Trail running seems to be getting more and more popular, and an increasing number of people are moving their jogging routes from the streets to the mountains.
This is, of course, great because it’s a wonderful opportunity to get some exercise while enjoying the soothing, natural surroundings.
However, many of these folks often encounter a health problem called peroneal tendonitis, due to running on steep and uneven surfaces.
This condition can be quite painful and can leave a runner unable to perform the favorite physical activity.
Fortunately, this injury is treatable, and one can prevent its recurrence with a good set of shoes.
In today’s article, I will be reviewing some of the best running shoes for peroneal tendonitis, and present some useful information to help you choose the appropriate model as well.
Top 5 Running Shoes for Peroneal Tendonitis
Asics is a well-known name in the world of sports, and it is especially cherished among runners.
Today, I’m inspecting their Gel Nimbus 18 model, so let’s take a closer look at it.
First and foremost, the main advantage of this shoe is its superb cushioning.
The brands FluidRide midsole technology utilizes gel to form the cushioning, and it is effective in taking pressure off the tendons.
Second, the upper part of the shoe employs the FluitFit technology, a stretchy mesh, which adapts the shoe to the individual’s width of the foot for ultimate comfort.
The sole is made from rubber and laced with gel in order to maximize shock absorption properties.
Each part of the shoe is masterfully crafted, and everything works well when put together.
However, I must say that the durability of Nimbus 18 is what is lacking, and frequent runners will probably have to replace the shoes after a year-or-so of intense use.
Third, this pair is lightweight which is what you definitely want, especially when recovering from tendonitis.
Last, a thing that might throw some people off the price, as it is very high compared to some of its competition.
- Excellent cushioning properties
- Good shock absorption
- Not very durable
- Very expensive
If you’ve never heard of Brooks, it’s about time you discover this incredible brand.
Their Glycerin 17 shoe is one of the most popular in the running community.
The shoes are made from a mix of mesh and various synthetic materials, which make it breathable and provide good ventilation to the feet.
Despite the design being narrow, the material is stretchable and fits all foot widths without any problems.
According to the company, their DNA midsole offers about 20% more cushioning than the average running shoe, which is indeed an impressive feature.
Besides midfoot, there is also additional cushioning in all the pressure zones of the foot, further decreasing the risk of injury.
Similar to the Asics shoe, this one too has gotten complaints about not being very durable when used frequently.
The arch support is exquisite and will be suitable for most people’s feet. If you have exceptionally high arches, you might require some orthotics as well.
With the weight of only 8 ounces per shoe, this is a very light model which is a highly desirable characteristic.
As for the price, the Glycerin 17 falls into the same category as the previous item on this list - they’re expensive.
- Excellent arch support
- Good cushioning and shock absorption
- Very expensive
- Not very durable
Cushiony and lightweight - this is how the manufacturer advertises their Triumph ISO model.
But what was my impression of it? Let’s find out.
The outsole of the shoe is made from special, injection-blown rubber that has cushioning which is strategically placed all over the critical points of the foot.
There is also an insole made from proprietary foam to improve the cushioning even more.
Now, the bottom part of the shoe is most comfortable, and the upper section follows as well.
The ISO fit inner sleeve grips and secures foot so that it doesn’t move inside the shoe.
The exterior is constructed of mesh and synthetic fabrics that provide great breathability.
A potential problem for some people might be the relatively narrow toe box. Even though the entire body of the shoe is stretchy, it still won’t work for some individuals with wide feet.
On the upside, Saucony Triumph is a very light, weighing around 10 ounces per shoe.
Regarding its cost, this pair is much cheaper than the previous two and offers decent value for the money.
- Secure fit for the foot
- Great cushioning and shock absorption
- Narrow toe box might be a problem for some
- Not great for people with high arches
Mizuno Wave Rider 24 has a rubber sole with a very interesting design, named CloudWave by the company.
The aim of this sole is to enhance shock absorption by acting as a spring, and they provide a responsive and snappy ride.
Even though these shoes have a little bit less cushioning than the other shoes I reviewed today, they are still soft and provide a lot of comfort.
However, people recovering from tendonitis might require a bit softer pair.
A significant advantage of Mizuno’s sneakers is that they are lightweight while being durable, with some users claiming they’ve used them for long periods of time.
Wave Rider 24 has excellent arch support for people with flat to normal arches, while those with high arches will probably need a bit more.
The price is another con of this particular model. It is far from being the most expensive, but it’s also much pricier than some other, reputable shoes on the market.
- Lightweight and durable
- Good shock absorption
- Some people might want more cushioning
- Not optimal for high arches
Last but not least, we have the industry giant Adidas, and now I’ll dissect their Energy Boost 3.
The shoe gets its name from Adidas’ boost foam which the sole is made from. This material manages to be comfortable, responsive, and durable all at once.
A potential setback of this sole is that it is perhaps a bit stiffer than one would typically want in case of peroneal tendonitis.
Another cool thing about this shoe is the Torsion system, a midsole designed in such a way to provide the best possible support and stability between the heel and forefoot.
The stretchy, synthetic mesh of the upper is breathable, but the plastic overlay tends to be a bit uncomfortable, especially when going for long runs.
The purpose that the overlay is there is to remove the need for stitches, which, as it turns out, can be a two-edged sword.
When it comes to price, this is one of the more affordable models in today’s reviews. It still isn’t cheap, but it won’t break the bank for most people.
- Boost foam provides good cushioning
- Pretty durable
- Fair price
- A bit stiff
- The welded overlays might be uncomfortable
The Final Verdict
As I’ve reached the end of this article, the only thing that’s left to do is declare the winner of the roundup.
It was a tight race, but I decided to go for Asics Gel Nimbus 18.
My reasons for doing so are the following - the shoe has excellent cushioning and shock absorption, and it’s breathable as well as comfortable.
Yes, you will have to pay a few extra dollars for it, but I’m sure that you won’t regret it.
About Peroneal Tendonitis
As the name implies, Peroneal Tendonitis is an injury of one or both peroneal tendons, located on each side of the heel, connecting the metatarsals with the calves.
This condition can be diagnosed as a tear or inflammation of these tendons, and it often occurs with runners who run on uneven and steep surfaces.
Its symptoms include pain and swelling, and the area feels tender when you touch it. It leaves the foot weak, unstable and makes walking extremely difficult due to the foot's inability to support the weight of the body.
In some rare instances, peroneal tendonitis gets misdiagnosed which leads to improper treatment and worsens the patient’s condition as a result.
In order to get the best possible diagnosis, it is advisable to visit a foot and ankle surgeon.
The surgeon will check the foot and look for swelling, instability, pain, and warmth, usually on the outer side of one’s ankle.
An x-ray or some other form of imaging might be utilized to determine if any other related injuries have occurred.
Causes of Peroneal Tendonitis
The primary physiological cause of this form of tendonitis is supination or underpronation of the foot.
It usually happens to those with high-arched, flexible feet which tend to stretch a lot and thus spread the plantar fascia.
Also, running on uneven surfaces will give you less control over your landing position, and you might end up supinating more than usual.
Another common cause is running at high speeds and doing a lot of volume without proper preparation. Obviously, you don't want to overtrain
In order to be able to run very fast safely, you have to build up the resilience of Peroneal tendons over a certain period of time.
Depending on the severity and specific details of one’s injury, there are different ways of treating it. Have a look at the list below to see what I’m talking about:
If your injury isn’t very serious, then resting is probably the best thing you can do.
This means that training is out of the question and walking should be done slowly and carefully as you do not want to put any unnecessary strain on the tendon.
Some doctors will recommend resting the foot in an elevated position.
In some instances, casting is used to restrict movement. This is usually done in case of a tendon tear.
It is not uncommon for the patient to undergo various forms of physical therapy for optimal and speedy recovery.
Some common examples include ice, ultrasound, or heat therapy, often used to decrease swelling and numb the pain.
As the situation improves, the therapist will introduce some light exercises aimed at improving one’s range of motion and strengthening the muscles.
Stretching and Massage
As the peroneal tendon connects the calves to the metatarsal, stretching, massaging, and loosening up the calf muscles is recommended.
The reason for this is that tight muscles place more stress on the mid-foot as well as the tendons, which might hinder the recovery.
If the injury is severe, then surgery might be required to mend the tendon or other parts of the foot.
After that, the patient will have to go through a phase of physical therapy and other forms of rehabilitation.
Ibuprofen and similar anti-inflammatory drugs are sometimes prescribed to help reduce swelling and pain.
Seldom, the doctors will give the patient a powerful cortisone injection in an attempt to mitigate inflammation.
As it is always better to prevent than to treat, I’d suggest you pay special attention to this section of the article.
Tendonitis is sometimes caused by muscle imbalances or improper running technique, so it would be wise to address these issues first.
Talk to a professional (a personal trainer or a physical therapist) who can assess your body’s condition as well as your running form, and correct it if it’s not right.
Sneakers also play a huge role.
As a matter of fact, the very reason I’m writing about them today is that they can be a massive factor in the successful prevention of peroneal tendonitis.
It’s impossible to understand the impact that shoes have on your running until you try on a good pair.
What is a good pair? Read on to find out.
What to Know Before Buying Shoes for Peroneal Tendonitis?
Good running shoes are essential because they will help prevent injuries as well as speed up the healing of an already inflicted foot.
Now, not every shoe is able to do this, so it is important to know which features to look for.
As you’re running, most of the stress gets transferred to your ankles, making them very vulnerable to injuries. A thing that can relieve some of this stress is proper cushioning in the midfoot area.
The reason for this is that most tendons go through the ankle and end at the front of the foot, leaving the middle part prone to get hurt.
Shoes with special, built-in soles or rubber cushions are the best solution for this problem.
The cushioning will act as a spring when you run and thus reduce the amount of stress that the ankle is absorbing.
Tendon related injuries often happen due to overworking of the tendons, which can happen very quickly if your shoes lack the adequate shock absorption abilities.
Air or gel filled soles, and multi-layered soles are the features that you should be looking for as they provide sufficient shock absorption.
When considering the weight of the shoe goes for as light as possible.
The lighter the shoe, the less effort you’ll have to put in while running, and the less impact will it have on your ankles and tendons.
Also, you’ll reduce the amount of fatigue you feel during/after running.
Good Arch Support
There are three kinds of arches in feet - normal, high, and flat. You need to be aware which one do you have and buy shoes accordingly.
What’s essential is to get shoes with adequate support the kind of arch your feet have. As high-arched people are the ones that get tendonitis the most, they should pay extra attention to this.
The Right Size
Your running shoes should be a perfect fit - not a bit bigger or smaller, but just the right size.
If you’re running in sneakers which are slightly too big for you, your feet are going to be moving inside the shoe which will cause instability and increase the chance of injury.
A number too small can be very uncomfortable and cause pain which will lead to improper walking or running form in an attempt to alleviate the discomfort.
All in all, I hope that you realize just how big a role shoes play in the prevention and recovery from peroneal tendonitis.
My advice is that you shouldn’t hesitate to invest your time and money in finding and buying a pair that is optimal for you, so that you can run happily for years to come.