Best Running Shoes For Bad Knees 2018 – Guide

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Best Running Shoes For Bad Knees will help you alleviate knee pain as well as other knee injuries.

Bad knees are a common problem that most runners experience and it dramatically affects running and leaves a runner wholly sidelined.

A bad knee can hinder your fitness schedule or worse affect your mobility if you don’t treat in time. However, recent research has shown that knee pain can be treated using simple methods like icing, resting or using an elastic bandage. But it’s important to seek professional physical therapy.

Experts also advice wearing supportive and cushioned footwear, Shoes that absorb shock, support the curves of the foot, and with low heels.

In this article, we’ll discuss Best Running Shoes For Bad Knees. But, first we’ll provide a summary of the best running shoes for knee pain, and then give a detailed review of the same.

Top 8 Best Running Shoes For Bad Knees 2018

In this section, we’ll give a detailed review of best running shoes for both men and women.

1. Nike Air Pegasus 34  – Best Men’s Running Shoes 

The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34 has Dynamic Flywire cables which comfortably enfolds the arch of your foot giving you support while running. The shoe is ultralight and also offers ample motion control to help prevent knee pain. With this shoe, you are guaranteed comfort, excellent cushioning, and a responsive ride.

Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34 Mens Running Shoes

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On our first review for Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees, we look at Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34.

This shoe has everything you might need to protect your knees.

The footwear offers comfort, a responsive ride and an exceptional cushioning to make running sessions enjoyable.

If you want reliability and safety during your runs, whether as a beginner or an experienced runner Pegasus 34 will be an ideal choice for you.

Go ahead and try it!

Ultralight, responsive, and fast

The Pegasus 34 is uniquely designed to fit both experienced runners and beginners.

Its lightweight feature makes it safe and suitable for runners with knee and back problems.

It is equipped with a Flymesh material which lowers heat buildup during running.

You’ll love the support and cushion the shoe will give you.

Best for beginners

If you have bad knees and you want to start a running routine, you should get Pegasus 34.

The shoe is comfortable and well-cushioned to prevent knee pain.

It also offers excellent stability because of its Flywire cables and stable heel cup which securely wrap the arch of your feet giving you support and security against knee damage.

Offers comfort

Air Zoom Pegasus 34 is one of the most comfortable shoes on the market today.

It has a tremendous responsive cushioning which makes it ideal for bad knees.

It has incredible Zoom Air units that help to push you forward, making you benefit from more extended runs.

Also, the shoe is light at 285g and has a lighter Flymesh to help reduce overheating, hence, enable your feet to breathe appropriately, thus, making them Best Running Shoes for Bad Knees.

Smart design

Nike is widely known for providing unique shoe designs. The Air Zoom Pegasus 34 is no exception.

The shoe comes in over 20 different unique color combinations to give you your best preference.

Also, it has an exceptional rubber strip near the sole to help a runner easily and comfortably transition between the toe and heel.

The shoe offers a trendy and unique look for anyone using it.

However, if you feel that the Air Zoom Pegasus 34 is not ideal for you, you can check on Amazon for previous Nike Air Zoom Pegasus designs or colors. Click Here For More 

Things We Liked
  • Best Running Shoes on Bad Knees
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Excellent cushioning
  • Smart design
  • Flywire cables and heel cup wrap the arch of the feet securely
  • Flymesh fabric reduces overheating for increased comfort
Things We Didn’t Like
  • Some customers have complained about its durability

2. Brooks Men’s Beast 14

Brooks Men's Beast 14

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Another superior Running Shoe for Bad Knees is the Brooks Men’s Beast 14.

It’s one of the traditional running shoes but still preferred by many because of its high cushioning and support to knees.


Stability and great cushioning

Runners who experience over-pronation while running are advised to invest in this shoe.

The shoe offers stability and great cushioning giving overall body support to the runner.

Furthermore, the shoe features a great linear platform that provides excellent support and stability to your feet.


The sockliner technology and moisture managing mechanism of the shoe help to regulate the temperature inside the shoe, leaving your feet feeling fresher.

Furthermore, this running shoe features a breathable mesh and a superlight synthetic material that comfortably covers your feet, while allowing your feet enough air to breath.

Mid-Section Support

The Beast 14 is flat in design providing additional support to your foot’s mid-section.

This shoe is ideal for those with flat feet type or those that need extra support and cushioning in their running or walking exercises.

For additional mid-foot support, the shoe has an asymmetrical saddle that extends to cover the feet inside the shoe ensuring it’s securely locked giving you a comfortable and enjoyable running experience.


This Brooks shoe is designed with durability in mind. It has rubber outsoles which help to extend the life of this product.

The shoe also offers impressive cushioning, to enable both heavy and light steppers to use the shoe for an extended period without getting ruined.

You can check more Brooks Men’s Beast design on Amazon. Click Here 

Things We Liked
  • Moisture-managing mechanism ensures the feet remain fresh all day long
  • Best shoe for those with bad knees or back pain
  • Rubber sole increases its running effectiveness
  • Ideal for those with flat feet
  • Offer Stability and great cushioning
Things We Didn’t Like
  • If used regularly, they can get damaged

3. GEL-Kayano 20 

The GEL-Kayano 20 is designed with a gel cushioning mechanism that allows it to absorb excess shock. It also features a fluid fit and a fluidride for a great bounce back and an ideal fit.

The Brooks Men’s Beast 14 features a linear design that offers excellent support and stability to your knees. Further, they are designed with a motion-control mechanism that controls pronation. Hence, are ideal for over-pronators.

ASICS Men's Gel Kayano 20 Lite Show Running Shoe,Surf/Lite/Blazing Yellow,8.5 M US

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The GEL-Kayano 20 shoe is one of the most preferred running shoes because of its excellent cushioning feature against knee pain.

It also helps prevent other knee injuries like Anterior Cruciate Ligament injury- a common knee injury affecting most runners.

If you want stability and comfort during your running exercises, then this GEL-Kayano 20 Lite will do the trick for you.


The Kayano 20 is designed with safety and comfort of runners in mind. This shoe is specially made for those looking for that extra support.

Because of its excellent stability, the shoe is highly recommended for runners with bad knees and those that experience over pronation when running.

This ASICS shoe, just like the rest of this model has great gel-cushioning which allows it to absorb shock, giving the runner comfortable running experience.

Fluid Fit

The fluid fit upper eliminate any chance of foot irritation that might be brought by inside shoe stitches.

Also, the fluid fit provides a stretchy cover on the whole shoe allowing it to wrap your foot in a glove-like fit securely.

Excellent grip and traction

The GEL-Kayano 20 has a fantastic rubber sole that gives it great grip and traction. Thus, it’s an ideal shoe for running and for those with knee or back pain.

This shoe is exceptionally sturdy and stable, and it will give you that great feeling of being in control while doing your exercises.

Sturdy and well-cushioned

This shoe offers comfort, stability, and fantastic support to allow you enjoy a running experience without any pain.

Comfort Fit upper

The smooth upper allows the shoe user to comfortably exercise without feeling any foot irritation experienced when using other shoe designs.

The shoe fit is perfect and conveniently holds the toes and the heels in place for a smooth run.

You can check on amazon other designs of the GEL-Kayano. Click Here For More 

Things We Liked
  • Ideal wear for over-pronation and other knee injuries
  • Gel cushioning helps to eliminate knee pain because of the shock absorbing property
  • Glove-feel like on the upper
  • Excellent breathability
  • Has a fluid fit and a fluidride that gives a great bounce back and a perfect fit
Things We Didn’t Like
  • Quite pricey

Best Women’s Running Shoes For Knee Pain

4. New Balance W1340v2 

The New Balance W1340v2 features motion-control technology that gives your feet support and superior cushioning. This shoe is ideal for anyone complaining of knee pain or over-pronation as it’s fitted with TPU and T-BEAM mechanism which offers needed stability within the midsection of your feet.

New Balance Women's W1340v2 Optimum Control Running Shoe

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New balance shoes have for a long time remained runners favorite which makes them a top choice for runners with knee pain. The W1340v2 is no exception.

This shoe features a durable rubber sole that gives excellent traction and grip on any terrain making it ideal for daily running routines.

Motion-Control Technology

The New Balance W1340v2 has motion control technology which reinforces a runner’s stride allowing them to go many miles without knee injuries.

This shoe was designed explicitly for over-pronators, and it has excellent cushioning as well as a support technology that helps runners feel comfortable.

This unique motion control technology ensures that you remain safe and healthy while protecting your knee from any injuries.

Lightweight, Supportive Design

The W1340v2 shoe model offers a supportive and lightweight design that combines a variety of colors to give your feet that sporty look leaving you feeling comfortable while working out.

The lightweight feature makes the shoe ideal for running with bad knees.

Your knees get the required cushioning and support to engage in your running routine comfortably.


The midsole feature many New Balance technologies which give stability support to the shoe midsection.

On the other hand, the upper has breathable synthetic material that helps the foot to remain cool and fresh all day long.


New Balance is known for producing  consistent products that offers value for the money as well as years of use.

However, if used daily, they might not last for long. Therefore, we recommend getting an extra pair to use alongside this one.


The shoe offers excellent support giving comfort to those runners with knee pain.

The REVlite midsole provides great cushioning to those with injuries, making the best-running shoes for bad knees.

You can check more New Balance Women’s shoes on Amazon. Click Here For More Designs 

Things We Liked
  • Excellent breathability and fit
  • Ultra-light and supportive design
  • Great stability and cushioning
  • Motion-Control Technology
  • Durable rubber sole
Things We Didn’t Like
  •  Some customers complained about their durability

5. Saucony Zealot ISO 2  

The Zealot ISO 2 offers a unique mix of protection and steadiness. Many runners agree that this shoe model is an excellent choice for those with knee complications like pronation as they provide the required level of stability.

Saucony Women's Zealot ISO 2 Running Shoe

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Saucony strives to offer best running shoes for knee pain, so if you have any knee issue, Saucony models are an excellent choice.

The Zealot ISO 2 has low weight and considerable cushioning to give a runner a bouncy and a well-cushioned ride.

They are also well-cushioned allowing a runner to exercise without any significant issues.

Furthermore, if you are overweight or have been inactive for an extended period and want to avoid any form of injuries, then the Zealot ISO 2 will be a perfect choice for you.

You can check more Saucony Women’s Zealot Running Shoe on Amazon. Click Here For More

Quality Rubber Soles

Zealot ISO 2 has quality rubber soles giving you excellent traction and grip while running on hard impact terrain.

When using this shoe, you don’t need to worry about injuries as the soles are designed to protect you against injuries.

Lightweight And Great Cushioning

Zealot ISO 2 is designed using lightweight material giving you essential cushioning while running. People with knee problems can comfortably exercise with this shoe as they are light enough, stable, and offer great cushioning


The Saucony ISO 2 has a synthetic mesh material that allows a high level of breathability. Another feature is the high drying ability. All these features leave your feet feeling cool and fresh all day long.


The Saucony shoes come in a variety of colors and style giving you a chance to select your favorite. This shoe has a unique sporty style which will provide you with the fantastic sporty look. The good thing is that the shoe can be worn even in informal events because of its attractive style and comfort.

Things We Liked
  • ISOFit technology offers a revolutionary fit system for extra comfort
  • 4MM Offset gives a more natural ride allowing the body and feet to be engaged fully without depending on the shoe for stability and cushioning
  • Flexfilm offers a smooth, flexible feel
  • Lightweight rubber soles that provide protection and excellent cushioning
Things We Didn’t Like
  • Some first-time runners complained that the shoe is heavy.

6. Hoka One One Women’s Bondi 5 Running Shoe

The Bondi 5 Running Shoe features ortholite insole which offers extra cushioning, arch support, and comfort. The shoe is designed with meta-rocker technology to give your feet comfort and protect you against knee injuries. The footwear has considerable cushioning because of the EVA Midsole.

Hoka One One Womens Bondi 5 Running Shoe

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If you want cushion, stability, and comfort all in one shoe, the Bondi 5 Running Shoe will offer you just that!

Bondi 5 has remained the top choice running shoes for bad knees. The shoe has a rockered design which gives it an elongated shape on the toe and heel generating a seamless heel to toe transition.

For more Hoka One One Women’s Bondi Click Here

Excellent Redesigned Upper

The Bondi 5 features a unique redesigned upper that encompasses a seamless and engineered mesh construction.

The upper engineered mesh gives the shoe Comfort and great cushioning. Most customers have praised the flexibility and smoothness offered by this shoe.

Quality midsole

The Bondi 5 midsole has a soft EVA foam that overlays the whole shoe. This foam comes in the form of a thick layer to give you that critical cushioning. This shoe will make you feel a little taller if compared with other brands.

The shoe allows your foot to rest on the cushioning comfortably, giving you comfort and stability.

Things We Liked
  • Great redesigned upper
  • Has soft EVA foam to give extra cushioning
  • Rubber sole offers great traction and grip when running
  • Best running shoe for knee pain
  • Great cushioning
  • Great for long distance runners
Things We Didn’t Like
  • A bit narrow

Look For The Following When Buying Running Shoes For Bad Knees

We’ve done an extensive research to help you choose the best running shoe for a bad knee. Sometimes you may experience knee pain, but still, want to continue with your running.

Selecting any of the reviewed shoes in this guide will give you pain-free and stress-free runs. Before buying ensure the shoe fits the following criteria

1. Comfort

Comfort should be your be your number one consideration when it comes to shoes.

Buying shoes that properly fit will leave you feeling comfortable and pain-free after your exercise.

The correct running shoe will prevent your knees from getting stressed; hence, protect you from significant knee injuries.

The shoes we’ve reviewed are guaranteed to give you comfort as they built around state of the art technology like motion control, DNA technology, and gel cushioning.


Choose shoes that can last long.

You shouldn’t be found wearing shoes that crumbles down during your running routines. You increase your risk of injuries, which is what we are trying to avoid at all cost.

The models we’ve selected are the best and have been tried and tested and successfully delivered the durability test as best running shoes for bad knees.

3. Stability/Support

Most knee injuries are mainly caused by motion control issues or improper balance.

The models we’ve selected will offer most needed support.  Our choices are fit for other knee injuries like under-pronation or over pronation.

Running without enough support or stability can aggravate knee injuries, causing more pain and discomfort. Thus, when choosing a running shoe select one that will provide adequate comfort and security in all conditions.

4. Traction/Grip

Choose shoes that have excellent traction to avoid cases of injuries.

Your running shoes should offer a firm grip on all surfaces they were intended to be used.

Any shoe with horrible traction on the ground they are intended for is a disaster in waiting.

What Is A Bad Knee?

A bad knee is typically pain in your knees caused b;

  • Knee arthritis
  • Poor ligaments
  • Over-pronated foot
  • Torn ligaments

Experts also warn that a bad knee can come when the joint is overloaded because of repetitive movements.

For example, doing endless squats, step-ups, or lunges, and going miles of running.

All these can cause pain to your knees because of doing too much within a short period, thus not giving the body enough time to recover.

When You Have knee pain, you’ll Experience The Following;

  • Straightening or flexing the knee becomes a challenge
  • Swelling of the knee
  • Soreness
  • Instability
  • Rigidity

But, The Big Question Is; What Causes Bad Knees? 

1. Muscle strains can cause knee pain (bad knee), ligament sprains and damaged or irritated cartilage.  All these may be a result of stress or traumatic injury on the knee over time.

2. Muscular imbalance/weakness can be another cause of bad knee.Your muscles may sometimes become too weak and may be unable to support your joints adequately.

As a result, your other muscles may strain in an attempt to compensate for the weakness.

3. Flattened arches (overpronation) can increase pressure or stress on the knee leading to pain. Similarly, poor posture can also cause pain to your knees.

4. You may also experience Bad knees or knee pain when you progress too quickly in fitness activities.

The body becomes so overwhelmed, thus, unable to adjust as quickly. All these will make your muscles and joints to strain to lead to muscular fatigue.

5. Wearing wrong shoes can also cause increased stresses to your knees. Footwear that is inappropriate for your fitness activity, feet, or even body type can cause pain.

Can Running Cause Bad Knees?

Well, this is something that many people ponder about, and  to answer it simply, if done correctly, running cannot hurt your knees.

A recent study has shown that running doesn’t increase or initiate the risk of getting osteoarthritis. Runners in this study reported less risk of arthritis compared to their non-active colleagues.

Similarly, another study has reported same outcomes. The research shows that although the impact of running is quite high, the feet of the runners hit the ground more briefly and less frequently compared to when they are walking. Therefore, what it means is walking and running causes the similar knee stress.

You may probably be wondering;

Why then do we have such a high rate of runners complaining of knee pain?

Why runners have knee pain

Well, most of the reported knee pain among runners is mainly due to poor running practice.

The good thing is that some of these poor running practices can be alleviated through conditioning.

However, some cannot. They are linked to an individual’s physical make-up, like having significant leg-length discrepancy- where one leg is shorter than other, or the pelvis is tilted.

However, running is still possible even with all these issues; you just need to know when to stop or continue.

But, if you are a beginner in the running or a runner who experiences knee pain there are things that you must take into account to avoid incidences of knee pain.

What to do to avoid knee pain

You should go for biomechanical analysis and check your running form. Get somebody who comprehends what they are doing, and you’ll be closer to a solution and eventually fix it.

Other Factors That Can Lead To Knee Pain

Running too much over a small period can also cause knee pain. Your muscles, ligaments, and joints will strain as they are not strong to handle the pressure and workload.

Unless it’s unavoidable, make a routine of running three to four days a week. From there you can gradually embrace higher distance and frequency.

Another major factor is running using the wrong shoes. Wearing wrong running shoes can put a strain on your muscles and ligaments causing knee injuries.

Ensure you buy running shoes that are more stable, well-cushioned, and comfortable.

Importance of Investing In Best Running Shoes

Having the right kind of running shoes will help to prevent knee injuries as well as boost your exercise routine. Ensure you invest in good running shoes to protect yourself against injuries

Best running shoes will offer you protection, support, and excellent cushioning. Always consider these factors when buying your running shoes.

How Do You Treat and prevent A Bad Knee?

Get Correct Running Shoes

If getting custom shoes that are well-cushioned, comfortable, and stable has not worked for you, then it’s time to take severe measures and treat your knee problem.

Get Specialized Orthotics

Here you’ll understand why your feet turn into different positions causing pain. Appropriate tests will be done, and insoles that correctly match your feet will be designed, and hopefully, your knee issues will be resolved.

Orthotics and correct running shoes can limit pronation and help maintain your foot alignment.

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