Whether you’re new to running or a seasoned marathoner, you need the right shoes to get started. But there are so many choices on the market today that even people who know what they want in a shoe can quickly feel overwhelmed.
It can be hard to find the best running shoes for you, especially if you are just starting out. When shopping for other kinds of shoes, you really only need to think about the price, how they look, and how comfortable they are. But if you want the best running shoes, there are a lot of other things to think about and a lot of lingo to learn.
Types of Running Shoes
Neutral Running Shoes:
Neutral running shoes provide a balanced combination of cushioning and support. They are designed for runners with normal arches, offering a stable and natural stride.
Ideal Use: Ideal for runners with a neutral gait who don’t overpronate or supinate.
Stability Running Shoes:
Stability running shoes are engineered with additional arch support to correct mild to moderate overpronation. They feature denser foam or a medial post to prevent excessive inward rolling of the foot.
Ideal Use: Best for runners with low to flat arches who overpronate and need added support.
Motion Control Running Shoes:
Motion control shoes are the most supportive type, ideal for severe overpronators. They feature a robust structure, including a significant medial post, to limit excessive foot movement.
Ideal Use: Suited for runners with flat feet and severe overpronation.
Minimalist Running Shoes:
Minimalist shoes offer a stripped-down design with minimal cushioning and a low heel-to-toe drop. They encourage a natural, midfoot or forefoot strike.
Ideal Use: Designed for experienced runners seeking a more minimalist and natural running experience.
Maximalist Running Shoes:
Maximalist shoes feature thick midsoles with ample cushioning. They are designed for runners who prioritize cushioning and shock absorption to reduce impact on joints.
Ideal Use: Suitable for long-distance runners or those looking for superior comfort.
Trail Running Shoes:
Trail shoes are built tough for off-road adventures. They have aggressive outsoles with deep lugs for traction, durable uppers to protect against debris, and rock plates for underfoot protection.
Ideal Use: Perfect for trail runners tackling rugged terrain, including dirt paths, rocks, and mud.
Road Running Shoes:
Road running shoes are optimized for smooth, paved surfaces. They are lightweight and offer a balance of cushioning and responsiveness.
Ideal Use: Great for everyday road runners and those training on tracks or city streets.
Sprint Racing Shoes:
Sprint racing shoes are minimalist and ultralight. They focus on speed and feature thin soles with spikes for traction on the track.
Ideal Use: Designed for sprinters competing in short-distance races like the 100m or 200m.
Distance Racing Shoes:
Distance racing shoes are lightweight and balanced, offering moderate cushioning. They are designed for long-distance races like marathons and provide a blend of comfort and speed.
Ideal Use: Suited for runners aiming for personal records in longer races.
Cross-training shoes are versatile and suitable for a variety of workouts, including running, weightlifting, and agility exercises. They provide stability and support for different activities.
Ideal Use: Ideal for individuals who engage in multiple types of training and need a versatile shoe.
What To Look For While Buying The Best Running Shoes