Whether you’re walking to work, going for a run, or taking a brisk walk around the block at lunch, your shoe choices matter. Some athletic shoes are designed to keep knee pain at bay, while others help alleviate any discomfort in your feet. But if your ankles tend to be a weak spot for you (and you’re not alone: ankle sprains are one of the most common and recurring lower-body injuries), ask an orthopedic surgeon to name the best shoes for you. for ankle support. .
If your ankles tend to feel a little wobbly and unstable, you should look for a few qualities in a shoe, says Korsh Jafarnia, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at the Methodist Center for Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine at Houston Methodist. “When looking for running shoes for an unstable ankle, you need to find a pair that is stable on the outside, the lateral side. If a shoe is laterally firm, your foot is less likely to collapse inward and can help prevent lateral sprains from ankle,” says Dr. Jafarnia. He adds that arch support is also key to improving ankle stability.
Of course, while ground kicks are a great start, it’s always important to get a professional opinion to make sure you’re addressing all of the factors that could be causing ankle pain. “If you have an ankle that is prone to twisting, you likely have a condition called chronic ankle instability, and it should be treated comprehensively,” says Dr. Jafarnia. So be sure to set aside some time with an orthopedist if you can.
Below, Dr. Jafarnia offers his two shoe recommendations for ankle support. Each shoe features Dr. Jafarnia’s key criteria for sneakers (outdoor stable Y awesome arch support), so you can keep those sprains far, far away.
The best women’s shoes with ankle support.
Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 Road Running Shoes — $160.00
“The Nike React Infinity Run 2 running shoe is designed to control motion, so you can focus on running and not worry about injury,” says Dr. Jafarnia. “With a wide base and Nike Flyknit material that hugs the foot, the shoe offers great stability and keeps the foot locked in place.” A bonus? The shoe also ventilates well for hot, sweaty runs and hikes.
Dr. Jafarnia recommends this for runners in particular.
Women’s US sizes 6 to 12
New Balance 1540v3 — $170.00
Dr. Jafarnia’s selection of women’s walking shoes feature a double layer of resilient and comfortable foam. “For even more support, the shoes also feature a Rollbar stability post system that is designed to control rearfoot movement, making them a good choice for over-pronators,” he says. In excessive pronation, the ankle rolls down and inward with each step, increasing the risk of foot and leg injury.
Women’s US sizes 5 to 13
The best men’s sneakers for ankle support.
Brooks Adrenaline GTS
“The Brooks Adrenaline GTS shoe is a good choice because it has exceptional cushioning, stability and support, making it ideal for those with weak or injury-prone ankles,” says Dr. Jafarnia. “Adrenaline introduces GuideRails, which limit unwanted movement in the ankles while supporting and aligning the foot.” She especially loves these shoes for runners who need ankle support because the high heel-to-toe drop will take some pressure off your heels and calves as the miles roll on.
US men’s sizes 7 to 15
Salomon Speedcross 5 Trail Running Shoes — $130.00
If you’re someone who spends a lot of their time hiking on the trails, Dr. Jafarnia has a great recommendation for you. Rugged and supportive, Salomon’s Speedcross 5 trail running shoes provide the protection you need for all types of surfaces and conditions. The shoe’s deep heel cup cradles your heels, ensuring stability throughout your stride, while the rubber outsole provides reliable grip on uneven surfaces,” he says. They also come in great color combinations that you might not find in other trail shoes.
US men’s sizes 7 to 12.5
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