If you have plantar fasciitis, sneakers with good arch support, plush cushioning, shock absorption, and a chunky heel are what you want.
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common triggers for heel pain, especially among runners. Regularly stretching is a good start, but you may also want to invest in a running sneaker that helps alleviate foot pain.
While there aren't plantar fasciitis-specific running shoes, there are some smart features to look for when shopping. Experts recommend choosing sneakers with good arch support, supportive cushioning, shock-absorbing soles, and a deep heel cup to keep plantar fasciitis symptoms at bay.
It's generally smart to choose a heavier shoe, since lightweight sneakers don't deliver much support, says New York-based podiatrist Hillary Brenner, DPM. "You don’t want to bend the shoe in half like a burrito," she explains.
Here are the best running shoes for plantar fasciitis (as well as insoles!) you should add to your workout wardrobe if you're suffering from this foot condition.
Brooks Running Glycerin 16 Running Shoe
New Jersey-based podiatrist and American Podiatric Medical Association spokesperson Alan Bass, DPM, is a fan of Brooks Running shoes for those with plantar fasciitis. This breathable, cushioned roadrunner makes moving from heel to toe incredibly smooth. It has two-way stretch for a customized fit and plush, removable insoles for comfort and support. Take note: The arch support on this sneaker is considered "neutral", meaning it doesn't provide extra support for those with low arches.
Asics GEL-Nimbus 20 Running Shoe
The exoskeletal heel counter in this shoe from Asics (Dr. Brenner recommends the brand) provides support, while additional height relieves Achilles' heel tension. It's also shock-absorbent and allows for movement in multiple planes as the foot goes through the gait cycle.
Need a trail runner? The Asics Gel-Venture 6 ($40-$170; amazon.com) is another good option with extra cushioning at the heel, removable sock liners to accommodate medical orthotics, and outsoles that provide uphill and downhill traction for all types of terrain.
New Balance 1080v9 Fresh Foam Running Shoe
New Balance is another brand that gets Dr. Bass' vote, and these stylish running shoes combine fresh foam, cushy Ortholite insoles, and mesh uppers to ensure total comfort. The wide toe box helps stabilize, while thick midsoles provide superior cushioning and shock absorption while you run. Bonus: They come in six cool colorways, including vintage denim, white and black ombré, and millennial pink.
Hoka One One Bondi 6
Paul Langer, DPM, a podiatrist based in Minnesota, likes Hoka One shoes, and these kicks are arguably the most cushioned shoe on the market. With molded Ortholite footbeds, internal heel counters, and a wider fit for stability, these surprisingly lightweight sneakers offer the perfect amount of toe room for a natural position of your foot. Also great? The thick sole provides shock absorption to lessen the impact on your feet, ankles, and legs.
Saucony Guide ISO 2 Running Shoe
This shoe has tons of plush cushioning, as well as mesh construction and contoured footbeds, which enable a custom fit. The evenly distributed cushion throughout the heel and toe provide comfort and support for those suffering from plantar fasciitis. We also like that the reflective elements make it ideal for evening runs.
Superfeet Run Comfort Insoles
Have a pair of running shoes you love, but need a bit more cushioning? Dr. Bass recommends adding insoles to support your foot. These plush, supportive ones by Superfeet have a deep heel cup and retain their shape for up to 12 months or 500 miles—whichever comes first.