5 Best Cushioned Running Shoes: Your Easy Buying Guide

best cushioned running shoes

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Even as an experienced runner, the thought of having to pick out your next pair of running shoes can be daunting. Fortunately, cushioned running shoes come in many different forms. For example, the best cushioned running shoes for you might be ones with the maximum amount of cushioning, especially if you tend to overpronate. Neutral runners, or those with normal to high arches, may find that less cushioning is better.

Runners with high arches should seek shoes with a softer midsole, according to this Cleveland Clinic article. Properly cushioned shoes allow for optimal shock absorption when running. In contrast, those with low arches may do best with a firmer midsole. While it’s a good idea to keep this general advice in mind, your needs may be different from those of a runner with the same type of pronation.

A properly cushioned shoe isn’t necessarily the heaviest. In fact, some of the best cushioned running shoes for general use offer lightweight performance with ample cushioning. According to Carson Caprara, a senior product manager for Brooks Running, up to 80 percent of runners surveyed prefer a lightweight yet cushioned shoe. From the most cushioning for road runs to cushioning in the right places for trails, here’s a look at this year’s top cushioned running shoes.

What are the best cushioned running shoes?


1. Saucony Freedom ISO 2 – $131.78

most cushioned running shoes

Saucony

Pros: Cons:
  • Plush cushioning
  • Best for neutral pronation
  • Designed for normal to high arches
  • Streamlined frame
  • Pricey
  • May be a bit narrow for wider feet
  • Runs small
  • Tight toe box

The Saucony Freedom ISO 2 is a unique shoe that caters to neutral runners and those with medium to high arches, yet doesn’t skimp on the cushioning. Runners agree that the plush cushioning helps relieve stress to the feet, even on shorter runs. These shoes come with a full-length midsole for optimal cushioning and energy return. If you’re looking for the best cushioned running shoes for narrow to medium feet, you’ll find that the Freedom ISO 2 provides a tight, secure fit. However, those with wider feet may find the shoes a bit narrow, especially in the toe box. The heel is streamlined for a secure heel fit.

You can find the women’s version here.

Buy the Saucony Freedom ISO 2 here.


Saucony Freedom ISO 2 Review | My Favorite Saucony shoe this YearSaucony Freedom ISO 2 Performance Review. This is my favorite Saucony running shoe ever. this is like a heavy duty Nike EPIC GET FREEDOM 2 HERE: bit.ly/2Il0QRW WOMENS MODEL: bit.ly/2Il0QRW SUPPORT: patreon.com/jamireviews GET SHOES: bit.ly/2KWNzRW Follow On Instagram: instagram.com/jamisonruns/2018-06-24T02:47:40.000Z

2. Brooks Ghost 11 – $120.00

cushioned running shoes

Brooks

Pros: Cons:
  • Waterproof, breathable upper
  • Energy-return cushioning
  • Removable foam insole
  • Ideal for medium to high arches
  • Heavier than previous models
  • 12mm drop might not feel natural to some
  • Relatively bland styling
  • Limited color options

The Brooks Ghost 11 is a neutral shoe that caters to runners with medium to high arches. However, it also has plenty of cushioning to absorb impact and create a comfortable ride. A heel crash pad softens landings as you run. There are also shock absorbers along the shoe for a smoother stride. These cushioned running shoes feature a waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex upper, along with flex grooves to keep the forefoot as flexible as possible.

You can find the Brooks Ghost 11 for men here.

Buy the Brooks Ghost 11 here.


Brooks Ghost 11 ReviewHi guys its Steve again from Run Moore, Carroll County's Premier Running store in Westminster MD. In this video, I review the new Brooks Ghost 11, how it compares to its previous model, the Brooks Ghost 10, and how it differs from Brooks' other shoes, like the Brooks Levitate 2 and the Glycerin 15. Hope…2018-06-28T17:01:12.000Z

3. La Sportiva Bushido – $94.48

cushion running shoes

La Sportiva

Pros: Cons:
  • Relatively light for a trail shoe
  • Ideal for neutral runners
  • Rounded outsole lugs provide added traction
  • Best for technical trails
  • Not waterproof
  • Runs a bit small
  • Some wish there was more heel cushioning
  • A bit narrow for wider feet

The best cushioned running shoes aren’t necessarily just for the road. If you’re looking for a balanced trail running shoe that offers cushioning without sacrificing weight, consider the La Sportiva Bushido. This trail running shoe is most suited for neutral pronators seeking a stable shoe for technical trails. Rounded outsole lugs ensure optimal traction and stability, even on tougher trails. This shoe also comes with a toe cap to keep toes protected. There is a cushioned midsole, along with a 6mm drop.

You can find the La Sportiva Bushido for women here.

Buy the La Sportiva Bushido here.


4. Skechers GOrun MaxRoad 3 Ultra – $110.00

cushioned running shoes

Skechers

Pros: Cons:
  • Maximum cushioning
  • Lightweight construction
  • Molded heel counter for stability
  • Reflective detailing
  • Bland styling
  • Some wish there was more energy return
  • Limited color choices
  • Runs a bit small

The Skechers GOrun MaxRoad 3 Ultra has maximum cushioning for your favorite road runs. Despite its ample cushioning, though, the shoe remains a lightweight eight ounces. The midsole is equipped with lightweight and responsive cushioning, while forefoot grooves keep this cushioned running shoe flexible. A molded heel counter keeps heels secure and stable as you run. Reflective detailing around the shoe makes you more visible to others on the road, especially in low light conditions.

You can also check out the women’s version.

Buy the Skechers GOrun MaxRoad 3 Ultra here.


5. Asics GEL-DS Trainer 23 – $83.88 – $120.00

Asics

most cushioned running shoes

Pros: Cons:
  • Rear gel cushioning system
  • Responsive midsole cushioning
  • For flat feet, low arches and normal arches
  • Reflective details
  • Limited color options
  • Not the lightest
  • Some complain of premature upper material wear
  • May be a bit narrow for wider feet

While the GEL-DS Trainer 23 works well for runners with flat feet or low arches, it also caters to neutral pronators with normal arches. This versatile trainer features responsive midsole technology that won’t inhibit bounce back or overall responsiveness, even on longer runs. There’s also a gel cushioning system in the rear of the shoe to keep heels comfortable without disrupting your stride. A dual density midsole support system provides equal parts stability and support for your favorite running routes. Reflective details make you more visible to others on the road.

The Asics GEL-DS Trainer 23 for women can be found here.

Buy the Asics GEL-DS Trainer 23 here.


Men's ASICS GEL-DS Trainer 23 | Fit Expert ReviewCheck out the Men's ASICS GEL-DS Trainer 23 here: roadrunnersports.com/rrs/products/18570/mens-asics-gelds-trainer-23/?cc=790?cm_mmc=social-_-youtube-_-description-_-MensASICSGELDSTrainer23 Features & Benefits: FlyteFoam® Midsole Technology: Provides exceptional bounce back and responsiveness Propulsion Trusstic® Technology: Mimics connective tissue in the foot by creating tension as foot enters the propulsion stage DuoSole® Outsole: Reduces weight and enhances flexibility while maintaining traction and durability DuoMax® Support System:…2018-01-05T19:12:50.000Z

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