Met-at-ar-sal-gia. Although it sounds like a species of monkeys or a foreign country, it’s not. Metatarsalgia is a general term to describe pain in the ball of one’s foot.
The name comes from the metatarsals which are tube-shaped bones in the middle of your foot. Metatarsalgia is a painful condition with many different potential causes.
It is a very common condition among runners because of how much time is spent on the feet. The good news is that with the proper running shoes you can reduce foot pain and get back to your normal training routine.
Below is a list of the best running shoes for metatarsalgia. Keep reading to find which ones are right for you.
1. Hoka Bondi 6
Hoka is known for making exceptional shoes for runners. The Hoka Bondi 6 is made for runners with a neutral foot strike or runners that under pronate (the foot rolls inward less than 15%). It offers superior comfort and cushioning, especially for runners with high arches.
The Bondi is a versatile shoe and works for most foot shapes. Try them out for yourself and stop suffering from metatarsal pain.
2. Brooks Ghost 13
- THIS SHOE IS FOR: The Ghost 13 is for runners looking for a reliable shoe that's soft and smooth. The Ghost 13 offers improved transitions for zero distractions so you can focus more on what matters most: your run.
- SUPPORT AND CUSHION: The neutral support type provides high energizing cushioning. Ideal for road running, cross training, the gym or wherever you might want to take them! Predecessor: Ghost 12
- BALANCED, SOFT CUSHIONING: BioMoGo DNA and DNA LOFT cushioning work together to provide a just-right softness underfoot without losing responsiveness and durability - yet it feels lighter than ever.
- SMOOTH, STABLE RIDE: No matter how your foot lands, our Segmented Crash Pad - an integrated system of shock absorbers - will cushion every step and stride for smooth heel-to-toe transitions.
- SOFT, SECURE, FIT: The newly engineered mesh and 3D Fit Print practically disappears on your foot with strategically placed stretch and structure.
They provide the right amount of cushion to support the mid-foot and reduce the pressure that could be causing metatarsalgia. These shoes are also known to be great for people who use orthotics or who have wide feet.
3. Saucony Triumph ISO 5
- Rubber sole
- Shaft measures approximately low-top from arch
- Full-length EVERUN midsole for enhanced energy return and continuous cushioning throughout the run EVERUN topsole construction for enhanced energy return updated, Form-fit performance contoured footbed reflective elements on the heel helpful for runners who suffer from underpronation, also known as supination, lace-up
The Saucony Triumph series is one of their best sellers – and for good reason! This is a great supportive shoe that offers comfort and cushion to reduce foot pain.
The toe box offers plenty of space and the base of the shoe is spacious even for those with wider feet. The crystal rubber is flexible while providing superior traction. If you’re a loyal Saucony fan experiencing metatarsal pain, check out the Triumph series today.
4. Adidas UltraBoost 19
- Responsive running shoes with an adaptive upper
- Regular fit; Lace closure; Arch type: Normal
- adidas Primeknit 360 upper offers an engineered fit that expands and supports as you move through each stride; Dual-density Boost cushioning under arch provides energized stability for a smooth, responsive ride
- Weight: 11 ounces (size 9); Midsole drop: 10 mm (heel: 29 mm, forefoot: 19 mm); Natural feel like a second skin
- Lightweight 3D heel frame for personalized fit; Stabilizing Torsion Spring
These are not your average running shoes. Adidas created a trainer that is both functional and fashionable. The PrimeKnit360 material is woven through the shoe for a more secure fit.
The midfoot stability of the UltraBoost shoes prevents inflammation and irritation of the metatarsals, preventing metatarsalgia pain. These are great shoes for training or just walking around in.
5. Nike VaporFly 4%
The Nike VaporFly claims to help runners run 4% more efficiently than before. Who knows if that’s actually true. But we do not that these are excellent shoes for distance runners that have a history of metatarsalgia.
The VaporFlys are seriously lightweight shoes which makes them great for long training runs or long races. You’ll notice right away how lightweight and breathable this trainer is.
The technology behind this incredible new shoe is called Zoom X. It’s known to provide a better energy return than other comparable shoes. The VaporFlys set themselves apart because they have a carbon plate that helps you transition between strides more efficiently. This is why the VaporFlys have become a favorite of many elite runners.
Regardless of your experience level, these are great shoes to alleviate foot pain and improve your training.
6. New Balance 1080v10
- Cushioned Running Shoes for Every Runner: Part of the Fresh Foam X collection, these shoes use our latest advancements in data to design to deliver precise plushness exactly where you need it
- Support and Durability: This shoe features a Hypoknit upper designed to provide strategic areas of stretch and support, in addition to a blown rubber outsole for impressive durability
- Perfect Fit: These comfortable running shoes include a bootie upper construction and an Ultra Heel design, both of which hug the back of the foot for a snug, supportive fit
- Breathable and Lightweight Running Shoes: The supportive engineered knit upper includes synthetic and mesh materials for amazing breathability during runs of any distance
- Keep Your Feet Comfortable: The Ortholite sockliner in these performance running shoes helps keep your feet feeling fresh as you power through your toughest runs
This shoe is not what you’re used to seeing from New Balance, but it has gotten rave reviews from the start. This is the best shoe for people with metatarsalgia and who find that their feet are too hot when running.
The 1080v10 has mastered breathability allowing for continued comfort even after serious mileage. They fit snug around the foot preventing excess movement which can sometimes contribute to foot pain.
The foam support of the 1080v10 is what prevents your joints from wearing out and your metatarsals from swelling. It may take a little more time to get used to this level of cushion, but once you do, you’re sure to love it.
7. ASICS Gel-Venture 5
- Trail Specific Outsole -Reversed lugs provide uphill and downhill traction on all types of terrain.
- AHAR Outsole -Acronym for ASICS High Abrasion Rubber. Placed in critical areas of the outsole for exceptional durability.
- Rearfoot GEL technology cushioning system -Attenuates shock during impact phase and allows for a smooth transition to midstance.
- Removable Sockliner -A sockliner which can be removed to accommodate a medical orthotic.
Calling all trail runners with metatarsal pain! The Asics gel-venture 5 may be just what you need to get healthy and back on your feet – literally! These shoes are designed for uneven terrain as well as both incline and decline running.
You can easily remove the inside liner to accommodate insoles if recommended by a doctor.
This is one of the most durable trail running shoes on the market. The high-quality materials and well-planned design is just what you would expect from one of the most well-known running shoe companies in the game.
8. Altra Men’s Torin 4
- Luxurious Knit
- Miles of Comfort
- Stack Height: 28mm
- 10.1 oz / 286 g
The Altra Men’s Torin 4 is designed for comfort. And don’t worry, there is also a women’s version unique to the more slender shape of a woman’s foot.
The Altra Torin 4 is a lightweight shoe with Zero Drop. Zero drop means that the heel of the shoe and the toe box are the same distance from the ground. This promotes better running posture and works well for athletes that under pronate. It also facilitates a more natural stride that can prevent foot pain.
A Quick Note on Metatarsalgia Pain
Changing your footwear is a good way to reduce pain from metatarsalgia. However, if the pain persists, you may be dealing with a more serious injury like a stress fracture. You should consult a doctor if you’re concerned about your metatarsalgia.
Lowering your running mileage can also help the pain go away more quickly. You may also try icing the area for short-term pain relief.
Choose Among the Best Running Shoes for Metatarsalgia
Now you have an idea of the best running shoes for metatarsalgia. So, it’s time to test them out! If you have a certain brand you prefer, try those first. And remember that your shoes are an investment in your comfort and your health.
If your metatarsal pain continues, contact a doctor for further evaluation. They can help you determine the cause of the problem and potential solutions.
Don’t wait to buy better running shoes until it’s too late. Take action now – your feet will thank you!
If you’re looking for more running tips, athletic training info, or general health knowledge, browse some of our other content today.