There’s a lot to take in, when it comes to running shoes. Walking in to a store and seeing a wall of shoes can be overwhelming, so I’ve constructed this handy guide to the major shoes of the major brands, as well as a small key for understanding it.
Performance: These shoes are generally very light and responsive. If you want to work on your speed, they’re the way to go. Usually US$100-110.
Standard: If you’re not sure, start here. These have a fair amount of cushion for most needs. Usually US$115-130.
Premium: These come with a lot more cushion than the previous two categories, but the downside is that they’re among the heaviest shoes. Usually US$140-160.
Premium+: A relatively new category, shoes listed here will come with all the bells and whistles, and may even be fairly stylish. Usually US$170-210.
Neutral: Most runners will fall into this category. It is essentially a “normal” shoe.
Stability: For runners that roll their ankles inward a little, stability shoes can help with knee pain. They end up being about an ounce heavier than neutral shoes.
Motion Control: These are generally reserved for runners who are injured, heavy, or have very flat feet.