Best Running Shoes For Knee Pain Reviewed & Rated For Performance

The last, yet most important step before heading out for your jog is putting on your running shoes. Choosing the proper pair can mean the difference between a long satisfying workout, and one that ends in injury.  This list will not only look at the top 10 running shoes for knee pain, but will also explain the different types of pain and guide you through choosing what is best for you.

It is important to understand the cause of your pain before deciding on a running shoe. A huge concern associated with knee pain is over-pronation of the feet. Finding a shoe that stabilizes the heel, and a midsole that resists collapse will keep your feet and knees in proper alignment throughout your entire workout. It makes no difference how much cushioning a shoe has, or how breathable the mesh is if the shoe does not fit your foot properly. One of the most important aspects when choosing the right running shoe is to ensure the correct fit, which will in turn deliver the most support. Not too snug, and most certainly not too loose.

Last Updated: December 26, 2017
By Tierney Lloyd:

The most recent update to this page is an overview of the best running shoes for knee pain. This list was well researched to ensure that each shoe provides some sort of comfort and relief for those suffering from discomfort in their knees after physical activity.

Featured Recommendations 

Saucony Cohesion 8
  • Saucony Cohesion 8
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Stability Heel Grid
  • Wide Tox Box Area
  • Price: See Here
 
Salomon Speedcross 4
  • Salomon Speedcross 4
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Aggressive Grip
  • Minimalistic and Strong Lace
  • Price: See Here
 
Avia Avi-Endeavor
  • Avia Avi-Endeavor
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • EVA Midsole
  • Padded Tongue and Collar
  • Price: See Here

Taking the extra step to get your foot sized will help in the process of finding what is right for you. If medical orthotics are needed to help stabilize your feet, it is essential to find running shoes that are either wide enough to accommodate them, or that have removable insoles/sock liners.

One thing that doesn’t need to be forgotten about is style. Just because the runner needs extra cushioning, or a deeper heel cup does not mean that the shoe cannot remain stylish enough to be worn on a day to day basis. The athleisure look has taken over, thus giving everyone the chance to dress comfortably while still remaining fashionable. It is nice to be able to go from working out, to running, to doing errands while still looking put together. This list will not only help you feel comfortable all day, but stylish as well.

 

10 Best Running Shoes For Knee Pain

 

1. Saucony Cohesion 8

Made to deliver strong foot support and cushioning for those who enjoy their daily runs but are concerned about the possibility of experiencing pain during their workout. These running shoes have thick cushioning to provide ultimate support, while remaining lightweight and airy.
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Heel Grid System
For a stabilized heel, and balanced cushioning throughout the midsole, this added feature ensures that your feet are provided with a stable platform. Important for those with knee pain who need sturdy protection.

IMEVA Midsole
Midsoles not only aid in stabilizing your foot, but adding comfort as well for all terrains your shoes may come across. The IMEVA midsole is a great addition to these running shoes. Creating a more cushioned feel, with added bounce while still maintaining a lightweight feel.

Cost and Value
As the top rated running shoe, it is very fairly priced. Depending on color choice, the price may vary slightly but you are still receiving a tremendous deal considering everything the Saucony Cohesion has to offer.
Pros
  • Reflective Hits
  • Rubber Outsole
  • Breathable Mesh
  • Removable Insole
  • Flex Grooves
Cons
  • Narrow Fit

2. Asics Gel Venture 5

Performance-driven running shoes that are made with your foot and body in mind. Asics made sure to provide consistent comfort and style throughout the shoe. With a deep gel heel cup, and added features like a pull tab on the heel for easily taking them on and off, these running shoes are hard to beat.
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Arch Support
The perfect blend of cushion for absorbing impact, and giving you much needed arch support. Whether you are going for a light jog around your neighbourhood or participating in a marathon, you can rest assured that you will have no pain by the end of the day.

Removable Sockliner
One of the biggest struggles when knee pain is a concern is finding a running shoe that has a proper insole. These not only already come with a well cushioned midsole, but give you the option to remove the sockliner; thus allowing you to insert your own medical orthotics for optimum comfort.

Cost and Value
One of the best values given the quality and care Asics put in to making these. With great features like a removable liner, and carefully crafted rubber outsoles for all terrains; these are one of the most versatile pairs of running shoes on the list.
Pros
  • Gel Cushioning
  • Removable Sockliner
  • Rugged Outsole
  • Neutral Color Selection
  • AHAR Outsole
Cons
  • Break-in Period

3. Skechers Energy Afterburn

For 25 years Skechers has been creating products with the consumer in mind. Over the years they have strived to develop shoes that meet all consumers lifestyle needs. These Energy Afterburn running shoes are no exception. Made of leather to withstand all weather conditions, lug rubber outsole for increased traction and adding pull tabs on the tongue and heel for easy on and off.
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Pull Tabs
With shoes that are made to fit snug, one of the most daunting tasks (other than the run itself, of course) is taking your shoes on and off. Though it may seem like an almost unnoticeable feature, the ease these small tabs provice can make all the difference when it comes down to the final decision on choice of shoe.

Lug Rubber Sole
In addition to the slip-resistant qualities of rubber outsoles, lug rubber; generally used on boots or hiking shoes, has deep indentations that are ideal for traction and stability.

Cost and Value
Though Skechers has become a more than reputable brand over the years, they have managed to maintain a fair price range for their buyers. Though not the most stylish compared to others on the list, they offer a nice neutral color selection, and a wide range of sizes.
Pros
  • Padded Tongue and Collar
  • Leather
  • Padded Heel
  • Cushioned Midsole
  • Arch Support
  • Classic Colors
Cons
  • Run Large

4. Salomon Speedcross 4

4. Salomon Speedcross 4
A different style than any other running shoe on this list. The Salomon Speedcross' have an almost cleat-like look making them ideal for running through forests and trails. With an aggressive, trustworthy grip, and well cushioned midsole these shoes will fit like a glove and provide exceptional support.
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Aggressive grip
Feeling like you may slip at any time, and injure yourself especially while on steep or slippery terrains like mountains takes the fun away from running. This is where Salomons Contagrip comes in. Developed with different densities and compounds, to make sure you could perform to the best of your ability, regardless of the terrain or weather conditions.

Precise Foothold
With technologies such as Sensifit, your feet will feel cradled, giving you an incredibly snug yet comfortable, almost customized fit. The Quicklace one-pull tightening feature makes it not only a breeze to take them on and off, but also ensures a quick secure fit.

Cost and Value
A great deal considering it is a shoe unlike any other on this list. The Contagrip feature is ideal for anyone who enjoys being adventurous and trail running, but has concerns about the impact it may have on their bodies.
Pros
  • Aggressive Grip
  • Minimalistic Lace Up Detailing 
  • Water Resilient
  • Mesh 
  • Stylish
Cons
  • Laces Can Be Hard to Loosen

5. Brooks Glycerin 14

5. Brooks Glycerin 14
Offering excellent arch support, a plush and well cushioned midsole; with the option to remove and insert your own specialized medical orthotics and a flexible outside made to run long distances. These running shoes are ideal for anyone struggling with over-pronation of the feet. From classic to brighter and more outgoing colors, there is something for everyone.
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Highly Cushioned Midsole
The Super DNA midsole is unlike any other made by Brooks. It moulds to your feet while adapting to speed, and environment ensuring the perfect amount of shock absorption. The Caterpillar Crash Pad offers extra stability, and a custom-like feel by flexing with your foot.

Accommodates Orthotics
For those suffering from knee pain it is so important to have a running shoe, that if not made with enough cushioning, at least gives you the option to insert your own insoles. Though this Brooks model gives you the option, it isn't likely you will need to given the already plus yet firm insole it has.

Cost and Value
Slightly more expensive, however the Brooks Glycerin 14 are not only made to last, but are made specifically for those needing extra support all around. The perfect option for anyone looking to add in their own insoles.
Pros
  • Breathable Mesh
  • Removable Foam Insole
  • Soft Fabric Lining
  • Reinforced Toe
  • No Break-In Period
  • Flexible
Cons
  • Run Small

6. Puma Tazon 6

6. Puma Tazon 6
A stylish design that makes it easy for you to go from running on the track, to running errands seamlessly. Though it may appear to simply be for looks, it goes far beyond in delivering excellent support and functionality.
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Raised Heel
Not only is the heel-pod made with durable foam for great shock absorption, it is also slightly raised taking any tension off of your achilles. Giving you proper support for your feet and legs.

EcoOrthoLite Sockliner
Not only made to provide optimum comfort, but you can feel good in every way while wearing this environmentally friendly sockliner. Not only are they breathable, wicking away moisture while you run, but they also are made to retain their thickness and shape, ensuring you have long-lasting support.

Cost and Value
For a well made name-brand running shoe you would expect the cost to be quite high. Puma however, not only made a high quality shoe, but a versatile one at that. Great for running, walking, or just being on your feet, you will be provided with all day comfort and support.
Pros
  • Midfoot Saddle
  • Breathable Sockliner
  • EVA Heel Pod
  • True to Size
  • Raised Heel for Added Stability
Cons
  • Take Time to Take On and Off

7. New Balance 990V3

7. New Balance 990V3
The most performance-driven shoe by New Balance made to provide you with an effortless run, and workout. Abzorb crash pads are added in so that every time your foot touches the pavement it is smooth.
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Abzorb crash pads
Created to absorb all shock, and leave you injury and pain free. You never want to feel the force of the your feet hitting the pavement step after step. Having a midsole featuring technologies that aid in comfort and support make all the difference.

Wide size range
Being able to have a shoe wide enough to comfortably accommodate an orthotic can make or break a quality running shoe for many. New Balance understands that not all feet are the same, and therefore has created an extremely wide range of sizes. From medium, to narrow and of course wide feet, there is a size for everyone.

Cost and Value
An expensive choice compared to others, you are however receiving a product that is customizable and made in the USA. These running shoes could be considered more of an investment, especially for those who run often and want quality shoes.
Pros
  • Reflective Detailing
  • Rubber Forefoot
  • Dual-Density Collar
  • Made In the USA
  • Designed to Fit
Cons
  • Heavyweight (May Feel Clunky During Long Distance Runs)

8. Adidas Ultra Boost

8. Adidas Ultra Boost
It is rare to find a shoe that not only looks beautiful, but performs beautifully as well. One of, if not the most comfortable running shoe on the market. Whether you are outdoors, or inside a gym on the treadmill; Adidas has created a shoe that offers next-level comfort. Their Boost feature makes you feel like you're running on a cloud, regardless of terrain. The rubber outsole provides tremendous support, wet or dry, making sure you have no excuse to miss your workout because of rain.
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Boost
TPU was reshaped to created the spongy outsole that Adidas ultra boosts feature. The lightweight material is ideal because it adds zero weight to the shoe. The most responsive cushioning yet, with energy-returning power - Boost allows you to push yourself to the limits.

Torsian System
This lightweight arch support is ideal for forward motion sports, added between the heel and forefoot creating a more stable ride. This allows the midfoot to naturally adjust itself to the ground, correcting any improper flexing of your foot, and giving the runner and all around sturdier and more comfortable run.

Cost and Value
The most expensive on the list for multiple reasons. Adidas is a trusted brand, known for making quality, high priced items. You can rest assured that you will receive a product that you are excited to wear, that not only fits well and feels like walking on air, but also looks extremely fashionable.
Pros
  • Removable Insole
  • Supportive Cage
  • Moulded Heel
  • Torsion System For Stability
  • Stylish
  • Trusted Brand
Cons
  • Small Color Selection

9. Hoka One One Clifton 3

9. Hoka One One Clifton 3
An all purpose running shoe with features that have taken it a step above others. With a more accommodating forefoot, and a no-sew speedframe which is a seamless interior; practically eliminating any risk of irritation.

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Meta-Rocker Midsole
Specifically designed to act like a rocking-chair; to encourage a guided gait-cycle. While still supporting the runners natural form, the meta-rocker supports a smooth roll from initial impact. Each step is instantly easier and more comfortable.

Accommodating Forefoot
Built to allow better toe splay, the runner is therefore given much better stability and comfort. A running shoe with a narrow forefoot can cause not only discomfort but can squeeze your toes too tightly, throwing off your balance and in turn causing injury.

Cost and Value
With a price range varying mostly on choice of color deisgn, your basic neutral tone running shoe is reasonably priced. A simple shoe that offers strong support for pain and discomfort in not only the knees, but throughout your body.
Pros
  • Seamless No-Sew Interior
  • Accommodating Forefoot
  • Air Mesh Upper
  • CMEVA Full-Length Midsole
  • Bright Color Selection
Cons
  • Narrow Fit

10. Avia Avi-Endeavor

10. Avia Avi-Endeavor
Made to help you go that extra mile, Avia is passionate about providing runners with exceptional, affordable quality. Thoughtfully conceived with a fabric that envelops your foot, offering a nice snug fit. Extra touches like a padded tongue and collar are examples of how Avia puts the runners needs first, knowing how important comfort is.
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Cantilever technology
It is so important for your foot to be centered while running to prevent injuries. The Cantilever keeps you aligned while also adding enough bounce to lessen the impact of the ground and keep your feet stabilized.

Rubber Outsole
The rubber sole is designed to support impact while also providing the elasticity necessary to keep you moving. The grips limit the stress on your feet making this footwear a standout among athletic shoes.

Cost and Value
The most cost effective product listed, yet still extremely stylish and highly rated. A perfect example that paying more money for something doesn't always guarantee better quality. Avia did not create a shoe that will last forever, however at that price buying two pairs at a time won't break the bank.
Pros
  • Lite Midsole
  • Padded Tongue and Collar
  • Breathable Mesh
  • Leather
  • Rubber Outsole
Cons
  • Short Tongue 

While knee pain or injury is something as many as 70% of people will suffer from at one point in their lives, it does not have to stop you from performing your favorite exercise, such as running. Running may be good for your health but it hasn’t always been proven to be great on our bodies, more specifically our knees. The most effective way to prevent pain or injury while running is to find the perfect running shoe for your specific needs.

First and foremost it is crucial to find out what the root cause of your knee pain is, making it easier to find a running shoe that will help ease it. This list consists of incredible options that will aid in different ways, so you, the runner must firstly know what it is you are looking for in a shoe.

Are you feeling pain in your knees every time you run? There are many reasons and causes for knee pain; inner or outter pain, IT band injuries,  but one of the main factors tends to be related to how your foot lands during a run. A shoe that encourages you to land on your midfoot, rather than your heel, will help distribute weight to your muscles instead of your joints, thus preventing future injuries.  Running on softer surfaces such as your local track, or on dirt trails lessens the impact on your knees. Remember, not all running shoes are a one size fits all, there will be a pair that fits someone like a glove, yet leaves you sore at the end of a run. You must understand your body and its needs first and foremost.