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How to Choose the Best Running Shoes

Academy Staff
5 min read
How to Choose the Best Running Shoes
Running is one of the most simple, affordable, and achievable ways to get in shape since you can do it anytime, anywhere. Although you don’t need much to start this workout, you do need one piece of equipment: a good pair of running shoes.
Despite running’s low barrier to entry, learning how to choose the right running shoe can be a daunting task. But don’t worry! You’re in the right place to learn how to pick running shoes that’ll help you hit and exceed your running goals.
Although running may seem like a simple workout, it does involve a lot of impact between the momentum from your body weight and the ground. Your running shoes are the only line of defense for shock absorption and decreasing wear on your body and joints.
Looking forward to hitting the pavement (or dirt, or mud, or sand)? Learning how to choose the right running shoe can make all the difference in your running journey. We’ll cover all the bases on how to choose running shoes, including how to find the right balance of cushion, speed, and support for your feet.
The Benefits of Running Shoes
One of the main benefits of finding the right running shoe for you is overall foot health. Finding the right shape based on your motion control, arch, and pronation (the foot’s natural pattern of movement during walking or running) can help you run longer distances without putting any strain on your feet.
Another reason to learn how to choose the best running shoe is that a well-fitted shoe prevents injuries. Having a nice, snug, fit will reduce blisters, and finding the perfect stability to match your gait will also help you avoid twists and turns to your ankles. Cushioning also plays a key factor in your run, since it determines the absorption of shock that will keep you in the game by withstanding impact and repeated stress.
One of the numerous benefits of running shoes is that they can enhance the traction you get from your running surface, making your overall run more effective and can speed up your time. Consider looking at shoes made for the specific surface type you run on, whether that’s a trail or treadmill.
Three Considerations for Running Shoes
Learning how to choose running shoes starts with knowing what to look for. Here are the three key factors to keep in mind when shopping:
Cushion

adidas Men’s Ultraboost 22 Running Shoes

A good rule of thumb to measure whether you have the right amount of cushion in a shoe is answering this simple question: are you comfortable? Take a lap around the store and see how they feel. If you’re feeling a little wonky or landing harder than you usually do, then this shoe is most likely not right for you.

It’s also important to notice not just how much cushion there is, but also where it is. Some shoes, such as Brooks Women's Glycerin 19 Running Shoes and the adidas Men’s Ultraboost 22 Running Shoes , offer all-around cushioning for every part of the foot for maximum running comfort. Meanwhile, the ASICS Men's Gel-Nimbus 23 Running Shoes focus cushioning on the heel, where the foot strikes the service, for maximum shock absorption.

Speed

Saucony Men's Endorphin Speed 2 Running Shoes

Is speed your end goal? Try looking into shoes specially built with hitting your personal record in mind. Shoes focused on speed use lightweight, but effective, materials to keep your run as fast and comfortable as possible. Here are a few of our favorites:

Support

Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 22 Running Shoes

Everyone needs a support system. For the best stability and support, make sure to ask an Academy Sports + Outdoor team member what would work best for your running surface and natural gait. Here are a few of our favorites that cover a wide range of foot shapes and sizes:

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION

Q. Do Kids Need Running Shoes?

A. Finding the best running shoe doesn’t just have to be for adults! Running shoes protect kids’ feet in running, PE class, and sports to avoid foot rolls, blisters, and other sports injuries. Here are some ways to get your little ones in the best protective gear for them:

  • Make sure to switch out boots or sandals for running shoes when they run.
  • Make sure the running shoes fit properly, a half-inch between the big toe and shoes.
  • Tie the shoes properly, and pair them with appropriate socks to avoid blisters.

Find the perfect pair of running shoes for any age and activity at Academy Sports + Outdoors, where we have a large assortment of girls’ and boys’ running shoes.

Remember, learning the ropes of how to choose running shoes doesn’t have to be complicated. Just remember to consider cushion, speed, and support — ask a team member at your nearest Academy store for help!

Find everything you need for running at Academy online and in-store. With our wide selection of men’s and women’s running shoes, there’s a pair for everyone.

Have Fun Out There!