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Best Running Shoes for Older Runners in 2020

 

Running is a great way to exercise that can be done by people of all ages. While other forms of working out seem to be primarily for the “kids,” it is exceedingly common to see runners in their fifties, sixties, seventies, and eighties completing marathons and other road races.

If you are an older runner, you probably already recognize the importance of the right footwear while running. The proper amount of support and cushioning will go a long way toward protecting you from injury and keeping you pain-free. But which running shoes should you choose?

We think the Brooks Glycerin 18 are the best shoe for older runners. It’s well-cushioned, feels great, and provides nice support for neutral runners. But depending on how much cushioning you need, the amount of support, and other factors, we know some shoes will work better for some than others.

In this article, we have done the work for you, selecting and reviewing the best running shoes for older runners in several different categories. Let’s dive in.

Top 4 Best and Favorites

 

Brooks Glycerin 18

 

  • DNA LOFT cushioning
  • OrthoLite sock liner
  • 3D Fit Print technology
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Hoka One One Bondi 6

 

  • Full-length EVA midsole
  • Engineered open mesh construction
  • APMA award
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Best Stability Running Shoe

 

  • GuideRails holistic support system
  • BioMoGo responsive cushioning
  • 3D Fit Print technology
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Best for Wide Feet

 

  • ENCAP midsole technology
  • Supportive midsole and Ortholite cushioning
  • Increased comfort and stability
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Best Overall

1. Brooks Glycerin 18

Our top choice for best overall running shoe for older runners: the Brooks Glycerin 18.

One of the most important features to look out for when selecting a running shoe (especially for older runners) is cushioning. The Brooks Glycerin 18 has plenty of it. The shoe features tons of DNA LOFT cushioning to offer maximum plushness underfoot while maintaining the shoe’s level of durability and responsiveness.

The midsole cushioning is enhanced by a full-length rubber outsole, which decreases the weight of the shoe and improves traction.

Greater step-in comfort is offered by the OrthoLite sock liner. The shoe also features a DNA LOFT transition zone, which makes the experience of transitioning from your heel to your toe amazingly smooth and soft.

The interior liner of the shoe surrounds the foot with plushness and expands with your stride. The fit is enhanced by 3D Fit Print technology and the engineered mesh upper. The double jacquard stretch mesh has been updated for greater structure, flexibility, and breathability.

This is a shoe that checks every box, combining superb cushioning and excellent support with maximum comfort and fit. If you are looking for a shoe that performs superbly in every category and which will prolong your running years, this is it.


PROS:

  • DNA LOFT cushioning increases degree of softness and plushness underfoot
  • OrthoLite sock liner offers greater step-in comfort
  • DNA LOFT transition zone increases softness and smoothness while transitioning from the heel to the toe
  • 3D Fit Print technology and engineered stretch double jacquard mesh upper enhance fit and offer more structure, breathability, and flexibility

CONS:

  • Not designed for those with flat feet
  • Some runners feel it’s not as plush as prior Glycerin models

Most Cushioned Shoe

2. Hoka One One Bondi 6

The Hoka One One Bondi 6 is the most cushioned running shoe we tested. Hoka One One, a company founded in France and now headquartered in California, specializes in “maximalist” running shoes that have oversized outsoles and hence, a great deal more cushioning than other running shoes.

Out of all of Hoka One One’s already extremely well cushioned road shoes, the Bondi 6 is the most cushioned. The compression molded full-length EVA midsole and Meta-Rocker technology provide the runner with a balanced, smooth ride that will be consistent for any type of distance. So no matter how short or long your run may be, the Bondi 6 will keep you comfortable.

The Bondi 6 has the distinction of winning an American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) award, which testifies to its effectiveness, safety, and quality in promoting foot health and allowing for the normal functioning of the foot.

The Bondi 6 features an engineered open mesh construction that optimizes comfort and breathability as well as an updated rubber outsole that optimizes durability while reducing weight. Also, the beveled heel offers increased durability and a smooth transition, while the internal heel counter and Lycra comfort frame offer comfortable support and a locked in fit.

If you are looking for a shoe that maximizes comfort and cushioning, you can’t go wrong with the Hoka One One Bondi 6.


PROS:

  • Most cushioned running shoe we tested
  • Compression molded full-length EVA midsole and Meta-Rocker technology provide balanced, smooth ride
  • Beveled heel with internal heel counter and Lycra comfort frame offers increased durability, smooth transition, comfortable support, and locked in fit
  • Engineered open mesh construction optimizes comfort and breathability while updated rubber outsole optimizes durability while reducing weight

CONS:

  • A tad bulky
  • Unique look and style not for everyone

Best Stability Running Shoe

3. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 20

The Adrenaline GTS 20 from Brooks just keeps getting better. It was always an excellent running shoe, but its most recent updates make it our pick for the running shoe that offers the best stability.

The stability of this shoe comes from the GuideRails holistic support system that protects your knees by keeping your feet stable while running. This stabilizing system helps protect you from knee injuries. The GuideRails system also provides the runner with smoother transitions.

Obviously, stability is not the only thing this shoe does well. It features excellent cushioning, stacking BioMoGo responsive DNA cushioning above a DNA LOFT Crash Pad to offer cushion underfoot as well as some spring.

The Adrenaline GTS 20 features 3D Fit Print technology in an engineered, streamlined mesh upper which offers proven fit and structure without any excessive bulk, wrapping around the arch of your foot to offer it a secure fit.


PROS:

  • GuideRails holistic support system offers maximum stability by keeping in check excess movement to protect the knees from injury while running
  • BioMoGo responsive DNA cushioning above a DNA LOFT Crash Pad offer cushion underfoot as well as just enough spring
  • 3D Fit Print technology in engineered, streamlined mesh upper offers proven fit and structure without excessive bulk, wrapping around arch to offer it a secure fit

CONS:

  • May be too soft for some runners

Best for Wide Feet

 

4. New Balance 990v5

If you are a runner with wide feet, you may be struggling to find running shoe options tailored to meet your need.

Enter the New Balance 990v5. It’s a classic, excellent running shoe with a selection of widths, ranging from extra narrow to extra extra wide, make it our choice for the best running show for wide feet.

The shoe features a blown rubber outsole as well as ENCAP midsole technology, which offers maximum durability and support. The dual density collar foam enhances comfort and support, and the ENCAP PU ring with EVA core further increases durability as well as comfort and stability. It features a 12 mm drop.

The shoe is designed with breathable mesh and suede for a classic, timeless appearance that does not deter from its functionality, and the supportive midsole and Ortholite cushioning insert offer comfort all day long.


PROS:

  • Offers widths ranging from extra narrow to extra extra wide
  • Blown rubber outsole as well as ENCAP midsole technology offer maximum durability and support
  • Supportive midsole and Ortholite cushioning insert offer comfort all day long
  • Dual density collar foam enhances comfort and support while ENCAP PU ring with EVA core further increases durability as well as comfort and stability
  • Made in the US

CONS:

  • A bit expensive
  • Not be as breathable as other shoes

Top Running Shoe for Ankle Support

5. ASICS GEL-Cumulus 22

When it comes to ankle support, we have found the best running shoe to be the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 22. This shoe is made for those who are neutral in their pronation or who tend to underpronate.

The shoe features Flytefoam Propel technology, an ASICS energetic foam formulation which offers maximum bounce due to its unique elastomer compound. The same technology is used in the midsole to offer superb responsiveness and bounce back no matter what the distance is by using super fibers to minimize the packing out that occurs with softer, lower density foams.

The Guidance Line midsole technology with its vertical flex groove provides enhanced gait efficiency by decoupling the tooling which happens on the line of progression. Also, the Rearfoot and Forefoot Gel technology cushioning system reduces shock during the toe off and impact phases, allowing movement on multiple planes while your foot is transitioning through its gait cycle.

The ASICS High Abrasion Rubber (AHAR) is positioned in critical portions of the shoe’s outsole to offer exceptional durability. This rubber on its outsole makes the shoe lighter and softer to provide flexibility, overall comfort, and a plush, balanced ride.

The premium Ortholite X-40 sockliner provides higher rebounding properties in addition to a higher degree of breathability and superb moisture management, while the 3D Print upper maximizes comfort and forefoot support. The shoe also features reflective material in order to enhance visibility safety and in lower light conditions.


PROS:

  • Flytefoam Propel technology offers maximum bounce due to its unique elastomer compound
  • Guidance Line midsole technology with its vertical flex groove provides enhanced gait efficiency by decoupling the tooling which happens on the line of progression
  • Rearfoot and Forefoot Gel technology cushioning system reduces shock during the toe off and impact phases
  • ASICS High Abrasion Rubber (AHAR) is positioned in critical portions of the shoe’s outsole to offer exceptional durability

CONS:

  • May not be wide enough for some runners

Best for Pavement and Concrete

6. Hoka One One Clifton 6

We found the Hoka One One Clifton 6 to be the best running shoe for pavement and concrete.

The compression molded full-length EVA midsole and Meta-Rocker technology on the Clifton 6 provide the runner with a balanced, smooth ride. The shoe enhances stability with its flat waisted geometry and full ground contact design.

The Clifton 6 has the distinction of winning an American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) award, which testifies to its effectiveness, safety, and quality in promoting foot health and allowing for the normal functioning of the foot.

Eyestays which have been reinforced offer greater durability, and high abrasion rubber zones have been strategically placed to reduce overall weight. Also, the embroidered reinforcement minimizes the number of layers and provides midfoot lockdown as well as support. The moderate beveled heel offers a smooth transition.

If you want a shoe for pounding the pavement (literally), the Hoka One One Clifton 6 is our top choice.


PROS:

  • Compression molded full-length EVA midsole and Meta-Rocker technology provide balanced, smooth ride
  • Enhanced stability due to its flat waisted geometry and full ground contact design
  • Embroidered reinforcement minimizes the number of layers and provides midfoot lockdown as well as support
  • APMA award

CONS:

  • May be less durable than other top running shoes

Top Lightweight Running Shoe

 

7. Saucony Kinvara 11

For the best performing lightweight running shoe, you need look no further than the SauconyKinvara 11. The shoe has been engineered to be as lightweight as possible to increase your efficiency and break your PRs.

If you are looking for the perfect shoe to set a new personal best, the Kinvara 11 may be the one for you. Its PWRRUN cushioning provides lightweight responsiveness which allows you to run either long or short distances.

Its sole is flexible to allow you to transition quickly between landing and take off, and the FORMFIT technology conforms to the shape of your foot to offer you the optimum feel and fit from each angle.


PROS:

  • Extremely lightweight shoe
  • FORMFIT technology conforms to the shape of your foot to offer you the optimum feel and fit from each angle
  • PWRRUN cushioning provides lightweight responsiveness which allows you to run either long or short distances

CONS:

  • May not provide enough support for some users
  • Not as durable as other shoes

Widest Toe Box Running Shoe

 

8. AltraTorin 4.5 Plush

If you need a shoe with the widest possible toe box, turn to the AltraTorin 4.5 Plush. Its Footshape Toe Box technology ensures that your toes will have enough breathing room during every run.

The shoe features a premium outsole and midsole for a responsive, lightweight, and incredibly smooth, balanced ride. The knit upper is breathable and comfortable and the shoe overall has been engineered to be more lightweight.

The shoe features Balanced cushioning for maximum comfort as well as FootPod technology for a durable, supportive, stable outsole. The insole is made of premium PU to create a footbed sculpted to the shape of your foot.


PROS:

  • Balanced cushioning for maximum comfort
  • FootPod technology for a durable, supportive, stable outsole
  • Footshape Toe Box technology ensures that your toes will have enough breathing room during every run
  • Knit upper is breathable and comfortable and the shoe overall has been engineered to be more lightweight

CONS:

  • May wear too quickly for some users

Best Value Running Shoe

9. Brooks Launch 7

For the best value for your money, the Brooks Launch 7 wins hands down. It offers premium performance, cushioning, support, and stability for a highly reasonable price.

The BioMoGo DNA midsole cushioning as well as the rebound rubber featured in the Launch 7 offer comfort without the extra weight, so you can increase your speed. The Midfoot Transition Zone is specially designed to allow you to transition quickly and smoothly from heel to toe.

The mesh upper is made of one piece, with an almost seamless construction internally. This construction allows the shoe to feel extra lightweight and breathable.


PROS:

  • BioMoGo DNA midsole cushioning as well as the rebound rubber featured in the Launch 7 offer comfort without the extra weight
  • Midfoot Transition Zone is specially designed to allow you to transition quickly and smoothly from heel to toe
  • Almost seamless internal construction and one piece mesh upper provide lightweight, breathable feel

CONS:

  • None

Top Walking Shoe

 

10. New Balance 577

Last but certainly not least is the New Balance 577, which is our pick for the best walking shoe. These shoes will eliminate as much foot fatigue as possible, keeping you comfortable no matter where you go or what you do in them throughout the day.

The midsole is made of PU for cushioning and stability, and the Abzorb technology offers further cushioning in the heel section with its superb shock absorption. The solid rubber outsole enhances durability and stability, and the leather upper offers breathability as well as enhanced durability.

If you need a solid, reliable walking shoe that you can take to your 9 to 5 or around the neighborhood for a brisk walk, this is the pair for you.


PROS:

  • Abzorb technology offers maximum cushioning in the heel section with its superb shock absorption
  • Midsole is made of PU for cushioning and stability
  • Solid rubber outsole enhances durability and stability

CONS:

  • Design may not be to everyone’s taste

 

FAQ

Q: How long should an older runner run?

A: In terms of distance, it depends on the runner. If you have already gotten used to distance running, your basic physiology hasn’t really changed, so you can continue to run your favorite distances. If you usually run shorter distances, you can stick with that.

One rule of thumb is the 10% rule: that is, if you are planning to increase your running distance, time, or intensity, do your best to add at most 10% in distance, time, or intensity from week to week.

Q: What features should running shoes for an older runner have?

A: The primary features that older runners ought to be concerned with when shopping for running shoes are cushioning and support.

Proper support in a running shoe will help maintain the correct stride and running posture, which will limit the chance of injury.

Sufficient cushioning will help to make up for the decrease in elasticity as one gets older, and it will also reduce the amount of wear and tear that is suffered by the knees, ankles, and other joints while running, which also helps to prevent injuries.

Q: After how many miles should an older runner change his shoes?

A: An older runner should change his or her shoes every three hundred to four hundred miles, although this also depends on the terrain on which he or she runs. If you run on tough terrain like trails or rough roads, you may need to change your shoes toward the low end of that range or even before that.

One way to determine when your shoes should be replaced is by looking at the tread of the sole. If the sole is worn down, the shock absorbency and cushioning is definitely worn out as well, and the shoe should be replaced.

Q: Is there an age older runners should stop running?

A: There is not a hard and fast rule for this; many runners continue running at a fairly high level well into their seventies and eighties. And running has countless benefits and may actually extend your lifespan.

The key is not to overdo it. Take a break after running long distances, and do not increase your running distance by over 10 percent every week. Stretching will also serve to preserve the flexibility of your joints and limber up your muscles.

The Wired Runner