9 Best Running Shoes for Heel Strikers in 2024

Today, we’ll delve into the world of the best running shoes for heel strikers.

If you see several different people running, be honest—would you really notice a difference in their running styles? If we exclude people who run like Phoebe from Friends (she has a really particular way of running), you’d probably assume everyone runs pretty much the same way. That is almost true, but not quite. The tiny variations in the way our feet land make a world of difference, and, believe it or not, it means we all need a pair of shoes suited for us.

New Balance Fresh Foam Running Shoe

In a Hurry? Skip to Our Pick

The New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 is the ideal running shoe for heel strikers, delivering an unparalleled combination of comfort, support, and sustainability. The Fresh Foam X midsole provides impeccable cushioning and is a shoe made with 3% bio-based content from renewable sources, showcasing New Balance’s commitment to a greener future.

Running shoes with good heel support

So do yourself a favor; stick with me and get yourself a pair of the best running shoes for heel strikers and overpronation!

Let’s heel strike!

Top 9 Best Running Shoes For Heel Strikers Reviewed

  1. New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 Running Shoe – Top Pick
  2. ASICS Men’s Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoes – Best for Men
  3. Brooks Women’s Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe – Best for Women
  4. Reebok Men’s Floatride Energy Symmetros – Budget Pick
  5. Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe – For Long Runs and Training
  6. Nike Men’s Race Running Shoe – The Most Designs
  7. Adidas Men’s Ultraboost-21 Running Shoes – Best Neutral
  8. Saucony Men’s Endorphin Speed 2 Running Shoe – Best for Hard Heel Strikers
  9. Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 22 Supportive Running Shoe – Best for Heavy Runners

How we chose top running shoes for heel strikers for our article

In the search for the best running shoes for heel strikers, our team of professional runners, athletes, and trainers chose and tested 14 pairs of shoes and evaluated them according to 7 key factors (comfort, breathability, stability, flexibility, cushioning, durability, price/quality ratio). They have also taken into account user reviews online. Only 9 pairs of shoes made it to this list and we have spent a total of 89 hours testing and analyzing the shoes. This is why we have no doubt you’ll find shoes that will fit you and your running style perfectly. We welcome any comments, suggestions, and opinions, so feel free to share them in the comments section!

ProductAverage ScoreComfortBreathabilityStabilityFlexibilityCushioningDurabilityValue for Money
New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V124.95.05.05.04.95.04.84.9
ASICS Gel-Cumulus 234.95.05.04.74.74.94.85.0
Brooks Ghost 144.84.94.84.74.85.04.64.6
Reebok Floatride Energy Symmetros4.64.84.74.74.24.54.44.9
Under Armour Charged Assert 94.54.64.64.84.34.54.44.5
Nike Race4.44.54.54.64.34.44.44.4
Adidas Ultraboost-214.44.44.64.24.44.14.34.5
Saucony Endorphin Speed 24.34.24.84.24.14.14.34.2
Brooks Adrenaline GTS 224.24.24.24.24.04.14.44.1

1. New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 Running Shoe

Top Pick

New Balance Men's Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 Running Shoe

New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 Running Shoe

These shoes combine impeccable cushioning, impressive design, and sustainability, as the Fresh Foam X midsole contains 3% bio-based content from renewable sources. With smooth transitions and natural movement support, these shoes are a runner’s dream.

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New Balance Men's Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 Running Shoe

You may be the type of person who has 10 or more pairs of running shoes. That may be because you just like shoes, or you’re just not able to find a pair that’s perfect. I’m telling you, this one is the closest to perfection you can ever get. If you give these a try, you won’t need any other pair.

  • Brand: New Balance
  • Material: Hypoknit
  • Sole Material: Rubber
  • Outsole (tread feature): Rubber
  • Drop: 8 mm
  • Season: All seasons
  • Colors: 26 colors available
  • Gender: Men
  • Weight (1 shoe): 0.6 lbs.
  • Special Features: Fresh Foam midsole
  • Size: 7–16

The Fresh Foam X midsole is not just a gimmick—it really works. The cushioning on these shoes is impeccable, making them ideal for heel strikers. It is engineered with advanced cushioning technology and efficiently absorbs impact, reducing stress on the heel during the strike phase. This makes sure the landing is soft, which is crucial for heel strikers, who are often prone to injuries due to the high impact on their stride. The rubber sole improves grip and durability, and provides a stable foundation that further mitigates the force felt by heel strikers.

Another thing I would like to point out is that New Balance cares about sustainability, and the midsole contains 3% bio-based content derived from renewable sources. Way to go, New Balance!

The design is impressive, to say the least. You can really tell they put thought and effort into it. The upper Hypoknit material is amazing at being stretchy where it needs to be, and supportive just where you would want support. Your feet will stay secure during your run, and you don’t have to worry about stability at all.

The transitions are smooth because there is extra foam in the wide areas, and the narrower points have increased flexibility. This results in a pair of shoes that support the natural movement of your feet while being supportive and comfortable at the same time.

I am 100% certain you won’t regret buying these. Your wallet, however, may have a different opinion on that. These are the most expensive shoes on the list, so take that into account.

New Balance shoes for heel strikers

Pros New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V12:

  • Sustainable
  • Fresh Foam X midsole is ideal for heel strikers
  • Supports the feet’s natural movement

Cons of New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V12:

  • The most expensive pair on the list

2. ASICS Men's Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoes

Best for Men

ASICS Men's Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoes

ASICS Men's Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoes

These running shoes feature heel cushions - offering the perfect balance of quality and affordability. The focus on breathable and flexible upper material adds to the overall comfort, ensuring your feet stay cool and comfortable during long runs.

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ASICS Men's Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoes

Everyone wants the most bang for their buck, and these running shoes with heel cushion are just that. Their performance is amazing, they’re incredibly comfortable, and you won’t break the bank after you buy them.

  • Brand: ASICS
  • Material: 100% synthetic
  • Sole Material: Rubber
  • Outsole (tread feature): Rubber
  • Drop: 10 mm
  • Season: All seasons
  • Colors: 24 colors available
  • Gender: Men
  • Weight (1 shoe): 1.7 lbs.
  • Special Features: Gel and Flytefoam technology for shock absorption and cushioning
  • Size: 7–15

The Gel Technology is amazing at shock absorption, and if you’re a runner, you know how important this is. It means your joints are not taking the majority of the hit, and you are able to train longer and more intensely.

The Flytefoam technology provides a light, but resilient midsole and makes sure each step is supported without adding unnecessary weight. This is especially important for heel strikers because it minimizes the energy spent during the transition from heel to toe.

The reason these are chosen as the best for men is because of the 3D Space Construction, which is gender specific. Footstrike has different compression rates depending on gender, and these shoes are designed with that in mind.

The upper material is my favorite feature, which surprised me because, with so much effort put into the design, you wouldn’t think the upper would be in focus. But it is, and that’s because it makes the shoes breathable and flexible. Breathability can make or break a shoe as far as I’m concerned. Imagine running for a long time in shoes that aren't breathable—your feet would be cooked and sweaty. I don't think you would even be able to concentrate on your workout with your shoes being so uncomfortable. Apart from this, the flexibility in the upper combined with the cushioning offers a stable, supportive environment for your feet and reduces the risk of overpronation, which is common for heel strikers.

I can see these becoming very popular because they're of great quality and the price is affordable. If you decide to give them a try, though, go up a size because these run a teensy bit small.

Pros of Running Shoes:

  • Very breathable
  • Gender-specific design
  • Impeccable shock absorption
  • Many colors available

Cons of Running Shoes:

  • They run small

3. Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe

Best for Women

Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe

Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe

These heel-strike running shoes, are designed to take your running experience to new heights. Shoes provide exceptional comfort without compromising durability. The snug fit and advanced upper technology offer a secure feel, but those with wider feet may need to consider sizing up.

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Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe

Brooks really took running shoes to another level with these heel strike running shoes. You ladies are sure to love them!

  • Brand: Brooks
  • Material: Fabric and synthetic
  • Sole Material: Rubber
  • Outsole (tread feature): Rubber
  • Drop: 12 mm
  • Season: All seasons
  • Colors: 38 colors available
  • Gender: Women
  • Weight (1 shoe): 0.5 lbs.
  • Special Features: BioMoGo DNA and DNA LOFT cushioning
  • Size: 5–13

As soon as you take these into your hands, the first thing you’ll notice is how incredibly lightweight they are. I always appreciate this with any kind of workout shoes, but especially with the ones made for running.

They’re so light that I can see some people thinking they’re flimsy and won’t last that long, but that’s not the case. Yes, they’re light, but they’re also extremely well made and will last a long time, even if you use them every day. That’s why you should always look to invest in a quality pair of running shoes—you don't have to sacrifice comfort for durability.

In terms of heel-to-toe transitions, they’re superb, and the transitions are smooth regardless of how your foot lands.

Where these shoes really shine is in the fit and the technology used in the upper. The shoes provide a secure fit, the upper moves with your feet, and the overall feel is quite snug. The energizing cushioning is what makes them so great for heel strikers. It absorbs the impact at the heel strike, reduces the stress on your joints, and allows for a smoother transition to toe-off. And with the shoes being a certified PDAC A5500 Diabetic shoe and having the APMA Seal of Acceptance, they guarantee not just comfort, but also the health and safety of your feet.

The snug fit can be good or bad, depending on how narrow your feet are. The toe box is a bit narrower than I would expect, so if your feet are on the wider side, you may want to keep that in mind before buying them.

Pros of Running Shoes:

  • Very light
  • Snug fit
  • Has APMA Seal of Acceptance

Cons of Running Shoes:

  • Narrow toe box

4. Reebok Men's Floatride Energy Symmetros

Budget Pick

Reebok Men's Floatride Energy Symmetros

Reebok Men's Floatride Energy Symmetros

The Reebok running shoes provide unmatched comfort and, making each stride energizing and dynamic. The carbon rubber outsole ensures stability and durability on any surface, while the breathable mesh upper keeps your feet fresh and comfortable.

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Reebok Men's Floatride Energy Symmetros

Our budget pick offers a lot more than its great price. Since Reebok is a reputable, well-known brand, there’s no worry that you will be getting a pair of shoes that will fall apart after only a few uses. These are sure to improve your running experience, and they’ll do so without making a dent in your wallet.

  • Brand: Reebok
  • Material: Engineered mesh
  • Sole Material: Rubber
  • Outsole (tread feature): Carbon rubber
  • Drop: 10 mm
  • Season: All seasons
  • Colors: 10 colors available
  • Gender: Men
  • Weight (1 shoe): 1.54 lbs.
  • Special Features: Floatride energy foam
  • Size: US 7–13

The Floatride Energy Foam might sound a bit like something you’d hear in Star Trek, right? But it’s actually what makes these running shoes with heel support nice and comfy. It also enhances the responsiveness of each stride you take. And compared to the original Floatride Foam, the Energy version ups your running experience and makes it more energizing and dynamic.

The engineered design of these shoes, with a 10 mm drop, is particularly good for heel strikers because it promotes a more natural foot alignment and makes the transition from heel to toe smoother. This elevation difference is key in reducing the initial impact force that heel strikers experience and it spreads it more evenly throughout the foot. This lower your chance of getting injured and makes those long runs more comfortable.

The carbon rubber outsole takes care of traction and durability. You can run on any kind of surface you want, and you can be sure that your feet will be stable, and the shoes will always keep their grippiness.

You know how important breathability is for me, and I’m so happy these are an absolute gem in that regard. The upper is made of a mesh material that not only provides support but also offers excellent breathability. No stinky, sweaty feet in these shoes!

If you’re used to a bunch of crazy colors that most running shoes offer, you might be slightly disappointed in the color selection these shoes provide. Although they still have 10 options to choose from, compared to some of the shoes on the list that have more than double, you might feel a bit limited. But honestly, that's the only downside these shoes have.

Runner in Reebok shoes for heel strikers

Pros:

  • Great value for money
  • Suitable for many different surfaces
  • Carbon outsole enhances durability

Cons:

  • Limited color choices

5. Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe

For Long Runs and Training

Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe

Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe

These shoes excel in price, style, comfort, and durability, making them the ideal choice for long runs and training sessions. The charged cushioning midsole ensures unmatched responsiveness and impact absorption, making your runs more comfortable than ever.

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Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe

These check all boxes: price, looks, comfort, durability… You name it; they have it! If you like long runs or you’re looking for something to train in, keep reading because these are what you want.

  • Brand: Under Armour
  • Material: Lightweight mesh and leather overlays
  • Sole Material: Rubber
  • Outsole (tread feature): Rubber
  • Drop: 10 mm
  • Season: All seasons
  • Colors: 25 colors available
  • Gender: Men
  • Weight (1 shoe): 0.66 lbs.
  • Special Features: Charged cushioning midsole
  • Size: US 7–15

The reason I think these are ideal for long runs or training sessions is mostly due to the charged cushioning midsole—it makes the shoes extremely responsive. The compression-molded foam absorbs impact like no other, and your long runs will be a lot more comfortable if you complete them in these shoes.

The 10 mm offset is key for heel strikers and ensures a more ergonomic foot position, which can significantly reduce the strain on the Achilles tendon and lower leg muscles (common areas of concern for heel strikers). The EVA sockliner adds another layer of comfort and gives a soft, step-in feel that complements the charged cushioning midsole’s impact absorption capabilities. This combination makes the strike phase more comfortable and makes the transition to midstance more seamless.

Should I even mention how breathable these are, or did you come to that conclusion yourself? The upper combines breathable mesh and leather to make the shoes breathable and super supportive. I’m a huge fan of mesh uppers and don’t mind if the upper is made completely out of mesh, but there's something about the inclusion of leather pieces that really adds to the support.

The outsole is solid rubber, which covers all high-impact zones. If you enjoy running on rough terrains (and for a long time!), you'll find this feature quite handy as it contributes to the shoes' durability.

They would be a perfect 10 if it weren’t for the weight. These weigh quite a bit more than what I’m used to with running shoes. Overall, though, they’re the best in their category if you want something comfortable and durable enough for those long runs.

Pros of Running Shoes:

  • Solid rubber outsole for durability
  • Compression-molded foam for shock absorption
  • Leather overlay adds to stability

Cons of Running Shoes:

  • Heavy

6. Nike Men's Race Running Shoe

The Most Designs

Nike Men's Race Running Shoe

Nike Men's Race Running Shoe

These shoes feature an anti-clog coating for protection against dirt on rough terrains. The solid rubber outsole ensures excellent traction and durability, complemented by anti-abrasion material in the heel and forefoot. The breathable mesh upper guarantees a long-lasting and supportive running experience.

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