Best Running Shoes for Shin Splints for 2019

The 12 Best Running Shoes for Shin Splints for 2019

As much as runners love to run, they fear injury. Not because of the pain but, rather, because injury will keep them from running. Though the severity of injuries run the gamut from inconvenient to life altering, the threat of shin splints can be a constant worry for the avid runner trying to build up their miles. Shin splints occur when the muscle or tendon around the tibia (or “shin”) become inflamed or even torn. What results is generalized lower leg pain and treatment requires low-impact cross training (i.e. no running) for at least several weeks (“Everything You Need to Know About Shin Splints,” 2018). For the runner who is marathon training or who simply runs to de-stress, this condition is a huge setback. However, with the right balance of stability and cushioning, your shoes could mean the difference between one more mile and a month on the elliptical. Read on for a list of the twelve best running shoes for shin splints so that the only thing you have to worry about is climbing that next hill.

Number 12

Hoka One One Arahi

Hoka One One Arahi

Cushioning is the name of Hoka’s game but in the Arahi they combined their cushioning with a new technology to make a shoe with what they call “Dymamic Stability.” This shoe promises to guide you through your run with support that is neither too rigid nor constricting thanks to Hoka’s new “J-Frame” technology. The J-Frame rests on the outsole of the shoe in a “J” shape of firmer density foam that still remains light and flexible. This feature provides additional support to the heel and arch, making for greater stability. The flat-waisted geometry of the shoe and EVA cushioning throughout ensures a soft and flat landing with each step, also increasing stability. Meanwhile, the Arahi 2 offers a lighter and more breathable upper than last year’s original model, providing the perfect amount of snugness to balance the signature cushioning of the brand. These features combine to make the Arahi 2 not only one of the best running shoes for shin splints, but also for plantar fasciitis and overpronation.

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Number 11

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080

There’s a reason New Balance is in its eighth model of the FreshFoam 1080: they just keep making it better. For eight years the company has been using data from professional athletes and non-professional runners to continually evolve their most supportive shoe and this version delivers with newly-configured grooves on the outsole to provide better stability and a new engineered mesh upper that provides a supportive fit with just the right amount of stretch. The FreshFoam midsole technology that the brand has mastered provides its usual high level of cushioning throughout but New Balance also provides an Ortholyte insert for additional support, making the shoe ideal for runners with a history of shin splints as well as flat feet.

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Number 10

Hoka One One Clifton

Hoka One One Clifton

Even runners who have never had a bout of shin splints rate the Clifton 5 among their top running shoes, but the very things that make the Clifton line so popular are what make it a great running shoe for shin splints as well. The fifth edition’s EVA cushioning makes for one of the smoothest and most comfortable rides out there. The shoe has a full-ground contact design that means your foot hits the ground as flat and evenly as possible, making for greater stability. It also boasts a re-engineered mesh upper that balances all that cushioning with a snug, supportive, and breathable fit. The Clifton has been one of the highest rated running shoes for years and this model proves that it can not only get you to the finish line, but also keep you strong through all the work it takes to get there.

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Number 9

Brooks Dyad

Brooks Dyad

The very name “Brooks” denotes stability in the running world as one of the oldest high-quality running shoe brands in America. So it’s no surprise that Brooks has applied its tried and true approach to creating one of the most time-tested, stable shoes around. The Dyad 10 is one of the best shoes for shin splints and those with wide feet or who need orthotics thanks to a wider base and Dual Arch Pods on the outsole that provide additional support and stability right underneath the arch of the foot. This is in addition to the brand’s BioMoGo DNA cushioning throughout that provides comfort and softness, but stops short of being too soft and cushy to feel supportive. If stability and cushioning are your main priorities and flash just isn’t your bag, look no further than the Dyad 10.

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Number 8

Brooks Levitate

Brooks Levitate

Brooks’ Levitate 2 has all the stability and cushioning of the Dyad but wow, does it give you some oomph! And color! The DNA Amp cushioning in this midsole was not only designed to cushion, but to provide maximum energy return and bounce. This springy ride is anchored by an arrow-pattern outsole that provides maximum stability when your feet hit the ground and a new breathable knit upper that wraps around the heel to provide additional support. Just because you require stability doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice responsiveness and the Levitate 2 provides a great combination of support, springiness and even some colorful flare by this time-tested titan of a brand.

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Number 7

Adidas Boston

Adidas Boston

Just when you thought Adidas had become a shoe for elite athletes and Kanye West, the Boston 7 is here to remind you that the brand is first, and foremost, a running shoe for us all. The Boston is one of the hallmark models of a flagship brand and the latest edition 7 has made just a few tweaks to make it a solid choice as a good shoe for shin splints. One of those new features is the outsole, which is made of Continental rubber. Continental is actually a company that makes car tires and they partnered with Adidas for this line to provide an outsole with superior traction and durability that makes an extremely stable shoe. The patented Boost midsole cushioning is still there to give support but there are also new symmetrical “rails” on either side of the Boost foam that aim to guide the foot and lock it in proper position, also leading to better stability and support. Last, but not least, this shoe has that classic Adidas “Three Stripe” look and a variety of colors to choose from, ensuring that stability isn’t short on style.

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Number 6

Hoka One One Stinson

Hoka One One Stinson

Hoka’s Stinson model is its most cushioned trail/road shoe “crossover” and, in a brand known for cushioning, that’s a pretty bold statement. The shoe looks like it rests on five inches of foam and it does, indeed, stand taller than many other shoes on this list. However, that doesn’t mean your foot is going to sink into a pillow when you put it on. On the contrary, the EVA midsole cushioning in this model is actually firmer than in other Hoka lines, making for a less springy but extremely supportive fit. Since this is a trail shoe that can cross over into road running, the rubber outsole has more lugs that are deeper than the average road shoe and the sole itself is wider, both of which make for a more stable landing on a variety of surfaces. Lastly, the Ortholite sockliner provides a snug fit around the heel and through the midsole, acting a counterpoint to all the cushioning. This is a big shoe in a world of maximalist shoes but all those features combine to make it a great shoe for shin splints.

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Number 5

Saucony Triumph ISO

Saucony Triumph ISO

You can’t have a list of the best running shoes for shin splints without mentioning Saucony. The brand has been marketing itself for over a century as a shoe for serious runners but The Triumph ISO 5 can be marketed as a shoe for serious runners with shin splints and bad knees thanks to some interesting new features. Saucony’s Everun midsole cushioning provides support with a level of responsiveness that is a unique combination for a stability-oriented shoe. The shoe has an 8 mm offset that distributes this cushioning more evenly throughout, meaning that you stay in a more balanced and comfortable position. Meanwhile, the Formfit outsole molds to the shape of your foot to provide an almost custom feel while the Triflex design disperses impact over a wider area, making for better traction and stability and less pressure on those knees.

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Number 4

Nike Air Zoom Structure

Nike Air Zoom Structure

Leave it to Nike to make a stability shoe look, well, cool. Despite being geared for maximum support, this shoe has a streamlined, low profile look thanks to a uniform mesh throughout and that iconic swoosh set further back, giving it an almost retro-Nike vibe. But the Structure 22 is so much more than just a pretty face. The Phylon and Cushlon midsole foam cushioning is the perfect blend of softness and support, with just a little extra in the heel to help minimize impact and guide the overpronated runner to a more neutral form. The cushioning also provides “Dynamic Support” that Nike states will mold to the shape of your foot to provide customized support and a snug fit, ideal for runners with plantar fasciitis or flat feet. You’ll feel good, run well, and look fantastic in these and that’s what makes Nike, Nike.

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Number 3

New Balance 860

New Balance 860

The 860 has been New Balance’s stability shoe for almost a decade, earning it high praise as one of the best shoes for running with shin splints. What lands this latest version in the top three on our list is that it’s taken its TruFuse, dual-layer midsole cushioning and reengineered it to make it more responsive than ever before. In a world where stability often means cloud-like cushioning that leaves you feeling removed from the road, this is no small feat for your feet. The two layers of cushioning still give you all the support you need in a stability-oriented shoe and the uniform mesh upper provides a snug and supportive fit. The 860v9 is going to feel more flexible and in tune with the road than previous models, but this is still a stability shoe that is going to provide you with the support you need.

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Number 2

Adidas Adizero Adios Boost

Adidas Adizero Adios Boost

The number two spot on our list has been the shoe of choice for several marathon record-breakers, a singular fact that stands alone as pretty good advertising. The Adizero Boost line was designed by Adidas to be a long distance running shoe and has all the features of the similar Boston 7. Continental rubber outsole: check. Boost midsole cushioning for soft support: check. Iconic three stripes that make for high style: check. But this shoe does have a few differences that make it an even better shoe for running with shin splints. The rubber outsole on the heel of the Boost 3 is just a little bit thinner, making for a softer more cushioned landing. The laces on the upper have been set back and closer together making for a more snug, custom fit that provides additional support. The toe box is also slightly wider, allowing the toes to spread out more and create a more stable, natural form when running. The Boost 3.0 truly is a shoe in which elite runners have done great things but this shoe can do great things for you too, every day.

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Number 1

Newton Fate

Newton Fate

Our top pick for the best running shoes for shin splints may not be a flashy name brand, but that’s just fine by Newton. This baby of a company began in 2007 as a sneaker for serious runners and is now sold exclusively online and in running specialty stores. The Fate 4 has all the trademarks of the brand with Action/Reaction technology that makes a cushioning system with more bounce back and greater energy return than most running shoes. The Fate 4 has concentrated cushioning in the midfoot and heel for greater support but, at the same time, has a lower heel to toe drop than so many other stability shoes based on the Newtonian belief that a lower shoe puts you in a more natural running position. Like all the other shoes, the mesh upper is light and breathable, but the Fate 4 has stretch panels over the metatarsals to better accommodate the foot’s natural shape. Just when you thought that shin splints could sideline you at any time, the Newton Fate 4 reminds us that we are all in charge of our own fate. Now get out there and go for it.

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