What are Heel Spurs?
A heel spur is a calcium deposit on our foot that creates a bony spur-like protrusion on the underside of our heel bone (the Calcaneus). Despite often being painless, they can unsurprisingly cause pain in the general heel area of our feet. One such issue caused is the painful inflammation of the connective tissue that runs along our foot, from the heel up to the ball. This is an unfortunately common problem for avid long-time runners.
Causes of Heel Spurs
It is totally possible you unknowingly have heel spurs as sometimes there simply are no symptoms, but often enough heel spurs are associated with intermittent or chronic pain in the heel area of the foot. This is especially true if there is inflammation that develops at the point of the spur. In general, the pain isn’t from the mere existence of the heel spur, but a symptom of the spur injuring the soft tissue around it.
If you’re wondering how on earth you got these heel spurs to begin with, here are a few possibilities as to how they came to be:
- Walking gait abnormalities that place an excessive amount of stress on the heel bone
- Running or jogging, especially possible when constantly on hard surfaces
- Poor fitted or worn-out shoes, especially ones which lack proper arch or heel support
- Excess weight or obesity putting excessive pressure on the heel bone.
Other, less obvious risk factors include:
- Old age, which decreases your foot’s flexibility and thins out your heels protective pad
- Work or daily routine that has one on their feet most of the day
- Short but frequent bursts of physical activity
- Flat feet or high arches.
1. ASICS Gel-Kayano 25
We’re kicking off our list with a pair of classic, tried and true running shoes by ASICS. The Gel-Kayano design has been around for a quarter of a century now given its top-notch quality and design. If you’re a runner with heel spurs, these are hard to beat, because these newer editions of the shoes have some new aspects to them to draw you in.
Namely, the Kayano’s now features two-layer cushioning throughout its midsole consisting of the ASICS FlyFoam Propel and FlyteFoat Lyte, called the FLUIDRIDE. These two cushions are not alone, because they are paired with ASICS gel cushioning at the heel of the shoe to increase the comfortability during movement.
The Kayano’s also feature what ASICS has dubbed the Heel Clutching System – a specially designed piece of resin inside the heel counter to minimize the gap between your heel and the shoe. This provides you with a better and comfortable sense of support in the heel and arch area. Finally, there is the DuoMax Support System which reduces weight and increased platform support across the foot.
The Kayano’s come in an abundance of colors, too many to list, so no matter what you’re looking for, their selection will definitely meet your needs. They run true to size so you should be safe ordering the size you’re most comfortable in without issue. The only issue that we have seen thus far with the Kayano is that for those with bigger toes, you may eventually poke a hole at the top of the shoe, but the warranty will cover that.
+ Tried and true brand and line of shoes
+ Proper support for heel spurs
+ Variety of colors for any of your aesthetic needs
– The upper unit sometimes frays away but is covered by warranty
2. ECCO Track II Low
Up next is a more casual shoe meant for day-to-day life, the ECCO Track II Low. The shoe manufacturer, ECCO, have been dedicated to creating high comfort and performance since the early 60’sl. These Oxford-style shoes are perfect if you suffer from heel spurs and need proper support, cushioning and a nice stylish shoe to wear anywhere.
These shoes are designed to take the pressure away from the forefoot, helpful for wider toes, and a tighter more supportive fit for the heel area. There is also a removable sole if the one provided just isn’t fitting well to your needs, and these can be swapped out for third-party soles depending on your requirement.
With that in mind, these soles aim to provide shock absorption and flexibility while allowing for a good amount of air circulation so your feet never feel stuffy or overheated. The sole will be giving you the same support months down the line as the very first day you wore them, as they are extremely durable.
With that said, it should be noted that these shoes are of premium make and therefore come with a premium price tag. So, for those of you who would like a more economical choice of footwear, the ECCO Track II might not be it. They also do run small, as a result, it is best to order half a size up.
+ Synthetic Leather Upper
+ Comfortable support for heel spurs
+ Removable insole
+ Aesthetically pleasing design
– High price
– Runs half a size smaller
3. Orthofeet Asheville
These shoes are different from the previous two in the fact that they are more for casual home wear, they’re slippers made for specific foot conditions – including heel spurs. These Orthofeet Ashevilles are a great and wide design that helps alleviate pain from the heel, arch and ball area.
The Ashvilles are a great choice if you have inferior or posterior heel spurs since they offer a great orthotic support system with a contoured midsole area and arch support. The Asheville’s also feature a cushioned back that makes sure you do not suffer from any extraneous or unnecessary stress while on your feet.
The only true problem with these shoes is that they are more or less exclusively for use indoors and going outside with them will be slightly unnerving or embarrassing as they well and truly are slippers. With that in mind, they still serve their purpose well.
+ Soft and comfortable
+ Specially designed midsole, heel and arch support
+ Reputable manufacturer
– Suitable mostly for indoor wear
4. Saucony Guide ISO 2
Another brand of runners that have stood the test of time is the Saucony line of footwear. Saucony is a trusted brand used by veteran runners for their high-quality and comfort. The Saucony Guide ISO 2s is an example of why there aren’t many running shoe lists without their name present.
The ISO 2’s feature two layers of midsole cushioning comprised of Saucony’s EVERUN foam with a thick EVA foam shell that provides great comfort as well as great medial arch support. This gives you maximum cushioning and support for runners with heel spurs. The rubber outsole has a durable XT-900 rubber on the heel designed to take the pressure off that area of the foot by providing great shock absorption. Perfect for runners with heel spurs that need the proper balance of comfort and support.
The colorways are a bit limited with only shades of blue, black and green. But they run true to size and are typically on the more affordable end of the running shoe spectrum, so overall, very few issues to report with the Saucony ISO 2’s. These are one of the best shoes for heel spurs in terms of price and value.
+ Good support for midsole, arch, and heel
+ Specially designed foam midsole for added support
+ Durable rubber on the heel area of the outsole
+ Affordable price point
– Not a huge selection of colors
5. Rockport Eureka
The Eureka is a pair of walking shoes designed by Rockport that aims to combine maximum stability and comfort. Best of all – you can wear these to nearly any occasion with ease. They feature a wide base made to increase stability in all circumstances as well as a fashionable leather upper and breathable lining.
There is a latex foam footbed, an EVA foam midsole and a San Crispino outsole base. All of these additions are aimed at providing great cushioning, shock absorption and flexibility to keep you on your feet for longer, without your heel spurs causing discomfort. There is also a padded collar to provide smooth ankle support and it is laced up to allow you to adjust the fit as required. These are some of the best shoes for heel spurs especially if you’re looking for something with a minimalistic profile.
These shoes sport a great business casual look with a dedicated support system hiding under the hood. The only issue with the Rockport Eureka’s is that they can run a bit small, about half a size or so, and for wider feet, can feel a bit narrow. So, if you’re getting these, it’s best to get half a size up for the perfect fit and comfort.
+ Sleek and aesthetic leather upper
+ Rubber outsole for durability and EVA midsole for stability
+ Comfortable foam footbed for heel spurs
+ Affordable price for the features it packs
– Size runs small and narrow. Best to get half a size up for optimal fit
6. ASICS GT 2000 5
Another one of ASICS designs makes this list, unsurprisingly. The GT 2000 5’s feature a rubber sole, a fuzeGEL midsole, ASICs new GEL cushioning tech made from the fusion of GEL and foam, creating a lightweight comfortable footbed. This fuzeGEL system is tuned to provide rearfoot shock absorption that shifts pressure to the forefoot, which is perfect for stubborn heel spurs and gives a bounce to your stride.
The GT 2000 5 features the DuoMax support system that enhances the stability and support of the shoe with reduced weight and increased platform support.
The GEL cushioning system attenuates shock during impact and allows for fluid movement as your foot transitions through the gait cycle, again, all of this is aimed at relieving heel pressure. The FluidRide midsole provides bounce-back properties as well as cushioning to further support the rest of the footwear system.
The only issues present withthe ASICS GT 2000 5 are they run small, so be prepared to purchase a half-size larger. Some testers also noticed outer durability issues – holes might appear on the upper unit from excessive use.
+ Added comfort and support for your heel and midfoot area
+ Comfortable and lightweight
+ Wide array of colors
– Tends to run half-size smaller
– Some durability issues from excessive use
7. Brooks Ghost 11
Brooks has become a go-to brand for many running and walking enthusiasts alike, and this updated edition of the Ghost series has some serious improvements targeted at runners with heel spurs. The Ghost 11 has a BioMoGo DNA cushioning midsole throughout the shoe, as well as an extra layer of DNA LOFT foam underneath the heel that was not present in earlier iterations.
This newly added feature provides a softer feel where you need it most. The soft and balanced cushioning provides just enough supple comfort in the underfoot without losing the responsiveness and durability that you need.
Moreover, the shoe has a segmented crash pad on the outsole designed to increase shock absorption that eases the impact of each step you take. The mesh upper that Brooks employed gives it the flexibility and support needed when you are suffering heel spurs.
+ Great system to support a variety of foot problems including heel spurs
+ Responsive cushioning and lightweight feel
+ Flexible upper that conforms to your feet
– Narrow around the toes
8. New Balance 990v4
A famous brand for years now, New Balance is known for manufacturing a high-quality product that always hits the mark. The NB 990v4 is no different and they feature an ENCAP midsole that takes advantage of NB’s proprietary ACTEVA LITE foam for a flexible, durable, and very comfortable ride for those with suffering heel spurs.
The sneakers are padded with a dual-density foam around the collar and its without a doubt that those with posterior heel spurs will appreciate thanks to the added support and cushioning. The upper is made of pigskin and mesh, a blend of breathability, flexibility, and durability. It should also be noted that these shoes are, for some, available to be covered by their medical insurance, as these shoes are not only medical grade but middle-to-high in the price range.
+ ENCAP midsole feels awesome on your feet
+ Added foam Cushioning and support for heel spurs
+ Potential for insurance coverage
– Runs wide, not ideal for narrower feet
9. Hoka One One Clifton 5
Hoka is known as a brand that prides itself in its great cushioning – delivering it in spades with its enormously thick midsoles. The One One Clifton will give you firm support around the heel as well as the softness and comfort you’d expect from a well-cushioned midsole. There is a single cut of EVA foam that runs throughout the Clifton’s midsole which is grooved around the edges and also curves around the foot for a form-fitting experience.
The Clifton has a plush cloudlike cushioning that provides great support and comfort for your foot which helps to alleviate your heel spurs. The midsole does a wonderful job in dis the dispersion of tension and impact from contact and instead of pressuring your sore heel spurs, the blow is evened out along the entirety of your foot. This also helps with the rest of your entire leg as well, alleviating tension from your ankle and knees.
The only real issue with the Clifton 5’s is their shoes running a bit smaller, so consider going half a size up.
+ Great foam support for heel spurs
+ Flashy and stylish colors
+ Plush and soft cushioning
– Runs a bit smaller than normal, so best to get half a size up
10. Vionic Tide II
The last pair of shoes on our list are the Vionic Tide II’s. These shoes are especially different from the rest we’ve covered – they’re sandals. This one is aimed at those with heel spurs that tend to live around hotter humid climates where other shoes aren’t as ideal. Vionic is a brand that is famous for its innovative and supportive footwear designs, so it is no surprise that the Tide II’s hold that standard.
It has a strap lined with foam with a woven toe post to increase comfortability and decrease any chance of cuts or blisters as is common with other sandal designs. The Vionic Tide II employs Orthaheel Technology – the footbed is biomechanically engineered to provide not only the best arch support to cradle your feet, but also great heel coverage to firmly support and lessen the discomfort from heel spurs. There is a medium-density EVA midsole and TPR outsole fitted to the Tide’s that absorb shock and provide great traction without compromise.
These shoes have received the APMA seal of acceptance and one of the few clinically approved designs of sandals to alleviate heel pain. The only glaring issues are the lack of adjustability and firm arch support which is not ideal for those who do not require it.
+ Unique and best-in-class sandal design
+ Provides all the support a normal shoe would give
+ APMA Seal of Acceptance
– Firm Arch support
– Cannot be adjusted or customized a great deal
How can Heel Spurs be treated?
There are a variety of treatments available depending on the severity of your issue, ranging from exercises, medication, removal surgery, or most relevant to us today, orthotics and shoes designed to alleviate stress caused by heel spurs.
Today, we’ll cover a variety of shoes we feel are great for people with heel spurs, from running shoes to walking and business casual, there is a shoe on this list for every occasion.
We have covered a variety of shoes dedicated to helping heel spurs in this list – runners, walkers, casual wear, and sandals. The prices were all usually affordable, with a few outliers who are tailor-made and require the additional price hike.
All in all, there should be a shoe here for any activity, for any gender, and for almost any foot problem. All these shoes are great for heel spurs and should provide the much-needed comfort and support to keep you walking and running the way you’d like without any of the pain or irritation holding you back.