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Best Jogging Shoes Reviewed & Rated for Quality

last updated Nov 16, 2018

Jogging is great for our health unless we have awful footwear to do it in – then it literally becomes a pain. The good news is that looking for the perfect pair of jogging sneakers has never been easier. The ones on this list have a number of added benefits and features that will make your exercise routine so much better! In 1917, Goodyear produced the first real athletic shoe. Since that time, they have come very long way in the sense of style, technology, and comfort. With many choices to choose from, we have done a lot of research for you to come up with ten of the best pairs available today!

Your feet are everything to you. Having constant pain in your feet is definitely a drag when it comes to working out. To avoid painful feet and injury, choosing a shoe that will support your athletic needs is very important. Improper footwear can lead to debilitating orthopedic conditions, eventually putting a halt to whatever it is that you enjoy doing. As important as comfortable athletic clothes are to this activity, the correct shoe is equally as important, as you will need the most comfortable and appropriate shoe to help you maintain your performance. Depending on your feet, there are different features that you will need to look for.

Arch support is key when it comes to eliminating pain during your jogs. If you do not have the proper arch support, your feet will feel as if they are ready to give up, just steps into the jog. While the activity creates shock, shock absorbing footwear is also incredibly beneficial. Here, you will find a large selection of runners that offer qualities to fit your needs as an athlete or for everyday use. Put pain in the past, shop for your comfort!

Researched Sources
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Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
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Hours Researching
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Products Evaluated
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Last Updated:
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By AndrewDJ:

We've updated our list to reflect the latest trends, styles and technologies, while reevaluating our criteria to ensure we bring you the best options available. Check it out!

Sorting Options
Comfort Flexibility Support Traction Weight By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88
Comfort
90%
Flexibility
80%
Support
90%
Traction
90%
Weight
90%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$52.67
2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Comfort
80%
Flexibility
80%
Support
80%
Traction
90%
Weight
90%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$77.99
3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83
Comfort
80%
Flexibility
75%
Support
85%
Traction
80%
Weight
95%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$119.17
4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81
Comfort
85%
Flexibility
75%
Support
75%
Traction
85%
Weight
85%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$69.99
5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81
Comfort
90%
Flexibility
70%
Support
70%
Traction
85%
Weight
90%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$69.99
6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
79
Comfort
75%
Flexibility
80%
Support
85%
Traction
80%
Weight
75%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$64.95
7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
77
Comfort
80%
Flexibility
75%
Support
70%
Traction
75%
Weight
85%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$52.88
8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
75
Comfort
80%
Flexibility
70%
Support
75%
Traction
70%
Weight
80%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$67.71
9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72
Comfort
70%
Flexibility
75%
Support
70%
Traction
75%
Weight
70%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$49.99
10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
70
Comfort
75%
Flexibility
65%
Support
75%
Traction
70%
Weight
65%
Price Comparison Last Updated (21.11.18)
$74.93
In Depth Review Top 10
  • Skechers Sport Equalizer 2.0
  • Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0
  • Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35
  • Under Armour Micro G Assert 6
  • Onemix Air Cushion
  • ASICS GEL-Venture 5
  • NIKE Revolution 3
  • Vibram KSO EVO
  • PUMA Osu NM
  • Mizuno Wave Rider 19
Table of contents
  • Criteria Used for Evaluation
  • Other Factors to Consider
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Sources

10 Best Jogging Shoes

1. Skechers Sport Equalizer 2.0

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88
2. Skechers Sport Equalizer 2.0
Comfort
90
Flexibility
80
Support
90
Traction
90
Weight
90
best offer for today
$52.67
Pros:
  • Arch Support
  • Gel Cooled Memory Foam
  • Mesh Material
  • Exceptional Flexibility
Cons:
  • Weak Lace Loops

With a high impact absorption, the Skechers Sports Men's equalizer 2.0 True Balance Sneaker is the perfect shoe for your daily jogs or casual walks in the park. Dual support for the foot and heel make this shoe incredibly comfortable and will support your feet with every move that you make. Added comfort at the collar, this shoe will make sure you are comfortable from toe to heel, at an attractive price.

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Gel-Cool Memory Foam
The Skechers Sports Men's equalizer 2.0 True Balance Sneaker offers a gel cooled memory foam that is both cooling and designed to take a bigger hit than normal foams. The gel cooled memory foam throws away heat and brings in the cool, allowing your feet to remain comfortable.

Lightweight
The Skechers Sports Men's equalizer 2.0 True Balance Sneaker is one of the lightest sneakers available in this market. Made with durable, yet powerful lightweight materials, this shoe is both made to last and give a natural feel with all of your performance needs.

Cost and Value
Full of sturdy stability, the Skechers Sports Men's equalizer 2.0 True Balance Sneaker gives a lightweight and comfortable feel while protecting your feet from hard impact. With great absorption, this shoe is known to keep comfort for miles with advanced technology throughout the sole that stops shock and gel cooled memory foam to enhance cooling features. All at an affordable price.

2. Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
5. Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0
Comfort
80
Flexibility
80
Support
80
Traction
90
Weight
90
best offer for today
$77.99
Pros:
  • Toe Wrap
  • EVA Midsole
  • Internal Fit Frame
  • Protection Wrap
  • Metasplit Flex Grooves
Cons:
  • Arch Support Very High
  • Runs Wide

Made for the elements, the Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe has an amazing toe wrap that is designed to keep your feet moving in any situation. The Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe offers so many added features that will make your head spin. Metasplit flex grooves keep your feet moving while ultimate lightweight materials make up this shoe to give you a natural feel, every time.

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Internal Fit Frame
With the added durability of the Internal Fit Frame, the Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe is made to last. Giving you optimal support and protection, these are known to get the job done without a flinch. Now that's durable!

EVA Midsole
The Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe offers the amazing foam EVA midsole for maximum comfort and contour. The EVA Midsole is designed to protect your feet from impact while absorbing any shock that may hit your shoe. The Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe has comfort in every step.

Cost and Value
Stay aligned and comfortable in the Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe. EVA midsole will help shield and protect the foot while added durability helps maintain this shoe. Versatile, this shoe is designed to control your step in a natural way and retain great traction on any surface. Added toe wrap allows your to jog in the rain or shine, keeping your feet out of the elements and safe from environmental hazards. How could you say no to the Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 Training Shoe?

3. Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83
6. Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35
Comfort
80
Flexibility
75
Support
85
Traction
80
Weight
95
best offer for today
$119.17
Pros:
  • Flywire Cables
  • Crash Rail Underfoot
  • Heel Zoom Air Unit
  • Flexible Forefoot
  • Rubber Sole
  • Mesh Construction
Cons:

Runs Narrow

Difficult To Clean

The Pegasus was one of the earliest runners ever built and this model is an especially strong athletic shoe. It has built-in cushioning via the Zoom Air unit in the heel and the crash rail, but it also sports a rubber outsole for traction and a breathable mesh upper for temperature management. This Nike model is excellent for jogging.

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Flywire Cables
The Flywire Cables in this shoe are filaments built into the upper of the shoe to provide support and a secure fit. These cables connect the shoelaces to the outsole.

Crash Rail Underfoot
The crash rail is a rubber strip built into the outsole of the shoe for a smoother jog or run. It reduces the impact of each step on your feet.

Cost and Value
The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35 shoe can be found for a middle-to-high price, depending on where you get it. The Pegasus is a well-established and popular Nike product line.

4. Under Armour Micro G Assert 6

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81
4. Under Armour Micro G Assert 6
Comfort
85
Flexibility
75
Support
75
Traction
85
Weight
85
best offer for today
$69.99
Pros:
  • Odor Free
  • Micro G Foam
  • EVA Shock Liner
  • Added Stability To Lock In Foot
Cons:
  • Runs Small
  • Narrow Shoe Wall

The excellent benefits that the Under Armour Micro G Assert 6 has to offer is totally worth the price. Specializing in comfort, the Under Armour Micro G Assert 6 has several different technologies that will ensure maximum comfort and durability. Lightweight and stylish this shoe will support your every need and can be worn everywhere.

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Eva Shockliner
The Under Armour Micro G Assert 6 offers a cushy, comfortable insert that that helps absorb extreme shocks from everyday runs or hikes. The EVA Shockliner is designed to mold and contour to the foot, giving maximum support.

Micro G Foam
The Under Armour Micro G Assert 6 has an added foam insert that is incredible to take off and stop for all your needs as a runner. The Micro G foam is the most responsive foam that can be put into a shoe as it is incredibly bouncy.

Cost and Value
With all of the unique features of this shoe, it will be hard for you to pass it up. The Under Armour Micro G Assert 6 offers a bouncy Micro G foam that that contours to your feet giving maximum comfort and stability. The mesh upper offers constant breathability and a no odor material, keeping them long lasting and money saving.

5. Onemix Air Cushion

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81
8. Onemix Air Cushion
Comfort
90
Flexibility
70
Support
70
Traction
85
Weight
90
best offer for today
$69.99
Pros:
  • Air Cushioned
  • Deodorant Foam
  • No-Slip Traction
  • Stylish
  • Not Glued
Cons:
  • Runs Narrow
  • Tight In Toes

This lightweight shoe is made to feel as if you are walking on clouds. What more could you want in a shoe? The Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion is made with an air cushion support that helps you glide through your work out and gives you the maximum support. Made durable, this shoe is not put together with glue and will not fall apart within the first few months. Best value around!

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Air Cushion Sole
The Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion has an airy feel to it. The air cushioned soles provide the right bounce to keep your game strong. The air cushioned soles are also in place to keep the feet in shape by absorbing maximum shocks. Keep your feet fit and safe from pain with the Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion.

Traction
The Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion offers a great multi-surface traction that will assist in performance and grip. Run, walk, or drive in them and feel safe knowing you will not slip.

Cost and Value
The Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion is one of the best air-cushioned models available on the market to date! They will protect your feet and keep a great traction at all times while on the field. The added deodorant foam will keep both your feet and sneakers smelling fresh and also keep you in style with the great colors to chose from. All at an attractive rate, feel the freedom that the Onemix Lightweight Air Cushion have to offer you!

6. ASICS GEL-Venture 5

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
79
3. ASICS GEL-Venture 5
Comfort
75
Flexibility
80
Support
85
Traction
80
Weight
75
best offer for today
$64.95
Pros:
  • Orthopedic Insole
  • Gel Cushion
  • Arch Support
  • Multi-Surface Grip
  • Mesh Upper
Cons:
  • Runs Large

Relax your feet in the ASICS GEL-Venture 5. Each shoe is designed to prevent pain and assist in each step you take. With the ability to absorb shock, they will keep your feet stabilized at all times. The ASICS GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoe offers a trail sole with multi-traction purposes. You can use this shoe to carry you in comfort, where ever you go.

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Gel Cushioning System
The ASICS GEL-Venture 5 offers a gel cushioning system that will absorb shock with every step that you take. The gel cushioning system spreads throughout the entire sole of the shoe, offering you maximum comfort at all times.

Traction
The ASICS GEL-Venture 5 offers a trail like sole with multi-surface traction. Take it anywhere outdoors and know that you will have supreme slip resistance to natures natural elements.

Cost and Value
The ASICS GEL-Venture 5 has a lot to offer the runner. Mesh upper allows a constant airflow on hot and sweaty days while a gel cushion gives you an excellent sense of comfort. Stay pain-free with the ASICS GEL-Venture 5's orthopedic, removable sole. With a grip this strong, you can't pass this up!

7. NIKE Revolution 3

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
77
7. NIKE Revolution 3
Comfort
80
Flexibility
75
Support
70
Traction
75
Weight
85
best offer for today
$52.88
Pros:
  • Mesh Upper
  • Foam Insole
  • Padded Collar And Tongue
  • Added Arch Support
Cons:
  • Seams Pull Away

The NIKE Revolution 3 is a super durable yet lightweight runner that is bound to get you from place to place in comfort and style. With a mesh upper the Nike Revolution 3 is bound to keep you on your toes with limited weight and constant air flow. The added arch support takes the shock out of your step.

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Mesh Upper
The Nike Revolution 3 is made with a mesh upper that gives constant breathability. Benefits of mesh include airflow, disease-free feet, comfort, and flexibility. Mesh will keep your feet stink free too!

Padded Tongue and Collar
The Nike Revolution 3 offers extra padding for your comfort. The tongue and collar of this shoe keep constant comfort and support with extra padding in this shoe. The extra padding will help prevent rubbing and pain and also maintain stability in the ankle.

Cost and Value
Comfort and stability are key benefits of the Nike Revolution 3. Maintaining constant stability, the collar and tongue of this shoe assist in great support. The mesh upper allows for sweaty feet to be a thing of the past and protects them from foul odor. Shock absorbing foam insoles will assist in running or walking on any surface. The benefits outweigh the cost with the Nike Revolution 3.

8. Vibram KSO EVO

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
75
9. Vibram KSO EVO
Comfort
80
Flexibility
70
Support
75
Traction
70
Weight
80
best offer for today
$67.71
Pros:
  • Fivefinger Technology
  • EVA Midsole
  • Speed Lace 
  • Vibram Outsole
  • Soft Lining
Cons:
  • Difficult To Break In

The Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe is a diverse and incredibly lightweight shoe that makes your jog go by fast and easy. This shoe fits very natural to the foot, keeping a natural feel on jogging. Icetrek outsoles make any surface a playing field with the Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe. Light padding gives you maximum comfort and speed lace systems allow you to get up and go. With a shoe this good, you will feel as if you are jogging barefoot with an added outsole.

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Vibram Outsole
The Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe offers an outsole so good, it makes it versatile for a variety of surfaces, even during the winter months. The maximum grip on the bottom of the Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe makes any dry, wet, slippery, or icy surface, a place for a jog.

FiveFinger Feel
The Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe offers the best feel for your feet by providing a slot for each toe. This comfortable experience is designed to give you a natural feel with ultimate comfort as you jog.

Cost and Value
The all natural Vibram KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe gives you optimal comfort with thick midsoles that absorb shock and Fivefinger technology that gives you a natural feel. Lightweight bungee laces give you a secure fit and easy on and off access to this shoe. As versatile as this shoe is, jog on any surface and stay upright with the maximum grip that this shoe offers.

9. PUMA Osu NM

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72
10. PUMA Osu NM
Comfort
70
Flexibility
75
Support
70
Traction
75
Weight
70
best offer for today
$49.99
Pros:
  • No Lace
  • Added Strap For Security
  • Grooved Outsole
  • Spacious
  • Mesh Material
Cons:
  • Narrow Sole Bed

Looking for the best running shoe at an excellent rate? These super cool sneakers will support your feet and allow a constant flow of air. The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe has a grooved sole with a strap for easy on and off. The strap also serves the purpose of constant ankle support while running or walking. This laceless cross trainer is the best bang for your buck!

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Roomy
The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe is an excellent shoe in the sense of flexibility and allowing extra toe room. The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe fits snug while also giving your toes and feet that extra room for a natural feel. Added flexibility allows a step up in performance and speed!

Grooved Sole
The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe has a grooved sole that offers a lot to the feet. With a shock absorption like none other, the grooved sole also allows added cushion for the comfort. The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe has an excellent grip due to the grooved sole, making this an all-purpose shoe.

Cost and Value
Ready, set, run! The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe has an excellent cushy and comfy feel that will keep your feet on clouds all day long. At an affordable price, the PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe offers you features that the most expensive shoe carries. Being as this shoe is a no lace, an added strap allows you to secure your foot at the right comfort for the morning run. The PUMA Osu NM Cross-Training Shoe is an incredibly stylish shoe that will leave your competitors jealous for their own.

10. Mizuno Wave Rider 19

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
70
1. Mizuno Wave Rider 19
Comfort
75
Flexibility
65
Support
75
Traction
70
Weight
65
best offer for today
$74.93
Pros:
  • Parallel Wave
  • X10 Carbon Heel
  • U4ic Midsole
  • Extreme Flexibility
  • Removable Contoured Insole
Cons:
  • Bunching In The Midsole

The all-purpose Mizuno Wave Rider 19 runner demands comfort from the flexible outsole and foam insole. This shoe is highly rated for its mesh upper, offering supreme breathability and the outsole that creates a smooth heel to toe connection. Contouring and cooling, the Mizuno Wave Rider 19 is ideal for any occasion and provides a fresh, comfortable stride, every time.

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X10 Carbon Rubber Heel
The Mizuno Wave Rider 19 offers maximum comfort with its X10 Carbon heel technology. This technology provides a comfortable heel to toe stride with every step that you take. Designed to assist in alignment, this shoe is ideal for jogging.

Parallel Wave
Added Parallel Wave technology in the heel is designed to absorb impact and distribute shock waves throughout the shoe rather than maintained in one spot. The Mizuno Wave Rider 19 gives you a very smooth step with this added technology.

Cost and Value
The comfort in the Mizuno Wave Rider 19 is unbelievable. Offering so many features for comfort, this shoe gets high ratings for its shock absorption and extra support to the heel, making your jog totally bearable. Support your feet with the Mizuno Wave Rider 19.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Comfort

Cushioning is essential. When you’re going for a casual walk, cushioning is still important, but going for a run produces more forceful impacts between your feet and the ground. You need sufficient cushioning to protect yourself from injury.

Sir Isaac Newton’s third law of motion states that “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” As such, the force from your foot pressing down on the ground is countered by an equal amount of force pressing back against your foot. These equal reactions between your feet and the ground allow you to push yourself forward. Force is measured in Newtons, named for the scientist that discovered the laws of motion.

According to research performed at Oregon State University, slow runs can exert anywhere from 1083 to 1314 Newtons on your feet. For comparison, ordinary runs can exert 2000-4700 Newtons on your feet per each step, according to Saucony. Each Newton is equal to about four and a half pounds. That means each step exerts the same amount of pressure on your foot as an object weighing 4,050 pounds would exert on a table. Each step could exert as much pound-force as an object weighing 21,150 pounds!

With all of this force being exerted, going barefoot or wearing footwear without cushioning could result in injuries which limit the time you can spend running. It’s imperative to find a shoe with the right amount of cushioning for you. That is to say that the most cushioning available is not always the right amount for each jogger.

Levels of Cushioning
There are three levels of cushioning commonly used in the manufacturing and design of athletic footwear. Minimalist, maximalist, and neutral. A minimalist shoe has the least amount of cushioning possible to reduce the weight and size of the shoe. A maximalist shoe has the most cushioning possible to reduce the most impact. A neutral shoe rests somewhere in the middle.

Which level of cushioning that works best for you depends on your personal tastes, your weight, the amount of it that you do, and the terrain on which you run. A harder surface like pavement would exert more force than a padded floor because the padded floor would shift under you more than the pavement would. The more you weigh, the more pound force that will be exerted with each step. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide how much cushioning you want and need.

Forms of Cushioning
Cushioning comes in a variety of forms. Insoles, midsoles, outsoles, padding, and shoe linings are all used to cushion.

An insole can be a removable footbed in your shoe that can be replaced with a customized orthotic insole with the best amount of cushioning for you. However, not every shoe come with removable insoles, so it would be best for you to choose a shoe with a well-cushioned insole so you wouldn’t need to switch out the insoles for a custom one.

A midsole is found between the outsole and the insole. This sole cannot be replaced, so it would be in your best interests to find a shoe with a well-cushioned midsole.

The outsole is found on the outside of the shoe. It’s the part that makes contact with the ground. Rubber outsoles offer extra cushioning and reduce impact while also supporting stability.

Padding can take the form of a plush tongue, air pockets on the sides, or a padded collar. These don’t reduce impact per se, but they do make your jog a little more comfortable because they reduce painful rubbing and irritation of the foot and ankle.

Shoe linings are generally rather thin, but the softer ones offer a little extra cushioning to complement the cushioning already built into the rest of the shoe.

Flexibility

Firm footwear has its purposes, but taking it for a jog isn’t one of them. You need a shoe that will give just enough with each footfall to allow your foot to move naturally and avoid injury. Similarly, too much flexibility can lead to injury due to lack of support within the shoe.

Consider our earlier discussion about Newton’s Third Law of motion and the importance of cushioning in your footwear. Each step generates up to 1314 Newtons of force on your feet. A hard, inflexible outsole could theoretically snap under the force, making you fall. If the sole didn’t snap, it could still cause severe pain and discomfort, or even injury, to your foot, ankle, or leg via the high impact between your foot and the inflexible sole.

Features of a Flexible Shoe
There are several ways that manufacturers produce flexibility in their footwear, such as rubber soles, flex grooves, mesh construction, and stretchy upper material.

Rubber Soles
You don’t want a leather sole or a sole made with hard heel materials in your shoe. The best soles are generally made of rubber, but some are made with other synthesized materials, such as polyurethane. Rubber soles in particular offer flexibility and traction, so they are the most common.

Flex Grooves
Flex grooves are thin grooves cut into the outsole in small increments to make the sole even more flexible. Some have more drastic grooves built in so that the entire shoe can be bent in a semicircle, while others have subtle grooves which allow some bend, but not that much.

Mesh Construction
Mesh construction is the gift that keeps on giving in this type of footwear. The mesh is lightweight, breathable, and flexible! The mesh can usually be tugged or compressed and it easily returns to its original shape. The slight give in a mesh upper prevents squeezing and painful rubbing of your feet and toes.

Stretchy Upper Fabric
Some manufacturers prefer to use a blend of materials in their fabric which makes their models more flexible than manufacturers developing less stretchy uppers. As with the mesh construction mentioned above, the stretchy fabric prevents painful squeezing and rubbing against your feet and toes for a more comfortable jog.

Support

Unlike cushioning, support is meant to be firm to provide stabilization and prevent injury while you are on the move. The frame of the shoe should be firm enough to prevent your ankles from rolling. Heel support can reduce the likelihood and symptoms of plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the tendon along the bottom of your foot. Arch support also helps joggers with Iliotibial (IT)-Band Syndrome, which results from too much strain on the IT-band tissue in the hip and thigh down through the rest of your leg.

The best options have a healthy balance between cushioning and support so that you may jog in any environment comfortably and safely. However, there are many models that maximize support and they are known as “stability footwear.” Bear in mind that some of them will be firmer and less cushioned than others when you look into them.

Features of a Supportive Shoe
A supportive shoe could have any of the following built into it to maximize support:

  • an exoskeletal heel counter;
  • a firm outsole;
  • a specialized support frame; and
  • a flexible beam and shape built into the outsole.

An exoskeletal heel counter is the back end of the shoe around your Achilles tendon. The heel counter is meant to support your ankle and feet so you don’t roll it.

A firm outsole provides support to your arches. However, too firm of an outsole would be uncomfortable, as it would not bend with your feet.

Some companies devoted a lot of time and energy into creating a stabilizing shoe. As such, there are several types of shoe frames which offer support and stabilization to prevent injury. Hoka One One’s 3-D Puff Print Frame technology is one such example.

Some outsoles incorporate different materials into them for arch support. Some companies use beams across the plantar fascia while others place their support pieces in the curved areas of the foot, such as along the side of your foot, rather than directly beneath it.

Traction

When you are out for a jog, it might start raining. Or it may be cold and there are a few patches of ice on the ground. Or you’re doing it indoors on some slick surface. You need a shoe that will grip the ground so you can jog safely.

The type of outsole and the size and shape of the indentations in the outsole can determine how well your shoe will grip the ground. The ideal shoe would have an outsole that has many indentations it and some of those need to be deeper than the rest. Having more grooves gives them more traction so you don’t slip and fall. The best models have outsoles made out of rubber. Car and motorcycle tires are made with rubber, as well, because it is proven to support traction. Leather soles do not lend themselves well to these activities because they have poor traction, so you would be wise to avoid any shoe with a leather sole.

If you will be doing it in any sort of slick or wet environment, it would behoove you to invest in a shoe which has a strong sole with lots of traction. If you fall and get hurt, you won’t be doing it for a while, and if you fall and get hurt in a remote area, such as a secluded walking trail, it could lead to further injury or even death. Take precautions as you jog: be aware of your surroundings, be prepared for an emergency, and wear footwear with good traction.

Weight

During your jogs, you don’t want ultra-heavy footwear meant for combat, construction work, or cold weather. You want a shoe that weighs less and still includes the features required for a safe, comfortable jog, such as cushioned midsoles and flexible outsoles. However, depending on the environment you plan to jog in and your personal preference, a heavier shoe might be more suitable for your jog. A jog on a mountain or up and down a hill would need footwear with higher ankles and more support to counter the effects of the slant on the mountain or hill on your feet. The more built into and onto the shoe will make the shoe heavier than more minimalist ones and, the heavier the shoe is, the more Newtons of force you have exerted on your feet.

If you are going to be jogging on mostly level terrain, such as a sidewalk or an indoor track, then the most lightweight footwear possible would be a great fit for your jog, unless you personally prefer the way a heavier shoe feels or you just want a little extra cushioning for comfort. There are many advances being made all the time in cushioning, support, and sole technology to build lighter weight insoles, cushioning materials, supportive frames, and outsoles without sacrificing effectiveness.

If you are going to be jogging mostly on unlevel terrains, such as in a meadow, on a nature trail, or across a creek, you will likely need a heavier shoe with firmer support and extra cushioning in case you step on a rock.

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Beginner Jogging Tips

If you're just starting out as a jogger or runner, there are a few great tips to keep you healthy, and to keep you going strong.
Warm up before you start your jog with a brisk walk. Warming up the muscles helps them become pliable, and prepares them for added load or activity. Most strains or muscle pulls happen when muscles are cold and not ready for the demand placed on them to perform.
Stretch after your jog or run to help keep your muscles limber. Hamstring and quad stretches cite the two major muscle groups used when running, so take time to stretch them out! Hold your stretch for 15-30 seconds, breath, and then go back into the stretch for another 15-30 seconds.

Improving Cardiovascular Fitness

Not only does jogging and running help your musculature endurance, it also give you a great cardiovascular workout! Improving your cardiovascular fitness can be done over time, by utilizing tempo or interval workouts.
Interval workouts utilize short bursts of speed, followed by a recovery period, for several sets. These push the capacity of your cardiovascular fitness, but will help improve them over time.
Tempo workouts are those where a sustained level of effort is performed, but slightly higher than a normal jog about town. These help raise the mid to high range of your cardiovascular fitness limit, and push you towards greater fitness down the road.

Other Factors to Consider

Bottom Line

The importance of a comfortable shoe is something that should not be underestimated by any jogger or those considering starting a routine. With so much shock going into the feet, pain is bound to happen when you have an ill-fitting shoe or one that does not fit the standards. No-one should accept pain as part of the activity.

Before you pick a shoe, you need to know what your feet need. Everyone has pain in their feet at some point but what you need to know is what causes that pain? Heel pain and a bad arch support are the top two issues relating to pain in the feet. There are several pairs listed here that have added support for both these issues. Picking a shoe that does not work well with the activity you’re planning can and will eventually jeopardize your performance and risk injury and long-term damage. In our top 10 list, everyone, with any shape of foot and any athletic requirement, will find a shoe that works for them.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: What type of closure should I get?
a:

A slip-on shoe has its benefits and some athletic footwear is slip on, meaning they have no buckles, clips, velcro, or laces. However, lace up or velcro strap models are more secure. It depends on your personal preference and how good of a fit the shoe is. You definitely wouldn’t want a slip-on shoe that only comes in whole sizes (i.e., 8, 9, 10 and not 8, 8 ½, 9, etc.), because your shoe may be a little large and it could come off during exercise.

q: How much room should there be in the toe box?
a:

There should be ample room in the toe box for your toes to spread out comfortably. Footwear which pinches your toes together in the toe box could cause injury but they definitely cause discomfort.

q: What kind of shoe should I get if I have high arches?
a:

You should look into a neutral shoe if you have high arches, but ultimately it depends on your preference and comfort. Neutral ones carefully balance support and cushioning to reduce the impact on your feet and legs and to stabilize your run.

However, some people with high arches overpronate, or your feet and ankles curve outwards, which means you may want a shoe with more cushioning and support to offset that tendency. Overpronation can lead to plantar fasciitis and other foot injuries.

q: How tight of a fit should I get?
a:

Your shoe should fit loosely enough for your toes to spread out naturally and for your feet to rest comfortably against the footbed. However, it should be tight enough that it won’t come off as you jog.

q: Can I dry them in the tumble dryer?
a:

I wouldn’t because it could reduce the life of the shoe. You should check the manufacturer’s website to see if they are dryer safe. It’s best to let them air dry if you can’t confirm that they are dryer safe, but if you can’t air dry them, stuff them into pillowcases, tie them up, and toss them in there. Be sure to use low heat!