Best Shoes for Knee Pain 2019

Best Shoes for Knee Pain

Knee pain is not the reason preventing you from running or playing sports, but you must be more considerative, especially in picking the shoes. Fit and comfortable footwear will reduce the shock on the knee and get your life easier.

However, you might find it hard to make a choice. “Is there any pair of shoes to ease the bad knee and to be stylish at the same time?”

Yes, there is. Not one but 10 best shoes for knee pain!

Best Men’s Shoes for Knee Pain

ASICS Gel-Kayano 25 SP Men’s Running Shoes

ASICS Gel-Kayano 25 SP Men's Running Shoes

  • Comfort cushion and effective bounce back
  • Considerative supporting features
  • High-performing midsole design
  • Rich in color options
  • Affordable price
  • Weight more than other running shoes
  • Boring style

Some might wonder why the best shoes for knee pain title does not go for Nike – the leading footwear manufacturer, but the ASICS Gel-Kayano 25?

ASICS get its reputation for running shoes having a consistent design quality at a very reasonable price, especially those who suffer from the bad knee. Overall, the shoes bring an exceptional fit feeling without the toe box to be cramped.

The dual FlyteFoam layered technology provides a complete cushioning and supreme bounce back from toe to heel.

Specifically, there is one lightweight foam layer with organic nanofibers at the heel which provides a continuous cushion. The second layer toward the toe makes it easier to propel yourself when running.

The fluoride midsole is another bonus.

It improves comfort and breathability. The small holes allow the air to take in and out of the shoes, keeping your foot cool and dry. However, those added features cause the shoes to be heavier than usual.

New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam 1080v7 Running Shoes

New Balance Men's Fresh Foam 1080v7 Running Shoes

  • Supports more cushioning and comfort thanks to the foam midsole
  • Enhance in the construction for the better stability and durability
  • Free your feet with the wider footprint
  • Feel quite stiff when running
  • Lack of the springiness and bounce back

Your bad knee desires shoes with much cushioning when you do a lot running over the uneven terrain. That time, the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v7 is a good choice.

Like its name, the shoes are well-balanced, stable, and flexible with excellent heel support. Notably, its firm foam midsole gives an extra cushioning.

The rocker-like midsole is made of 8-mm EVA foam, coming with a foam sheet underneath. Such the midsole makes it firmer and faster for your foot to roll off.

Whereas, the outsole has a full rubber coverage and an ultra-wide footprint toward both the heel and the forefoot. Your feet will feel more comfortable.

To be short, the combination of the wide footprint and the rocker shape delivers the ride supportive as well as the smooth transitions.

However, the bounce is not very useful due to the firm midsole. I recommend this New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v7 for a long-distance running such as the marathon competition.

Mizuno Men’s Wave Rider 20 Running Shoes

Mizuno Men's Wave Rider 20 Running Shoes

  • Good at absorbing shocks
  • Supportive cloud wave technology
  • Removable insole for necessary customization
  • Affordable price
  • Unexpected small size
  • The model size is somewhat off, so be considerate on choosing

Mizuno uses what they call the wave technology for their shoes including the Wave Rider 20.

There is a plate, shaped like a wave, inside each shoe to disperses the impact on your feet while you are running. Accordingly, the impact will distribute evenly on foot, making an ultra stable ride and reducing the shock on your joints.

Good for your bad knee! The removable insole is an interesting added-value feature.

Honestly, the Mizuno’s insole is comfortable enough. However, your doctor might advise adding some customized support, for example, medical orthotics to increase stability and comfort. So, you should follow your doctor.

Overall, the Wave Rider 20 brings a comfortable underfoot experience, and breathable design, along with great support. I recommend these shoes for daily exercise rather than the long distance though.

The underfoot experience was soft and comfortable, noted a runner. The inclusion of the U4icX cushioning technology made the mid-sole more robust and efficient

Nike Men’s Air Max Motion Low Cross Trainer

Nike Men's Air Max Motion Low Cross Trainer

  • Well-performed functions
  • Suitable for various activities from sports
  • Fashionable design to improve your daily style
  • High price

Developing footwear with every “athlete” in mind, Nike hardly disappoints consumers with its shoes – both functional and stylish! Nike Air Max is excellent, too.

As I said, knee pain can never stop you from doing sports. You can run, play tennis, play basketball, and more. You can do all of these activities with one pair of Nike Air Max Motion Low since they are cross-training shoes.

These shoes are ultra-lightweight and versatile enough for various activities. The highly-breathable mesh upper and firm overlays give off a well-ventilated feeling and reduce your knee pain significantly.

Interesting enough, the shoes are super fashionable and cool. So, next time, if you want to head for a cross-training event, bring this Nike Air Max with you. However, you might feel a bit hesitant because of the price.

Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 19 Running Shoes

Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 19 Running Shoes

  • Less stress on the knee to ease the pain
  • Breathable materials
  • Improved stability
  • High heel drop
  • Some time to be familiar with the Guide Rails

What makes Brook Adrenaline GTS 19 outstanding out of hundred shoes for knee pain is its holistic Guide Rails approach to improve the stability.

This technology gets inspired by the bowling analogy, in which the shoes work as the bumpers to guide your foot movement forwards. This keeps the heel in place and lowers the stress on your knee by limiting the excessive movements.

Brook has updated this model with new DNA Loft crash pad to offer a bouncier and softer experience on your heel. Accordingly, the cushioning of the midsole becomes firmer – but not too firm, which increases the durability for long runs.

The upper mesh is stretchy to improve the breathability thanks to the airy sensation. Interesting enough, the material is somewhat waterproof since the shoes dry quickly.

One small complaint is the very high heel drop. Sometimes it causes my body to tilt forward and stumble.

Best Women’s Shoes for Knee Pain

Saucony Women’s Cohesion 11 Running Shoes

Saucony Women's Cohesion 11 Running Shoes

  • Good cushioning and stability for the long-distance running
  • Suitable for medium to high arched runners
  • Affordable deal
  • Smaller size than normal

If your arch is medium to high and you have a bad knee, I recommend the Saucony Cohesion 11 model.

The EVA foam midsole, plus with the memory foam footbed, provides the comfortable cushioning to your foot. Not to mention, the rubber cover shields these shoes from surfaces’ abrasive nature.

It means better stability and less stress on your knee. The outsole sets a mixture of rubber and an entire length lather, making the shoes more durable.

Saucony Cohesion 11 are also breathable thanks to the artificial overlays net and grid, which cover and protect the heel better.

Women will also love these shoes because of their combination of lovely color from baby blue; grey/citron; charcoal/peach; and other more.

However, the size options seem a bit off. In general, Saucony Cohesion 11 shoes are ideal for a regular workout like walking or running. Especially, the price is very affordable.

ASICS Women’s GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoes

ASICS Women's GEL-Venture 5 Running Shoes

  • Excellent stability by applying the Gel technology
  • Rich in color variety
  • Affordable price
  • Poor performance in case of the wet ground

I have to say that ASICS shoes have excellent cushioning and stability – it reduces the common knee issues. For example, these GEL-Venture 5 shoes.

First to mention is the Gel cushioning technology. The rearfoot gel reduces the impact of heel strike for smoother transition whereas the forefoot gel increases the shock absorption on the forward movement.

Such technology aims at comforting your running and easing the knee pain.

The sock liner is removable so that you can use your custom medical orthotic if necessary. Even better, the reversed lugs in the outsole give off the downhill and uphill traction on every terrain.

This ASICS GEL-Venture 5 model is ideal for women having under or neutral pronation. A small reminder is that these shoes are unsupportive in wet weather.

Brooks Women’s Glycerin 14 Running Shoes

Brooks Women's Glycerin 14 Running Shoes

  • Good at absorbing shock to reduce the knee pain
  • Breathable feeling and comfortable toe space room
  • Ideal for long-distance running
  • Bulky design and the limitation in color options
  • High price

Brooks gets the reputation for its high-quality shoes. For men having knee pain, I suggest the Adrenaline GTS 19. For women, you should have a look at the Glycerin 14.

This model is a significant upgrade from its predecessor, especially the use of pressure zones in the outsole. The pressure distributes evenly across the entire foot so that your knee feels less stress and pain.

To be more specific, there is a resistant rubber between the midsole and the ground to absorb shock. The supportive grooves bring flexibility on moving.

It produces a plush collar with various cushioning level. Just get rid of the knee pain and focus on moving forward.

Thanks to the Brook’s 3D Stretch Print Overlays, the shoes give off a breathable feeling since the air flows through smoothly to maintain a cool temperature inside.

Of all the positive features, the design is the least attractive. The Glycerin 14 is slightly bulky.

Skechers Performance Go Walk 3 Slip-On Walking Shoes

Skechers Performance Go Walk 3 Slip-On Walking Shoes

  • Comfortable for walking, even in hours
  • Lightweight and soft materials
  • Easy to clean
  • Not recommended for running and active sports

If you seek for shoes for work or daily walking without causing pain to your bad knee, the Skechers Performance is the best choice.

Honestly, you will hardly try anything else once you wear these shoes. It takes almost no time to put the shoes on and off. Just slip on and go!

Skechers Performance is ultra-lightweight thanks to the soft fabric upper and Resalyte outsole. Such comfortable materials prevent your foot from pinching, which might cause the pain. So, you can go shopping or walk for hours.

It is not ideal for running or other active activities though.

Light as they are, the shoes provide enough cushioning and arch support. The toe box is vast compared to most of the shoes on the list so you will not feel like trapping your foot in a vice.

Good news is Skechers Performance comes at a pack of color so you can buy more than one pair to match with your jeans, casual dresses, or leisurewear.

RYKA Women’s Dash Walking Shoes

RYKA Women's Dash Walking Shoes

  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Good grid with an ortholite cushioned footbed and rubber outsoles
  • Affordable price
  • Better to wear for comfort rather than to be stylish

Many women look for walking shoes since they go shopping very frequently. However, knee pain prevents them from enjoying their time to the full. So I bring one more choice besides the Sketchers Performance. It is RYKA Dash.

You can wear these shoes all day without feeling the extra weight on your feet since they are super lightweight. What’s more, the air circulation mesh upper is helpful towards the breathability. Always cool and dry!

The outsoles are made of rubber, plus with the ortholite footbed, to optimize the traction and flexibility. Thanks to their excellent width at the metatarsal joints, the shoes also reduce the knee pressure significantly.

One bonus to RYKA Dash is the easy cleaning. All to do are remove the insoles and wash them in the basin. The soft material makes them quick to dry. From my friend’s experience, the shoes are not ideal for quick movement – for example on the treadmill.

Best Shoes for Knee Pain FAQs

Can wrong shoes cause pain in the knee?

Absolutely yes! The improper distribution of weight across your body often leads to the knee joint subluxation and further is the pain.

Wrong shoes cause uncomfortable movements, which result in the flip-flops or put pressure on your toes and feet. Even worse, it increases the fatigue in the lower body – the main reason for the knee pain.

So, whenever you feel something wrong with your knee – consider changing your shoes.

Best practices to choose shoes for knee pain

Please take note these following tips to select the right shoes which treat your knee comfortably.

  • Know your body. Do you have flat feet, under or neutral feet?
  • Know your habit. What are the shoes for running, walking, or cross training?
  • Seek for cushioning, arch support, and shock absorption
  • Avoid heavy soles which increase stress on the knee
  • Look for fit size and wide toe box shoes
  • Try before buy, if possible

What are the underpronator, neutral pronator, and overpronation?

For those who might want to know, the pronation is how your foot naturally hits the ground. It will impact shock absorption while choosing the shoes.

  • The underpronator: The outer side of your heel contacts the ground, causing the shock on the lower leg. As a result, the impact on the field is harsh and dangerous.
  • The neutral pronator: Your body strike the ground with the heel before rolling inwards. Your arch tilts inward to absorb the shock. So, the weight is distributed evenly from the front of the foot.
  • The overpronator: If your arch collapses inward too much, then you might have an overpronator. The shock is not absorbed properly, which might cause unexpected injuries.


Above I introduce you 10 best shoes for knee pain – for men and women respectively. Have you chosen the right footwear? If yes, then remember to share this post with your friends so they can also make the right choice.

If not, feel free to leave a comment below, and I am willing to help you more.

Leave a Comment