Here’s an interesting fact, half of America call running shoes “sneakers” while the other half call them “tennis shoes”. Well not quite half, because there are others who call them gym shoes. In this review we will be referring to them as tennis shoes, but we’re really talking about regular running shoes. Feel free to mentally change the name to whatever suits your regional sensibilities.
When purchasing a pair of tennis shoes most people spend most of their time concentrating on the aesthetics. This is a perfectly understandable thing to do, in fact it’s really hard NOT to do, but it isn’t the right thing to do. Studies have consistently shown that a tennis shoe should be comfortable and fit you properly – nothing else really matters!
Tennis shoes are perfectly for running on the street, running cross country, or even running middle or long distances on the running track. The only type of running they don’t suit is track sprinting (you want spiked track shoes for that). You can also use tennis shoes for many other track and field events … and tennis (obviously).
In this guide we will look at the best tennis shoes for running, well five of them anyway. We’ll assess each one based on cost, comfort, durability, and the distance that they suit. Then we will decide which one is the best based on all of that.
Best Tennis Shoes For Running #1: Saucony Men’s Cohesion TR10 Trail Runners
Saucony are a well known running shoe company that is based in Massachusetts, US. They are famous for their sprinting track shoes, but also have a great reputation for regular tennis shoes, and longer distance running shoes.
Trail runners are fantastic shoes for running outdoors through woods, fields, dirt paths, or just on concrete, gravel, or the running track. They are versatile! The rubber soles create a lot of traction thanks to the different grips attached. The cushion is quite large and will give you a lot of comfort as you run. Possibly suiting longer distance runs because of their weight and comfort.
These tennis shoes would be perfect for people running a 5km or 10km race, or perhaps a half marathon. They may be a little heavy for the marathon, but would suit a cross country race really well. If it has been raining then these may even be preferable to regular running shoes when on the track, as the traction will be better.
Aesthetically the track shoes look really good, Saucony offer a Black/Yellow/Grey combo (our favourite), a Grey/Black combo, and a Charcoal colour shoe. All three look excellent. The upper contains a mesh that allows your feet to breathe, incidentally this mesh makes it unsuitable for hiking as it prevents them from being waterproof. So use them for running, use them for walking in, but don’t use them for walking through streams!
Best Tennis Shoes For Running #2: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34
Is there a more versatile shoe than the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34? A tennis shoe that looks great in the gym, on the running track, or just for walking around in. This is what makes them such good tennis shoes for running, because you can just wear them for any form of race and get a decent result (except track sprinting).
The shoe uses a Premium Cushlon ST foam to keep your feet in the lap of luxury while running, it uses dynamic flywire to make sure that the shoe fits your foot perfectly. This leads to a very comfortable ride. Because there is nothing worse than a shoe that slides around your foot as you race.
The shoe would suit most sports, and almost all forms of running. You could put these on and run a great 5km, or you could stick them on and play a great game of one on one basketball with a friend. The shoes are durable so they will put up with a lot of bad treatment, and outlast a lot of other, cheaper tennis shoes.
If you want a pair of tennis shoes that you can trust to last you a long time, that are of high quality, and that will keep you upright in slippery conditions, then you want a Nike Air Zoom Pegaisus 34.
Best Tennis Shoes For Running #3: Men’s Asics GT-3000 5
The Asics GT-3000 5 is an absolutely fantastic tennis shoe, it looks really good aesthetically, it is durable, very breathable, and has a responsive cushion. It is perfect for people who overpronate, and provides unrivalled support for the heel and mid foot. There are gel systems in the rear foot and in the forefoot to create the most comfortable run possible.
There has been a lot of effort put into every aspect of this shoe’s design, and you can really tell while running in it. The shoe uses an impact guide system that adapts to your natural running gait and then enhances it, helping to lessen the risk of joint pain, while improving your running economy. The outsole is made to reduce weight and increase flexibility, making it a great shoe for running fast in.
There is cushioning around the midsole which again reduces weight while massively increasing durability. The GT-3000 5 also utilises an exoskeleton heel that prevents your heel from moving laterally or slipping forward/backwards while running. This again increases comfort and will help improve running economy.
The shoe looks beautiful too, particularly the Carbon/Black look with a beautiful red sole and white cushioning. The familiar Asics design along the side looks excellent too. You could use this shoe on the running track, on the road, in the gym, and while walking and it would look excellent (and perform even better) in each setting.
Best Tennis Shoes For Running #4: Hoka One One Men’s Bondi 5 Running Shoe
Hoka One One are mainly known for creating the most well cushioned and balanced running shoes around, so if you are a long distance road runner, then you should definitely be looking at their range. The Men’s Bondi 5 tennis shoe is probably their most cushioned shoe, which is saying something!
When you first look at these shoes you might be forgiven for thinking that they are too cumbersome to run in. The cushion is so large that you’d think that you’d tire out just lifting your feet! But try them on and you will realise that not only are they surprisingly light, but the cushioning is so comfortable that your feet will feel like they are running through clouds.
You get a surprising amount of stability from the Bondi 5 running shoe, and your running gait will be improved because of this. Hoka One One may not be the shoe brand for the competitive racer, but if you are an amateur and more interested in enjoying the ride rather than winning – these are definitely the shoes for you. Let’s face it, that describes 90% of us!
Best Tennis Shoes For Running #5: Adidas Performance Men’s Adizero Tempo 8 M Running Shoe
The final pair of tennis shoes we are going to look at are the Adizero Tempo 8 by Adidas, they are fast, lightweight, durable, and look pretty cool too! The shoes have a rubber sole, which is created using Continental Tires to create the tread. This works well with the cushion and allows for a proper spring in each step, really helpful when running fast.
The upper uses open mesh which really helps to keep the tennis shoes breathable throughout your runs, and there is a synthetic overlay that provides extra support for your foot. The mesh also allows moisture and heat exchange while you run, removing sweat and aerating your feet. Compare this to most tennis shoes which can really heat up during a long run.
The shoes look very nice aesthetically, particularly the Continental Tires soles. The only slight issue is the cushion – it looks a little like polystyrene which is a shame. But only when you look really close. You shouldn’t mind because the cushion is probably the best part of these shoes, providing stability and comfort throughout. These tennis shoes are perfect for middle and long distance racing, or for just jogging round the block.
The Bottom Line
All five of these tennis shoes are perfect, but the best of them would be (in our opinion) either the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34, or the Asics GT-3000 5. Both shoes are incredibly comfortable, durable, they look good, they suit almost any distance, and are really good all round shoes. They may be a little on the pricey side, in which case the Saucony Cohesion TR10 Trail Runners might be a better choice.