Best Shoes for Shin Splints 

If you’re in a hurry and just want to find out what the best shoes for shin splints are, then I recommend the Skechers Women’s Flex Appeal 2.0 Sneaker as the best pair for women and the ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 26 Running Shoes as the best pair for men.

Woman running on street

If you’re like me, running is more than just a hobby. It’s how I meditate and keep myself focused. 

If I’m feeling awful at the end of a run i.e., stiff, sore and achy, then what was the point? 

Luckily, some shoes are made to keep you feeling great! From keeping your feet in the right position to allowing you maximum movement, the best shoes for shin splints will reduce your chance of soreness after your run.

Here are the best shoes for shin splints of 2020:

Why You Need the Best Shoes for Shin Splints 

Running is amazing! It’s simple and practical. You don’t need fancy equipment or a gym membership to get started—many can just throw on any pair of sneakers and a sports bra and get moving! 

But, if you’re one of the many people who have medial tibial stress syndrome, it can feel excruciating! Now, don’t be scared. That fancy-sounding term is just the medical jargon for simple shin splints. 

Overuse and stress on your muscles can cause them to seize up—making you feel stiff and sore. If you want to get the benefits of running, we need to find a way to keep you from pain and injury. 

Finding the best shoes for shin splints is one of the easiest fixes out there. Combined with stretching—you ARE stretching, aren’t you?—before and after running, you can feel confident that you’ll be doing the best for your body. 

How Can Shoes Help Me?

Now, I’m not a professional runner by any means—but you’d be surprised how many sneakers you end up with.

But for my health, one of my most researched purchases was the best running shoes for shin splints. Medial tibial stress syndrome—also known as MTSS or shin splints—is the most common injury for athletes, myself included!

These aching muscles can almost be guaranteed to newbies—almost double muscle injuries happen to novice runners. But that doesn’t mean it leaves professional athletes alone. So, why does it happen?

When you push yourself to conquer new distances or faster speeds, you’re asking a lot of your muscles. Running puts a lot of work on your tibial muscles—the very front of your leg between the knee and ankle. 

The best shoes for shin splints and insoles can help absorb the impact and dramatically reduce the risk of injury. The most common features are:

  • Absorbing impact. 
  • Preventing pronation.

Absorbing Impact

The best shoes for shin splints start by absorbing the impact from the ground. The harder you hit the pavement—or the ‘dreadmill,’ no one is judging—the more likely you are to throw your body out of alignment. 

Those shocks travel up your body, affecting your feet all the way to your head.

Preventing Pronation

Pronation prevention is the main feature of the best shoes for shin splints. The sneakers need to have a good bounce back and lateral design. But most importantly, you need support for that high arch. 

The best running shoes for shin splints have medium to high midsole support or have removable insoles to allow you to customize them. 

Man stretching hamstring

The Five Best Shoes for Shin Splints 

If there’s one thing I don’t want to do, it’s to suffer another day on the couch, icing my shin splints. If you don’t want that either, take a look at my list. 

1. Skechers Women’s Flex Appeal 2.0 Sneaker

Look, I get it. You’re not Usain Bolt. But if you want to really move, then Sketchers is a trusted brand that keeps you moving. 

The Flex lives up to its name with 100 percent knit fabric that lets your foot feel the freedom of movement—this heavy-duty cloth is both breathable and lightweight. 

High traction soles keep you on the straight and narrow, or at least upright on the pavement. One of the best features is the comfortable and supportive memory foam lining in the upper. 

Speaking of support, the arch support is higher than your average moderate running shoe. This is great to prevent pronation issues that can develop into shin splints. The only downside is that the interior isn’t removable, in case you wanted to add your orthotics. 

In addition, they’re great if you have wider toes or bunions. The toe box has ample room that allows you to spread out if you need to, avoiding the dreaded black toenail. 

These shoes are suitable for feet sizes 5 to 11.

Pros

  • Features a wide toe box.
  • Knit fabric is breathable.
  • Excellent traction on the rubber sole.
  • Integrated exoskeleton lacing.
  • Non-marking sole.

Cons

  • The very tip of the toe box can wear out since the shoe is so flexible.
  • Insoles can’t be removed for orthotics. 

2. Brooks Women’s Adrenaline GTS 19 Running Shoe

Brooks has always been a trusted brand for me and is an excellent running shoe manufacturer. 

The extra high level of support puts it at the top of the ‘support’ styles in the Brooks brand. They’re made for people who are wobbly on their feet, like overpronators. The soles’ excellent tread system adjusts lateral forward movement for overpronators.

They also have multiple widths to accommodate everyone, from a narrow to wide foot. If you’ve always felt that shoes run big, give the smaller width a try for better support. 

Perhaps one of the best features is the Guiderail Support System—a proprietary style that focuses on your knees instead of only your feet. When you really need to drop the hammer, this can help prevent injury.

Brook’s DNA LOFT and BioMoGo DNA cushioning do more to keep your stable, by allowing for light but ample support. Your foot won’t feel constricted since the inner shoe is softer.

This footwear is available in sizes 5–13.

Pros

  • Guiderail Support System.
  • Brooks is trusted as a running company.
  • 3D Fit Print upper.
  • Combines both circular and hexagonal tread for increased traction.
  • Excellent rubber tread system.

Cons

  • Fabric can be subject to easy wear, especially around the ankle. 

3. Asics Men’s Gel-Kayano 26 Running Shoes

The Asics logo on the shoe always reminds me of Spiderman and the webbing on his mask. This shoe makes you feel like the friendly neighborhood hero, too, with its excellent grip and aesthetics. 

When you’re running the long haul, you need some serious support. Luckily, the Kayano employs SpevaFoam 45 to cushion and support the whole length of the shoe. 

In the midsole, where overpronators need the most support, you’ll find FlyteFoam Lyte Technology. This foam also gives you far more bounce that you’re used to, allowing you to keep your pace up.

The sole is much lighter, thanks to the Trusstic System, which helps to remove much of the interior rubber. When your feet aren’t weighed down, you’re less likely to be out of balance.

Finally, Asics shoes are width-friendly—available in sizes 6 through to 15 in extra-wide.

Pros

  • Impact Guidance System Technology.
  • EVA sock liner keeps the support firm, but light.
  • DUOMAX midsole.
  • Removable liner.
  • Pressure is on the inner toes, so high arches are more supported. 
  • Traction is excellent and propels you forward. 
  • Wide styles are great for bunions and chaffing.

Cons

  • Runners are advised to size up half to a full size.

4. Asics Gel-Contend 5 Women’s Running Shoes

Asics continues the best shoes for shin splints with its women’s version. You’ll stay steady with its excellent forward lateral sole construction, but that’s not all. 

Not only is the Gel-Contend 5 a winner for its Gel Cushioning System, but its also 100 percent synthetic, which means it’s vegan-friendly.

The sole is also made for trail running, with multi-surface traction ridges designed with high-abrasion rubber. Practically, this means that your shoes have less chance of wearing out if you’re really racking up the pedometer. You might save money in the long run by choosing a shoe that is meant to take a beating!

A removable sock liner means that you can add in your custom orthotics or extra arch support for pronation. True, the shoe only has moderate arch support, but reviewers say that the support is more than adequate. 

Asics shoes carry the brand motto, “A Sound Mind in a Sound Body.” You’ll definitely be feeling that bliss that only a runner’s high can give you while keeping your body fit. 

These trail running shoes are available from sizes 7.5 to 10.5.

Pros

  • Excellent forward momentum with a custom patterned sole.
  • Rugged high abrasion traction for trail running. 
  • Gel Cushioning system.
  • Removable liner. 
  • Excellent back support.
  • Great shoes for—plantar fasciitis, bunions, wide toes and hammertoes.

Cons

  • Only available in medium widths. 
  • Not very breathable.

5. Asics Men’s Gel-Kahana 8 Running Shoe

Many people develop heel pain in addition to leg issues when their sneakers don’t have enough support. If you’re one of them, the Gel-Kahana 8 may be the right sneaker for you. The Gel Cushioning Support system can really diminish the impact and help keep you comfortable through the run. 

The upper is entirely synthetic, like the other Asics shoes. This model is a bit more breathable than others, which is great for your feet. 

For extra bounce, the SpEVA midsole material allows for a high springy action that can help propel you forward. It also lowers the midsole breakdown, which keeps these sneakers feeling newer for longer. 

The midsole also features a DuoMax Support System, which not only keeps you moving but also stable. By preventing micro-movements, you’re saved from overpronation, which can make these some of the best running shoes for shin splints. 

The Kahana 8 is available in sizes 6 to 13, though no extra widths are available. 

Pros

  • Heel cushioning. 
  • Rugged sole. 
  • Reinforced arch support. 
  • Thick tongue keeps the laces from biting into the top of your foot. 
  • Ideal for trail running, track and field, and indoor treadmills. 
  • Lightweight model.

Cons

  • No extra widths available. 
  • Tighter toe box.
Running at night

Negative Splits Without Pain

Running is a great way to exercise—basically for free! So a shoe that keeps you feeling in balance is a great investment. The best shoes for shin splints can help you avoid overpronation and instability. 

The best women’s running shoe on my list is the Skechers Women’s Flex Appeal 2.0 Sneaker. If you’re looking for the best men’s shoe, it’s the ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 26 Running Shoe

Both have excellent stability with interior cushioning and midsole support. They’re both low-top sneakers, which give you freedom of movement when you need to make a split-second decision on the trail or the treadmill. 

These two lead the pack and can help you lead, too. Beat your fastest time, and prevent injury.

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