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Hiking Shoes/Boots for old knees and hips

Any suggestions for shoes/boots for old knees and hips? Especially on rocky trails.

6 Replies

You might want to look at the Lowa Renegade GTX boot. It is available in both regular and wide widths.  My knees have seen many decades of hiking and these boots work well with this old set of bones.  The don't work magic on my joints, but they don't make things worse.    The boots have been up MT Washington NH many a time. Very rocky and the boots worked ok.  

The best way of minimizing injury is making sure any boot you buy fits well.  For older people it as much about avoiding aggravating prior injuries as anything else.  From experience, poorly fitted boots that do not support your foot correctly will result in knee and ligament pain.   Investing in a pair of orthotics for your hiking boots can give you the best chance of a comfortable hike.  If you have custom orthotics from old ski boots, you can try them in you hiking boots. 

But the best advice I can give is to purchase good quality trekking poles. the use of poles can reduce the weight on the knees/hips by transferring the weight to your upper body. Makes a big difference when descending.  

I just bought a pair of Oboz and so far they have been a dramatic improvement over my previous hiking shoes. My hyper-mobile feet are collapsing and the pain can be indescribable at times. With the Oboz, I can hike farther with less pain.

I had custom orthotics built for my ski boots, which have helped considerably, so that will be my next investment for my hiking shoes. I have been told that my ski boot orthotics can be used in cycling shoes, but I will need different ones for hiking.

And I second the recommendation for trekking poles. They help with balance and weight distribution. 

  • Hey, I'm brand new to hiking but I have fibromyalgia and I'm finding ways to cope. I've recently purchased and have been using Merrell Moab 2 Mid waterproof hiking boots which have been good for my wide feet. Also highly recommend trekking poles to distribute weight better. They have honestly been a game changer for me. I'm using Leki Micro Vario Cor-Tec TA trekking poles because I'm a 5'5" woman and they have a good height range for me along with the cork grips that are easier to grab even when wet. And then I had been using a regular backpack while I was starting out but recently purchased the women's Osprey Sirrus 24 pack to distribute more weight over my hips rather than hurting my back. Hiking has been loads of fun so far! I hope you find gear that helps you too. 🙂 

Love Oboz Sawtooth for rougher trails. Love Solomon Outline for easier trails.



@StanC one more vote for trekking poles! They can make such a big difference for knees and hips, especially on the downhills.

In general, for rockier terrain, a shoe or boot with a stiff sole can be really helpful for your feet, ankles, knees and hips. And what matters most is choosing a pair that fit YOUR feet the best, and that means it's hard to pick based on what brands/models others love (because their feet might be totally different than yours!). If you want to share a little about your feet - width, volume, arch, trouble spots - we'd be happy to make some recommendations of shoes/boots to try on. And we'll always recommend either dropping by your closest REI store or setting up a free virtual outfitting appointment to try on and get advice!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Another vote for trekking poles.  To get their full benefit it is important to learn how to use then properly..

Basically setting the right height and using the straps so they support you weight on your wrists.  This guy explains it quite well

Thanks for checking out my trekking pole technique, I hope it helps. There are a few things missing from this video that I have updated in this video you may...