The best running shoes for every type of runner
No one says running isn’t hard. He is. But running also improves heart health, cardio fitness and strength, while reducing stress and mental fatigue. To get these benefits you have to work, but you can’t work without the right equipment.
What you need to get there – literally, in fact – is a great pair of running shoes. Because you can’t pull on old sneakers and reap the health benefits. In fact, hitting the trail with shoes that aren’t specifically designed for running will only make it harder and could injure you.
The first thing you’ll notice when shopping for running shoes is how many options you have. It can be totally overwhelming. That’s why lists like this exist. We’re here to help (yeah, we’re nice like that). That’s why we’ve condensed all the essential information and the best options available.
What are the best running shoe brands?
You will probably come across a lot of big names, like Adidas and Nike. These brands offer a wide range of running shoes for all budgets, with a few standout examples that stand out in this roundup. We’ve also included running shoes from lesser-known brands like Hoka and Saucony. There is something for everyone.
What are neutral running shoes?
If you’re new to running — or even just a casual runner — you might not know the tech lingo. Neutral running shoes are for runners who have a neutral gait, meaning they don’t overpronate when running (more on that below). A neutral running gait means that the outside heel of the foot makes the first contact with the ground and the heel then gently rolls in, so that the rest of the foot makes contact with the ground. The foot then pushes with all the toes at once. About half of all runners have a neutral running style, and most running shoes, unless otherwise specified, tend to be neutral.
What is pronation?
It’s when you roll your foot inward, so a runner’s feet are never fully flat on the ground. The inside of the foot touches the ground and they push off with the big toes. It’s overpronation. It is also possible to underpronate, where the outside foot makes contact. If you are prone to pronation, consider getting a pair of stable running shoes. These are designed to provide support and compensate for pronation. They improve comfort and reduce the risk of injury.
What are the most important features of running shoes?
There are a lot of factors to consider before buying a pair of running shoes – which will determine all the kids you need. For example, what surface are you going to run on? What kind of distances will you cover? Does your approach require something more specialized? Some basic features to look out for include:
The midsole — This is integrated into the sole and provides cushioning and shock absorption.
The upper portion — The upper part of the shoe. It is usually made from high performance mesh to maintain airflow around your feet.
the buttress — This is the molding on the back of the shoe that holds your foot securely in place.
The middle post — A stabilizing mechanism found in stability shoes.
The toe box — The end where your toes go. (Yes, self-explanatory.)
We don’t expect you to thoroughly review every shoe on the market, but it’s worth keeping these things in mind when making your selection.
What are the best running shoes?
We’ll level you up: there’s no objectively superior running shoe that we’re going to recommend above all others. Everyone is different, with a different set of requirements and preferences. To find a running shoe that’s right for you, it’s important to carefully consider fit, support, style and, of course, price. The options highlighted below should be a good starting point.
So, on your marks… these are the best running shoes in 2022.