Top 10 Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees And Knee Pain

Disclosure: A few links on this blog/website are affiliate links, which means we earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) when you buy the products after clicking them. They are helping us to deliver much better content on this blog.


Top 10 Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees And Knee Pain

To get rid of knee pain, check our latest picks for the best running shoes for bad knees. 

Being a professionally trained runner, I know exactly how it feels running with bad knees. There is nothing more frustrating than that. 

Anyone can suffer from knee pain, whether a professional runner or just a beginner. It mostly happens due to wrong running position, running on hard surfaces, weak joints, or running with the wrong shoes. 

Running or walking with bad knees not only keeps you frustrating but also slows down your pace. But luckily, there are various ways to prevent it. Few people prefer replacing the older insole with a new extra-plush insole, while others may go for steady arch support shoes. 

But the best way is to get an overall good pair of shoes for running, which absorbs all the external shocks and reduces the stress from your knees. And if you are continually feeling a growing pain while running, it’s the right time to purchase one of the best running shoes for knee pain.

  • Budget Pick

    Brooks Ravenna 11 Running Shoes for Knee Support

    • Provides holistic GuideRails support through an incredibly streamlined design 
    • Extremely lightweight with a single layer of mesh upper
    • A perfect option for those looking for excellent support while running or training
  • Best Value

    Asics Gel-Kayano 27 Running Shoes

    • Comes with a rearfoot and forefoot gel technology advanced cushioning system
    • Features FlyteFoam Propel Technology providing supreme bounce while running
    • DuoMax support system for enhancing the stability and support
  • Premium Pick

    Asics GEL-Kinsei 6 Bad Knees Shoes

    • Impact Guidance System (IGS) technology to improve the foot’s natural gait while running
    • Provides supreme bounce with ultimate shock absorption technology
    • Asics FluidFit upper which easily adapts your foot’s size and delivers exceptional comfort

What Are The Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees?

1. Brooks GTS 21 Running Shoes for Knee Pain

Features

  • Outsole- Durable rubber
  • Arch- Medium, High
  • Technology- Segmented Crash Pads, DNA LOFT
  • Midsole- 12mm
  • Use- Road Running

If you are looking for the best-cushioned running shoes for bad knees, there is no other option better than Brooks GTS 21.

These are the perfect shoes that offer a soft and smooth ride while non-stop running. It helps in delivering reliable support to your knees so that you can easily enjoy running.

The Brooks GTS 21 features high energizing cushioning material in the midsole to provide outstanding support, especially to those suffering from overpronation. These shoes come with unique DNA LOFT Crash Pads providing tremendous support to your footfall and toes.

It easily adapts according to your foot’s size and avoids marks or blisters.

The knee pain can be avoided by excellent support from your shoes, and Brooks GTS 21 stands out in all the features. 

Pros

  • Offers smooth transition
  • Features GuideRails support system
  • Comes with the soft and secured fit
  • DNA LOFT Segmented Crash Pads

Cons

  • A bit on the costlier side
  • Ankle support is not extremely good

2. Hoka One One Bondi 7 Running Shoes for Bad Knees

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Heel To Toe Drop- 4 mm
  • Stability- Neutral
  • Cushion- Plush
  • Midsole- EVA foam

The Hoka One One Bondi 7 comes under one of the best running shoes for men and women regarding knee pain.

It leaves no chance of delivering a smooth and balanced ride, no matter what the distance is. The EVA midsole offers excellent cushioning, and an open-engineered mesh upper confirms excellent breathability.

These shoes are designed with a unique ultra-soft memory foam that accommodates a narrower heel. They come with fantastic heel support along with an internal heel counter that delivers a supportive feel.

To minimize the excess stress from the knees, it features a beveled heel design that provides a smooth transition and increases the durability of the shoes.

If you want to experience a mind-blowing natural running gait, try these new Hoka One One Bondi 7. 

Pros

  • EVA foam midsole
  • Meta-Rocker for a smooth ride
  • TPU overlays
  • Breathable mesh upper

Cons

  • Similar to its previous version
  • A bit costly 

3. Saucony Cohesion 12 Road Running Knee Pain Shoes

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Textile and Synthetic
  • Technology- Grid technology
  • Support- Neutral
  • Offset- 12 mm

The Saucony Cohesion 12 is a good pair of running shoes for bad knees on a limited budget.

This shoe comes with a unique and incredible VERSARUN cushioning technology that absorbs all the external and internal shocks while running. It doesn’t fail to deliver a comfortable ride by reducing the pressure from your knees and other lower parts of the leg.

The shoe’s insole offers the maximum cushioning to your underfoot, which does not let you feel the hard impacts of the ground. The breathable and supportive upper comes with excellent perforations that allow your feet to feel fresh and dry as long as you run.

Lastly, the advanced grid technology offers stable support to your legs, providing an advantage for all types of runners.

Pros

  • Offers a unique Grid technology
  • Versa foam cushioning
  • Durable rubber outsole
  • Provides excellent support

Cons

  • Little narrow towards the forefoot
  • Runs small in size

I will highly recommend trying the Asics Gel-Kayano 27 for both men and women if you are looking for the overall best running sneakers for bad knees.

These top running shoes for knee pain are designed with an excellent rearfoot and forefoot gel cushioning system, absorbing all the external shock to deliver a smooth ride. Moreover, the FlyteFoam Propel Technology in the midsole is highly cushioned with excess foam to offer supreme bounce while running in all the terrains.

To lower the excess stress from your knees, it is advisable to look for lightweight shoes that help remove your heel and ankle pressure. The Asics Gel-Kayano does the same.

It made me impressed by its Dynamic DuoMax support system that increases the level of support and stability along with increasing the platform support.

I have personally tried them for around 7-8 months, and I don’t think there is a much better option than these to treat your bad knees. It will last long for 450-500 miles and even more.

Pros

  • Comes with a unique dynamic DuoMax support system
  • Provides tremendous support to your knees and ankles
  • Excellent rearfoot and forefoot gel cushioning system
  • Engineered mesh upper for better breathability

Cons

  • Feels a little tight towards the toe
  • Few people may be uncomfortable with its design

5. New Balance FuelCell Running Trainers for Bad Knees

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Synthetic and Mesh
  • Surface- Road and Trail running
  • Support- Neutral
  • Arch Type- Medium, High

The New Balance FuelCell is one of the highly cushioned top running shoes to recover knee pain.

These are the special shoes for bad knees, which come with a fantastic FuelCell midsole foam. This unique foam provides you a propulsive feel while running or walking and also corrects your foot’s structure on a non-stop run.

They are designed with a highly durable REVlite rubber outsole which ensures complete ground contact and delivers abrasion-resistant wherever required.

It becomes necessary to keep your feet fresh and dry during long runs. Hence, the breathable upper mesh makes your shoes extremely lightweight and lets your feet breathe naturally.

These shoes give full opportunity to enjoy your natural gait while running by removing all the pressure from the lower leg and delivering excess support.

Pros

  • Responsive cushioning
  • Speedy outsole
  • Light, snug fit
  • Outstanding knee support 

Cons

  • Limited color option
  • Poor design

6. Brooks Glycerin 18 Sneakers for Knee Pain

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Synthetic and mesh
  • Support- Neutral
  • Arch- Medium, High
  • Technology- 3D Fit Print, DN LOFT

The Brooks Glycerin 18 is ideally for runners who demand extra cushioning while road running.

The shoe uppers are incredibly fantastic, protecting your feet and provides the right amount of support. The Brooks Glycerin 18 is a step ahead of its predecessor Glycerin 17 as it delivers outstanding neutral support, which is ideal for road running or gym training.

Due to increased DNA LOFT super-soft cushioning, you will experience tremendous support at your knees, arches, and ankles. They provide extreme softness to your underfoot without losing responsiveness and durability.

For the premium step-in comfort, it has its own ortholite sockliner. The Plush fit feature surrounds your foot with an internal stretch lining and easily adapts according to your foot’s size to avoid irritations or various marks.

I will highly advise these shoes to get quick results to better your knee pain and start running at your original pace.

Pros

  • Super-soft cushioning
  • Plush transitions for an incredibly smooth ride
  • Excellent arch support
  • Ortholite sockliner

Cons

  • Somewhat bulky look
  • Runs smaller in size

7. Asics Gel-Kinsei 6 Bad Knees Running Shoes

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Pure synthetic
  • Support- Neutral
  • Technology- IGS, FluidRide
  • Arch Type- Medium, High

These are the second Asics shoes after Gel-Kayano 27, which comes under the list of best running shoes for bad knees.

The Asics Gel-Kinsei 6 is equipped with Impact Guidance System running technology to allow you to enjoy your natural running experience. These shoes have an exceptional rubber outsole that offers a supreme bounce while running on all terrains.

They feature incredible durability and are extremely lightweight, which does not let any extra pressure on your knees and other lower parts of the leg. The shoe’s upper are specially designed with a unique Asics FluidFit technology which lets your feet breathe naturally and keep them fresh and cool throughout the run.

Lastly, the combination of rearfoot and forefoot gel cushioning systems allows you to run comfortably on different planes.

Pros

  • Rearfoot and forefoot gel technology
  • Impact Guidance System technology to improve foot’s natural gait
  • Ortholite Sockliner
  • Extra cushioning

Cons

  • A bit costly
  • Limited color option

8. Brooks Ravenna 11 Running Shoes for Knee Support

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Synthetic and mesh
  • Support- Neutral
  • Arch Type- Flat, Medium
  • Use- Road running, Gym training

The Brooks Ravenna 11 is a good option for those who are regularly searching for shoes for running or training with excellent knee support.

It’s a budget-friendly running shoe with fantastic support and cushioning to increase the level of comfort. People suffering from overpronation can also try them as it delivers the right amount of stability and cushioning while running continuously.

The BioMoGo DNA midsole has excess foam to provide an impressive rebounce experience. It will not put any extra stress on your knees because of its lightweight character, which ultimately increases your running intensity.

The Ravenna 11 are specially designed with Holistic Support, which directly impacts the most injury-prone area of your legs, i.e., knees.

With GuideRails support, these shoes will allow you to move comfortably without any tension in mind.

Pros

  • GuideRails Holistic Support system to provide tremendous support at your knees
  • BioMoGo DNA fast cushioning
  • Quick transitions 
  • Awesome design and fitting

Cons

  • May wear out after 7-8 months
  • Size problem 

9. New Balance 1080 V10 Knee Support Running Trainers

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Synthetic and mesh
  • Support- Neutral
  • Arch Type- Medium, High
  • Use- Road running

The New Balance 1080 is an ideal and good-looking shoe for knee pain designed with the latest advancements.

They provide the exact plushness to the right areas of your feet. After wearing them, you can also do trail running to some extent because of its Fresh Foam midsole cushioning.

It lets you enjoy a lightweight ride with every step you make ahead. The excellent toe protection protects your toes from rocks, roots, or debris.

The upper mesh material is uniquely designed with a no-sew construction technology to deliver a sleek fit and feel. It makes the upper highly durable and breathable, which lets your feet breathe naturally.

To prevent slip and hurt yourself while running, these shoes are made with a unique tread pattern that allows traction for both on and off-road.

Pros

  • No-sew construction
  • Ortholite sockliner
  • Engineered mesh upper
  • Sleek and sporty style

Cons

  • On the costlier side
  • Design is not too good

10. Mizuno Wave Rider 24 Running Shoes for Bad Knees

Features

  • Outsole- Rubber
  • Material- Synthetic
  • Support- Neutral
  • Arch Type- Medium
  • Use- Road and trail running 

The Mizuno Wave Rider shoes for controlling your knee pain contain a dual compound midsole specially designed with U4ic and MIZUNO ENERZY technologies.

It aids in offering a smooth and springy ride. This outstanding midsole controls your pain and provides optimal shock absorption.

The special grooves at the front provide a smooth toe-off while running. The shoe’s upper is uniquely designed with dual-layer engineered mesh with laser perforations that allow proper ventilation during long runs.

The Mizuno energy foam makes the support so incredible because of its springy qualities that you will forget that you are even suffering from knee pain.

Running with them offers you a responsive and resilient ride that lets you get back your original running pace.   

Pros

  • Engineered mesh upper with proper ventilation
  • Provides stable platform at the bottom
  • U4ic midsole for shock absorption
  • X10 durable rubber outsole for rebounce

Cons

  • No major update from its previous version
  • Usually runs smaller in size

List of My Favorite Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees

  • Brooks GTS 21 Running Shoes for Knee Pain
  • Hoka One One Bondi 7 Running Shoes for Bad Knees
  • Saucony Cohesion 12 Road Running Knee Pain Shoes
  • Asics Gel-Kayano 27 Cushioned Running Shoes
  • New Balance FuelCell Running Trainers for Bad Knees
  • Brooks Glycerin 18 Sneakers for Knee Pain
  • Asics Gel-Kinsei 6 Bad Knees Running Shoes
  • Brooks Ravenna 11 Running Shoes for Knee Support
  • New Balance 1080 V10 Knee Support Running Trainers
  • Mizuno Wave Rider 24 Running Shoes for Bad Knees

Features of Good Running Shoes for Knee Pain- The Ultimate Buying Guide

If you are going to make your final purchase of the best running shoes for bad knees, look out for these features-

Support

The support of the shoes is the most important factor if you are searching for a good shoe for knee pain. A top running shoe provides plenty of support. It is you who will decide what support you need. For high arches, I’ll recommend some best running shoes for high arches.

I’ll highly recommend going for shoes that have a proper arch and ankle support for bad knees. It is necessary to avoid extra pressure from your knees while running. The boots with tremendous support not only protect your bad knees but also avoid alleviating the pain. 

Comfort Level

After support, it becomes necessary to look for the comfort level in a particular shoe. Running is an intensive exercise. So it becomes crucial to look for excellent comfort; otherwise, you will lose interest because of a growing pain in the knee. If the shoes are not comfortable, you can harm your shin splints. In such any cases, any best shoes for shin splints will help you.

I’ll advise going for the shoes that offer excellent cushioning in the midsole. The more cushioning, the lesser will be the stress on your knees. Also, you will get extra bounce while running from such shoes. The padded collar and tongue will add extra comfort to your running journey.

Better Traction

The traction entirely depends on the type of outsole your shoes are having. As a runner with bad knees, you definitely don’t want to slip. So always select the trainers with a highly durable rubber outsole that provides good traction on all surfaces. It must offer little friction to avoid slips while running. 

Fit

While searching for the best shoes for knee pain, always keep your foot’s size in mind. The shoes that fit accurately with your foot’s length will give you the best results at the time of a run.

While suffering from bad knees, you don’t wish to wear loose or tight shoes, which can divert you from running and make you fall. The right-sized trainers will make out the best results from you and keep your feet lightweight.

Comparison Table of All The Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees

NameMain FeaturesScore
1
Brand- BrooksBrooks GTS 21 Running Shoes for Knee Pain
Brand- Brooks

Brooks GTS 21 Running Shoes for Knee Pain

  • Perfectly for runners asking for a smooth ride with supportive arches
  • Offers a significant amount of stability and cushioning 
  • Features DNA LOFT Crash Pads protecting your footfall
9.5
View Price
2
Brand- Hoka One OneHoka One One Bondi 7 Running Shoes for Bad Knees
Brand- Hoka One One

Hoka One One Bondi 7 Running Shoes for Bad Knees

  • Open-engineered mesh construction for breathable comfort
  • Memory foam collar for added comfort
  • Internal heel counter for delivering a supportive feel to the knees
9.4
View Price
3
Brand- SauconySaucony Cohesion 12 Road Running Knee Pain Shoes
Brand- Saucony

Saucony Cohesion 12 Road Running Knee Pain Shoes

  • Features a unique Versa foam cushioning technology to reduce pressure
  • Features an incredible upper for an added heel support
  • An outstanding durable rubber outsole
9
View Price
4
Brand- AsicsAsics Gel-Kayano 27 Cushioned Running Shoes
Brand- Asics

Asics Gel-Kayano 27 Cushioned Running Shoes

  • Comes with a rearfoot and forefoot gel technology advanced cushioning system
  • Features FlyteFoam Propel Technology providing supreme bounce while running
  • DuoMax support system for enhancing the stability and support
9.8
View Price
5
Brand- New BalanceNew Balance FuelCell Running Trainers for Bad Knees
Brand- New Balance

New Balance FuelCell Running Trainers for Bad Knees

  • FuelCell Midsole foam that helps you move forward while running at a good intensity
  • High-quality REVlite rubber outsole offering abrasion-resistant wherever required
  • Breathable mesh upper ensuring a comfortable fit
8.9
View Price
6
Brand- BrooksBrooks Glycerin 18 Sneakers for Knee Pain
Brand- Brooks

Brooks Glycerin 18 Sneakers for Knee Pain

  • Perfect shoes for those runners demanding extra cushioning for knee pain
  • Awesome running shoes for road runners delivering neutral support and maximum cushioning
  • Ortholite sockliner for premium comfort while walking or running
9.4
View Price
7
Brand- AsicsAsics Gel-Kinsei 6 Bad Knees Running Shoes
Brand- Asics

Asics Gel-Kinsei 6 Bad Knees Running Shoes

  • Impact Guidance System (IGS) technology to improve the foot’s natural gait while running
  • Provides supreme bounce with ultimate shock absorption technology
  • Asics FluidFit upper which easily adapts your foot’s size and delivers exceptional comfort
9.4
View Price
8
Brand- BrooksBrooks Ravenna 11 Running Shoes for Knee Support
Brand- Brooks

Brooks Ravenna 11 Running Shoes for Knee Support

  • Provides holistic GuideRails support through an incredibly streamlined design 
  • Extremely lightweight with a single layer of mesh upper
  • A perfect option for those looking for excellent support while running or training
9.3
View Price
9
Brand- New BalanceNew Balance 1080 V10 Knee Support Running Trainers
Brand- New Balance

New Balance 1080 V10 Knee Support Running Trainers

  • Offers the right amount of plushness where you need
  • Remarkable toe box for toe protection against the odds
  • Stunning knee support with a breathable mesh upper
9.1
View Price
10
Brand- MizunoMizuno Wave Rider 24 Running Shoes for Bad Knees
Brand- Mizuno

Mizuno Wave Rider 24 Running Shoes for Bad Knees

  • Provides a stable platform to your foot with superb cushioning
  • Delivers smooth traction while running from heel to toe
  • The dual-compound midsole for a soft and springy ride
9.1
View Price

Frequently Asked Questions

Do running shoes help with knee pain?

Knee pain is mainly caused due to the inward rolling of your feet while running, also known as overpronation. If the condition is serious, no shoes can help you to recover it. In such a case, you should consult a doctor or a physician.

But if it’s not so severe, then you can avoid your knee pain to extravagate by wearing the right shoes from the above list. Good running shoes for bad knees can help you to recover your knee pain quickly.

How can I stop my knees from hurting when running?

Well, there are various ways to avoid pain in the knees while running. You can initially start by investing in one of the best running shoes for bad knees from the list above. A good shoe will provide tremendous support through shock absorbers and an excellent rebound. 

Secondly, avoid heel striking while running. It means don’t try to take your feet away from your body during running. It will put extra stress on your knees, and your pain will alleviate. 
 
You can read more about other ways to prevent knee pain while running at Chirunning.

Can I still run with runner’s knee?

According to TrailRunner, you can continue running with bad knees, provided it should be done in a limited range. You can try cycling or a little bit of other low-impact cross-training exercises. But if your pain level is above 3 out of 10, you should completely stop running.

Conclusion

Running is a highly intensive workout. It is one of the best practices to keep yourself fit and healthy. On the other hand, if not done correctly, it can be dangerous. As a runner, I’ll always suggest wearing the right footwear while running.  
 
Running barefoot or with any standard shoe, especially in the case of bad knees, will ultimately make you weak and take away your entire energy. 
 
In this article, I’ve mentioned some of the top 10 best running shoes for bad knees that can help you eliminate your knee pain. All the shoes comprise excellent cushioning and top-level support. So, don’t waste your time.
 
Select the shoes that suit you best and make your running journey effortless.

Do let me know in the comments section below, what you think about the above list. Also, if you have any other suggestions, they are highly welcomed.

Jose C. Nichols

Hi, I am Jose C. Nichols, a part-time blogger, a body trainer, and a passionate runner. Apart from a trainer, I have a passion for traveling and hiking, therefore tried various shoes on the journey. I am well aware of the facts to keep in mind before purchasing shoes for different tasks. Therefore, created this blog to help the people who find difficulties in selecting the right pair of shoes for themselves. This research is the result of my experience and knowledge of the past 15 years.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *