Best Shoes to Wear After Knee Replacement Surgery

My goal as a physical therapist is to keep this simple and not discuss 500 different types and styles of shoes.  I did comb over a few other ‘review’ articles on the subject and even I felt overwhelmed after reading about so many shoe brands!

best shoes to wear after knee replacement surgery

For the purposes of this shoe wear discussion, I will assume you are in the early phase of your TKR recovery.  By this I mean the first 6-8 weeks after your knee replacement surgery and not 10 years down the road after surgery.

You may not be a shoe wearer around the house and that’s ok as you will not be doing a lot of walking early on.  However, when you are ready to move out and about from the house it is extremely important to have the proper shoes after your knee replacement.

Wear Shoes With Support Over Style After TKR

The most important aspect of your shoes after knee replacement is the amount of support they give you.  Your new knee needs cushioning and weight support to best recover and allow your maximum potential early on.

I always recommend walking or athletic shoes for all of my patients when they are in this phase of recovery.  Wearing heels, flats, sandals or dress shoes in the first few months after knee replacement would not be recommended simply because they do not provide enough cushioning and support.

You may have comfortable sandals which could possibly provide some support however most sandals do not provide the lateral side to side support your knee replacement requires.  For this reason I would not recommend any sandals early on after TKR.

Should I Buy New Shoes After My Knee Replacement?

If you have regular athletic shoes that provide support and proper fit, there’s really no reason for you to go out and get a new pair.  Your regular running or walking shoes will be just fine after your knee surgery.

However, if you are in need of a new pair of shoes or just want to start fresh, it can be confusing to figure out which pair to choose.  To make your decision easier I will recommend 6 pairs of shoes for both women and men that will work to give you great comfort and support. 

PT SHOE RECOMMENDATIONS POST OP KNEE REPLACEMENT

The below recommendations have been gathered after years of discussion and evaluation from my patients who have had knee replacements.  While I have not worn these shoes myself as I have not have a knee replacement, I feel extremely comfortable recommending these shoes to you.

Also, you can purchase these shoes anywhere that you find them either online or in store.  There is no need to use the provided links.  Your foot may require a higher arch or larger width so please make sure to choose the shoe that fits your individual foot. 

Best Slip On Shoes After Knee Replacement – Unisex

1. Kizik The Madrid Eco-Knit Slip-On Sneakers  ~ $99

kizikthemadrid

Why Kizik? 

Kizik walking shoes are my choice for one main feature: They are designed to slip on and off easily while also having a heel for support.  The rebound heel design of Kizik shoes allows you to keep the shoe laces tied and slip into and out of the shoes effortlessly.  

Kizik shoes also provide excellent cushioning and support with their F.A.S.T. technology design.  In addition, The Madrid shoes have a 4.4 out of 5 star rating Amazon with over 2400 ratings.

Where to Get?  You can get on Amazon and also on the Kizik website at roughly the same price point.  

Additional Information:  Kizik The Madrid shoes use fabric mesh made from 100% recycled water bottles.  The mesh fabric also allows extra stretch in case you still have some swelling after your knee replacement.

Bottom Line: After your new knee replacement, the Kizik Madrid shoes will give you excellent support, lightweight design and easy on and off to make your recovery easier.

2. Kizik The Prague Slip-On Sneaker – $109

Why? As discussed above Kizik shoes are extremely easy to get on with their rebound heel design.  The Prague shoe has unique ‘Rabbit Foam’ signature outsoles that provide an additional layer of comfort and cushioning.

Where to Get?  Amazon and Kizik website

Bottom Line: The Kizik Prague shoes add an additional layer of foam support cushioning (Rabbit Foam) for an additional price tag.  Also lightweight and accommodating, these shoes will provide you excellent 

2 Best Women’s Shoes After Total Knee Replacement

1. New Balance Women’s DRFT V1 Running Shoe – $69.95

Why New Balance?  New Balance shoes are widely regarded as one of the most versatile running and walking shoes available.  The DRFT Shoe has ACTEVA midsole cushioning which provides additional support you will benefit from with your knee replacement.

New Balance Women's DRFT V1

Where to Get?  Amazon, Kohl’s and New Balance website.  The Madrid shoes have a 4.5 star out of 5 rating Amazon with over 5300 ratings.

Bottom Line:  The New Balance DRFT Shoes are an affordable supportive shoe that will serve you well with your new knee replacement.  My favorite women’s running/waliking shoe after knee replacement.

2.  Saucony Women’s Grid Excursion TR12 Sneaker – $59.95

Why Saucony?  Saucony has been one of the most reliable athletic shoes and a choice of many experienced athletes worldwide.  The Grid Excursion TR12s are a great choice after knee replacement as the grip on the sole will give you additional traction outside on all surfaces.

By providing this additional anti-slip support, you will be able to more comfortably walk outside of the home in all manners.  Slopes and unsteady areas such as grass and gravel can put extra stress on your knee so having strong traction is key.

Where to Get?  Amazon, Zappos and Saucony websites

Bottom Line: My favorite women’s all purpose trail and all-terrain shoe after knee replacement surgery.  

2 Best Men’s Shoes After Total Knee Replacement

1. New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker – $75

Why?  New Balance sneakers are again one of the most versatile athletic shoes available.  The Fresh Foam Road V1 Sneakers are one of the most often purchased shoes online for their combination of support and comfort.  

The Road V1 shoes have Ndurance rubber technology on the sole to provide reliable long lasting support in the high wear areas normally broken down over time.  It also boasts the Ultra Heel to provide additional heel support where needed.

Where to Get?  Amazon, Kohl’s and New Balance website.  The Fresh Foam Road shoes have a 4.6 star out of 5 rating Amazon with over 12000 ratings.

Bottom Line:  The New Balance Fresh Foam Road V1 Sneakers are an affordable cushioned sneaker that will serve you well with your new knee replacement.  My favorite men’s running/walking shoe after knee replacement.  

2.  Saucony Men’s Excursion TR12 Sneaker – $65

Why Saucony?  Saucony provides a comfortable and reliable athletic shoe, a choice of many experienced trail runners worldwide.  The Excursion TR12s are a great choice after knee replacement as the GRID cushioning system grip on the sole will give you additional traction outside on all surfaces including slopes and grass.

Having this additional anti-slip GRID support, you will be able to more comfortably walk outside of the home in all manners.  Slopes and unsteady areas such as grass and gravel can put extra stress on your knee so having strong shoe traction is key.

Where to Get?  Amazon, Zappos and Saucony websites

Bottom Line: My favorite men’s all purpose trail and all-terrain shoe after knee replacement surgery.  

Final Thoughts on Best Shoes to Wear After Knee Replacement Surgery

Best Unisex Easy On/Off Shoes After Knee Replacement:  

  • Kizik The Madrid – $99
  • Kizik The Prague – $109

Best Women’s Shoes After Knee Replacement

  • New Balance Women’s DRFT V1 Running Shoe – $69.95
  • Saucony Women’s Grid Excursion TR12 Sneaker – $59.95

Best Men’s Shoes After Knee Replacement

  • New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker – $75
  • Saucony Men’s Excursion TR12 Sneaker – $65
About Jeffrey Roth MPT

Owner and operator of Roth Therapy Services in Pittsburgh, PA focusing on in home rehabilitation physical therapy services.

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