Breaking in new shoes doesn’t have to break the bank – or your feet


There is a plethora of shoe styles worn by students at K-State football games: from the go-to Nike Free to the ever popular Sperry Top-Sider, game day could have its own fashion show.

About halfway through the first quarter, however, moans of feet and leg pains start to mix into the chants of school pride. Students dedicated to standing through the entire game realize that their shoes, while game day ready, seriously lack in comfort.

Shoes provide students the support they need to make it through both game and school days. It’s important to look for styles that will stand the wear and tear of college life without wearing out your wallet.


College students spend hours standing and walking throughout the school year, so comfort is always a big factor when choosing the appropriate footwear.

“I made a stupid decision and wore flip flops on the first day of class and now I have a huge blister on the bottom of my foot,” Jared Rice, junior in management and entrepreneurship, said.

Rice said he would wear the better option, his Asics Running Shoes, to class the following week.

According to Luke Byron, general manager at Tradehome Shoes in Manhattan Town Center, comfort is the most important thing to look for in a pair of shoes.

“The best thing to do is get the right shoe for you; not necessarily what your friends wear, but what works best for your unique needs and feel,” Byron said. “Some people like a really thick arch. Some people like a really soft shoe.”

Byron said that a lot of the most common foot ailments can be cured by wearing shoes that fit well and give your feet the right amount of support.


While looks and comfort matter, the price tag is often a deciding factor for college students when it comes to purchasing shoes.

“Cost comes first, because I don’t have a lot of extra money,” Ramsey Hundley, sophomore in milling science and management, said. “Comfort, because I don’t want sore feet or a backache because of my shoes. Then style, because I’m not really a stylish person. I don’t put a lot of stock into my shoes according to my outfit.”

According to Byron, the standard price of a stylish shoe (that is also comfortable) would cost around $100. However, it can be difficult for students to justify that alongside all their other expenses. Fortunately, there are other solutions on hand that don’t require you to break the bank in the name of comfort.

Any shoe with a removable insole can easily be made into a comfortable shoe. Wal-Mart has shoe inserts that offer extra support and padding on sale anywhere from $5.72 to $49.96. Depending on the quality, amount of cushion and support, the price will vary.

“An insert will make a shoe a lot more comfortable,” Byron said. “A decent insert will be around $20 or $30 dollars.”


Although reasonably priced and comfortability are practical requirements, style can be just as important to some.

“I really like the way things look and I want it to match well,” Makayla Leslie, junior in agriculture education, said. “When I’m just looking at everyday shoes or boots, I look a lot at style.”

Many students buy Birkenstock sandals, because they are stylish, comfortable shoes with good arch support. Chacos are a strappy sandal that, while originally made for white water rafting, have gained popularity in the Midwest as a comfortable and supportive summer sandal perfect for the lake, camp and walking long distances.

There are also many running shoe brands known not just for for comfort and support, but also for their looks such as Asics Gel-Zarcara, Brooks, Saucony Cohesion and New Balance 3010.

Finding a comfortable, stylish shoe at the right price can be tricky. However, comfortable shoes for a college student that’s constantly on the go can be a very wise investment.

So before you leave for class, make sure your outfit is complete with a comfortable, good-looking pair of shoes. Your feet, and the rest of your body, will thank you for at the end of the day.