There’s nothing quite like having a good pair of shoes. They keep your feet snug, make you look good and, quite literally, undercut everything you do. When you regularly go out walking or hiking? A good pair of walking boots is essential! But what separates a quality shoe from a poor one? This is a question that plagues plenty of people when they go out shopping for footware, with many struggling with the plethora of advertisements, price ranges and brands promising long-lasting materials. Below are the top five tips for finding the best pair of casual hiking boots or adventure shoes, to keep you walking on the right track instead of floundering in the dark.
Keep An Eye On The Market
Let’s take a look at how the fashion market is faring. It’s estimated there are a whopping 20 billion pairs of shoes produced on a yearly basis — on the other hand, that means we see nearly 300 million thrown away. The average retail price of walking shoes back in 2014 was around $50, which is perfect for giving yourself a budget to actively work with. More than 19 million pairs of the first shoe have been sold, even the ones that are most commercialized. But it’s not enough to simply be caught up on the latest market trends. What about your own?
Know Your Hobbies
What exactly are you going to use your walking boots for? This question will keep you from wandering from store to store unnecessarily and give you a certain model or price range to aim for. Camping has been found to be one of the most popular outdoor recreational activities in the United States alone, be it in conventional tents or a quality campground or even people’s own backyard! The year 2014 saw more than $1 billion spent on camping equipment, with sleeping bags and backpacks being some of the most common items.
Avoid Common Pitfalls
Now how about avoiding common mistakes? The last thing you want to do is waste money unnecessarily when searching for a pair of shoes that should last you for at least a year, if not more. Try to give the shoe a good once-over — if the material is excessively thin or weak, that’s a sign the materials may be on the cheaper side and unlikely to last through any hardy activity. Buying online? No worries. Double-check the most recent reviews and get a good idea what customers have thought of the brand you’re checking out. Good walking boots should be your proverbial companions through thick and thin!
Stay Fit In Style
Are you a fan of hiking, camping or exercising? How about jogging or brisk walking? Walking has been found to be the most popular aerobic physical activity by a landslide for its ease and accessibility, with studies showing six out of 10 adults reporting walking sessions for at least 10 minutes daily. Good shoes don’t only protect your feet — they can even help you stay healthier. The weight of your shoes exerts a noticeable drain on your energy and stamina, with experienced hikers frequently saying, “A pound on your feet equals five pounds on your back.”
Snag A Pair Before Winter Hits
The last tip on the list is certainly not the least one. The cold season is coming around and nobody wants to be caught with their feet wet (pardon the pun). Since prices tend to raise during the holiday season, being proactive and finding some lightweight walking boots or trekking sandals now will save you money later. A general rule of thumb is this — if you can get at least 500 miles out of your footwear, you’re doing a good job! With these tips in your back pocket, there’s little stopping you from finding the pair of your dreams.