Do you have high arches? Do you run on the outer edges of your feet? Are you experiencing shin splints or plantar fasciitis?
If you answered YES to any of these questions, then there is a good chance you supinate. And if supination is causing you pain, then there is an even greater chance you are running in the wrong shoe.
The fact is that 85% of runners are using the wrong shoe. I know, a pretty scary number. But here’s the kicker: 65-85% of runners become injured each year. My guess…the similarity in these numbers is no coincidence.
But here’s the good news: if you find the right pair of running shoes, you can then prevent injury and pain. Being pain-free will allow you to run faster and further without interference.
So, what is supination exactly anyway? Read on for an explanation.
What Is Supination?
Simply put, supination is when your foot rolls outwards as you run. Another name for supination is underpronation. It’s the opposite of overpronation. When you overpronate, your foot turns inwards when you run.
Supination wouldn’t necessarily be a problem if you weren’t a runner. Running on the outer edges of your foot for too long can be detrimental to your legs. Enough uneven wear and tear as a runner and you can count on injury. Runners knee, shin splints, and plantar fasciitis are only the start.
It’s important to understand that supination isn’t some plague or magical curse. It can be supported and corrected. Fortunately, most pain and injury are preventable and even reversible through the right running shoes. But it must be the right running shoe for YOU.
Buying a running shoe for your underpronation can be one of the best decisions of your life.
Here’s what I can tell you from experience–the moment you find the right shoe is the EXACT moment you become a runner with no limitations. That’s because you can now run without worrying. No more self-created injuries lingering in the back of your mind. No more overuse injury from wearing the wrong shoe. No more excuses. It’s just you, the road, and the miles ahead.
So, you may be thinking, “That’s great and all but how do I know If I definitely supinate?“
And that’s an excellent question. Let’s answer it. Read on for some vital signs that you have a supination problem.
As you can see, pain from supination is evident. And if you ignore the pain, it will only grow worse. But if you find the right shoe for YOU and your footstrike, the pain has a great chance to go away. Next, read on for the benefits of choosing the right running shoe for YOU.
What to Look for In Running Shoes If You Supinate
Choosing the right running shoe is not always an easy task. There are so many options and companies to choose from. It becomes easy to lose yourself in the details. But if you follow this guide, you will be well on your way to finding a shoe that supports your underpronation.
So, let’s keep moving forward through this guide. I will now explain what to look for in running shoes if you supinate. Let’s discuss support, cushion, flexibility, the manufacturer, and user reviews.
Most running shoe companies separate their shoes into three categories. The categories are overpronation, neutral, and supination. Here is a very brief explanation of each…
Overpronation occurs when your foot rolls inwards throughout your gait cycle. This puts the majority of your body weight on the INSIDE of your feet. It causes an unbalanced stride. Typically, runners with flat feet suffer from overpronation.
Supination occurs when your foot rolls outwards throughout your gait cycle. This puts the majority of your body weight on the OUTSIDE of your feet. This too causes an unbalanced stride. Typically, runners with high arches suffer from supination.
A neutral footstrike is between the two and is an ideal foot strike for runners. It’s the most desirable because it promotes a balanced stride.
Here’s the point: look for a running shoe that is categorized as a supination, neutral-to-supination, or mid-to-high arches.
Yes, some supination shoes are categorized as both neutral and supination. The category you choose is typically based on your arch size (low, middle, high).
So, if you have super high arches, I’d recommend trying a full-out supination shoe. And if you have medium arches, then you can probably get away with a neutral running shoe. But this is not standard. We all have different shaped feet. You will have to be the final judge.
One of the most significant challenges a runner faces who underpronates is shock absorption. They experience super high levels of shock that has the potential to wreak havoc on their lower legs.
Why does this extra shock occur?
Well, when you run on the outer section of your foot, you rely entirely on your ankle and a few toes to absorb most of the shock. As you can imagine, this can easily cause foot, ankle, and lower leg pain. If left untreated for long enough then injuries will develop.
That’s where extra cushion comes in. The more cushion in your running shoe, the more it will absorb shock. The extra shock absorption provides more relief to your feet, ankles, and legs. And as you probably know, the less pain when you run, the better.
What sounds better? Feeling like you are running barefoot on cement or a gymnastic spring floor? If I’m running long distances, then I’ll take the latter every time. Actually…if I’m running at all, I’ll take the spring floor.
So, if you supinate, find a shoe that has extra cushion. Make sure there is extra cushion in the midsole and along the outside of the shoe. Your feet will be happy you did.
Finding a “supination” running shoe with extra cushion is most essential. However, you want it to be flexible too. A flexible shoe helps evenly distribute impact. This helps spread the shock out to your whole foot instead of just the outer edges.
Simply put, make sure you buy a quality shoe from a quality company. Your shoes are the most valuable investment you can make in your running career. Here is NOT where you want to cut corners. Be smart and make the investment.
When I stopped looking at the sale rack and focused solely on finding the right shoe for ME is when I became a real distance runner. Here is when I ran my first marathon. The difference is unexplainable, and most importantly, you prevent injury. Give yourself an opportunity at greatness. Don’t limit yourself through unnecessary resistance like wearing the wrong shoe.
When you have the right running shoe for YOU, it will even make up for poor form as you practice improving it.
Companies like Brooks, New Balance, Nike, ASICS, Mizuno, Saucony and Hoka One One are quality companies. I’d stick with one of them.
Lastly, take a look at customer reviews. Look for reviews written by people with supination and/or high arches. Read about their experience. Read the good and the bad. This type of information is priceless. It will bring confidence to your purchase.
As you may know already, Amazon is one of the best places for reviews. I recommend checking there for customer feedback.
So, now that you know what to look for in a supination running shoe, let’s pick one out. Read on for the 10 best running shoes for supination in 2019.
Reviews for the Top 10 Best Running Shoes for Supination
Below are the reviews for the top 10 best running shoes for supination in 2019. Go through each, read the pros and cons, and find the best shoe for you and your running style.
1. Brooks Ghost 11 – Best Choice for High Arches
The Brooks Ghost 11 is the top choice for runners who supinate (underpronate). This running shoe has just about everything that a supinating runner needs. First, it’s a comfortable shoe. There’s an explosion of cushion through its Brooks signature DNA LOFT and BioMoGoDNA technology. Being a bilateral cushion system, this shoe is designed to absorb shock without losing responsiveness. For example, it’s similar to running on a gymnastic spring floor instead of comfy pillows. Sure, pillows are soft, but there’s no bounce back.
Also, this running shoe is super stable, and it’s designed for runners with medium to high arches. And being that runner’s with high arches tend to underpronate, this shoe will help. Users love it for its soft and secure fit.
- Forefoot flexibility for ankle mobility and shock distribution providing relief for underpronators.
- Its vented upper mesh creates excellent breathability especially for hot days.
- A smooth and soft ride generated from its crash pad. This also helps prevent shock-related injuries like shin splints.
- Superior cushioning provides relief for high arches and those who heel strike.
- Some like the Ghost 10’s over the 11’s.
- Not cheap but a fair price for quality running shoes.
2. New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v7 – Best Choice for Durability
Overall, new balance makes a durable shoe that gets the job done. That’s why I love New Balance. There are no surprises. You get what you pay for. And the New Balance Fresh Foam 1090v7 is no different. It’s a durable shoe built to last for mid-arch feet. Whether it’s through its flex groove outsole or the fresh foam midsole, this running shoe provides and reliable and cushioned ride. Available in narrow, standard, wide, and x-wide, it covers a wide range of foot sizes. It’s users praise it for the overall lifespan.
- Blown rubber outsole provides a long lifespan making it perfect for long distance runners.
- Breathable upper mesh provides superior ventilation when during a run.
- Fresh foam technology makes them one of the most cushioned shoes on the market.
- New-sew bootie provides a super snug fit, so you don’t have to worry about heel slippage.
- It’s a neutral shoe designed for mid-arches. If high arches I recommend trying another shoe.
3. Hoka One One Clifton 5 – Best Choice for Speed
The Hoka One One Clifton 5 is best known for its light and fast, yet cushioned ride. Not a lot of companies have designed a shoe that’s both stable and cushioned but light and fast. However, Hoka One One does it well. So, well, in fact, that this shoe has won an award! It comes packed with an overload of midsole foam along with an adaptive forefoot. The extra cushion provides better shock absorption–a top benefit for those who supinate. Its users praise this shoe for its improved upper mesh design. Some people say running a Hoka One One shoe is like running on clouds. Okay…so no one can run on a cloud to know what running on a cloud actually feels like…but you get the point!
- Extra cushion makes it a top choice for heavier runners.
- New upper design provides improved breathability.
- Rocker system is like a rocking chair—a natural feeling, yet guided gait cycle.
- It’s a shock absorption machine. Amazing comfort. Its users praise this benefit the most.
- Because of their large size, Hoka One One shoes take some getting used to.
4. ASICS Gel Nimbus 20 – Best Choice for High Arches
This shoe, in my opinion, is ASICS best running shoe for supination. And being that ASICS is one of the best running shoe companies in the world, you could then say that the ASICS Gel Nimbus 20’s are one of the best supination running shoes in the world.
Designed for high arches, this shoe has many benefits for runners who underpronate. It’s designed with an external heel clutching system, rearfoot & forefoot gel, flytefoam midsole technology, and a fluidfit upper. Simply put, this shoe provides support and cushion from heel to toe. No wonder it’s one of the most popular running shoes out. Its users love this shoe for its improved fit from its last version.
- Superior comfort and support for a smooth and injury-free ride.
- Users say it’s helped get rid of their plantar fasciitis.
- True to its fit. It went through size improvements since the 19’s.
- Incredible pain relief for the outer edges of you feet. This prevents injury and advances comfort.
- High price compared to other running shoes.
5. Mizuno Wave Rider 22 – Best Choice for a Soft and Cushioned Ride
The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is soft…like SUPER soft. No wonder runners who underpronate flock to this running shoe. It’s comfort mainly stems from its signature Mizuno cloudwave technology.
Here’s how Mizuno explains its wave technology…
” Inspired by nature, the Wave plate disperses energy from impact to a broader area providing a stable and smooth front ride.”
This shoe also provides superior guidance, and you will notice a springy underfoot. Then add in its U4ic technology on the midsole and heel, and you get a durable and lightweight shoe. Its users love this shoe for its wave technology. Some say, “it’s one of a kind.”
- Incredible shock absorption though it’s Wave technology. Ideal for running long miles on the road.
- Premium sockliner provides a breathable and snug fit.
- Excellent cushion all around. Helps prevent shin splints and runner’s knee.
- Extra cushion in the heel. Ideal for those who heel strike.
- Superior guidance. Makes running easier.
- Less room in the toe box compared to other shoes.
- Limited color choice.
6. Brooks Glycerin 16 – Best Choice for Marathon Running
If you have medium-to-high arches, tend to underpronate, and enjoy running on the road, then consider giving the Brooks Glycerin 16’s a try. Unlike other running shoes, this shoe provides a “luxurious feeling underfoot.” And even with “luxurious” comfort, it doesn’t lose much responsiveness at all. Now, don’t let the word “luxurious” throw you off. Running takes hard work and dedication, and you much push against resistance to grow. However, why not add a little extra comfort along the way?
Most of its comfort comes from the DNA Loft transition zone. That’s Brooks branded technology. But you know what? Do you know what I found most unique about this shoe? Brooks incorporates what they call an “IDEAL pressure zone.” This is a game changer.
What does IDEAL pressure zone mean? Well, have you ever finished a run with hot spots? You know, those red, painful marks on your foot? Believe it or not, that’s from an unbalance pressure build up in one spot. I know them well. Personally, I tend to get them on top of my foot after running a marathon or a similar distance. Well, what the IDEAL pressure zones will do is disperse impact away from your body. This provides a much more balanced and smoother ride…with less painful hot spots! Its users love this running shoe for its breathability and excellent flexibility.
- Plush fit provides a super snug ride but still expands and contracts when needed for superior flexibility.
- Top cushion level (level 3) of Brook shoes providing excellent shock absorption for long distance running.
- Here’s a biggy: runners who loved it ’s predecessor (15’s) still love this shoe.
- It’s made by one of the top running shoe companies in the world who specialize in long distances.
- Not a “speed shoe.”
- On the smaller side for some. It seems those with narrow feet like them most.
7. Saucony Triumph ISO 4 – Best Choice for Mid-Arches
When you run with the Saucony Triumph ISO 4, your feet feel ALIVE. I say this because they are designed with what Saucony calls “EVERUN Technology.” The entire focus of this technology is to provide enhanced energy return and continuous cushioning. They promise this through the whole gait cycle. Ever run with a shoe that makes you feel slow? Like your energy is being drained away with each step? Well, this energy drain is what Saucony attempt to prevent with this shoe. The result: excellent responsiveness and superior comfort.
My favorite feature is its ISOfit lacing system. This system allows the shoe to adapt to your motion and shape while running. In turn, you get the signature Saucony ride. Its users love this shoe for its forefoot cushioning and excellent grip.
- Innovative lacing system provides enhanced flexibility and prevention of hot spots.
- Engineered upper mesh provides more ventilation. Your toes will thank you for it!
- Excellent traction ideal for wet conditions.
- Available at a fair price.
- Limited color options.
- Not ideal for those with extra high arches.
8. Asics Gel-Cumulus 19 – Best Choice for Those Who Heel Strike
Anytime you see the word “GEL” in the name of an ASICS shoe you can be confident it contains excellent cushion. And the ASICS Gel-Cumulus 19 is no different. Packed with the ASIC signature GEL technology, this shoe can absorb some severe shock. In addition, now when your foot strikes the ground the force spreads out evenly. That means fewer pressure spots during your run.
This shoe is ideal for those who underpronate. Especially those who suffer from pain on the outer edges of their feet. It compensates for your uneven footstrike. Trust me, your knees and feet will be grateful you are wearing this shoe. That is, if you have high arches and supinate when you run. It’s also super supportive. ASICS uses its GUIDANCE LINE Midsole Technology with vertical flex grooves to offer a guided stride. So, if your feet roll to the outside, this shoe will help center them. Its users praise it for the relief it’s brought to their lower legs and feet.
- Excellent cushion and responsiveness for a comfortable, durable, and springy ride.
- Rearfoot and forefoot GEL provides extra cushion whether you heel strike or land midfoot.
- Excellent quality equals a long lifespan. With even-wear, some runners get 500 miles on a pair.
- Multiple color options
- Built specifically for underpronation. A top choice for those with high arches.
- Common sizes sell out fast.
- Targeted for those with high arches…sorry flat footers.
9. Nike Zoom Vomero 13 – Best Choice for Running Further Distances
The Nike Zoom Vomero 13 is designed for serious runners. And when I say serious, I don’t mean experienced. Beginners AND experienced runners will benefit from this shoe. But if you are someone who wants to work upwards from a 5k to a marathon, then you can put your trust in it. Mainly because it’s Nike and it provides incredible support.
Nike is great for that…providing support, that is, a shoe you can count on. I ran my first marathon in a pair of Nikes, they were a game changer for me. Well, this shoe, in particular, keeps your foot secure through its Flywire cables. It’s also extra responsive because of its Air cushioning system.
Anytime you see “Nike Zoom” you know it’s a shoe that can take you on those long miles. As I mentioned earlier, you need to find a running shoe for you. So, this shoe is not the best choice for EVERY runner. But if you have mid-to-high arches, it may be worth a spin. Its users love it for its fashionable Nike design. They also rave about its excellent support and comfort.
- Superior comfort and fits to size.
- Lacing system molds the shoe to your foot providing even more comfort.
- Flywire system keeps your foot straight thus providing excellent stability.
- It’s Nike, they’ve been designing running shoes from the beginning.
- Multiple color options and a hip style.
- High price.
- Hard soles
10. Adidas Ultra Boost – Best Choice for Part-Time Runners who CrossTrain
If you want a neutral running shoe that’s also designed for cross-training, then you should definitely consider the Adidas Ultra Boost. Use them for a weekend jog, a morning at the gym, or even during your next fitness class. Sure, it’s a great running shoe but it’s ideal for an all-around fitness enthusiast. What runner’s like best is how it’s packed with an extraordinary level of energized cushion. A few other benefits are its lightweight feel, reliable traction, and superior flexibility. Its users love the fact they can be worn outside of running as well. Adidas has a signature style that goes well with fitness clothes and casual clothes alike.
- Cross-training functionality makes it ideal for fitness enthusiasts.
- Stretchweb outsole provides ultra-flexibility and superior traction–a marvelous combination.
- Roomy and lightweight for increasing shoe comfort.
- Responsive cushioning provides comfort and an energized push-off with each stride.
- Too narrow for some
- Highest priced running shoe on this list.
Congratulations! You have finished this guide, and you are now ready to take your running to the next level.
Now that you have the right running shoe for supination, it’s time to run.
REMEMBER: Give your body time to adapt to your new running shoe. Take it slow. Do not go out the gate too fast. As you run, little by little your body will adjust, and soon enough, nothing will hold you back. Especially your underpronation!