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Picking Kids Running Shoes

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Last Updated: 14 May 2020
is there a difference between short distance and long distance running shoes for kids

When it comes to athletic performance, regular sport shoes are often not sufficient. If it is the best performance that you need for your kids, then running shoes is what you need. These are shoes that are designed in such a way that the sole and the overall design are curated to fit running. When it comes to running, factors like traction on the field and the stability have essential roles to play. Therefore, kids running sneakers and shoes are designs that allow maximum stability for running. There is also the benefit of comfort that comes into the picture. These shoes keep the feet flexible and provide the appropriate support that runners look for.

TOP 10 Best Baby Formula For Gassy Babies: Comparison Chart

Best Value
Adidas Kids' Duramo 9 Running Shoe
Best Choice
PUMA Kids' St Runner Velcro Sneaker
Nike Girls' Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe
Adidas Kids' Altarun Running Shoe
New Balance Kids' 455v2 Hook and Loop
adidas Unisex-Kid's Duramo 9 Running Shoe, Black/White/Black, 3
PUMA Unisex ST Runner Velcro Sneaker, Peacoat White-Firecracker, 3.5 M US Big Kid
Nike Girls' Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe, Wolf Grey/Racer Pink-Cool Grey-White, 11C Child US Little Kid
adidas Kids' Altarun, Real Magenta/White/Real Magenta, 1 M US Little Kid
New Balance Kid's 455 V2 Alternative Closure Running Shoe, Summer Sky/Light Peony, 13 M US Little Kid
$35.88
$29.99
$86.69
Price not available
Price not available
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Best Value
Adidas Kids' Duramo 9 Running Shoe
adidas Unisex-Kid's Duramo 9 Running Shoe, Black/White/Black, 3
$35.88
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Best Choice
PUMA Kids' St Runner Velcro Sneaker
PUMA Unisex ST Runner Velcro Sneaker, Peacoat White-Firecracker, 3.5 M US Big Kid
$29.99
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Nike Girls' Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe
Nike Girls' Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe, Wolf Grey/Racer Pink-Cool Grey-White, 11C Child US Little Kid
$86.69
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Adidas Kids' Altarun Running Shoe
adidas Kids' Altarun, Real Magenta/White/Real Magenta, 1 M US Little Kid
Price not available
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New Balance Kids' 455v2 Hook and Loop
New Balance Kid's 455 V2 Alternative Closure Running Shoe, Summer Sky/Light Peony, 13 M US Little Kid
Price not available
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New Balance Kids' Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Running Shoe
New Balance Kids' 455 V2 Running Shoe
Nike Kids Revolution 5 Running Shoe
ASICS Kid's Gel-Contend 5 GS Running Shoe
Adidas Kids' RapidaRun El Running Shoe
New Balance Kid's Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Bungee Running Shoe, Light Aluminum/Rainbow, 2 M US Little Kid
New Balance Kid's 455 V2 Lace-Up Running Shoe, Black/Rainbow, 11.5 W US Little Kid
Nike Unisex-Kid's Revolution 5 Pre School Velcro Running Shoe, Gym Red/Whiteblack, 10.5C Regular US Little Kid
ASICS Kid's Gel-Contend 5 GS Running Shoes, 6M, ICE Mint/DEEP Sapphire
adidas Unisex-Kid's RapidaRun EL Running Shoe, Off White/White/Grey, 3.5 M US Big Kid
$48.95
$44.95
$106.36
$39.95
$65.00
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New Balance Kids' Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Running Shoe
New Balance Kid's Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Bungee Running Shoe, Light Aluminum/Rainbow, 2 M US Little Kid
$48.95
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New Balance Kids' 455 V2 Running Shoe
New Balance Kid's 455 V2 Lace-Up Running Shoe, Black/Rainbow, 11.5 W US Little Kid
$44.95
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Nike Kids Revolution 5 Running Shoe
Nike Unisex-Kid's Revolution 5 Pre School Velcro Running Shoe, Gym Red/Whiteblack, 10.5C Regular US Little Kid
$106.36
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ASICS Kid's Gel-Contend 5 GS Running Shoe
ASICS Kid's Gel-Contend 5 GS Running Shoes, 6M, ICE Mint/DEEP Sapphire
$39.95
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Adidas Kids' RapidaRun El Running Shoe
adidas Unisex-Kid's RapidaRun EL Running Shoe, Off White/White/Grey, 3.5 M US Big Kid
$65.00
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Best Overall: Adidas Kids’ Duramo 9 Running Shoe Review

Sale
Adidas Kids' Duramo 9 Running Shoe
  • Regular fit
  • Mesh upper for breathability
  • Adiwear outsole offers the ultimate in high-wear durability
  • Cloudfoam midsole for step-in comfort and superior cushioning

Great Support: PUMA Kids’ St Runner Velcro Sneaker Review

Sale
PUMA Kids' St Runner Velcro Sneaker
  • Casual Athletic Sneaker
  • St Runner

Best for girl: Nike Girls’ Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe Review

Nike Girls' Revolution 4 (PSV) Running Shoe
  • BOY'S SHOES: The Nike Revolution 4 sneaker for kids features a hook and loop closure for a secure fit on the foot. Lack of laces allows for easy on and off.
  • MINIMAL DESIGN: The kid's shoes have a minimal design made of lightweight mesh, no show overlays and soft foam. The toe tip design offers support and structure.
  • MAXIMUM COMFORT: The Nike kid's tennis shoe offers a cushioned heel and lightweight low profile. Soft IP foam beneath the foot for revolutionary comfort.
  • BREATHABLE: The mesh top layer is designed for optimal breathability during activity. The boy's running shoe is ideal for everyday and athletic wear.
  • RELIABLE GRIP: Rubber outsole provides great traction and durability. The boy's sneakers offer deep flex grooves that promote a more efficient, natural range of motion.

Lightweight: Adidas Kids’ Altarun Running Shoe Review

Adidas Kids' Altarun Running Shoe
  • Regular fit; Lace closure
  • Open-weave mesh upper for breathability
  • Enjoy the comfort and performance of EcoOrthoLite sockliner
  • Abrasion-resistant EVA outsole for lightweight durability
  • Flexible, lightweight feel

Durable: New Balance Kids’ 455v2 Hook and Loop Review

New Balance Kids' 455v2 Hook and Loop
  • Mesh upper with a no sew tip for durability
  • Athletic styling makes every step stand out
  • IMEVA (injection molded EVA foam) midsole offers flexible, lightweight cushioning
  • Synthetic/ Mesh

EVA Midsole: New Balance Kids’ Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Running Shoe Review

New Balance Kids' Fresh Foam Arishi V2 Running Shoe
  • Rubber outsole
  • Synthetic/mesh upper
  • Soft EVA midsole

Flexible: New Balance Kids’ 455 V2 Running Shoe Review

New Balance Kids' 455 V2 Running Shoe
  • Mesh upper with a no sew tip for durability
  • Athletic styling makes every step stand out
  • IMEVA (injection molded EVA foam) midsole offers flexible, lightweight cushioning
  • Synthetic/ Mesh

Hook-And-Loop Closure: Nike Kids Revolution 5 Running Shoe Review

Nike Kids Revolution 5 Running Shoe
  • Mesh upper for optimal breathability
  • Rubber outsole offers durable traction
  • Soft foam midsole delivers lightweight, responsive cushioning
  • Hook-and-loop closure Provides lockdown

Good Fit: ASICS Kid’s Gel-Contend 5 GS Running Shoe Review

Budget: Adidas Kids’ RapidaRun El Running Shoe Review

Adidas Kids' RapidaRun El Running Shoe
  • Juniors' running shoes with a cushioned midsole and extra stability
  • Regular fit; Lace closure
  • Flexible mesh upper is breathable; Abrasion-resistant overlays and TPU heel clip for durability
  • Cushioned Cloudfoam midsole; Soft textile lining for comfort
  • Durable Adiwear outsole

Buyer’s Guide: All You Need to Know About the Best Running Shoes for Kids

Why is Running Important for the Kids?

Why Running is Important for the Kids

Physical activities of all kinds are known to be very good for kids. From a very young age, if the children are taught to be active and fit, it can prove to be beneficial in the long run. This helps them stay fit and strong. Give the best fitness tracker for kids to motivate them to stay active and run the desired distance each day. Here are some of the benefits of running for kids.

Provides an entertaining physical activity

Kids are naturally active. Running is one of the easiest activities that can also be fun for the little ones. This can keep them engaged for a long time and therefore help them kill boredom while also keeping them active and fit.

Doesn’t need any equipment

There are many cheap kids running shoes to begin with. Other than the shoes and a comfortable pair of shorts and sports jerseys, there is not much that you have to spend on when your kid starts running. This makes running one of the most affordable sports practices to start from a very young age.

Anyone can learn to run

This is one of the easiest yet also the most effective sports to master. There are a few tricks that kids should learn to master their running skills. Other than that, there are not many strategies and rules to learn. Therefore, acquiring the best running techniques doesn’t take a long time. For kids who require learning a physical activity that can be learned quickly and mastered easily, running is one of the most popular choices.

Learn to balance

Running done right can improve the posture of the child throughout the day. There are many ways in which runners can improve their balance. One such trick is to learn and maintain a good posture while standing and running as well. This helps improve the posture and therefore keeps the spine happy and healthy.

Running can be relaxing

are running shoes for kids really safe for running

Little kids also have a lot of stress, but they do not even realize that they are stressed. This can sometimes come out in the form of cranky behavior. Kids are so full of energy, and when they do not get an outlet to channelize their energy, the result is the feeling of crankiness and irritability. To prevent this, the kid should find ways to focus their energy. Sports like running are particularly useful as stress-busting activities for the little ones. With the best running shoes for kids, parents can be sure that their child is using up all his energy in the right direction.

Are running shoes for kids safe for running?

Yes. When you choose the right junior running shoes, you are making an investment that strengthens the child’s safety while running. This is one reason why you should pay attention to the various attributes that make or break the effects of this footwear.

Is there a difference between short distance and long-distance running shoes for the kid?

One significant difference that you would find between kids trail running shoes for a short distance and the ones for long-distance is the level of padding. Short distance options are less padded, and they are light in weight. While they are suitable for use during long-distance runs, rarely it is best to avoid using a pair of short distance shoes for long-distance running. There is also a level of flatness that the long-distance childrens running shoes are known for. This makes them well-suited for long-duration use.

How many pairs of running shoes does my child need?

how many pairs of running shoes does my child need

While picking the best running shoes for kids, you should know that your kid might need at least 2 pairs. It is a good idea to rotate the pairs between runs. Especially with long-running shoes, it is best to stick with 2 pairs. The significant difference here could be depending on the trail where the child practices or runs. For short distance and long-distance, separate pairs are required as well. Short distance options can also be used for casual jogs in the neighborhood.

How to Choose the Best Running Shoes for Kids

Given the overwhelming choices out there, here are a few attributes you can consider while picking from the best rated running shoes for kids. To compare the many choices you have and to pick the best ones here are the factors to consider:

Brand

You have two choices when it comes to picking track shoes for kids — branded ones and non-branded ones. For the sake of reliability, it is better to stick with the popular brands in sports merchandise. You get standardized designs that would be compatible for use with different tracks. You would also find a large assortment in terms of foot sizes and other parameters while working with popular brands.

Versatility

With versatile options, you get to use them for athletic events and also for practice sessions. Some of them also look stylish and can be worn for casual running. Picking a versatile pair means that you are left with a good investment for your money and your kid’s comfort.

Size

With the best shoes for kids, size is another crucial consideration. Different brands have different ways of denoting the sizes. Consider checking the size guide and measuring the child’s feet before picking a pair. Kids indeed grow fast, and their feet sizes keep changing. However, do not pick those that are larger than their feet, assuming that they will eventually fit.

running shoes for kids with high arched feet

Fit

Fit is also equally important as the size. Some kids have broader feet, and others might have slimmer feet. Consider the width of the boys running shoes you choose. This helps you choose something that keeps the feet comfortable while running without feeling any suffocation.

Materials

For boys running shoes and those for girls, you need the most durable heel design. To kick back and get a good start for the run. Carbon rubber is one of the most popular choices for heel design in these. For the trail runners, there are footwear designs that consist of carbon rubber all through the outer sole surface. With this comes the durability in these and also the padding that protects the feet.

Lacing system

There are lace-up options and slip-on kinds. The lace-up designs provide the ease of wearing the footwear and also make it easy to alter the fit. With this, it is possible to secure the shoes in place. Even while running, these can be adequately held with a snug fit. Provision to add laces makes it possible to add lengthy laces and alter the looks as well.

Durability

Kids spike running shoes made of sturdy materials would last for a long time. Though the child would outgrow the footwear with time, durability makes sure that the shoes do not wear off too soon. This helps safeguard their feet without worry about damaged footwear, offering broken protection. Even if it is preschool running shoes that you choose you need

proper strength for proper protection.

Flexibility

Combined with stability, flexibility can be an excellent strength for runners. This makes sure that there is no resistance while running. It helps accommodate all positions of the feet and prevents any kind of discomfort while running.

running shoes for kids with neutral feet

Breathability

Whether it is kids cross country running shoes or some simple short distance options, you need to look at breathability. This comes from the material, as well as the overall design. Several such factors together make sure that the child doesn’t feel sweaty. Sweat leads to bacterial infection and can make the run feel uncomfortable.

Support

Support depends on the sole shape and firmness. There should be a contoured fit that provides a good posture for the arch and support as well. This makes sure that no matter how fast your kid runs and the length of the stride, there would be a comfort.

Shock absorption

This comes into the picture for cross country runs. Good padding helps absorb impact and protects the feet from damage. Shock absorption at the toe region also provides excellent support in the outdoor running experiences.

Weight

Kids might like their shoes to be light but not too light. They should have comfortable weight that keeps their feet feeling free to move. The right weight means the right support.

Design

Styling elements alter the aesthetics. Fancy styles are easy to find in track shoes for kids. Some peppy colors in girls running shoes and boys running shoes are all available. Different age groups and proficiency levels in the running can all find different designs to be suitable. Besides conventional designs, there are barefoot running shoes for kids with minimal designs.

Price

There is a pair for every budget group. Check the value instead of the price tag to know what you buy. It is alright to splurge on a pair that your child would love to wear and also feel the most comfortable in.

Best Running Shoes for Kids Types

Running shoes for kids with neutral feet

Most of the big kids running shoes and those for the younger kids come as designs suitable for neutral feet. These have the natural arch of the feet and can be worn comfortably without foot aches.

Running shoes for kids with high arched feet

Youth running shoes with a good cushioning effect are essential for high arched feet. It also should carry adaptive comfort that adjusts with the feet shape.

running shoes for kids with flat fit

Running shoes for kids with a flat fit

Best running shoes for kids with flat feet make sure that the kid doesn’t strain his feet while running. It prevents sprains and ankle tension from a bad fit.

Best Running Shoes for Kids FAQ

How to clean running shoes for kids

To keep them sparkly clean while also preventing any damage, it is better to handwash running shoes. Good running shoes for kids stay that way when you wash and maintain them well. Dry dust can be cleaned with an old brush and then rinsing with a mild detergent, and soapy water should work with most cases. This helps maintain the hygiene of the shoes.

How tight should the laces be tied

When you tie the lace, make sure that there is a 2 finger gap between the two eyelet positions. The flaps should not overlap, and the eyelets should not be too far away. Too loose or too tight a fit can lead to bad running performance and safety issues. You can allow the kid to walk and run once you tie the lace to make sure that the child feels comfortable. Always try the shoes at a slower pace before you let the child run with the same lace tightness for a long distance.

Can I purchase a pair of running shoes for my child one size bigger than they need?

This often happens as parents wonder whether bigger shoes will accommodate growing feet. But then with the increase in size comes the loose fit, which can lead to injury when the child runs fast. Proper support only comes from a snug fit and proper size. It is, therefore, essential to pick the right size no matter what the age of the child is. Whether it is the best toddler shoes you are buying, or something for the tweens measure the feet size and pick the right one.

Can you wash running shoes for kids in a washing machine?

Though some follow this method, this wears off the shoes too soon. To keep the shape intact, it is better to hand wash it. You should also check the manufacturer’s recommendations for obtaining the best wash while also keeping the shoes in perfect shape. When you wash them regularly, there is no stubborn dirt, and so hand washing and mild scrubbing with an old brush helps deep clean the pair.

Verdict and Our Recommendation for 2020

As you can see, there are plenty of choices when it comes to picking a pair of running shoes for kids. As a parent worried about getting the best for your kid, you can find an ideal setting that works for your kid. Different kids have different running styles. Giving them the right training right at an early stage can set them on the right course. Equipment like the perfect pair of running shoes can motivate them to push their boundaries. With the best running shoes for kids 2020, the child would be able to go the distance and expand their practice without feeling any strain on their feet. For different feet sizes and widths, there are plenty of options available. For more good reviews and buying guides on various fitness equipment, check out top-mom.com.

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PRODUCTS TESTED BY Top-Mom.com
How We Tested

We started with rounding up the ones that fall in the best rated category. We created this list of the best running shoes for kids 2020 from the most comfortable ones that offer the best foot support for all types of runners.

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