the runner and the terrain to maximize traction.

Now you know what’s the difference between running and walking shoes. Need a pair? No worries, whether you are a runner or a fitness walker, we got something for both of you.

Conclusion

Running and walking are two different sports; hence they require the right type of gear. There are many differences between running and walking shoes. You can’t use your walking pair as a runner as the end would be nothing but disastrous. 

Now that you know what type of shoe you need for running or walking, what are you waiting for? Select one from our picks or find your perfect pair with our buying guide to get into action.

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    1. thetoprunningshoes

      Thank you!