Top 5 Running Shoes for Overpronation: Reviews & Tips
Runners for Overpronators: Finding the Right Fit
If you are an avid runner, you know that the right shoes can make or break your exercise and enjoyment. Overpronation is a common problem that plagues many joggers, runners, triathletes and marathoners, but fortunately there is an easy solution: upgrade your runners.
Finding a good set of running shoes for overpronation will drastically improve your comfort while running, while protecting your knees and joints.
Overpronation is actually a result of nature's attempt to absorb shock and impact. It's accentuated by a number of factors (more on this in a bit), and it can make a run a lot less fun due to aches, pain and lack of efficiency. A lot of people who suffer from it aren't even aware of the problem. A good pair of running shoes for overpronators will combat this excess movement in a number of ways.
This article will take a close look at a handful of my favorite running shoes for overpronation. We'll take a close look at each pair and explain why it might work for you and your running habits. But before the reviews we will look at what overpronation is, how it works and what can be done to remedy it. If you have any questions about the shoes or about anything not covered in the article, please leave a comment at the bottom. Let's get started!
What Is Overpronation?
Overpronation is a result of the natural shock absorptive capabilities of your body. It's basically intended to reduce strain throughout your knees, hips and spine by redistributing the shock of impact.
When you take a step, you'll probably notice that your ankle will roll somewhat through your stride, as your weight is distributed across your foot. People with 'normal' or natural pronation will have a slight inward roll. The heel hits the ground, and the weight is distributed along the inside arch of your foot. Those with overpronation experience a larger than normal degree of 'roll' with each stride, meaning that your full body weight is distributed across the extreme inner edge of your foot.
The diagram to the right shows how overpronation happens visually. The red shows where the weight is distributed through the stride. The blue line indicates the angle of your ankle. Overpronation can range from very mild to severe.
The Damage, and How Overpronation Runners Help
Overpronation puts excessive strain on the ankle, knees and hips, and it stretches ligaments and tendons in ways that aren't compensated for by the body. Injuries caused are usually the 'wear and tear' variety that get gradually worse over time, and repairing this damage can be costly.
If you're unsure of whether you require running shoes for overpronation or not, you might want to get someone to video or photograph your stride from behind as you run. Another solution is to look at the wear patterns on your runners. If you see excessive wear on the inside portion of the shoe, you may be overpronating.
People who are heavier or overweight have a higher likelihood of overpronation, as do those with low arches.
The best running shoes for overpronators help by lessening the amount of roll that your ankle and foot does on impact and throughout the stride, by providing extra support and stability to even things out. Mild to moderate issues will require standard stability style runners, while severe cases might want to opt for motion control running shoes.
New Balance 940: Stability & comfort
New Balance is a great brand that has really addressed the issue of pronation in many of their running shoes.
The 940 series is one I really like because it's a versatile and comfortable shoe that's pretty light and offers above average stability and support with every stride. I also like this series because it is a running shoe for overpronators that is available for both men and women.
The 940 series addresses the health issues associated with this condition in a few different ways. First off they feature a stability core that helps compensate for excessive foot roll and keep your ankle much more aligned throughout the stride. There is a super absorbent cushioning system that reduces impact shock on your joints and makes running more comfortable.
The shoe also has a slightly more rigid external skeleton that increases stability and helps prevent injury, but it's a mesh that still allows airflow. The effect is a springy stride and lots of energy while you run.
Lighweight and comfortable, available in a number of sizes and for both men and women, the 940 series by New Balance is a good set of overpronation running shoes that are perfect for moderate to severe sufferers.
Saucony ProGrid: Affordable runners for symptom relief
Saucony is another great running shoe brand that has recognized the growing need for overpronation relief. They offer a range called the ProGrid series which is generally intended for treating the symptoms of excessive pronation.
The one I will be showing here is the Triumph 10 model, which is also available for both men and women. This shoe helps guide your foot and ankle throughout your stride, while also keeping your feet secure and cool.
The Progrid Triumph 10 features a heel impact zone and reinforced toe cushioning in the front, which gives a nice feeling of energy and bounce with each stride you take, while reducing impact and absorbing shock that could cause joint wear over time.
The shoe is designed to reduce 'slippage', which means you'll get fewer blisters on long runs. They fit snugly but not uncomfortably so.
It compensates nicely for roll so anyone who suffers from mild to moderate overpronation could definitely benefit from a pair of these awesome running shoes. Overpronators will also love that they look great and they're pretty lightweight and cool.
ASICS Gel-Kayano 21: Memory foam comfort & stability
ASICS is a slightly more expensive brand than some of the others listed here, but they're obsessed with shoe technology and they make an excellent, long term choice. They are one of the best running shoes for overpronation because they combine all the stability and support you'll need with light weight, air flow and good looks.
The Gel-Kayano 21 series is also available for both men and women. The Gel in the name stands for a type of memory foam in the heel and front of the shoe which conform to your shape and provide awesome reduction of shock and overall comfort while you run. The mesh upper portion of the shoe is built to breathe and does an excellent job of letting air in to the shoe while you run.
Overpronation is dealt with by using their 'Guidance Trusstic' system, which provides increased gait guidance to protect your feet from rolling.
Really these shoes fit like a glove and are a good choice for anyone seeking the top running shoes for overpronators on the market today. They're available in a ton of color choices too, which is always a nice thing.
Mizuno Wave Paradox: Running shoes suitable for severe overpronation
I wanted to feature runners for anyone who suffers from moderate to severe overpronation. If you do, you'll want a set of motion control running shoes that actively work to counteract the excessive roll in your gait.
The Wave Paradox series by Mizuno is a nice example of how a control running shoe can still be comfortable and attractive.
The main difference is in the midsole and heel, which include shock absorbing technology and responsive polymer construction that work to respond to the motion of your foot. Their SmoothRideTM system is meant to reduce excessive motion through your stride and make the transition from heel to toe a lot more stable.
Despite the fact that this shoe is a bit beefier than some of the products shown earlier, it is not actually that much heavier, and a fun and durable running shoe for moderate to severe overpronators that will make most runners very happy. It's available in men and women's sizes.
Brooks Adrenaline: Motion control running shoes for severe overpronators
Brooks has a couple of shoes that are really great options for anyone with moderate to heavy overpronation and low arches. They are not the same product but they're effectively quite similar. I really like these runners because they look great and they have a 'free' feeling when you run (many running shoes for overpronators will make you feel 'locked in', not always a great feeling).
The main mechanism for counteracting excess foot roll is the use of diagonal roll bars in the sole. They basically work to make the sole of the shoe a lot more rigid than a standard runner.
They also offer adaptive cushioning, which varies the cushioning depending on where precisely your weight is distributed. The segmented Crash Pad allows a lot of cushioning for lower arches and gives you a spring in your step with each stride.
The Adrenaline is available for both men and women. Both are great options and make excellent running shoes for heavy overpronators or those with lower arches to their feet. Read some customer reviews to get a feel for how popular they are.