TOP 17 Best Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis 2020 (Shoes for Men & Women)

Is Plantar Fasciitis putting the brakes on your running routine?

Fear not!

Many runners overcome plantar fasciitis and go on to achieve whatever ambition they are chasing.

Well-designed running shoes can help ease the pain and aid recovery from plantar fasciitis.

In this quick guide, I will show you how to find the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis 2020 and review 17 of the best options.

TOP 17 Best Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis 2020

First up, the 9 best men’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Mizuno Men's Wave Inspire 16

Review: The Mizuno Wave Inspire 16 is a very popular and highly rated stability shoe. Its 12mm drop is designed for heel strikers with a medium arch.

It provides some of the best stability on this list as a result of Mizuno’s thermoplastic wave plate. This combined with U4ic and U4icX foam makes for excellent cushioning, shock absorption and responsiveness.

Pros

  • Excellent arch support.
  • Responsive cushioning.
  • Premium Sockliner provides an extra cushy footbed.
  • Durable but flexible outsole.

Cons

  • Toebox could be wider.

Takeaway

Light and comfortable, with excellent energy return. These are some of the best running shoes for men with plantar fasciitis.

New Balance Men's Fresh Foam Vongo v4

Review: The Fresh Foam Vongo is a highly cushioned stability shoe from New Balance. It’s designed to be super comfortable for people with problems like bunions and back pain, but the plush cushioning makes it a great choice for plantar fasciitis too.

It has a 4mm drop which means it’s designed for forefoot strikers, which is unusual for highly cushioned stability shoes. But, it just might work for you.

Pros

  • Very well cushioned.
  • Wide sizing available.
  • Lightweight.
  • Flexible and breathable engineered mesh upper.
  • Molded EVA insole for arch support and cushioning.

Cons

  • Some issues with heel fit.

Takeaway

This is a unique, low drop stability shoe for forefoot strikers with plantar fasciitis.

Saucony Men's Guide 13

Review: This top-rated Saucony shoe is an easy choice for people looking for moderate support, excellent cushioning and durability.

It’s a lightweight shoe with a fast feel and good responsiveness but just enough stability you guide your foot through a healthy amount of pronation.

It has a medium 8mm drop which makes it well suited for midfoot strikers or heel strikers looking to build up their strength.

Pros

  • A great choice for long runs.
  • Excellent energy return.
  • Removable insole.
  • FormFit midsole technology.

Cons

  • Slightly narrow fit.

Takeaway

Smooth, light, fast, supportive and well cushioned, what more could a runner with plantar fasciitis ask for?

Asics Men's GT2000 7

Review: The GT 2000 has been Asics’ mainstay stability shoe for many, many years. It has reliable arch support, a 10mm drop, comfortable cushioning and a highly breathable upper.

Asics uses many features to provide its high-level stability, include an Impact Guidance Trusstic System and Duomax rubber which combine to keep the foot in good alignment from heel strike to toe off.

Pros

  • Wide and extra wide fit available.
  • Good arch support.
  • Well suited to long distances.
  • Good for flat feet.

Cons

  • Asics is usually better suited to narrower feet.

Takeaway

Excellent all-rounders, these shoes are good value for money while providing good support and plush cushioning.

Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 20

Review: Brooks’ extremely popular motion control ‘Go To Shoe’ is easily one of the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis of 2020.

It’s literally got everything you want – very stable support, plenty of cushioning, good responsiveness and all in a very comfortable, reasonably lightweight shoe.

DNA Loft foam provides plush cushioning while Brooks GuideRails support system keeps everything in alignment.

Pros

  • 12 mm drop is great for heel strikers.
  • Excellent support for heavier runners.
  • GuideRails support system.
  • Engineered mesh upper.
  • Well-designed heel cup.

Cons

  • Slightly narrow heel fit.

Takeaway

Excellent all-rounders that will serve as every day running shoes for a range of distances.

Interested in more motion control shoes? Check out our list of the best motion control running shoes.

Newton Men's Motion 8

Review: The Newton Motion 8 is top quality but slightly lesser-known shoe compared to the others on this list. It only has a 3mm drop which is the lowest on this list so it’s definitely only suited to people with plantar fasciitis who already forefoot strike.

But, it is a stability shoe so it provides reliable arch support in the form of a medial post, while Newtonium foam and an ETC sockliner provide very comfortable cushioning.

Pros

  • Nicely breathable.
  • Reliable arch support.
  • Comfortable cushioning.
  • Lightweight and fast.
  • Responsive over long distances.

Cons

  • Very low drop.

Takeaway

This is a lightweight marathon shoe designed for people who forefoot strike but the combination of arch support and soft cushioning make it a good option for plantar fasciitis (provided you already forefoot strike).

Hoka One One Men’s Arahi 4

Review: Hoka One One shoes are known for their maximalist cushioning and the Arahi 4 is no exception. Specifically designed for plantar fasciitis, this shoe has pronation support, ample shock absorption and an extra soft sock liner for added comfort.

The pronation support comes in the form of Hoka’s J-Frame design while its Meta-Rocker provides smooth transitions from midfoot strike to toe off.

Pros

  • Very lightweight despite all the cushioning.
  • Securely fitting heel.
  • Plush sockliner provides a very comfortable footbed.

Cons

  • 5mm drop is designed for midfoot striking.

Takeaway

A great running shoe for the overpronator who suffers from plantar fasciitis and appreciates maximum cushioning.

Nike Men's Air Zoom Structure 22

Review: Nike’s Air Zoom Structure is a lightweight and highly responsive stability shoe well suited for people who want to feel fast and not weighed down by bulky shoes.

It has a 10mm drop and provides a very stable platform that is ideal for heavier runners. Its cushioning manages to lean towards plush while maintaining good energy return and light weight.

Pros

  • Fast, responsive cushioning.
  • Good arch support – can be used by folks with medium arches.
  • Flexible and comfortable.
  • Lightweight.

Cons

  • Not as durable as other shoes on this list.

Takeaway

Long lasting, responsive running shoes that can be considered a versatile every day running shoe.

Brooks Men's Ghost 12

Review: The Brooks Ghosts are a highly cushioned neutral shoe but they still provide a nice, wide, stable platform which makes them a great option for plantar fasciitis sufferers provided your overpronation isn’t too severe.

It has a plush interior that adapts to your foot, Brooks’ BioMoGo DNA foam in the midsole and a segmented crash pad that provides superior shock absorption.

Pros

  • 12mm drop.
  • Wide sizing available.
  • Excellent for long runs and high mileage.
  • Very plush cushioning.

Cons

  • Toe box runs a little narrow.

Takeaway

Truly, some of the best men’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Now, it’s time for the ladies!

My pick of the 8 best women’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

New Balance Women's w990v4

Review: The New Balance women’s w990v4 is a stability shoe with plenty of cushioning, making it a great choice if you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis.

The 12mm drop is great for heel strikers, the newly included ENCAP technology provides really comfortable stability and shock absorption, and New Balance is also known for having a wider fit which is helpful for people with low or fallen arches.

Pros

  • Supportive with good arch support.
  • ENCAP midsole technology for cushioning and stability.
  • Very comfortable.
  • Breathable.

Cons

  • A little pricey.

Takeaway

Some of the best women’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis, the 990s are really comfortable with the perfect balance of cushioning and stability.

Asics Women's Gel Kayano 26

Review: The Asics Kayano 26 is another cushioned stability shoe designed for overpronators who heel strike. The Kayano has some of the most advanced stability technology out there making it the best choice for severe overpronators.

Aside from its top-quality arch support, it has gel cushioning in the heel making the shoe a comforting choice for plantar fasciitis sufferers.

Pros

  • Midsole returns energy for a responsive stride.
  • Designed with impact guidance system for proper alignment.
  • Gel cushioning for extreme shock absorption.
  • 10mm drop.

Cons

  • Toebox runs small.

Takeaway

One of the best running shoes for severe overpronation and plantar fasciitis.

Brooks Women's Ravenna 10

Review: The Brooks Ravenna 10 is a popular option for people with foot pain. It’s a snappy road running shoe that won’t weigh you down but still provides a good level of arch support and firm, stable cushioning.

It’s not as plush as some of the other shoes on this list, but if the shoe fits… you get my drift.

Pros

  • BioMoGo DNA midsole.
  • Holistic GuideRails provide reliable arch support.
  • Wide toe box, narrow at the heel.
  • Blown rubber outsole makes for bouncier ride.
  • 10mm drop is good for heel strikers.

Cons

  • Runs just a little large.

Takeaway

If you want a fast shoe that won’t slow you down, this is the one to go for.

Mizuno Women's Wave Horizon 4

Review: The Wave Horizon 4 is another excellent stability shoe with good responsiveness and comfortable cushioning. It’s a marathon shoe that’s designed to go the distance so it has a durable construction and long-lasting springiness.

The combination of stability, excellent shock absorption and a soft sock liner make this shoe a great choice for overpronators.

Pros

  • Shock absorbing midsole thanks to Cloudwave technology.
  • Very responsive, plenty of bounce.
  • OrthoLite sock liner provides soft underfoot cushioning.
  • 12mm drop is great for heel strikers.

Cons

  • May feel a little heavy.

Takeaway

Mizuno’s wave plate technology takes the cake here, making this shoe an impressively responsive option considering the excellent shock absorption.

New Balance Women's Leadville v3

Review: The Leadville v3 is a trail running shoe for overpronators. It has an 8mm drop, excellent arch support in the form of a medial post, and very responsive cushioning.

It will likely feel a little firmer than the other highly cushioned shoes on this list, but that’s usually the case with trail shoes.

Pros

  • REVlite foam is lightweight and responsive.
  • Arch support isn’t too protruding so comfortable for low arches.
  • Upper keeps out debris.
  • Breathable and quick-drying.

Cons

  • Cushioning won’t feel as plush as other shoes.

Takeaway

These are the best trail running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Nike Women's Air Zoom Pegasus 36

Review: The latest Pegasus 36 is a neutral road running shoe with a 10mm drop and plush cushioning.

They are built for people with high arches who don’t overpronate so you won’t be able to rely on them if you overpronate, but if you’re a neutral runner, these are a great choice.

A full-length piece of Cushlon foam provides the cushioning while air pockets provide responsiveness and more shock absorption.

Pros

  • Good for high arches.
  • Orthotic-friendly.
  • Foot conforming sock liner.
  • Very breathable.
  • Flywire technology provides a securely fitting upper.

Cons

  • Runs a little narrow.

Takeaway

These are a great option for plantar fasciitis sufferers with neutral pronation and high arches.

Brooks Women’s PureCadence 7

Review: The Brooks PureCadence 7 are stability shoes built with GuideRails that keep your hips, knees and joints in alignment.

They’re specifically made for those with flat or medium arches and work well for alleviating the discomfort of plantar fasciitis.

But, their 4mm drop means they’re only suited for people who already forefoot or midfoot strike.

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight.
  • Stability shoe for flat and medium arches.
  • Guiderail keeps joints properly aligned.

Cons

  • Snug fit, not too roomy in the toe.

Takeaway

Some of the best women’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis with plenty of support for forefoot strikers.

Saucony Women's Cohesion 12

Review: The Saucony Cohesion 12 running shoe is another neutral running shoe for normal pronators. It’s designed for distance running so it’ll cope with many miles before losing any cushioning.

It features a cushioned yet stable heel, a moderately cushioned midsole, and a removable insole you can replace with your own orthotic if needed.

Pros

  • Heel grid design enhances stability while cushioning the heel.
  • 12mm drop is good for heel strikers.
  • Very light.
  • Affordable.

Cons

  • These shoes tend to run large.

Takeaway

One of the most comfortable women’s running shoes for neutral distance runners with plantar fasciitis.

How to Choose the Best Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis

Women stretching for warming up before running

First Things First – Conflicting Viewpoints

There are several schools of thought when it comes to how to treat plantar fasciitis.

Some believe it is best to use a minimalist style shoe with very little support to strengthen the arch of the foot. They may even recommend going barefoot when it is convenient.

Others believe that in order to heal or prevent plantar fasciitis you need a supportive and stable shoe with adequate cushion.

Who is right?

The truth is, what works to heal one person’s plantar fasciitis may make another’s pain worse.

In other words, some runners do get better using the barefoot style or minimalist shoes, while other runners find supportive shoes helpful.

female runner with barefoot running shoes closeup

How do You Decide What is Right for You?

This depends on what is causing your plantar fasciitis. For this, you may need to get checked out by a professional.

Plantar fasciitis can be caused by a wide range of things. Anything from being overweight, being on your feet all day, to having tight muscles, an old injury or, most commonly, overpronating.

If you’re overweight or forced to be on your feet all day, these aren’t things that can be changed quickly so you’re better off going for supportive, well-cushioned shoes, and incorporating some stretching into your routine.

If, on the other hand, your pain is resulting from overpronation and tight muscles, this is something you can work with slowly to build up strength and flexibility.

I’d still recommend starting with supportive, well-cushioned shoes for your running, and work on your foot strength and flexibility in between runs. Once your pain is reducing, then you can start transitioning towards more neutral shoes.

Check out this video for ideas on strength and flexibility exercises for plantar fasciitis.

What to Look for:

Arch Support

Most people with plantar fasciitis tend to overpronate or have a degree of instability in their feet. For this reason, stability or motion control shoes are usually the most comfortable.

If you’re interested in more shoes for overpronators, we have even more great options on this list. If you know you have flat feet, why not check out our guide to the best running shoes for flat feet?

On the other hand, if you know that you don’t overpronate, you could still benefit from a neutral shoe that incorporates some stability features so that your foot muscles don’t go into overdrive and make your plantar fasciitis worse.

Lastly, in rare cases, runners with high arches who underpronate, or supinate, can also end up with plantar fasciitis. If that’s the case for you, be sure to have a read of our guide to the best running shoes for underpronators.

Heel Support

A sturdy heel counter and deep heel cup will help with stability and keeping the heel securely in place inside the shoe.

Avoid a flat insole because it won’t hold your foot in place and make for an unstable landing.

Cushion

Look for a shoe with ample cushioning and a form-fitting footbed.

When you have plantar fasciitis, the muscles in your feet are enflamed and sore, so extra cushioning is important to stay comfortable.

But cushioning also means shock absorption. If your shoes aren’t well-cushioned, the muscles in your feet and lower leg will be forced to cope with the impact of landing repetitively which can make plantar fasciitis worse.

Good shock absorption will reduce the load on your muscles.

young woman running in morning outdoor

The Shoe’s Drop

The shoe’s “drop” is a measurement of the difference between the stack height of the sole at the heel compared to the forefoot.

If a shoe is 15mm high in the heel, and 5mm high at the toe, the drop is 10mm.

Why does the shoe’s drop matter?

The shoe’s drop affects two things

  • First, a steep drop, say 10mm or more, pushes you forward slightly as you run. These shoes forward motion make some runners feel like they are moving faster.
  • Second, a shoe’s drop affects where the foot strike occurs. A low or medium drop shoe tends to strike near the front or midsole. A higher drop encourages heel striking.

What does this mean for you?

It’s important that you already know whether you’re a heel striker, midfoot striker or forefoot striker, and that you match the drop in your shoes to match this.

If you’re a heel striker and you suddenly start running in a pair of low drop shoes, the muscles in your feet and lower legs will have to works harder and you’ll likely make your plantar fasciitis worse.

The Toe Box

A good running shoe for plantar fasciitis should be snug in the heel and midfoot.

But…

The front of the shoe where the toes are, called the toe box, should be roomy and wide enough for your toes to splay naturally while you run.

Why do my toes need room?

When your toes have enough room to land as nature intended, this keeps the bones of your foot in proper alignment.

That sums up the list of what to look for.

More into working out than running per se? No problem! We have a list of the best workout shoes for plantar fasciitis which will help you out.

FAQ

man running on bay walk during daytime

What are the Best Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis?

The best running shoes for plantar fasciitis are shoes are that provide the right amount of support for your foot type with plenty of cushioning.

There is no single best shoe for plantar fasciitis because everyone’s feet are different. The most important thing is that the shoe fits you and is comfortable.

Does Running Make Plantar Fasciitis Worse?

Running can make plantar fasciitis worse if you’re not wearing the right shoes or if you’re not doing any stretching between your runs.

What Asics are Good for Plantar Fasciitis?

Any of Asics’s supportive shoes like the Kayano or GT 2000 are great for plantar fasciitis.

Are Skechers Good for Plantar Fasciitis?

If you find a supportive and well-cushioned pair of Skechers then they will be fine for casual wear, but not for running.

What Brooks are Good Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis?

Brooks Ghost, Beast, Ravenna and PureCadence are all good options for plantar fasciitis.

What are the Best Nike Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis?

Nike’s Air Zoom Structure are the best Nike shoes for plantar fasciitis due to stability and cushioning.

What Shoes Should You Not Wear with Plantar Fasciitis?

Old, worn-out shoes, or shoes with limited stability or cushioning are not a great option for plantar fasciitis sufferers.

I wish you success in your search for the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis in 2020 and hope you drop me a line in the comments to let me know what shoes you like best.

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