Small, but mighty, the ankle is the most important joint of the leg. It supports our body weight and provides with balance. Once you realize the importance and function of this joint, is when you start looking for the best shoe for ankle pain. There is nothing worse than twisting or spraining your ankle, and those who have experienced this pain know that I am right.
That is why ankle care is important, not only after an injury, but you should also think about prevention as well. Luckily, there are thousands of shoes promising to protect and care for your ankles. As shoe manufacturers are competing with each other and putting forward shoes on daily basis, you have to be extra careful when selecting and buying the best shoe for ankle pain. Although they all promise to work miracles for your ankles, not all of them are providing the needed support, and I learned this the hard way.
But, today’s article will steer you in the right direction when it comes to the best shoe for ankle pain. Let’s begin!
Best Shoe for Ankle Pain – Criteria Used for Evaluation
Before I proceed to listing the best shoe for ankle pain available on the market today, let’s take a short while to discuss a couple of factor you need to consider before making a decision. Of course, you should always factor in the specific features the shoes come with and their style, but we feel like the following criteria should never be neglected.
It’s crucial to remember that all of these factors may vary depending on the activity you need the shoes for! The most comfortable shoe for hiking may not be as comfortable for working out. Therefore, make sure you need what you’re looking for before you place an order!
First and foremost, you need to look for shoes that are comfortable. The comfort of the shoes is determined by a number of factors such as breathability, adjustability, material quality, but probably the most important feature is the cushioning.
Bear in mind that cushioning comes in many varieties, and if one type of cushioning is good for your friend, it will not be good for you as well. Starting from the person’s weight, all the way to the type of activity you need the shoes for; you might need softer cushioning, whereas others may look for stiffer cushioning.
To choose the most comfortable shoes available, pay attention to the foot-bed (molded or contoured). Examine the design, for example, consider if you need a removable insole. The material the shoe is made of also plays its part in the overall comfort of the shoe. Generally speaking, leather and suede shoes have the ability to shape and mold to the form of your foot, while lightweight materials are more breathable. Therefore, you’d want to look for shoes made of such materials.
Well-fitted shoe is a must when you have ankle problems. Basically, ankle pain is a direct result of lack of support and discomfort, unless you’ve hurt your ankle while working out or you have a medical condition.
Without proper fit, your shoe gets loose or tight, therefore it lacks support and causes discomfort. Lack of support and discomfort are sworn enemies to your ankles. In order to choose the right fit, we’d recommend you fit the footwear and measure your feet in the evening as they are largest at the end of the day. There’s an unwritten rule that shoes need to fit half-inch from the toe box to the tip of the longest toe. In addition, we’d recommended looking for a thicker tongue.
New Balance 928v3
New Balance is a brand that I’ve known and loved since childhood. Although I used to buy their shoes because I liked the looks, once I got interested in running, hiking and working out, I started considering the comfort of the shoes, how long I could wear them, as well as how they fitted me. I was genuinely happy to find out that my favorite childhood brand is at the forefront of the supportive and motion control footwear industry!
Available for men and women both, the New Balance 928v3 is one of the best shoes for ankle support. The shoe sports an attractive design but it is much more than just a pretty shoe. It is extremely comfortable and easy to wear, upgraded with unique technologies that deliver stability and motion control.
The 928v3 reduces the movement in the rear of the foot as is made with ROLLBAR technology. You need not worry about stability, New Balance made sure to include the Walking Strike Path in these shoes that will also guide you to taking proper steps. As far as the midsole is concerned, the 928v3 model has a plush, cushioned midsole and a Phantom Liner.
On a negative note, 928v3 is made of a synthetic material. Compared to leather, synthetic materials are less durable. However, considering the comfort these shoes provide with, along with the unique built-in technologies, that’s one drawback I’m willing to overlook. On top of it all, the New Balance 928v3 are also odor-resistant!
New Balance 928v3 Pros
Walking Strike Path
New Balance 928v3 Cons
Heavy for some
As the name itself suggests, the Vans Sk8-HI shoes were primarily made with skateboarders in mind. These legendary lace-up high top shoes are inspired by the classical Old Skool and come in a variety of colors. Although skateboarding is not my thing, I went ahead and ordered these Vans as they received a lot of positive feedback.
I’m not going to lie, at first they felt a bit tight, but I still wore them because I adore the design. Once they broke in, they become the most comfortable shoes! From then on, I wore them in the gym, I took them out running, and I even went mountain biking with my Vans. They offer all the support needed for a number of activities. Even though this pair doesn’t support orthotics, I don’t think there’s room to improve the comfort – at least not for me.
Thanks to the padded collar, the shoe fits better allowing your joints mobility and further increasing the overall comfort. It also creates a snug fit. To prevent unruly wear, the toecaps are reinforced. In addition, Vans Sk8-HI features Vans vulcanized signature Waffle Outsole with an incredible grip.
However, the soles were first to suffer, but after all these are skating shoes, not meant for mountain trails. Although I got holes in the outsoles, I believe this is easily repairable, but even better, I can always order another pair as the price is just right!
Vans Sk8-HI Pros
Classic, attractive design
Great for skating, but other activities as well
Comfortable Waffle Outsole
Reinforced toe area
Vans Sk8-HI Cons
Doesn’t support orthotics
Outsole is prone to tear
Dr. Martens 1460
During my punk teenager days, Converse and Dr. Martens were the two brands I couldn’t live without. I’ll never give up my Chuck’s, but nowadays, I rely on Dr. Martens more. As far as the design is concerned, you either love it or hate it. But as far as comfort goes, Dr. Martens 1460 are among the comfiest shoes out there!
A rather alternative solution to your ankle problems, you can tell that the Dr. Martens 1460 gives all the support and grip you need just by looking at the boot. But, what you can’t tell at first sight is that it also comes with air-cushioned sole that provides unmatched comfort and energy-return.
In addition, the boot comes with 8 eyelets allowing you to fully adjust the fit. They come at a certain price, but they are built using the Goodyear welt technique. Thanks to this, this boot can be easily re-soled without doing any damage to the design. This means that Dr. Martens 1460 are good for years to come!
My punk years are long gone, but Dr. Martens is here to stay! Despite the somewhat alternative look, they are as versatile as they come. Providing unmatched stability and over-the-top comfort, Dr. Martens 1460 is a mighty ally in a number of activities. Full disclosure: I wouldn’t wear them in the gym though!
Dr. Martens 1460 Pros
Goodyear welt technique
Adjustable lace closure
Dr. Martens 1460 Cons
May not be the right fit for people with wide calves
ASICS Gel Nimbus 18
One of the leading names in running footwear in the past decade, the Japanese brand ASICS, once again proved why they deserve their reputation! With the Gel Nimbus series of running shoes, ASICS managed to gather the attention of athletes worldwide.
Personally, I prefer the classic design of shoes and I believe that there will never be new black, contrary to the propaganda that pink, purple, or red is the new black! But, the ASICS Gel Nimbus 18, despite being on the ‘brighter’ side, is a shoe I immediately fell for.
The outsoles of these running shoes are partly made of Asics High Abrasion Rubber, a proprietary material to the brand. This material is responsible for the supreme durability and is mostly found in the heel area. I’ve previously owned other pairs from the Gel Nimbus line, but the 18 iteration has a different outsole design that provides with a better ride.
The highlight of these shoes is the gel which is placed in the midsole. This way, the ride is more cushioned and responsive and the gel also serves as a shock absorber making it one of the best shoe for ankle pain. Moreover, Asics uses the FluidRide technology for increased cushioning and durability, which doesn’t add any weight to the shoe. Since these running shoes are rather heavy, I was pleased to learn this.
Due to the seamlessly engineered mesh fabric upper, the Asics Gel Nimbus 18 are extremely breathable. Although I found these shoes to provide with just enough comfort, some runners find the midsole to be a bit stiff. There’s also a certain concern regarding the toe box as many runners feel that it is too narrow. If you have wide feet, I’d recommend buying a size larger than usual.
Asics Gel Nimbus 18 Pros
High Abrasion Rubber
Gel in the midsole
FluidRide for increased comfort
Asics Gel Nimbus 18 Cons
A bit heavy
Under Armour Valsetz RTS
This pair of military-style boots is my go-to shoe for my regular mountaineering activities in the spring. They provide with awesome stability and are water-resistant, so I needn’t worry about sudden rain either. I really believe that this is the shoe that your footwear collection can’t go without.
Made with the unique UA ClutchFit design, these boots will give your ankles all the stability they need. If you’re one of those people who tend to twist their ankles just by walking, I highly recommend this pair as the UA ClutchFit is unparalleled.
They show high shock-absorbent properties, and are made with UA Micro G foam midsole. This helps supporting your feet. Thanks to the fact that they absorb shock, this pair will take impact load off of your joints.
They may not be your preferred design, but when it comes to the best shoe for ankle pain, appearance should come last, and functionality first. That said, even though you might not wear this pair every day, you will find them extremely useful in a number of activities. They come at a price everyone can afford too!
Under Armour Valsetz RTS Pros
ClutchFit design around the joints
UA Micro G foam midsole
Under Armour Valsetz RTS Cons
Best Shoe for Ankle Pain – Summary
Taking everything into consideration, you can see that you are basically spoil for choice when it comes to the best shoes for ankles. In this article, I included the shoes which really served my needs and which I can recommend to everyone. However, before you make your decision, please consider why you need the shoes so that you can buy a pair accordingly!