As an older runner, wearing the right kind of shoes is important as they help me avoid pain, discomfort, and even torn ligaments.
As an underpronator I was always prone to turning an ankle which I did on many occasions. Today, I take more care of the choice of shoes and orthotics. If anyone wants longevity with their running, I would highly recommend getting the appropriate shoes.
What Makes for the Best Shoes for Older Runners?
Our selection of running shoes for the over 50s (or thereabouts) is suitable for most other general sorts of physical activities like walking, hiking, working out or just for casual wear.
These days training shoe manufacturers have taken this into account and they have designed their shoes accordingly. If I was a cynical person I would say they may be trying to capture a bigger portion of the market if their shoes can pander to all forms of activities. But I’m not.
Anyway, we have discussed in detail the debate of when and where you should be wearing what shoes in our article, aptly entitled, “Training Shoes vs Running Shoes vs Walking Shoes – What’s The Difference?”
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For the complete list of our choice of the best running shoes, feast your eyes on these:
Men’s Running Shoes
- ASICS Men’s Gel-Venture 6 Running Shoe
- Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 8 Running Shoe
- Salomon Men’s Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoes
Women’s Running Shoes
- Brooks Women’s Adrenaline GTS 20
- Nike Women’s Tanjun Running Shoes
- Saucony Women’s S10483-2 Trail Running Shoe
Selecting the best models for seniors wasn’t an easy task. We evaluated features, styles, and customers’ feedback to provide you with the top running shoes for both men and women.
Top 3 Men’s Running Shoes For The Older Athlete
1. ASICS Men’s Gel-Venture 6 Running Shoe – Best Overall
If your feet bend toward the outside when running, this pair is designed to correct your foot posture. Precisely, it’s meant for under and neutral pronation.
We like to think that for any severe problems with the running, jogging or even walking gait, should be attended to by bespoke orthotics. The included insole is removable in case you need an insert.
The shoe contains gel-type padding to absorb shocks and prevent injuries. We love the smooth transitioning as the foot goes from heel strike through to the forefoot.
A roomy toe box provides further comfort. The outsole is versatile and suitable for both road and trail use.
We’re currently rating the Venture 6 over the Venture 7 at the moment as the 6 is such a good price and proven for its versatility and especially for its durability.
- Great value.
- Durable high abrasion rubber outsole.
- Best for neutral and under pronation.
- Gel cushioning to absorb impact.
- Comes in extra-wide size.
- Best value for the quality.
- Some buyers wished the material was more breathable.
- The sole is a bit too squishy for some reviewers.
2. Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 8 Running Shoe – Best for Versatility
These running shoes offer balance and flexibility. Their elegant look also makes them fantastic road shoes for daily life. Just looking around on the street these may be the best sneakers for old – certainly one of the most popular.
When I run, I don’t need to have heavy shoes to add to my weight, which is why this pair of Under Armours stands out for me. It’s lightweight—0.6 pounds—and its breathability gives them an even lighter feel.
Although designed for men, male users report that the shoes often get “borrowed” by their female partners.
- Sturdy rubber sole.
- Made of polyester and elastane.
- Offset of 0.4 inches.
- Cushioned foam midsole
- Great responsiveness.
- Available in 13 colors.
- Can become squeaky after some time.
- Run smaller than true size.
3. Salomon Men’s Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoes – Best Trail Running Shoes for Older Men
This pair should wow any aged runner still covering trails. If you’re afraid of losing balance, these shoes offer fantastic traction to keep you safe and steady on mud or other soft terrains.
It comes with a Quicklace lacing system for ease of use. This means you can tighten up each shoe simply by pulling on a single string.
They’re pretty flat with a very small drop from heel to toe which may not suit some of us older folk especially those big heel strikers on the road.
- Aggressive grip.
- Comfortable fit.
- Lightweight—0.7 pounds.
- Made of synthetics and fabric.
- Designed for a snug fit.
- OrthoLite insole for optimum cushioning.
- Users wished they were waterproof.
- Heel drop of 0.4 inches.
Top 3 Women’s Running Shoes For The Older Athlete
1. Brooks Women’s Adrenaline GTS 20 – Best Overall
Brooks shoes have been a go-to choice for runners for many years, especially for the older gals (and guys). Brook’s models have been a favorite of mine for running off and on for years.
Brooks make some of the best walking shoes around too.
But they’re funkier in this range, the GTS 20, which has around 30 different designs. That, along with the overall comfort means they’re great for casual wear as well as serious walking and running.
They lean towards those with a tendency to overpronate when your heel-to-toe tends to tilt inwards. The pair will support your feet, giving stability and cushioning.
Have a look at your arch. If like me, it’s flat—or medium—this pair should help support your foot as you run. Plus, the insole is removable if you have a medical one to insert instead.
For older runners, again like me, after the feet, the knees are the next point of weakness and Brooks has tried to design the Adrenaline GTS 20 with their protection in mind.
If when moving your legs (running or any other activity) and have felt your knee go slightly out of alignment, you’ll understand what a sensitive structure the knee is.
This Brooks model has its GuideRails design to minimize this excess movement from the straight.
- Available in many colors.
- Strong cushioning.
- Designed to support overpronation.
- Provides stability.
- Comfortable padded collar and tongue.
- Breathable and flexible mesh.
- Suitable for flat and medium arches.
- Great as a walking shoe too.
- Fits smaller than true size.
- Some users wished they were more comfortable overall.
2. Nike Women’s Tanjun Running Shoes – Great Value Option
Spending a chunk of your savings on a pair of running shoes can feel frustrating, regardless of age. These shoes are available at a cost-efficient price point and offer a straightforward look and features.
In fact, its name “Tanjun” means “simple” in Japanese.
Despite its simplicity, it offers the cushioning required to protect joints. It’s also multi-purpose and can serve as day-to-day shoes.
The midsole support design gives good general support and is particularly good for supporting the arches so those who are a little flat-footed.
- Classic style and great casual shoes.
- Mesh fabric for good airflow.
- Lightweight—0.62 pounds per shoe (size 9).
- Foam midsole and outsole.
- Good arch support.
- Insoles can’t be removed.
- Can be slippery on wet surfaces.
- Toe box can be a little tight for some users.
3. Saucony Women’s S10483-2 Trail Running Shoe – Best Trail Running Shoes for Older Women
Running on a forest trail is my best therapy, and this pair makes the use of trails safer for older runners. Specifically, the Everun midsole provides the padding needed for a comfortable run.
Also, the footbed is designed to contour your foot to keep it balanced as you’re running through roots and branches. Plus, the outsole offers exceptional grip to make sure you stay on track when turning.
- Cushioned midsole.
- Contoured footbed.
- Exceptional grip.
- Long-lasting rubber sole.
- ISOFIT design for a snug feel.
- Users report a wide toe box.
- Aren’t waterproof or water-resistant.
- Back of the shoe seems too stiff for some users.
Great Tips For Over 45 Runners
What To Consider When Choosing Activity Shoes
Take the following factors into account when selecting a pair of running shoes if you are, like me, a more mature runner:
First, decide in which condition you’ll use the running shoes. Some of us like versatile models that can be worn to run and serve as a daily casual walking pair.
You’ll find ample road shoes designed to jog on flat surfaces. However, if you run uphill, downhill or on muddy or difficult terrain, pick a pair specifically suitable for trail runs. These shoes typically have a better grip on the ground to keep you stable.
As we age, every movement becomes challenging. We’re more likely to lose balance, and it takes more time to recover our stability. Whether you’re running on flat surfaces or on trails, make sure your running shoes offer great foot support with a contoured outsole.
Regardless of age, our foot positioning can be a bit off when we run. It could be slightly or overly tilted towards either the inner or outer side of the foot.
This is called pronation and can be referred to as under (supination), neutral or overpronation. Some shoes are specifically designed to support and correct these foot postures.
If you have severe back or foot issues, make sure that the insole is removable to place your own insert instead. Underpronation or supination where your foot travels from heel to toe on the outer part is more likely to require a fitting to be made by a foot specialist who will get them made-to-form orthotics for the shoe.
I also noticed that my joints gradually became stiffer and less flexible, which is normal for my age, with injuries waiting for me around the corner. You’ll find that a well-padded shoe can remove a lot of stress from your feet, knees, and hips.
A pair with a cushioned midsole should absorb most of the impact, keeping your joints healthy. The best padding is generally made of foam or gel.
Light shoes should make your run easier. Models weighing less than 0.7 pounds per shoe are considered lightweight and are ideal for old runners.
Ease Of Use
Bending isn’t our forte, either. Selecting a pair that’s easy to put on and remove should make your pre and post-running life much smoother.
Some models come with a new lacing technology where you only need to pull a single string to tighten up your shoes. This feature also avoids stopping while running to fix the loose laces.
We haven’t covered slip-on shoes or those ones with velcro straps as we don’t believe those qualities are good for running.
However, they can make life easier for those who are suffering some mobility.
At all ages, picking the right size is essential. Yet, for older runners, it’s even more important to avoid putting unnecessary pressure on already weakened muscles and joints. It’s usually best to plan to size up, but make sure your feet don’t glide inside the shoes.
Whichever shoes you decide on, just don’t stop running or walking briskly. Jogging for 30 minutes daily, three times a week, is enough to reduce physical decline.
The ASICS Men’s Gel-Venture 6 Running Shoe is my top runner for the guys. It offers fantastic value, optimum cushioning, and is designed for neutral and under pronation. They are great value and last longer than the normal duration expected of a running shoe.
For women, Brooks Women’s Adrenaline GTS 20 is my winner. They have the pedigree. They come in various classic designs, are well-padded for comfort, and are well-designed for stability. Plus, they are reasonably budget-friendly!