The Hoka Gaviota Sneakers Have Me Walking Pain-Free for the First Time in Years

My injury-prone knees feel completely supported thanks to these super cushioned shoes.

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Courtesy of Merchant

After sitting in front of my computer all day for work, there's nothing I love more than unwinding with a podcast and a long walk. Walking has innumerable benefits—from reducing stress to boosting immunity—and it's an easy way to stay active, get your blood flowing, and stretch muscles. Unfortunately, if you're like me and struggle with knee pain, you already know that a nice stroll around the neighborhood can quickly turn into limp home.

A past knee injury had me dealing with chronic knee pain for years, and I had no idea that simply switching up my footwear could be the X-Factor in getting my steps back. After years of on-and-off physical therapy, I overheard a friend raving about how comfortable her new sneakers were to walk in. Even though I initially thought they were more fashionable than functional, I was intrigued and bought a pair of the Hoka One One Gaviota 3 sneakers, and they've been my favorite shoes ever since.

Designed with comfort and stability in mind, the Hoka One One Gaviota 3 sneaker feels like stepping into a cloud. A firm back exterior that cradles the heel and Hoka's signature J-frame (read: extra padding on the inner side of the sole) work together to prevent overpronation, a common contributor to knee pain. Best of all, the Gaviota 3s deliver on their promise of "over-plushness" with more than an inch of soft, shock-absorbing foam to help curb pressure on your knees.

Unlike high-intensity activities like running and HIIT, the shoes I wore for walking had always been an afterthought, and their lack of support was causing my joint pain to become progressively worse. The first time I laced the Gaviota sneakers up, I knew it would be love at the first step. After about a mile of walking, the point when my knees usually demanded a break, I felt completely supported and remarkably pain-free. Now that I've walked in these shoes multiple times a week for over a year, I rarely feel pain while walking, even after a few miles. An added bonus: They're still in great shape, and I haven't needed to replace them yet, making the price point totally worth it, too.

HOKA Gaviota

To Buy: Hoka One One Gaviota 3 Running Shoe

But I'm not the only fan of these sneakers. They've garnered nearly 400 five-star reviews from shoppers on the Hoka One One site, with many—from pregnant women to amusement park enthusiasts to runners with injuries—claiming that they help keep them comfortable for many hours on their feet while easing knee pain.

One customer wrote: "If you have issues with feet, knees or hips. These are the most comfortable sneakers. No more pain when walking."

"I have many feet issues, [and] to add, I am overweight," shared another. "I was able to stand for most of the day for my job and my feet AND knees were not sore (recovering from a knee injury). Already picking out my next pair!

"I'm able to run 7-mile runs, several times a week, even with a torn meniscus in this shoe, and without knee pain," reported a final reviewer.

If you're ready to conquer knee pain and reclaim your walking routine, check out the Hoka One One Gaviota 3 sneaker at Hoka, Nordstrom, or Zappos. You won't be sorry.

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