When you’re shopping for shoes, you would generally look to buy a pair with a flat bottom. You wouldn’t think to look at any shoes with a sole that actually rocks when wearing them. However, rocker bottom shoes have been shown to be beneficial for relieving pain and adding stability to your footwear.
It’s important when looking for a pair of rocker bottom shoes that you choose the ones that are comfortable. You should make sure that you can walk easily in the shoes as they can take some getting used to.
We have reviewed the best rocker bottom shoes to help you choose the best ones for your feet. Our winner is the HOKA ONE ONE Men’s Bondi 7 Running Shoes, which is also available for women.
We will also share with you the benefits of wearing this style of shoe in our guide below.
The best rocker bottom shoes available right now are:
What Are Rocker Bottom Shoes?
Rocker bottom shoes are called so due to their thick sole that’s curved at the toe or heel. It can also be curved at both, giving a full rocking motion when walking. The shoes can certainly take some time to get used to wearing with the different sole and movement.
Though it sounds rather bizarre, a lot of thought and engineering went into the initial design of the rocker bottom shoe to provide comfort as well as support and stability. They were designed to make you feel like you’re walking on sand. The rocking movement reduces the impact and pressure felt on the heel and ball of your foot.
The rocker bottom shoe has many benefits when it comes to correcting your gait and body alignment. They can also be used to improve and treat other conditions, such as:
- Arthritis of the ankle and midfoot.
- Rheumatoid arthritis.
- Plantar fasciitis—pain in the heel.
- Calluses—thickened skin on the foot.
- Metatarsalgia—pain in the ball of your foot.
- Hallux limitus—stiff big toe joint.
- Freiberg’s infarction—avascular necrosis in the metatarsal bone.
How Do Rocker Bottom Shoes Work?
There are two types of rocker bottom shoes: a forefoot rocker and a heel to toe rocker. They both offer different types of movement and support. You should take a look at your personal condition before deciding which style will suit you.
The forefront rocker has the flat heel and the rocker placed just behind the metatarsal heads. This style of rocker reduces pressure on the ball of the foot and reduces the motion at the toe joints. These are a good choice for anyone with pain in the ball of their foot or in the toes, especially the big toe.
Heel to Toe Rocker
The heel to toe rocker has the full rocking experience with the pressure reduced on the heel of the foot. This style of rocker limits ankle and midfoot motion, which helps anyone with pain in the ankle or heel. The impact is reduced on the heel as the foot rocks off the heel quickly; this will help people with heel pain.
What To Look For When Choosing the Best Best Rocker Bottom Shoes
There are lots of factors to consider when choosing a pair of rocker bottom shoes. They are built to make you feel like you’re walking on sand. They should still be comfortable and not increase the pain that you feel in your feet, knees or hips.
When wearing rocker bottom shoes for the first time, they will feel strange, and you may have difficulty walking in them. You should get used to them around the house before taking them outside for a walk or run.
If they don’t get easier to walk in after a few days indoors, you may have to return to a flat sole shoe. They are built to reduce pain and make your movement easier, so if the rocker sole adds to the stress and pain, they are not for you.
It’s important that your shoes fit you correctly, and this should be in width as well as in length.
Shoes that are too tight will squeeze your feet, putting pressure on them and increasing pain. Shoes that are too big will not support your feet correctly as your feet will move around inside the shoe. This could increase your chances of falling, among other things.
Make sure that you try the shoes before committing, where possible. Every shoe fits differently, and it’s important that the shoe fits you perfectly.
The best materials used for shoes that you will wear for long periods should be breathable and flexible. A breathable material like a textile mesh will let the air flow through your shoe, allowing your feet to breathe.
The lining of the shoes should be seamless to avoid rubbing your feet. If you are wearing the shoes in wet weather conditions, it’s a good idea to invest in shoes with a waterproof upper. These will keep your feet dry, warm and comfortable in all weathers.
All shoes should have an element of cushioning to keep you comfortable. However, specialist shoes to reduce pain should place this as a top priority. The rocker bottom shoe should have cushioning in the midsole to improve shock absorbency. This can reduce pain felt when hitting hard surfaces with impact.
There should be padding around the collar of the shoe and the tongue to keep your feet stable and cushioned. This will stop any rubbing or discomfort when walking.
The insole should be soft and cushioned for maximum comfort, especially when wearing the shoes for long periods. Shoes can have insoles made from specialist materials, such as EVA, gel or memory foam for extra cushioning and comfort.
If you want to add more comfort to your shoe, check out our article on the best rated memory foam insoles.
Rocker bottom shoes are made with stability in mind. The sole of the shoe stabilizes the foot and stops the metatarsals from moving, which will relieve any pain felt when walking. The curve of the sole in the rocker bottom shoe gives you a natural gait through your foot’s journey from heel to toe.
Once you get the hang of walking or running in these shoes, you will see how they stabilize your feet. This will help you walk with your body aligned correctly and a good posture. It will also ease any pain previously felt in regular shoes.
If you have high arches, you may need additional support to stabilize your feet in the shoes. Check out our article on the best insoles for high arches for further information.
Shoes can be heavy to wear on your feet. Add to this the thicker sole of a rocker bottom shoe, and you could be carrying a lot of extra weight with every step. This can cause fatigue and be painful when moving.
You should look for lightweight shoes that are easy to lift when on your feet. This will give you a more comfortable movement and help to reduce any pain felt when walking.
The outsole of rocker bottom shoes are generally made from a rubber composite that is durable and provides great traction. You don’t want to have to worry about slipping or tripping when wearing your rocker bottom shoes. It’s a long way down and can cause lots of additional pain that isn’t needed.
You need a solid sole with a great grip to feel secure when walking or running on uneven surfaces. If you are relaxed when moving, your body will respond positively, and this will reduce the stress and pain.
Rocker bottom shoes are not cheap, and you don’t want to be buying new shoes every few months. It’s important that the shoes that you buy are durable and long-lasting. It’s frustrating to get comfortable wearing a shoe just as it needs replacing.
You should check that the materials used are of high quality and the stitching will not come apart easily. The soles of the shoes should be solid and built to resist lots of wear and tear from outside. These shoes are an investment and they should be comfortable and supportive to wear for a long time.
Reviews of the Best Best Rocker Bottom Shoes in 2021
There are lots of different types of rocker bottom shoes out there and they all offer different benefits. We have reviewed different styles of rocker bottom shoes to save you some time. You can find our top seven products below.
The Hoka One One Bondi running shoes are made with cushioning in mind. The EVA midsole gives you great cushioning throughout your foot, from heel to toe. The memory foam collar and tongue hold your foot stable while providing comfort and preventing any rubbing.
It has a molded ortholite insole and an internal heel counter to hold your foot in place comfortably. The outsole is made from rubber and is reinforced in areas that are susceptible to wear and tear for durability. The shoe is lightweight, and the mesh upper gives your feet the breathability needed.
These shoes are available in different colors and are also available for women.
- Ortholite insole for comfort.
- Comfort frame stability.
- Breathable material.
- Suitable for a heavier runner.
- Harder sole than the previous version.
- Not available in different widths.
The Dansko XP 2.0 Clogs have been made to be worn for long periods of time and still be comfortable. The clogs have a soft, durable leather upper that comes in lots of colors and designs to suit all. They are lightweight and have a slip-resistant outsole that will keep you upright on the slippiest surfaces.
The shoes have a removable insole with Dansko natural arch technology for support and comfort for the arch of your foot. The insole is made from memory foam for a soft, comfortable base. The shoes are ideal for long shifts at work when you’re on your feet all day.
The clogs are available in two widths and are also available for men.
- Great for long shifts at work
- Soft, durable leather uppers.
- Arch technology removable footbed.
- According to some buyers, the color can run into socks.
- The toe box is quite narrow.
The Gravity Defyer G-Defy Orion shoes are great for those who need extra support and stability. The shoes have been designed to reduce foot and knee pain when walking or running. They have a lightweight Omega outsole that absorbs all the impact from hard surfaces with the hidden VersoShock technology.
There are orthotic insoles that can be removed to insert your own specific orthotic insole. The nubuck leather upper is flexible and breathable, allowing the air to flow around your feet.
The shoes come in three colors and three different widths. They are also available for men.
- Flexible with lots of support.
- VersoShock technology to reduce impact.
- Free pairs of orthotics insoles to give the support that you need.
- Roomy toe box.
- Tight to get on in the heel.
- The tongue is not very padded.
The MBT Colorado X Rocker Bottom walking shoes are built for comfort. The SensorTechnology in the heel gives you a natural cushioning that feels like you’re walking on a beach. The PivotAxis technology in the midsole activates the muscles that are needed for a good posture.
The cushioned and supportive insole is mesh for breathability and removable for a custom fit. These shoes will give you the comfort and stability that you need when out walking.
The shoes are available in different colors and are also available for men.
- SensorTechnology for comfort.
- PivotAxis technology to improve posture.
- Removable, breathable insole.
- Flexible sole with good traction.
- The rocking motion is not as pronounced as other styles.
- Not available in different widths.
The MBT Boston lace-up Oxford shoe gives you the comfort of a rocker bottom shoe with the style needed for everyday wear. They have a leather upper and a soft lambskin insole for a premium feel. The outsole is made from a lightweight IP EVA material that gives your feet cushioning and is durable.
The SensorTechnology in the heel absorbs all shock from the impact of hard surfaces. An innovative pivot strike in the sole will give you enhanced comfort and support.
- Stylish design.
- Shock absorbing SensorTechnology for comfort.
- Pivot strike for great transition.
- Soft upper and insole.
- Not much arch support.
- Previous versions were more durable, according to customers.
The ASICS Glideride running shoes are great for the runner who wants more comfort and support with every stride. The shoe has gel cushioning in the heel for shock absorption and comfort. The FlyteFoam Lyte Technology in the midsole provides bounce-back responsiveness, even on long-distance runs.
The multi-directional mesh upper is breathable for ventilation and offers good stability. The GUIDESOLE technology gives you improved cushioning and reduces muscle load as your foot hits the floor. The shoe is a good fit, with lots of grip to keep your foot stable and your posture correct.
These running shoes are available in different colors and also available for men.
- Fits true to size.
- GUIDESOLE technology reduces impact.
- FlyteFoam Lyte Technology for responsiveness.
- Breathable mesh upper.
- The traction is not great on some surfaces.
- The rocker sole takes some getting used to when running.
The Exersteps Whirlwind sneakers are a comfortable and supportive shoe that gives you great value for money. They have a durable leather upper with mesh inserts for breathability and a soft, comfortable lining.
The shoes have a lightweight midsole that offers good shock absorbency and relieves the impact of hard surfaces. The molded insole is cushioned for your comfort.
The sneakers are available in two colors and are also available for women.
- Good value for money.
- Moisture-wicking lining.
- Molded insole for comfort.
- Good traction.
- Not as durable as more expensive brands.
- Rigid shoe with little flexibility.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Wear My Rocker Bottom Shoes All Day?
We would recommend that you wear them little and often in the first few days of getting the shoes. This will allow you to get used to the new way of walking and the rolling movement of the shoes.
Once you are comfortable walking in them, you can wear them for long periods at a time with no issues.
Can I Wear My Rocker Bottom Shoes for Running?
Yes, you can run in rocker bottom shoes, but make sure that they have been specifically made for running. Other styles may not be as flexible and may cause further pain.
A running shoe with a rocker bottom will help to push you through your stride with less effort compared to a regular running shoe.
Should I Get a Larger Size Than Normal In Rocker Bottom Shoes?
Your shoes should fit you like a glove, and sizes differ between different manufacturers and shoe styles. We would recommend that you always try the shoes on for size before going outside in them.
You should look to try your usual size initially and then see how they feel. Shoes come in all different sizes and widths, so you may find that you are a different size in different brands or styles.
The Midsole of My Rocker Bottom Shoes Has Creases; What Should I Do?
You may start to see creases in the soles of your rocker bottoms shoes. This is a sure-fire way of telling you that you need a new pair of shoes. When the sole creases it’s no longer offering you the support and comfort that you need. You should invest in a new pair of shoes. This will make sure that you don’t damage your feet or increase any pain due to the worn-down sole.
We hope that this guide has helped you in your quest to find the best rocker bottom shoes. They may take some time to get used to the feel of the rocker bottom, but once you do, you won’t look back.
Our favorites are the HOKA ONE ONE Men’s Bondi 7 Running Shoes, as these offer great comfort and stability for both running and walking. They are durable shoes that are made to last.
A close runner-up would be the Dansko Women’s XP 2.0 Clogs. These are perfect shoes for people who are on their feet all day. They will give you the comfort that you need.
Once you get used to the rocking movement of rocker bottom shoes, you will wonder how you ever wore regular flat bottom shoes.