If you need someone who can hold it down, who's going to ride with you through the highs and the lows, the overpronation and the heel striking, then look no further: we've rounded up the best stability running shoes for you.
You're tired. You're weary. You're overpronating. You don't want no scrub—you need a strong, supportive shoe to give your feet TLC, to be there for you through the ups and the downs, the overpronation and the heel striking, mile 15 of a marathon training long run and the 6th mile repeat on threshold day. If you're considering a stability shoe, here's everything you need to know, plus our picks for the best stability shoes on the market today.
Each brand has a slightly different way of holding your foot stable, and within a brand's own range, there are often different options for stability. Here are some of the top stability shoes available today.
The Saucony Guide 16 is the stability version of the tried-and-true Saucony Ride. It's a great all-rounder, as it offers a comfortable and secure fit for long or short miles. It has a refined upper and gusseted tongue that stays in place no matter how you land. The Guide has a moderate level of cushioning with a PWRRUN+ insole (beaded TPU) and PWRRUN midsole (EVA), making it suitable for daily training runs (35 mm heel, 27 mm forefoot, 8 mm drop). The shoe has mild to moderate stability through features the Hollow Tech support frame and sidewalls, which provide guidance without being too firm against the inner side of the foot.
The Arahi is Hoka's stability version of the popular well-cushioned Clifton daily trainer. The Hoka Arahi 6 is a great stability due to its J-Frame technology, which provides moderate stability by wrapping the heel and medial side of the foot. The shoe features a secure and comfortable fit with a loose and comfortable upper typical of a daily trainer, ensuring a stable platform throughout the length of the shoe. The midsole is made from Hoka's ProFly EVA-base foam and has a similar feel to the Clifton, though slightly firmer. The Arahi also has a decent rocker that enhances stability from the rearfoot through to toe-off on each stride.
Feet can be cramped and options can be limited for the wide-footers. But fear not, New Balance is here with a stability shoe for you. The New Balance Fresh Foam X 860v13 is a great stability option because it incorporates both older and newer methods of stability, serving a wide range of runners. The shoe has integrated stability options that are just as effective but less intrusive than fully traditional stability shoes—the sidewalls of the upper are reinforced and rigid, and a post is integrated on the medial side to guide the foot through the stride. The one key knock on the 860 is that its on the heavier side at nearly 11 ounces for men.
While most stability shoes are designed for daily miles, the Saucony Tempus comes through in the clutch for overpronators looking to push the pace in speed sessions. The Tempus combines Saucony's PWRRUN foam with PWRRUN PB foam, achieving stability though the unique dual midsole foam construction. The EVA-based PWRRUN foam runs higher up the midfoot than typical, giving the Tempus structure and stability, while the PEBA-based PWRRUN PB gives this puppy the pop. The Tempus has the honor of being the first dedicated stability shoe to use a super foam. This is a great choice for race day if you need stability.
The Altra Paradigm 6 is a comfy cruiser with zero drop and level platform, which makes it a great choice for stability while running. It's got wide guiderails on both the inside and outside of your foot that keep you steady without needing old-school support posts. With Altra's traditional roomy upper, the Paradigm 6 is generously wide, with a rubber outsole that covers nearly the full platform for added traction and stability. It has a smooth ride and more flexible toe-off than other stability shoes, making it a great choice for longer runs.
If you need to scoop the kids from Prep after hitting your afternoon jog with Sarah, the On Cloudstratus are a great choice (Editor's Note: I can poke fun at On wearers because I have 2 pairs of these and a pair of matching Cloudmonsters for me and my wife). The Cloudstratus combines a firmer but cushioned underfoot feel with bespoke design elements for stability. The EVA and Olefin–based Helion foam provides structure on the stride, while a plastic asymmetrical heel counter and a guidance line through the midsole offer guidance and stability during the gait cycle. The shoe has a wider toebox and overall platform, which also helps make for stable landings. On attaches Pebax-based Speedboards (plastic plates) to the CloudTec pods on most of their shoes, including the Cloudstratus—and here, it allows you to pick up the pace and get a solid response.
Packed with Brooks squishy-soft DNA Loft supercritical foam, infused with nitrogen, the Brooks Glycerin GTS 20 is a top-tier stability shoe that has comfort for everyday training and easy miles (if you can get past Brooks' 1980s drug store inspired design aesthetics). Like the Guide is to the Saucony Ride, the Glycerin GTS is the stability take on the popular Glycerin. The GuideRails on the medial and lateral sides of the feet enhance stability, which helps lock both the heel and midfoot in place. One thing to note here is that you likely won't want to be picking the pace much up in these due to the performance of the midsole (supple, not speedy), so you should consider adding another daily trainer or speed-oriented to your rotation for that.
The ASICS Gel-Kayano 30 is the traditional stability shoe in Asics lineup, but this recent version has moved beyond its rigid past. The 30 has large sidewalls and a wide platform, providing inherent stability and a centered ride. The stabilizing force here is the geometry—rather than medial posts—which means this is now suitable for runners who need everything from mild to maximum stability. It has a thick stack of FF Blast Plus Eco, the same foam in the comfort-oriented Gel-Nimbus 25, making this a great choice for both daily training and long runs. This recent iteration of the Gel-Kayano series suggests that stability shoes at-large may be evolving past the rigid medial posts of yesteryear, towards comfortable, well-fitting uppers and cushioned midsole.
The Endorphin Shift 3 is part of Saucony's Endorphin family along the Pro and Speed. It's meant for daily training, while those two other models are geared toward speed. The Shift 3 has a plastic heel clip for added stability and wide bed of responsive but firm EVA-based PWRRUN cushioning. An aggressive forefoot rocker helps you plod along even when tired, while a snug upper brings the raceday fit to slower-paced runs. This is a good option for runners who need mild stability, are looking for a max cushioned shoe and like a firmer ride.
While it's a stretch to put any race day super shoe in the stability category, there are some options that are better than others. The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 has a wider platform than other super shoes, which helps stabilize the foot on landing. In particular, the rear foot has a wide base of foam in contrast to shoes like the Nike Vaporfly Next% 2 or Adidas Adios Pro 3, which have cutouts on the rearfoot. The carbon fiber plate adds stability and firmness to the underfoot feel, while a roomier upper accommodates a variety of foot sizes. If you don't need aggressive stability and want to try a super shoe, this is a great option. The Saucony Tempus would be the next best choice for raceday if you need a shoe with precriptive stabilization.
Stability shoes provide support and guidance for runners who land too far on the inside of their feet, a phenomenon called overpronation that can lead to lower leg injuries. Brands have different takes on the technology and mechanism for stability, but all stability shoes work in essentially the same way—on the side of the shoe touching the inside arch of your foot (medial side), there's a firm material that prevents your foot from rolling inward.
In contrast, neutral running shoes have no innate stability materials on the medial side of the foot to prevent the foot from rolling inward. For runners who overpronate, running in a neutral shoe can lead to pain in the lower leg, ankle and foot. Aggressive overpronation, when your ankle rolls inward too fast or too far, puts excess pressure on the tendons in your foot whose job is to stabilize your weight when you land. This can lead to general inflammation, tendinopathy (issues with the tendons) and plantar fasciitis.
There are two mains types of shoes that address stability concerns: traditional stability shoes and mild stability shoes.
Traditional stability shoes use plastic pieces or other physically noticeable reinforcements that are added into the structure of the shoe to hold the foot in place. Often, stability shoes are purpose-built for overpronators and have specialized technology throughout the chassis and upper to stabilize the fit. This type of stability shoe tends to be heavier due to the plastic pieces added. They also typically have a firmer and stiffer ride than neutral running shoes.
Traditional stability shoes are a good option for overpronating runners who experience discomfort when using shoes designed for neutral runners. Mild stability shoes, explained below, may not provide enough support for serious overpronators.
Mild stability shoes leverage a shoe's platform and qualities inherent in a running shoe's existing construction to provide stability. For example, the Saucony Tempus uses a firm midsole firm to create a mildly stabilizing shoe. Other times, this type of shoe is a modified version of a brand's daily trainer with added stability elements—examples of this are the Hoka Arahi (modified Clifton), Saucony Guide (modified Ride) and Brooks Glycerin GTS (modified… you guessed it… Glycerin).
These types of shoes are good for runners who are don't always need support but can benefit from the occasional guidance, as mild stability tend to be friendlier to the feet of runners who are not aggressive overpronators. Marketing materials will often use words like "support" or "structure" to describe this type of shoe, rather than labeling it as a full-blown stability shoe.
If you've never had an issue with pain in the feet or ankles while running, it's likely you don't need a stability shoe. However, if you're experiencing discomfort anywhere in your lower legs during and after running, you may need extra help landing in a way that's anatomically correct. It's a good idea to visit a physical therapist, chiropractor, or at the very least, a local running store expert, to see if you need a stability shoe.