The best sneakers for your knees need these features

WWhen it comes to shopping for sneakers, how fresh do they feel on your feet—wide, firm toes in the arch—and whether they provide enough ankle support. Trends are the main boxes that people want to check. (Apart from looking good, of course.)

What you may not realize, however, is that the construction of the shoe can also affect parts of the upper body, especially joints like the knees and hips. That’s because they’re all connected, forming a kinematic chain that makes movement happen—something to keep in mind when shopping for the best sneakers for your knees.

“Every time you take a step, more is happening in your body to propel you,” says Jensen Henry, MD, orthopedic foot and ankle surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. move forward.. “During the walk, your hip muscles contract to stabilize your hips, your quads and hamstrings work at specific times, while the muscles in your lower leg activate,” explains Dr. Henry. act on a sequence of events. Meanwhile, knee mobility works to stabilize the center of gravity, reduce energy expenditure, and absorb the impact of the heel hitting the ground.

Sitting in the middle of this sequence of movements, your knee is affected by the health and function of the muscles and joints that live both above and below it. For example, tight hips or hamstrings can affect knee stability. The same goes for the sneakers you wear. “A simple change in footwear and foot position can completely change your gait and affect your performance and balance,” says Dr.

The common ground of the best sneakers for your knees

“I generally recommend a pair of sneakers with a stable, supportive sole, and a design that cradles the foot,” says Dr. “Ideally this maintains ankle motion and absorbs shock when your heel hits the ground, both important factors for minimizing excess force on the knee.”

To test this, Dr. Henry recommends doing the following test: “If you can hold a pair of sneakers in your hand and roll it into a ball, it’s usually too soft for patients with foot/ankle or lower extremity problems,” she says.

Other factors to consider when buying the best sneakers for your knees

Because fit is so important, Dr. Henry recommends looking for sneakers specifically designed for both men’s and women’s feet. “Some footwear brands produce gender-specific shoes, which account for differences in heel or forefoot width and may be better tolerated by some,” she says.

What’s more, while finding your Cinderella sneakers is certainly a happy ending, it won’t last forever, especially if you’re someone who enjoys frequent walks with hot girls. burns or active activity. “It is important to regularly replace worn out shoes,” says Dr. Henry. “Running experts generally recommend running every 300 to 500 miles, or about every six months.

Finally, before you replace your worn-out sneakers, take a moment to inspect them. “If you notice that your shoes are uneven, it may be time to see a professional — we can determine if an alignment or gait problem can be corrected,” says Dr. resolved or not.

With all of this in mind, below are options that include all the features that Dr. Henry says the best sneakers for your knees should have.

Hoka Clifton 8

Hoka Clifton 8 — $140.00

A perennial favorite of editors and hot-walkers alike, these super-comfortable sneakers will keep your feet fresh for 10,000 steps and more.

Adidas Terrex Free Hiker 2

Adidas Terrex Free Hiker 2 — $200.00

The instability of unfamiliar, frequently shifting terrain underfoot can be tough on your knees and other joints, but the shock-absorbing sole on this trail running sneaker helps minimize impact. there. The high neck design gives extra support to your ankles, something that will also help your knees and hips.


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