The 7 Best Work Boots for Plantar Fasciitis in 2020 and Beyond
What are the best work boots for plantar fasciitis? What features make them great for those with such foot condition?
If you are suffering from plantar fasciitis, it is essential to find the right work boots that can hold up in all kinds of weather and, at the same time, provide the support your feet need. While plantar fasciitis is not always disabling, it is painful enough to make even the everyday tasks of life difficult, and it can affect your work performance.
Without the right work boots, your productivity may suffer as well as your quality of life. Without help, plantar fasciitis will only grow worse, especially when your work requires you to be on your feet for hours every day.
Thankfully, for those that require boots for work, there are many styles that not only keep plantar fasciitis from worsening but can also help repair and correct some of the symptoms.
We looked at the 7 best boots for plantar fasciitis today, comparing them and reading others' experiences with them.
Based on our research, we have decided that the best one is Timberland PRO Men's Hyperion Work Boot because of its sturdy construction, waterproofing, famous Timberland comfort, and the option to be customized with inserts to make them the perfect fit for your feet.
Best Work Boots for Plantar Fasciitis
Timberland PRO Men's Hyperion Work Boot
Caterpillar Men's Diagnostic Work Boot
Timberland PRO Men's Rigmaster Work Boot
Thorogood Men's American Heritage 6" Boot
Bates Men's Enforcer 5 Inch Nylon Leather Uniform Boot
Skechers for Work Men's Workshire Relaxed Fit Work Boot
KEEN Utility Men's Louisville 6" Work Boot
1. Timberland PRO Men's Hyperion Waterproof XL ST Work Boot
The Timberland PRO Work boot, one of the most reviewed work boots online, offers all the essential features of a supportive boot with the famed Timberland name.
These boots are high-quality leather and waterproof. Most reviewers mentioned that the boots hold up well to lots of everyday use. However, some also said that in spite of the leather boots didn’t retain any odors, even when they got wet.
These boots come in sizes 7-15, and fit pretty true to size, although some reviewers said that the toe cap was a little tight, causing them to need a larger size. They feature a mesh lining with anti-odor treatment, and a lightweight molded EVA midsole.
The support provided is Timberland’s Dual-Density Dynamic Anti-Fatigue technology. It involves shock-absorbing cones that compress and rebound to maximize comfort during walking, thereby reducing foot fatigue.
Timberland offers a 30-day comfort guarantee on their boots, so anyone can try them and make sure they’re “the ones” before keeping them.
Overall, the Timberland name and 30-day comfort guarantee, make these work boots worth trying. They offer style, comfort, and safety rolled up into one package, which could make them one of the best men’s work boots for plantar fasciitis.
2. Caterpillar Men's Diagnostic Waterproof Steel-Toe Work Boot
Another big name in the work gear industry, these Caterpillar Men's Diagnostic boots offer many essential features for those with heel issues and plantar fasciitis. Reviewers mentioned they had some of the best heel and arch support of any works boots they've worn. This pair is one of the Caterpillar boots in the market today.
First, the boots are leather, waterproof, and offer 200 grams of insulation with Thinsulate thermal technology. So, they'll keep your feet stylish, warm, and dry regardless of the weather. They come in sizes 7-14 with both medium and wide width. For comfort, they offer an EVA insert with gel technology and nylon mesh lining for breathability.
Safety-wise, they are entirely decked out. They have a rubber sole and steel toe that also has a rubber cap. They meet standards for electrical hazard protection and have a slip-resistant outsole.
Many reviewers had good things to say about these boots; according to them, these boots were some of the most supportive and comfortable boots they've ever worn. Others noted that they tended to run a little bit big. Still, others had trouble with the boots not holding up to the everyday wear and tear of the workplace, with the treads wearing off, soles coming apart, and the waterproofing wearing off.
Check out 5 more Caterpillar boots to pick you the best pair for you.
Overall, these boots seem great for their comfort and variety of options, from waterproofing to insulation. According to users, they may not hold up well to more intense work environments.
They could be more targeted towards those who spend a lot of time operating machinery or sitting at work sites, as opposed to a lot of heavy walking and carrying.
3. Timberland PRO Men's Rigmaster Steel-Toe 8" Waterproof Work Boot
Another quality offering from Timberland, these Rigmaster Steel-Toe 8” Waterproof work boots are highly rated and reviewed, with many users finding them great for their workplaces.
This leather boot offers anti-fatigue conical midsole geometry and shock diffusion with an excellent platform and raised the heel to improve the pressure placed on the heels. They have a steel shank for structural support, and the shaft sits 7.75 inches above the sole. The contoured footbed and inside of the boot have antimicrobial treatment for breathability and odor control.
The boots are completely waterproof, slip resistant, and have a Ladder Lock outsole radius, along with oil, heat, and abrasion resistant sole. They come in sizes 7-13, in both medium and wide widths. Of course, they come with Timberland’s 30-day comfort guarantee, too, so you can be sure you have the right boot before committing to keeping them.
Many reviewers love these boots and highly recommend them, although some had trouble with the soles or seams holding up.
Overall, these boots seem like a great choice for the heavy-duty workplace, and worth a try for the 30-day comfort guarantee. However, for those struggling with plantar fasciitis, they don’t seem to offer as much heel or sole support as may be needed; there are better choices for plantar fasciitis boots.
4. Thorogood Men's American Heritage 6
These American-made boots are popular not just for their workability, but also for their looks. They are very stylish and can be worn outside the workplace if needed. They are full-grain leather, made in the USA, and some of the most-loved work boots on shopping sites for their comfort and durability.
The Thorogood Men's American Heritage 6 boots come in ten sizes and three different widths to find the perfect fit for everyday comfort. They have a removable ultimate shock absorption footbed, and comfort cushioned insole, fiberglass shank, steel toe, and a slip-resistant outsole.
Reviewers had lots of great things to say about these boots; some say that they were extremely comfortable, were broken in within a few hours, and that the soles were stiff but flexible enough to allow for normal walking patterns.
Others noted that the removable insole was extremely high-quality, rivaling those found in athletic shoes, and underneath this insole was memory foam padding for support and comfort.
Arch-wise, these work boots don't offer a ton of support, but this could be improved by adding a more supportive insole. They are also not waterproof or insulated, which may be a problem for certain workplaces.
While not the best choice for every workplace, these boots would hold up to most non-water or cold-related workplaces. They offer great support that can be added onto as needed, and they come in a wide variety of sizes. They are one of the best Thorogood boots in the market today.
5. Bates Men's Enforcer Leather Uniform Boot
Our first all-black, uniform-friendly work boot to review, these Bates Leather Uniform Boots are a more lightweight option to the previous boots, but also have a lot to offer. They come in nine sizes, with extra wide options available in some sizes.
For features, they have a rubber sole, breathable mesh lining for moisture and odor control, and a reinforced front without metal. They make a great choice for those that have to go through metal detectors for work, as these boots don’t have to be removed.
This Bates work boot also features a cushioned EVA midsole and cushioned removable insert. Many users said that they needed additional added support from a better insert, especially for jobs that require being on your feet a lot. Others noted that they take a while to break in before they start to get comfortable.
For those whose job requires them to have a safety-rated but all-black work boot, these could be a great choice. Depending on the job, these could be great boots for you. However, if you need tactical boots, check out our review of the tactical boots for law enforcement personnel.
6. Skechers for Work Men's Workshire
A company well-known in the shoe industry, Skechers used their experience in making comfortable urban shoes to make work boots that can measure up to their other shoe offerings. Skechers for Work Men's Workshire boots come in two full-grain leather color choices and 9 different sizes with two widths – medium and wide.
The boots themselves have a steel safety toe, are electrical hazard tested and proven safe, and have an oil-resistant traction rubber outsole. The relaxed fit is supposed to provide a roomier, more comfortable feel for those who desire it in a work boot.
On the comfort angle, Skechers offers memory foam on the inside to provide a comfortable place for the foot while working and walking. With all this, it seems like it would be the perfect work boot for plantar fasciitis. This would make a good work boot for electricians, too.
After reading reviews from users, though, it seems that these boots are not entirely living up to their description or Skechers' reputation. While the boots are very lightweight in comparison to other steel-toed boots, and they do have memory foam on the inside, the memory foam is only in the heel. Users said that where the memory foam was, it was very comfortable, but the rest of the sole is hard and inflexible.
Looking at the facts and information about these boots, it seems they would not be one of the best work boots for plantar fasciitis. With no warranty, no waterproofing or insulation, and not much support in the sole, there are better choices out there.
7. KEEN Utility Men's Louisville Work Boot
If you've ever worn KEEN hiking boots or sandals, you would know that KEEN is synonymous with things like comfort and durability – both perfect for a work boot! These KEEN Utility Men's Louisville work boots come in three colors and nine sizes with both wide and regular fits.
The waterproof full-grain leather supported by oil and slip-resistant outsoles. On the inside, the waterproof, breathable membrane keeps moisture out and the air circulating. The removable insole touted as a metatomical design perfect for arch support, and the toe protection is a steel cap that is anatomically designed for individual right and left boots.
Overall, reviewers had lots of great things to say about these boots, from their looks to their great craftsmanship and their comfort. They are massive compared to some other work boot offerings, but they offer excellent slip resistance, and the steel toe does its job.
On the negative side, some users found a long break-in time, and that the removable footbed insole was cheap and did not do much for their arch support.
These boots seem like a great heavy-duty option for those who need a waterproof boot that’s well-made and has great traction. To make them acceptable for those with plantar fasciitis, you’ll want to add some more high-quality inserts.
When you do this, combined with all the other features of these KEEN boots, you would have one of the perfect plantar fasciitis boot on the market today. Check out the review of different KEEN work boots for more options.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a condition that can develop when the tissue that connects your heel bone to your toes becomes inflamed. It is one of the most common causes of heel pain in both men and women and can affect a variety of people.
For most, it’s a feeling of stabbing pain in your foot, towards the bottom, and near the heel. Some people find it most debilitating during their first few steps in the morning, after exercise, or after long periods of standing.
Under normal circumstances, your plantar fascia acts like a shock-absorbing spring that supports the arch of your foot. However, due to various factors (discussed below), the fascia can begin to develop tiny tears and become inflamed and irritated.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis Pain?
Plantar fasciitis can develop in adults of all ages and lifestyles, and for different causes. Below are some of the most common causes of plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis is most common in adults between the ages of 40 and 60. Whether it is inherent due to foot construction, or it’s been caused by years of unsupportive shoes and hard work environments, this is the most common age to develop this type of pain.
As mentioned above, the build of your foot – having a high arch, an abnormal pattern of walking, or a flat foot – can all contribute to plantar fasciitis by putting stress and pressure on areas of your foot and heel that aren’t meant to bear that much pressure and weight long-term.
Certain types of exercise can contribute to an earlier development of plantar fasciitis pain. Any exercise that puts abnormal pressure on the heel and arch, like running, ballet, jumping, and aerobic-type classes, can cause it to develop and keep it from healing on its own.
Excess pounds put pressure on a number of joints and areas of the body, but it most negatively affects your feet and heels which carry your full weight. Many people find that their plantar fasciitis pain resolves with weight loss or worsens with weight gain.
Jobs that keep you on your feet or involve a lot of walking, especially when combined with unsupportive shoe choices, can aggravate or cause plantar fasciitis. The best way to prevent this is to invest in shoes or boots that will give you the support you need from day to day. You can check out, for example, the work boots for standing on concrete all day.
What to Look for When Buying a Work Boot for Plantar Fasciitis Pain
If you are in a job that requires you to stand or walk around for long hours, there is a way to prevent or address plantar fasciitis pain: get a work boot that specifically addresses this issue.
Strong Arch Support
A strong arch support will relieve pain and reduce pronation. Pronation refers to the normal side-to-side motion that your foot makes when walking. As you lower your foot to the ground, your foot slowly flattens as it presses into the ground, the arch flattens, and it absorbs the shock of your foot hitting the ground.
The Plantar fasciitis will have a strong arch support that will keep the arch from flattening too much, which can place pressure on the tissue and tear the fascia.
The heel counter is the structure around the heel to protect and support it. When buying work boots for plantar fasciitis, it’s important that the heel of the boot is stiff and structured and will not collapse when pressed down. The heel should also have some height added as it helps by taking pressure off your heels and sending it to other parts of the foot.
A rocker sole helps relieve pressure on the tissue of your heel and foot by working with your natural gait and pronation to spread the pressure of each step evenly across your foot. You can determine a boot’s rocker sole by pressing on the toe of the boot and seeing if the boot “rocks” from heel to toe.
For work boots, you don’t want a lot of flexibility in the arch. When you bend the toe to the heel, there should be a lot of resistance and more of a slow bend than a quick one, similar to the need for a firm heel instead of one that can collapse on itself.
Many of the work boots will also include shock-absorbing cushioning in the sole and heel of the boot. Finding the perfect fit is essential to comfort, as even the best of boots will cause pain if the fit is not correct.
Ankle support is a necessity in any work boot, but especially so for those that are made for plantar fasciitis. With the increased support offered to your heel and arch, your ankles could be at risk for twists, so a full ankle support matching that of your heel support is necessary and best.
For work boots, safety should also be taken into consideration. There’s no reason to give up the most useful of work boot features, just because they are also supportive. Choose boots that offer things like waterproofing, steel or composite toes, oil-resistant, and slip-resistant features. There are also boots that good for winter, to provide utmost safety and protection.
While choosing work boots depends on individual preference, some are more well-suited to supporting those struggling with plantar fasciitis than others. They can even be added on to make them a perfect fit.
Heel pain is not something that has to be a part of your work day, and getting the best work boots for plantar fasciitis is the first step to being pain-free and able to focus completely on the job at hand.
If you are not a big fan of work boots, instead of looking for a pair of plantar fasciitis shoe, we have published a comprehensive guide by featuring 25 best shoes for plantar fasciitis.