For walking on concrete, you need work boots that absorb the maximum amount of shock. Concrete is a uniformly hard surface, with little to no “give” in it whatsoever.
Pounding pavement or concrete all day delivers shocks to the heel and lower leg that human beings just aren’t really made to absorb, so that means you need some work boots that bear the brunt.
As it happens, some are designed for absorbing that shock and protecting your feet – keeping you comfortable and less prone to injury – and then some are not. If your job has you pounding up and down a hard slab of concrete all day, you want the ones that are.
Here are three types of work boots that are excellent choices for walking on concrete all day.
Wedge Sole Work Boots
Wedge sole work boots are a classic choice of work boot in general, but one of the areas in which they shine is jobs where you’re on concrete all day. They’ve been popular choices with factory workers, mechanics and other workers for years, and for good reason.
So, why the wedge sole?
A wedge sole puts a solid slab of material underneath the heel, typically rubber or a similar material that absorbs a lot of the shock of walking on concrete. Since the material in question has a little “give” – but not much – the wedge sole is absorbing the impact, almost like a bumper on a car.
Some people also prefer the wedge sole design because there’s minimal heel drop, meaning the foot is almost flat. You’ll notice a bit more of a planted feel, a bit more of a barefoot feel compared to typical boots with a raised heel.
Some folks say it’s a work boot that feels almost like a pair of sneakers. After all, the heel is closer to a pair of Chuck Taylors than what you usually think of for work boots.
However, that’s also what turns some people off. Some people find they prefer them, and some people don’t for exactly those reasons. That much is completely up to you; you’ll either love them and find they are precisely what you’re looking for or you won’t.
That all said, wedge sole work boots are a classic work boot design for good reason, for people in a lot of different trades. If you’re working in a warehouse, factory or other work that has you on hard concrete all day, they’re definitely a great choice.
Logger-Style Work Boot
The classic logger-style work boot is also a great choice for working on concrete, due to the raised heel.
The logger style of boot is a solid choice of work boot for ANY trade, let alone for loggers, because of the shock absorbing nature of a raised heel with a thick rubber sole such as a Vibram lug.
The raised heel puts more material between your foot and the ground, keeping your heel from absorbing the impact and putting more of it into the heel and the footbed of the boot. That’s how work boots are supposed to work, and that helps to keep your feet from taking a beating.
What’s important when you’re working on concrete is keeping your feet from taking the punishment of walking on a hard surface. Wedge soles work very well for that, and so does a raised heel on a logger-style boot.
Footbed construction also matters a great deal too, so just because you find a pair of logger boots for a very modest price doesn’t mean that will mean comfortable feet. You need a well-made pair of boots that offer the necessary support to begin with.
The Classic 8-Inch Work Boot
Your classic 8-inch work boot with a moderate heel – similar to a classic combat boot is also a good choice for working on concrete.
If you wanted a solid boot for working on hard surfaces, but didn’t quite want a raised heel, a more standard heel profile is perfectly suited so long as the boots are made well. Again, you need a well-made footbed and a boot that’s built to be durable.
The heritage boots of today were the work boots of yesterday, after all.
In fact, work boots of exactly that kind of design launched a certain “British” boot brand (we won’t say who…but it rhymes with “Smock Martin”) that was initially very popular with postal carriers and factory workers, but later became a fashion boot…and are said to now have build quality to match.
Having a slightly lower heel can be a bit more comfortable for many people, as a raised heel block causes some people to drag their heels a bit. The lower profile feels a little more planted, a little closer to a natural stride, which some prefer.
That much is personal preference; you’ll either prefer the lower heel or you won’t.
Regardless, what’s going to keep your feet comfortable while standing and working on concrete all day is a boot that’s built to give your feet the support they need. Invest in a pair of work boots that’s made to do that, and you’ll get more than your money’s worth.