11 Best Women’s Stability Shoes for 2018

11 Best Women’s Stability Shoes for 2018

These aren’t your grandmother’s stability shoes. Adding support features into running shoes was originally meant to correct deficiencies in your footstrike, but recently shoe manufacturers have shifted perspective. Today your shoes are meant to work with you and adapt to your natural gait, and sometimes this involves the torsion rails, medial posts, and dual-density soles traditionally associated with support shoes. These days, it’s not about fixing your running form as much as it is about matching your style. What are the best women’s stability running shoes available right now? Keep reading for the top 11 models as determined by a survey of over 11,000 runners.

Number 11

Saucony Guide ISO

Saucony Guide ISO

If you’re wondering what are stability running shoes, the Guide exemplifies the way stability shoes have evolved. The Guide has long been Saucony’s staple support shoe, but the latest model opts for a nimbler 8 mm heel-toe offset and a full-length Everuntopsole layer, giving the Guide an energetic bounce more typical of a lighter uptempo shoe than a traditional support trainer. The Everun-based sole is paired with a snug-fitting breathable knit upper, and runners have responded enthusiastically to the new Guide.

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Number 10

Mizuno Wave Inspire

Mizuno Wave Inspire

Mizuno takes a different approach to making the best stability running shoes. Its trademark Wave, a thermal plastic plate inside the sole, not only does a great job of returning energy back into your gait, but it also provides phenomenal stability. Mizuno shoes have a reputation for firmness, but not the Inspire 14, which are exceptionally soft in the heel and forefoot but don’t sacrifice any of Mizuno’s tradition of dependability.

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Number 9

Topo Athletic UltraFly

Topo Athletic UltraFly

Compared to Mizuno, founded in 1906, Topo is still in its infancy. It was founded in 2013 in Newton, Mass. (not to be confused with Newton Running Shoes, founded in 2007 in Boulder, Colo.). Like other recent running shoe innovators, Topo has a philosophy: Running shoes should be light in weight, have a low heel-toe offset, and give your toes plenty of room. That describes the UltraFly 2, which puts the low offset to good use by putting a full 21 mm of cushion under your toes while still allowing for natural movement.

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Number 8

Mizuno Wave Catalyst 2

Mizuno Wave Catalyst 2

The Catalyst 2 is another Mizuno model incorporating a Wave plate, but it’s much different from the Inspire. The Catalyst is lighter and runs lower to the ground than the Inspire, and it rides firm in classical Mizuno style. The Catalyst is one of the lighter shoes on this list, giving it great range and versatility. You can count on the Catalyst for the responsiveness you need on your faster days and the cushion you need for easy days and longer runs.

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Number 7

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18

In choosing the best stability running shoes, women’s votes bumped two models from Brooks up to the top. The Adrenaline GTS 18 is a daily trainer that is legendary for its reliable support and comfort. It offers a high level of support even compared to other stability shoes, and it puts a full 30 mm of cushion under your heel for a ride that is as soft and shock-absorbent on landing as it is when your foot leaves the ground.

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Number 6

New Balance 860 v8

New Balance 860 v8

It’s impressive for Mizuno to land three models on this list of the top 11, but if the search for the best running stability shoe was scored like a cross country race, New Balance would win on points, with three models in the top six (and a score of 11-19, in case anyone’s wondering). The New Balance 860, which has been highly successful as a daily support trainer, has a flexible sole that transitions from a moderately cushioned heel to a firm forefoot to keep your stride energetic.

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Number 5

Brooks PureCadence 7

Brooks PureCadence 7

The PureCadence 7, the second model from Brooks, is quite different from the Adrenaline. The PureCadence, like the other models in Brooks’s Pure line, is a flexible, lightweight, low-drop uptempo trainer. Its moderate level of support won’t slow you down or prevent you from connecting with the road, path, trail, field, slope, or any other surface that you run on.

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Number 4

Asics Gel DS Trainer 23

Asics Gel DS Trainer 23

The DS Trainer 23 is the lightest shoe on this list, and the competition isn’t all that close. And that’s exactly what you want in a shoe designed for speed workouts and racing. The FlyteFoam sole provides responsive cushioning without adding weight or detracting from the fast ride. The DS Trainer might be just what you need for hitting your goals in key workouts or keeping your competitors at a distance on race day.

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Number 3

New Balance 1260 v7

New Balance 1260 v7

If you know the code, then “1260” is New Balance’s way of saying “the best stable running shoes.” The last two digits (60) identify it as a stability model, and runners have found they can count on the 1260 for maximum support. And the first two digits? They tell you that on a scale from 1 to 10, the level of luxurious cushioning and premium comfort goes all the way up to 12.

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Number 2

New Balance Fresh Foam Vongo v2

New Balance Fresh Foam Vongo v2

On team New Balance, runners’ votes give a slight edge to the Fresh Foam Vongo v2 over the classic 1260. Where traditional trainers might have a heel stack 10 or 12 mm higher than the sole at the toe, newer models tend to even out the height difference. The Vongo achieves its low offset not by lowering the heel, but by providing a generous 21 mm of cushion under your toes, the most of any shoe on this list (along with the UltaFly). And what’s under your foot is New Balance’s Fresh Foam, giving the Vongo outstanding forefoot cushion.

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Number 1

Mizuno Wave Paradox 4

Mizuno Wave Paradox 4

As admirable as New Balance’s accomplishment of providing half of the top six models may be, Mizuno would like to point out that most runners are not looking to buy a team of good shoes, but just one pair of the best stability running shoes for overpronators. And the top model on this list as determined by runners’ votes is the Mizuno Wave Paradox 4. While matching the Inspire in stability, the Paradox beats every contender in how much cushion it provides in the heel: 32 mm, enough to provide cushioned support every step of the way when you’re putting in long miles.

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