Bunions have become a common issue that a huge proportion of women and some men have to deal with. Due to this problem, exercising and running, in particular, requires special footwears like the best running shoes for bunions.
There are, however, so many types of shoes available on the market. It is now so hard for users to determine which is suitable. That is why we put this article together to recommend the best choices for you.
The Best Running Shoes For Bunions
Here are the options that we believe to be the best for people with bunions. Let’s take a look!
1. ASICS Gel-Venture 7 - Best Overall
What we like
Despite being born much later than either Nike or Brooks, ASICS has managed to achieve the same reputation as them. The main reason for this accomplishment lies in its commitment to quality. You can look at the ASICS Gel-Venture 7 leading features like a clear example.
These shoes can literally mold according to your feet’ shape, so there are no feet that cannot fit them. This feature scores even more points for people with bunions, as their uniquely large shape feet can fit the shoes nicely. You will not feel any discomfort, no matter how serious your foot problem is.
There is also some additional support coming from the synthetic leather upper. Thanks to the high-quality material, this sturdy part can work together with the internal heel counter. Consequently, your foot will always be in its natural motion line, providing more efficient strides.
There is, however, a minor issue that we have found within these shoes. The shoelaces are a little bit too thin, which means they cannot lock your feet down properly.
2. ASICS Gel-Cumulus 22 – Best For Response
What we like
Most of the time, if you go too hard on the cushioning for running shoes, you risk losing their responsiveness. With the debut of the ASICS Gel-Cumulus 22, this issue will no longer plague you. Now, you can be comfortable yet still have a good response.
The main reason for this advancement is the use of the FluidRide Midsole. While normal midsoles are either too firm or too soft, this one is a perfect combination. As such, you can get good cushioning alongside an incredible bounce back, improving your running form.
There are also parts, like the rearfoot and forefoot, that have the famous GEL cushioning system. This setup will attenuate all the shock occurring during toe-off as well as impact phases. As such, the movement occurs in many planes as your foot goes through the gait cycle.
We do want to note that the midfoot can be a bit tight for some people. It does not mean you cannot wear them; it’s just that you will feel a slight discomfort.
3. Brooks Ghost 13 – Best For Stability
What we like
Most accidents while running occurs due to a lack of stability, which is more common than you think. That is why Brooks spent so much effort on researching a way to combat this issue. The result of that research is the Brooks Ghost 13.
Wearing these shoes, even if you make a mistake while landing your feet, you will never worsen your bunions. The reason for this protection is the Segmented Crash Pad, which is a shock absorber system. And this setup will provide a smooth transition from heel to toe.
The cushioning of these shoes makes use of the BioMoGo DNA tech, enveloping the entirety of your foot. No matter how big your bunion is, you will never have to worry about it making contact with rough surfaces. Finally, you can freely run at your full capacity.
We are not that pleased with how the grip of these shoes operates, though. As they lose their strength easily, we do not recommend using these shoes for trail running. There will always be a risk of injury if you are not careful.
4. Salomon Xa Pro 3D V8 GTX – Best Durability
What we like
Outdoor running shoes are always subjected to a lot of damage, from harsh weather to strong impact. That is why it is always necessary for them to be highly durable. In this aspect, few can compete with the Salomon Xa Pro 3D V8 GTX.
The membrane of these shoes is completely water-proof, so the main source of damage cannot touch them anymore. In normal cases, most runners have to ponder carefully about whether or not they should ignore the rain. With these shoes, you can press forward with no problem.
We are also fairly impressed with the utilization of seamless materials, which significantly reduce friction and irritation potential. Normal runners may only see this feature as small benefits, but it is vital for people with bunions.
We did not see that much cushioning available on these shoes. You may feel a slight discomfort in the sole of your foot after running for a while.
5. New Balance Fresh Foam Evare V1 – Best Cushion
What we like
The cushion is something that all runners, not just ones with bunions, need to pay attention to. Using shoes with a bad cushion design does not only limit your running speed, but also damage your feet. That is why we recommend the New Balance Fresh Foam Evare V1.
These shoes have the newest Fresh Foam midsole cushion, which is the current best cushion tech on the market. This tech delivers soft but firm support, which means you still get a respectable response. That’s not all; there are also additional stack heights, allowing for even more cushion.
You will also get a two-layer jacquard mesh alongside an internal bootie specifically engineered to accommodate the forefoot. Moreover, the bootie construction gives out the same comfortable feeling as a pair of good socks. They also help in locking the midfoot area down.
The jacquard mesh makes these shoes take quite a while to completely dry out. We do not recommend taking them out on a run if there is any sign of rain.
6. Salomon Speedcross 5W Trail – Best Grip
What we like
Rain is among the most difficult issues runners have to deal with. If your shoes do not have enough grip, you risk a high chance of losing balance and falling down. This issue will never concern you if you get the Salomon Speedcross 5W Trail.
The main material of these shoes’ outsole is a type of high abrasion rubber. This ingredient, alongside the deep lug design, makes for quite a strong grip on any surface. Even if you are trail running through heavy rain, you will still be able to stride easily.
The upper part of these shoes is quite breathable, thanks to its synthetic mesh material. There will be no discomfort, no matter how long you wear this pair of shoes. The mesh will also be gentle to your bunion.
The biggest weakness of the Salomon Speedcross 5W is the fact that it feels quite heavy. And this heaviness will limit your gait as well as your running speed.
7. Nike Revolution 5 – Best Value
What we like
Of course, there would be an option from Nike, as it is arguably the most popular shoe brand there is. Aside from the high prices, people rarely have anything to complain about them. Strangely enough, the reason we put the Nike Revolution 5 Wide is for its high value for the money.
The first thing that you will notice about these shoes is their highly specialized design. Not a single person who has bunions can resist this wide toe outline. Instead of closely encapsulating your toes, these shoes gently wrap around them with just enough tightness to not be floppy.
Your running form will also receive some reinforcement due to the special pattern of the outsole. This style makes it so that your foot will receive more transition than normal shoes. As such, you can even use these shoes as marathon tools.
The midsole part of this option is a little bit lacking. From what we have seen, it cannot distribute the weight of your feet evenly. This issue is not that serious, but it can be annoying.
8. Mizuno Wave Inspire 16 – Best Flexibility
What we like
The main advantage that the Mizuno Wave Inspire 16 Road hold over other options is its flexibility. Thanks to the incredibly stretchy Innerflex tech, you can expect the outsole to perform just like your feet.
They also have a spacious toe box design, a life-saver if you have bunions. The mesh material is also form-fitting enough that even the biggest of bunions can fit in nicely.
Mizuno has also given the upper a full upgrade with how the mesh material was constructed. Thanks to it, the shoes have the same thickness as their previous model but with more breathability.
The only bad thing that we can say about the Inspire 16 is that its heel padding needs more work. Using the shoes semi-regularly for a few months and you will find holes in the heel cushion.
9. Vibram FiveFingers V-Run – Best Comfort
What we like
The Vibram FiveFingers V-Run - W are completely made from the newly developed Polyester Lycra Stretch Mesh. In other words, they can provide you a level of comfort rarely seen before.
The cause of its unbelievable comfort is the Vi-lite midsole. This newly developed midsole can absorb shock like no other; it is also responsive yet soft beyond belief. The contoured shape is also vital in stabilizing your foot.
Furthermore, the upper part has received an update with the new ISO fit construction, making up for a support cage. These shoes will wrap evenly around your feet, accommodating a multitude of foot shapes. Yes, even those with bunions.
The biggest issue that we have against the shoes is the fact that they almost always run a size too big. Keep this in mind while ordering!
10. ALTRA Paradigm 4.5 – Best Drop
What we like
Being among the first companies to make use of the Zero-Drop tech, ALTRA is the best at utilizing it. The prime example of this statement is the ALTRA Paradigm 4.5.
Zero-Drop means that your forefoot and heel will be at the same distance from the ground when they touch it. Consequently, you will be able to enjoy the low-impact, proper running form.
The combination of the knit upper and the Altra EGO midsole provides a pleasurable and stable running experience. This stability is further enhanced through the built-in StabiliPods that help you regain balance immediately.
There is, however, no rock plate, which means you do not get any protection while trail running. We strongly recommend only using these shoes for road running.
How To Choose The Best Shoes For Bunions
Bunion is a special type of condition, so the shoes that can accompany them tend to be a little bit different. Here are the things you need to look for.
Space For The Bunion
Aside from the usual things you need to look for, like grip, stability, etc., you need space. By space, we mean a deep and wide toe box that provides lots of leeway for your toes. Running shoes with tighter toe boxes will pull your toes closer to the tip, putting more pressure on the bunion.
The best way to do this step properly is to find shoes with at least half an inch of extra integrated depth. This depth is especially vital for running shoes, as you are already creating quite a lot of pressure while striding.
A trick is to try the shoes on in the evening, as that is when your feet are the largest. If you try them on in the morning, you will likely find them tight later in the day.
Besides, you can get lots of arch support to ease the pressure being put on your toes. You need to always remember that pressure is the biggest cause of bunion worsening.
Grip For Trail Running
Running in general and trail running in particular requires that you wear shoes with strong grips. After all, you are running on easy to slip trails, so you need some additional help to cling onto the road.
The best way to check for grip is to look at the outsole design. You will quickly realize which shoe is better at trail running.
Stability For Safety
Bunion is one of those conditions which can easily worsen if taken any damage. Your balance will also suffer if you happen to have bunions, leading to a higher chance of slipping.
To lessen this chance, you need to get shoes that can ensure your stability. These shoes are mainly those with a bigger toe part, as they have more area touching the ground.
These are the most interesting questions that we have gathered while researching.
Should I Put Something On My Bunions Pre-Running?
If it’s the early stages of bunions that you are in, you can enlist the help of bunion taping. To start things off, you need to straighten your big toe as much as possible. You then have to keep it straight like that by tying it in the opposite direction of your other toes.
Something like a KT tape can help tremendously in making sure that the big toe is stable while running. Doing this will not fix your bunion in any way, but it will ensure that you do not feel any discomfort.
Does A Bunion Surgery Influence My Running?
The short answer is yes,. In fact, over 90% of patients that received bunion surgery had remarkable pain reduction. As a result, their motor skills, especially running, improved greatly.
How To Lace Shoes If I Have Bunions?
You can do a “Bunion Step-Over” shoe lacing technique, in which you skip the first eyelet near the big toe. With this approach, you will fully alleviate all pains.
My top picks
All in all, the biggest takeaway that we want you to remember is that space in the toe area is imperative. If you can keep this suggestion in mind, finding the best running shoes for bunions is no longer a challenge.
As for a clear recommendation, we believe that nothing can beat the ASICS Gel-Venture 7. Due to the mesh material being able to fit with any feet shape, your bunion rarely gets to act up.