Best Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis – TOP 17 Shoes for Men & Women 2019

Is Plantar Fasciitis putting the breaks on your running routine?

Whether you just got back into running after a loooong break, or are running to lose weight or training to run your first marathon, a bout of plantar fasciitis may feel like the end of the road for your running career.

Fear not!

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

One tool in the runner’s injury prevention and recovery arsenal is a good pair of running shoes.

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 for you and review 17 running shoes that have helped others with plantar fasciitis.

First Things First – Conflicting Viewpoints

Women stretching for warming up before running

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?

I have heard from both sides, and 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.

How do you decide what is right for you?

I am no doctor, but my advice is to try each way and experiment.

Note: pain that does not subside or discomfort that lingers should be checked out by a professional.

In my review of the 17 best running shoes for plantar fasciitis, I included a few minimalist shoes and several others that offer more support and cushion.

All the shoes I reviewed are those that real runners like yourself found helpful to alleviate plantar fasciitis.

What to Look for: Choosing the Right Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis

marathon running

Are You an Under, Over or Normal Pronator?

Over Pronators

People who overpronate need a “stability shoe”.

What does that even mean?

If you overpronate, it means your foot tends to roll inward as you run. A stability shoe is designed to limit the motion of your foot and keep it properly aligned as you run.

Stability shoes may have “guiderails” built in or feature a denser material on the inner sole to prevent your stride from straying inward.

These features keep your foot properly aligned.

Shoes for overpronators may also have a built-in post or shank in the arch for additional support in this susceptible area.

If the arch of your foot flattens as you run, this puts a strain on the muscles and ligaments that create the foot arch.

Ouch!

Poor arch support combined with repetitive impact is often the cause of plantar fasciitis.

Under Pronators aka Supinatiors

Take a look at the soles of an old pair of running shoes.

Do you notice more wear to the outside edge of the sole vs the inner sole?

If so, you are probably an under-pronator, meaning your foot tends to roll outward as you run.

The problem with under-pronation is that since the foot does not land properly, the impact from your stride is not fully absorbed and your knees take the brunt of the unabsorbed force, causing knee pain.

Under-pronators need shoes with flexible soles and ample cushion.

Normal Pronators

Normal pronators will notice wear at the ball of the foot and heel, which indicates that the biomechanics of your gait are normal and the impact of your stride is being properly absorbed.

Normal pronators need a “neutral shoe”.

Note: it is possible to be a normal pronator and still have heel and arch pain. If a shoe does not support the arch, your arch may flatten, causing pain in the heel and midfoot.

Heel Support

A stiff heel counter, the area of the shoe that wraps around the heel, keeps the heel in place. The heel counter adds stability and prevents the foot from rolling.

A deep heel cup also keeps the heel in place and helps prevent flattening of the arch of the foot.

If you are struggling with plantar fasciitis try a pair of shoes with a sturdy heel counter and deep heel cup.

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 cushion and a form-fitting footbed. Extra cushioning will help absorb the extra impact created by a pronation issue.

The cushioning will also prevent the arch of your foot from flattening out as you run, which can strain the arch and cause pain in the heel, arch or top on the foot.

The Shoe’s Drop: the Height Difference Between the Heel and Forefoot

The shoe’s “drop” is a measurement of the difference between the heel height and the height of the forefoot.

If a shoe is 15mm high in the heel, and 5 mm 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 10 mm 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 steep drop encourages heel striking.

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.

A narrow toe box squishes the toes, throwing the bones and joints out of alignment, causing painful blister, bunions and puts stress on tendons and muscles in the midfoot, which may cause the pain associated with plantar fasciitis.

Now that we have the mechanics out of the way, let’s look at the best running shoes for high arches and plantar fasciitis that I could find.

TOP 17 Best Running Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis Reviewed

First up, the 10 best men’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Brooks Men’s Ravenna 9

Review: Brooks Tennis Shoe Company has been in the shoe game for a long time. Brooks is well known for focusing on designing high-quality shoes that provide comfort and support.

The latest 2018 version Ravenna 9 shoes are a complete re-design, made for runners with low to med arch, over Pronators and those who suffer from plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • Supportive, for flat to medium arch.
  • Ideal for over Pronators and Plantar Fasciitis.
  • 10 mm drop to propel you forward.
  • Diagonal roll bar to add stability and prevent overpronation.

Cons

  • Slightly narrower than previous Ravenna models.

Takeaway

Light and comfortable, with excellent energy return. The best running shoes for men with plantar fasciitis.

HOKA ONE ONE Men's Bondi 5 Running Shoe

Review: The Bondi 5 is well cushioned, wearing them makes you feel like you are walking in the clouds. They have thick wide soles and accommodate wide feet.

These have good arch support and are stable.

Model 5 has been updated to be more breathable and provides a wider toe box so your toes can splay out comfortably.

Pros

  • Well cushioned.
  • Incorporates an active foot frame, like a bucket seat for your feet!
  • J-Frame sole uses dense foam on the inner sole to properly guide your stride.

Cons

  • Runs small.

Takeaway

Well designed and thought out shoe that is more cushioned than any others available.

Mizuno Men's Wave Rider 21 Running Shoe

Review: This neutral running shoe by Mizuno is the 21st iteration of the Wave rider model.

A shoe that has lasted 21 years must be good and indeed this model is.

The shoe is made with a durable shock absorbing midsole, plenty of heel cushion, and an X10 outsole which is firmer in high impact areas.

Pros

  • 12 mm drop keeps you moving forward.
  • Neutral running shoe-ideal for mid foot strikers.
  • Makes for a soft run-well cushioned.

Cons

  • Runs large.

Takeaway

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

Saucony Men's Cohesion 11 Running Shoe

Review: The Saucony Men’s Cohesion 11 have a cushioned yet stable heel that is supportive, without being too cushiony.

They have a firm mid sole and good side to side, or lateral stability.

Pros

  • Neutral shoe for normal pronators.
  • 12 mm drop.
  • Ample support for high arches.

Cons

  • Not as shock absorbing as previous models.

Takeaway

Good running shoes for plantar fasciitis for runners who are not interested in highly cushioned shoes.

New Balance Men's 990V4 Running Shoe

Review: The New Balance Men’s 990V4 shoe has been updated from the m990v3 and now includes more cushioning and increased stability. They are both good running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

These shoes have a classic New Balance look and are manufactured in the USA.

Pros

  • 12 mm drop propels you forward as you run.
  • ENCAP midsole offers arch support and added durability.
  • Excellent support for heavier runners.

Cons

  • Slightly heavier than the previous model (13.6 oz).

Takeaway

Best New Balance running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Salomon Sense Ride Running Shoe - Men's

Review: The Salomon Sense Ride Running shoes just make sense if you suffer from Plantar fasciitis.

They have a modest 8mm drop and are better cushioned than the street and track shoes by the same company because they are actually designed for trail running.

But that just means more cushion for you who suffer from plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • OPAL midsole is a soft cushion insole with good energy rebound and return.
  • “Profeel” film in the chassis connects the heel and forefoot preventing rolling.
  • EVA heel cup is supportive and cushioning.

Cons

  • The mesh upper is not as durable as other Salomon models.

Takeaway

This trail shoe is soft yet stable, light enough to double as a street shoe with added cushion.

One of the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Brooks Men's PureCadence 6

Review: Brooks Men’s Pure Cadence 6 are a stability shoe designed for over pronators.

They are a real help to those who suffer from Plantar Fasciitis with the BioMOGo midsole that cushions each stride.

Pros

  • Light guide rails prevent over pronation.
  • Support and stability style shoe.
  • Flex grooves allow the shoe to move comfortably as you run.

Cons

  • The upper is not as durable as previous models.

Takeaway

A great running shoe for the over pronator who suffers from plantar fasciitis.

Altra Men's Superior 3 Running Shoe

Review: The Altra Men’s Superior 3 running shoes are designed for the trail but work just as well on pavement.

The sole is made stronger than other models, and these have relatively little cushion compared to other models.

The cushion they have is in the arch and heel, which is why these work for plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • Wide toe box.
  • Foot bed shape encourages natural foot positioning.
  • Cushioned in the heel and arch.

Cons

  • The Superior model runs small.

Takeaway

If you want shoes that lean toward the minimalist style these may be the shoes that help alleviate your plantar fasciitis.

NIKE Men's Air Zoom Pegasus 34 Running Shoe

Review: The NIKE Pegasus line has been a popular running shoe for over 30 years.

The Pegasus 34 continues to be great, providing good cushioning that is not too soft nor unstable. This is a neutral running shoe, designed for average pronators and the arch support works well for folks with high arches.

Pros

  • Fast responsive cushioning.
  • Good arch support- can be used by folks with high arches.
  • Flexible and comfortable.

Cons

  • Run narrow.

Takeaway

Long lasting, responsive running shoes.

Brooks Men's Ghost 10

Review: The Brooks Ghost 10 shoe has a plush interior that adapts to your foot.

Designed for medium to high arches, these stability shoes are for over pronators and work well for pain caused by plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • 12 mm drop.
  • Wide toe box, ample room.
  • Cushioned midsole adapts to your arch, good for flexible arches.

Cons

  • Upper seems smaller compared to other Brooks models.

Takeaway

Truly, on of the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis 2019.

Now, it’s time for the ladies!

My pick of 7 Best women’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

Brooks Women’s PureCadence 7

Review: The Brooks PureCadence 7 are support shoes built with guiderails that keep your gait inline, keeping hips, knees and joints in alignment.

This support shoe is specifically made for those with flat or medium arches and work well for alleviating the discomfort of plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • Extremely light at 7.9 oz.
  • Support 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.

New Balance Women's w990v4 Running Shoe

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

In addition to that the shoe is made with high quality material in the USA.

Pros

  • Support midsole with good arch support.
  • 12 mm drop keeps you moving forward.
  • Good for over pronators stability shoe.

Cons

  • Runs small.

Takeaway

The stability shoe for over pronators and those with plantar fasciitis. The best running shoes for plantar fasciitis and heel spurs.

ASICS Women's Dynaflyte 2 Running Shoe

Review: The Asics Dynaflyte 2 is a cushioned shoe designed for over pronators.

It has gel cushioning in the heel making the shoe a comforting choice for the unfortunate folks suffering from plantar fasciitis.

Pros

  • Midsole returns energy for a responsive stride.
  • Designed with impact guidance system for proper alignment.
  • Mere 7.2 oz weight.

Cons

  • Runs small.

Takeaway

One of the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis 2019 for women.

Brooks Women's Ravenna 8

Review: The Brooks Ravenna 8 is very similar to the previous model, with just a slight reduction of material in the upper making it a wee bit lighter.

The reason this shoe is one of the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis is they are designed for runners with low to medium arches and who slightly overpronate.

Pros

  • Firm insole foam prevents inward foot roll, ankle injury and worsening of plantar fasciitis.
  • Support shoe, for low to med arches and mild over pronators.
  • Wide toe box, narrow at the heel.

Cons

  • Runs just a little large.

Takeaway

Comfortable stability running shoe for women with plantar fasciitis.

Mizuno Women's Wave Rider 21 Running Shoe

Review: The latest Wave Rider,21 is a neutral running shoe for runners with normal pronation.

Soft heel counter and moderate cushioning make this running shoe a good choice for women who suffer from plantar fasciitis and have a normal gait.

Pros

  • Shock absorbing midsole thanks to wave technology.
  • Soft midsole.
  • Very responsive, plenty of bounce.

Cons

  • These shoes run narrow.

Takeaway

A soft heel and bouncy ride make these a great running shoe that works for women with plantar fasciitis.

Nike Women's Air Zoom Pegasus 35 Running Shoes

Review: The latest Pegasus 35 running shoe from NIKE has been going strong for over 30 years.

This running shoe is so popular thanks to the responsive, energy returning ZoomX foam cushioning and a collar that angles out to provide comfort for your Achilles tendon.

They are also great for alleviating pain from plantar fasciitis because the midsole has high arch support.

Pros

  • High arch.
  • Responsive ZoomX foam midsole.
  • 10mm drop.
  • Foot conforming sock liner provides good support.

Cons

  • Run small and a bit snug.

Takeaway

Don’t let plantar fasciitis stop you from flying, pick up a pair of the best Nike running shoes for plantar fasciitis for women and get your wings back.

Saucony Women's Cohesion 11 Running Shoe

Review: The Saucony Cohesion 11 running shoe is a neutral running shoe for normal pronators.

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.
  • 12 mm drop for dynamic forward movement.
  • Very light, 8.2 oz.

Cons

  • These shoes tend to run large.

Takeaway

One of the most comfortable women’s running shoes for plantar fasciitis.

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

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