3 Shoe Issues That Lead to Back Pain While Hiking

Choosing footwear that is in tune with your lifestyle and line of work is crucial for proper spine health. This is true for anyone, from schoolchildren to people in corporate offices. But when you regularly go on lengthy hikes in your free time, this is all the more important. Due to the nature of the activity, comfort is essential if you want to avoid back pain.

The Issues

Not only do you need the best comfortable work boots for standing all day, but also ones that are good for walking long distances. Having the best of both worlds is possible, but it requires extensive knowledge of the most common errors people make and how to avoid them. Here is everything that you need to know on the topic.

1. Improper Style Choice

The number one mistake people tend to make when shopping for footwear is assume that all models are the same. In fact, there is no one universal pair of hiking boots to suit every single situation. Depending on the type of terrain you plan to hike on, you need to choose the most appropriate alternative.

The most popular variety is represented by trail boots. These are perfect when you pack lightly and don’t venture off the beaten path. They are usually low or mid-cut, and are made from a combination of fabric and leather, with waterproof lining on the inside. However, if you are more adventurous, go for ankle-high rough-trail boots instead.

Other types include mountaineering footwear, off-trail, and technical scramble. Do not be intimidated by the wide array specialty stores have to offer. If you feel lost, consult with a sale assistant on site. He or she can help you pick out the most suitable pair that is well within your budget and suits your hiking needs at the same time.

2. Poor Arch Support

The second most common mistake hikers tend to make is not focusing enough on arch support. Wearing shoes that don’t hold your foot in the optimal position is a sure way to poor spinal health. Fortunately, if this is an issue you are faced with, you can still get away with putting on something that is less comfortable if you make sure to attach orthopedic insoles inside them.

This is also a good idea for people who enjoy taking long hikes on challenging terrain. They can be found in any bigger pharmacy or sports store in your area, so don’t be afraid to go out and buy some. Providing proper relief for back pain is important, and this is one of the many ways in which you can do that. However, choosing the proper boots is more desirable in the long run.

For this reason, it’s important to invest in a high-quality pair of hiking boots. Specialized brands manufacture footwear with a 3 to 5mm insert between the midsole and outsole to make the entire construction not only durable and reliable, but comfortable as well. Look for something that fits this criterion, and you’ll be all set.

3. The Wrong Size

A lot of people from all around the world wear shoes that don’t fit, and they don’t even realize it until it’s too late. Therefore, it’s important to choose the right size when shopping. By doing this, you will provide your entire musculoskeletal system with the proper support it needs to stay fit and healthy, while at the same time making your long hikes more enjoyable.

Unfortunately, sizes differ from brand to brand and even from model to model within the same manufacturer’s range. This makes getting shoes in the right size even more difficult, which is why you need to be savvy and test them out thoroughly in the store before making the purchase.

Go shopping in the afternoon, when your foot has naturally expanded throughout the day. Wear socks you’d normally wear with that type of item, and don’t forget to examine the product itself. Pay close attention to the soles. Are they sturdy and well-made? If the answer is yes, you might have found yourself a winner.


Choosing and buying the right footwear for hiking difficult, especially when considering that high-quality products come in many shapes and sizes. Nevertheless, with a few bits of knowledge on the topic, you can easily make the right choice. What you need to keep in mind above everything else is the nature of your activity.

Where will you be hiking? What type of terrain do you plan to venture on? Choosing the right style and ensuring that it offers proper arch support is a must. What is more, you need to shop for footwear in your size.

At the end of the day, being a wise shopper and choosing products that fit perfectly is the best thing you can do.

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