Calf pain is a physical injury that not only limits your running session but also hampers your regular movement. 

For any movement, you have to use your leg, and when the calf does not support you enough rather you feel pain with every step then it’s a critical situation. And, as we get older it affects us more and more.

However, most major brands have come up with shoes that have a high drop, secure fit, flexible upper and midsole, excellent responsive bounce, and premium-level cushioning which reduces pressure on your calves.

In this article, I have listed the 9 best running shoes for calf pain which will help you to deal with your weak calf muscle and get you back on track with full spirit.

Best Running Shoes for Calf Pain: Top 9 Options

Shoes are one of those endless products that keep on manufacturing. But are all shoes good shoes? No. And what’s more, from the outside most of them look fine while the quality on the insides isn’t good enough, and fades away in a few months.

That’s why people try to scour for reviews, however reading page after page and scrolling through blog posts one after another will exhaust you.

To make things quick for you, I have listed 9 running shoes for calf pain.

I hope it will benefit you in many ways. So let’s see what those awesome running shoes offer to your calf muscle.

1. ASICS GEL-NIMBUS 22 Running Shoes

Asics gel-nimbus 22

When you have pain issues in your calf muscle then you can’t buy just any shoes and ASICS GEL-NIMBUS 22 would be an outstanding choice for that. It’s packed with tons of tech which provides extreme comfort for the runners.

It comes with a feature called Trusstic System technology which makes it pretty lightweight. It also maintains a high level of structural integrity. In addition, the fitting is true to size, and the shoe’s appearance is stunning.

Also, the rearfoot and forefoot GEL technology helps to reduce the load on your feet. The upper mesh promotes excellent breathability. The engineered upper mesh also adds more to the stability. 

The midsole of the ASICS 22 is stuffed with foam which helps to cut off a significant amount of running shock and makes it a durable high-mileage running shoe. You will feel the high stability on both the front and heel parts while running. 

Plus, the FlyteFoam Lyte technology provides responsiveness and flexibility during the run. The tread of the ASICS 22 provides excellent traction on different terrain which secures your training time. 

In addition, FlyteFoam Propel Technology will allow you to get enough bounce while running. In addition, it’s a great running shoe for people with wide feet, because it has plenty of room for the toes.

The only downside is that the price of ASICS 22 is a bit costly. Apart from that, this shoe would be a great treat for your calf pain.


  • Stylish looking & durable
  • High-quality cushioming of GEL technology
  • The extremely comfortable, lightweight, and properly breathable upper mesh
  • Flexible, wider feet and enought toe area
  • Traction is excellent in different terrain


  • Comparatively heavier pair
  • High cost shoe

2. Adidas Men’s Ultraboost 20 Running Shoe

Adidas Men’s Ultraboost 20 Running Shoe

Adidas Men’s Ultraboost 20 running shoe that not only looks stylish but also provides ultra comfort for your feet. It comes with premium-level cushioning that makes sure your calf muscle is having less stress from running. Which eventually lowers calf pain.

Plus, the outsole of the shoe is made of continental rubber which is highly durable and provides good traction during a run. The Adidas Ultraboost 20 is good for wide feet and has the required amount of toe space for runners. 

The midsole of the shoe ensures a plush ride with enough responsiveness. Which works as good support for the calf pain. Moreover, the Adidas Ultraboost 20 provides a good level of stability.

In addition, the heel counter features soft padding as well as a secure foot lockdown. Though it’s highly cushioned, that does not cut off the awesome flexibility. The Tailored Fiber Placement provides enough support and makes running easy for you.

Moreover, the durable Primeknit upper will feel great and provide enough airflow. Which prevents sweating, moisture build-up, and any kind of odor forming. 

Two flaws of Ultra Boost 20 came to my attention. One drawback of the shoe is that it’s more of a recovery shoe than a high-speed running shoe. Which means it’s good for normal running and jogging. Another one is that the weight is a bit higher compared to other running shoes.

As a whole, the Adidas Men’s Ultraboost 20 running shoe is a great deal.


  • The heel counter is secured & ample amount of toe space
  • Durable outsole ensures high-level traction
  • Stylish, high-level cushioning & flexible
  • Plush ride with proper responsiveness
  • The upper feels comfortable and ensures enough airflow


  • Not suitable for high-speed running session
  • Weight is a bit higher than a regular running shoe

3. ASICS Women’s GEL-Venture 6 Running Shoe

ASICS Women’s GEL-Venture 6 Running Shoe

ASICS Women’s GEL-Venture 6 is a top-notch cushioned shoe that will provide an ample amount of support for your calf pain. It was made to run on rugged terrain comfortably.

The outstanding AHAR Rubber Technology outsole ensures both comfort and high-level traction. Not only that, this material is extremely durable making it a long-lasting shoe. 

Plus, the Rearfoot GEL cushion ensures the reduction of shock during the ride. It also provides appropriate energy return which helps to reduce running fatigue. Its midsole ensures less amount of impact on your calf muscle. The breathability of the shoe is very poor.

In addition to that, the synthetic mesh upper assists your feet and ankles to fit securely. Along with that, it allows good flexibility during training time. The looks of the ASICC Venture 6 are extremely appealing and mint! 

Regarding the price, it’s a highly reasonable running shoe compared to its competitors. Due to its true size, it fits the moment you first wear it for a run.

Also, you will like the toe room which is enough for a smooth running session. One of the unique features of ASICS Venture 6 is the removable sock liner feature. It allows you to install a medical orthotic for your needs. However, it is a bit heavier than other shoes.

In short, the ASICS Venture 6 is a great option for low-impact running.


  • The AHAR rubber outsole provides a high-level grip
  • Flexible & fitting of the shoe is proper
  • The Rearfoot GEL feature absorbs shock & Removable sock liner
  • Reasonable price & ultra-stylish design
  • True to size plus high durability


  • Breathability is below the standard & weight is heavy 

4. ASICS GEL Kayano 27 Running shoes

ASICS GEL Kayano 27 Running shoes

ASICS GEL Kayano 27 running shoe is a sturdy and cozy cushioning shoe that would be helpful to deal with your calf pain. The stability of this running shoe is top-class. 

Plus, the durability of the Kayano 27 is exceptional. It’s a heavy shoe that provides enough support but it’s not suitable for a speedy run. 

In addition to that, the upper mesh of the Kayano 27 is stylish. It will be a nice summer shoe to wear which will ensure enough airflow inside the shoe. Thanks to the heel and upper which keeps your feet secure during the run without any discomfort.

The high-grade cushioning of the Kayano 27 will let you enjoy an exceptional plush ride. Along with that, it offers true to size so you don’t have to go through the hassle of a break-in period. Speaking of the toe room, it won’t give you a hard time. 

Besides, the grip of this shoe will win your heart as it provides high-level traction on different surfaces in both wet and dry conditions. You will get enough bounce because of the FLYTEFOAM Propel cushioning of the shoe. 

Moreover, below the heel part, you will get enough cushion because of the GEL technology cushion. It will reduce a large number of impacts from running which eventually saves your calf muscle from extra stress. 

Though the price tag is on the higher end, ASICS GEL KAYANO 27 is a profitable buy for your regular jogging.


  • Sturdy shoe, great stability & stylish
  • Plush ride & high-grade cushioning
  • High-level traction & precise amount of bounce
  • Secure fit, GEL technology reduces running shocks
  • Enough toe space, true to size & high durability


  • The price tag is higher than many other competitors
  • Not tailored for speedy run

5.  Brooks Ghost 12 Running Shoe

Brooks Ghost 12 Running Shoe

The Brooks Ghost 12 is the top of the cream of the running shoes for calf pain. It is tailored to provide an ample amount of softness to enjoy a soft ride.

Plus, soft heel-side cushioning makes it one of the best choices if you try to lower your calf pain during the running session. The DNA loft cushioning plays a major role here in increasing comfort.

In addition to that, you will get proper balance during the run as it comes with the responsive BioMoGo DNA midsole. It also ensures a comfortable long-distance ride. 

The Segmented Crash Pad will ensure a smooth landing with an easy heel-to-toe transition by absorbing running shocks.

Moreover, the durability of the Brooks Ghost 12 is uncompromised. The high abrasion rubber in the outsole increases durability and reduces the chance of wearing too fast. But sadly the price tag of this shoe is a bit higher than its competitors. 

Also, you will find the fitting of Brooks Ghost 12 feels like a sock. In addition, the shoe’s light weight contributes to a plush ride. Though the upper mesh is of good quality but holds a bit of heat which makes it less comfortable for summertime.

Furthermore, you will also get the required amount of wiggle room for your toes. Speaking of the traction and grip it would support quite well. Helps a lot during running on any slippery or smooth surface. 

Considering the strong side and weak side Brooks Ghost 12 would be an excellent friendly running shoe for your calf pain. 


  • Well cushioning ensures a smooth ride
  • Fitting is appropriate
  • Lightweight with enough grip
  • Durable & moderate toe room
  • Shock absorbing with great stability


  • The price tag is a bit pricey
  • The upper shoe holds heat & is less comfortable for a summer run

6. Mizuno Wave Rider 23 Running Shoes

Mizuno Wave Rider 23 Running Shoes

Mizuno Wave Rider 23 would be a great running shoe for your calf pain due to the pro-level cushioning. It’s more of a recovery shoe that you can use for daily activities and medium-pace running. 

Plus, the Waveknit upper stretches with your foot which increases running comfort. Along with that, the ample amount of airflow will keep your foot cool from getting hot.

Also, the U4icX midsole increases the durability of the shoe. As well as cutting shocks during the run which adds more comfort for runners. The durability of the outsole is quite good and gives a good amount of traction. 

Moreover, the plush sock liner and spacious upper adds more comfort for the user. The stability of the Wave Rider 23 is phenomenal and provides adequate safety during the ride. Sad to say, the rearfoot outsole is a bit clunky and noisy.

In addition to that, this shoe is true to size. When it comes to the secure fit, the tongue has no sliding problem and the collar feels snug. 

Furthermore, the flexibility of the shoe is moderate and lets you run without any discomfort. The cloud wave tech cushioning provides extreme comfort for the heel striker. But the toe room and forefoot feel a bit tighter for the wider feet is a downside of Wave Rider 23.

Analyzing both pros and cons, the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 is a great deal for your everyday running shoe which will help your calf muscle a lot.


  • Ultra breathability with stretchy upper mesh
  • U4icX midsole makes it super durable
  • Rubber outsole provides good traction & True to size
  • Ample amount of cushioning with CLOUDWAVE
  • Stable ride & Secure fit in both tongues plus collar


  • The toe room and forefoot feel a bit tight
  • The rearfoot outsole generates noise and is a bit clunky

7. Saucony Triumph 17 Running Shoe

Saucony Triumph 17 Running Shoe

The Saucony Triumph 17 is an extraordinary cushioning running shoe that will be helpful for your calf pain problem. Plus, the heel-to-toe transition is only 8 mm keeping your feet relaxed. 

The Triumph 17 is an outstanding running shoe for recovery running and long run which provides a pillow-like feeling around your feet. But unfortunately, it was not made for a hardcore high-speed run.

When it comes to stability, it’s superb. Though this running shoe looks bulky, luckily it’s quite light. 

Plus, the Triumph 17 shows enough support during running by ensuring a soft landing. As well the light bounce of the running stride serves as a welcome treatment for your fatigued feet. In addition to that, the thick insole has POWER RUN+ tech which ensures a springy ride.

Moreover, the Form-Fit insole will ensure a soft ride with a pleasant amount of responsiveness during running. Which helps a lot to keep the calf pain at ease. It’s a highly durable shoe that can easily last more than 400+ miles.

Besides, the toe room is enough while the forefoot fitting will feel snug and comfortable enough for a smooth ride. The outsole is extremely durable and has that ultra grip feature which makes sure a secure ride and high traction in wet or slippery roads.

Furthermore, the tongue and heel counter of the Triumph 17  has a very thick cushion which makes it a great shoe. Due to the proper cushioning, the hill and midfoot feel extremely secure.

All in all, it is an excellent shoe that you can gift to yourself for better running.


  • The heel and front feel super secure & stable
  • Enough toe room with appropriate responsiveness
  • A durable shoe with a high grip outsole
  • Mind-boggling cushioning provides comfort for calf muscle


  • Not appropriate for hardcore running

8. Saucony Women’s Ride 13 Running Shoe

Saucony Women’s Ride 13 Running Shoe

The Saucony Women’s Ride 13 running shoe might not be very good-looking but it is greatly beneficial for runners with calf pain.

Plus, you will be impressed with the stability and flexibility of the Saucony Ride 13. Also, it’s true to size and provides enough room for your forefoot to ensure a comfortable ride.

In addition to that, it does not require any break-in period to become easy on your feet. You will enjoy it from the first ride. The brilliant outsole design provides an insane-level grip during your running session. The TRIPLEX outsole of the shoe increases flexibility which adds more comfort. 

When it comes to cushioning, the Saucony 13 is uncompromised. The built-in PWRRun cushioning that’s made of TPU and EVA reduces impact. This cushioning isn’t too stiff or too soft. As a result, you enjoy less pressure on your calves.

Moreover, the footlocker of Saucony Ride 13 is awesome. Heel and midfoot locks are secure so nicely that you won’t feel like the shoe becomes loose during running. Sadly, during the sharp turn, the shoe might feel a bit clunky. 

Furthermore, the upper mesh of Saucony Ride 13 is superb and comfortable. And, you also form any blister due to soft upper material. But, the breathability is unfortunately not up to the standard.

Analyzing both drawbacks and benefits, this running shoe would be a wonderful buy for your calf pain. 


  • Secured foot locker with no slipping off plus great stability
  • TRIPLEX outsole provides a mind-boggling grip & high flexibility
  • True to size & high-quality PWRRun cushioning
  • Enough toe space with comfortable upper material
  • Midsole reduces pressure on your calf muscle


  • Sharp turning feels a bit clunky
  • Breathability is not up to the mark

9. Nike Men’s Air Zoom Pegasus 36

Nike Men’s Air Zoom Pegasus 36

Nike Men’s Air Zoom Pegasus 36 is one of the top-notch sneakers that will provide a good amount of cushioning. Which benefits you in many ways and one of them is keeping calf pain at ease. 

Plus, the excellent meshwork that has been done on the upper part of the shoe keeps your feet cool. You will be amazed at the traction of the rubber outsole of this shoe. In terms of durability, the combination of EVA midsole foam and rubber outsole makes it ultra-durable.

In addition to that, you will experience a smooth and responsive ride because of the full-length Zoom Air unit. Along with that, the Pegasus 36 is an extremely stable shoe that increases your safety during the run.

Additionally, the lightweight design makes it more comfortable to use.  The sock liner of PEGASUS 36 fits well with your feet plus the cushioning of both forefoot and heel reduces the overall impact. Unfortunately, the forefoot of the shoe is a bit stiff. 

Moreover, it’s true to size and the toe box leaves enough space for a comfortable ride. The upgraded Flywire cable lacing system of Pegasus 36 ensures a secure fit during high speed. Besides, the ergonomic tongue and slim high collar ensure proper fitting.

Sadly, the low ankle collar of the shoe takes a bit of time to get easy. Which can form blisters after running for some users. 

Wrapping up all the things, the Nike Men’s AIR PEGASUS 36 is a great buy at a reasonable price.


  • Good airflow with high durability
  • High-quality traction due to the rubber outsole
  • Responsive ride plus adaptable sock liner
  • Secure fit with premium cushioning
  • Stable,  true to size & adequate toe space


  • The design line of the forefoot sole is a bit stiff
  • Low ankle collar irritate during a run

Buying Guide

A good purchase is a good experience while a bad purchase is a bad experience plus a waste of time and money. 

When it comes to buying a pair of shoes for any foot problem, you should consider some factors. 

If any of the factors is missing then your buying purpose wouldn’t serve properly and it would be a waste of your hard-earned bucks. Let me tell you about those factors below…

High-Grade Cushioning

Normally you don’t need high-grade cushioning especially if you are not suffering from any kind of foot problems. But if you are carrying calf pain for a long time then it’s highly recommended to select running shoes with enough thickness of cushioning. 

shoe that has extra cushioning on the heel side will be the priority. Because the ample amount of cushion will reduce shocks by absorbing them. As a result, your calf muscles will have less stress during the ride.


The majority number of shoes in the market are tailored with mesh material to ensure proper breathability. Your feet must stay cool enough for a comfortable and enjoyable running session.

Try to ignore buying any shoe that comes with thicker upper fabric or leather. Because they not only decrease the breathability but also the flexibility of the upper part of your shoe.


Even if anyone does not have any foot problems wearing rigid or firm shoes will end up causing problems. And when you already have calf pain it’s like throwing petrol on fire! 

It’s a must to buy a highly flexible shoe that will make it easy to run with your natural form. 

High Drop

Ignoring this feature will give your calf muscle a hard time. The drop means the difference in the height of the heel and ball of the runner’s foot after wearing the sneaker. 

A higher drop will reduce stress on your calf muscle and Achilles while a lower drop will do the opposite. You must ensure your shoe has a high drop. 

Arch Support

As long as you are looking for a shoe for your calf pain you must buy one that provides enough arch support. You need proper arch support on your feet and heel. 

Ensure that it matches your feet ‘shape. If you don’t get enough support the pain will increase for sure. I hope you don’t feel pain after spending dollars!

Durable and High traction Outsole

A strong rubber outsole that provides high-level traction on different tracks is of utmost importance. It increases safety during the run. A lower traction outsole will put pressure on your calf and other foot areas because you have to exert more energy for braking. 

Why does my calf hurt when I run?

Though it’s not super common among the runner community a good percentage of people often face and carry calf pain. Especially during running. 

According to the experts, there might be various reasons behind it. Let’s see what those are…

  1. Runners having calf pain often start running on their forefoot side. Because they think heel-strike running will create more stress and shocks on their calf. But landing every strike using your forefoot will not only hurt your toes but also your calf muscle. 

The best position is to make sure while landing your foot’s arch becomes flat. In simple words, try to make a flat landing with your foot and it will reduce your post-running calf pain. 

  1. Another factor is running on hilly tracks. You should not run too much on a hilly surface even if you live in a hillside location. Try to combine both flat and hill runs. It will help a lot with the immense calf pain.
  2. Some runners can’t control their urge for high-speed running but if you have calf pain you simply don’t go for a high-speed run. It will stop your calf muscle from getting proper recovery. 

You can run for a long time but at a moderate speed. In other words, focus on a fixed time rather than the distance covered. Slow-paced running will help you for sure. 

  1. Running without using your glute muscles is another underlying reason for calf pain during the run. You can learn the glute using techniques from any tutorials on YouTube. Make sure the professional certified trainer. 

When you are firing up the glute muscle during a run you will see a huge difference in the calf pain. 

How Do I Stop My Calves From Hurting When I Run?

Among many reasons behind calf pain one is overlooked and that is poor foot biomechanics. If your landing on track is not good you will surely have a hard time on your whole leg including calf pain.

A large number of runners know without knowing the proper mechanics of a perfect landing of the foot while running. It mostly happens because one doesn’t know the correct pattern you are bearing the calf pain during the run. All you need to do is to make sure your whole feet are getting shocks evenly during your training time.

Because of a tight calf muscle problem, some runners overpronate their feet during a sharp turn which eventually forms problems of collapsed arches and other problems. Finally, these problems transit to your calf and you pay the price of the pain. Buying shoes that will reduce the overpronation can help a bit but not that much.

Many runners often overlook the need for a change of the running track. If you keep running on hard surfaces with a less cushioning shoe you are negatively hammering your feet. As a result, calf pain will remain. Mixing your running track with both hard and soft surfaces will do mercy on your calf muscle. 

How do I strengthen my calves for running?

The human body is an amazing thing. The muscles that we use for running and walking among them the calf muscle are one of the most important. It provides full support during a normal walk. 

But any pain or cramp in the calf muscle can prevent you from walking normally for 2-3 days. So runners with calf pain can increase their calf muscle strength by doing some simple exercise. Let’s explore those…

Double leg & SIngle leg calf raises

For this exercise, bodyweight or dumbbells can be used. First, stand on a step bench or a stria with little weight in hand, and keep your feet width apart. Try to stand near a wall for the right balance. 

Now ensure that all your joints like hip, knee, and ankles are in a perfect vertical alignment. After that, step up with your tiptoes then press down on the ball of your foot to alleviate your body in the upward direction. Then hold for a few seconds then slowly lower back to the floor. 

For a single leg, calf raises follow everything the same but use one leg to increase more engagement of your calf. After doing double leg calf raises for a few days you can do it,

For the best outcome, repeat it for 15-20 reps.

Jumping Rope

This exercise is simple and very effective for strengthening your calf muscles. All you need is rope and keep jumping in place by putting pressure on the balls of your feet. Do it for 35-60 seconds. Repeat 3-4 times for best outcomes. Don’t forget to land on your toes which will help to gain the strength of your calf muscle. 

Toe Walking

Another simple workout for increasing the strength of the calf muscle. Just lift your feet and start walking forward using your toes for around 90 seconds. It will gradually increase your calf muscle strength. You can repeat this exercise in 3-5 sets for the optimum result.

Seated Calf Raise

An outstanding exercise to target and fire up your soleus muscle. You just start by sitting on a chair then keep the ball of the feet on a step. Now keep some weight plate on your thighs to increase resistance. 

During this exercise, you must ensure your toes are turned inward 15 degrees while both knees are bent at a 90-degree angle. 

Now take your heel back toward the ground surface until you feel a pulling or stretch feeling inside your calf muscles. After that, press the balls of your feet onto the surface then pull back your heel as music as you can go. Finally, lower the weight very slowly to five to six seconds to engage the calf muscles.

What can I do to ease calf pain?

Every muscle pain has its way of treatment. Calf pain is a common problem runners face. Single calf pain can take you off the track for a few weeks if it’s severe. I will explain some ways that will at least keep your calf pain at ease or least point. 


Stretching your leg would greatly help tone your calf muscles. Plus strengthening them also prevents pain and injury. You should stretch every day but make sure you don’t overwork your calf muscle. You can separate stretching calf exercises in the morning set and another one in the afternoon time.

Don’t run with pain

If you realize that there is still calf pain then you should not start running. It will deteriorate the condition of the calf muscle and ultimately you will have more problems with your legs. Don’t hurry and start running after the calf pain is gone.

Keep yourself hydrated

Staying dehydrated is never good for a normal person. And when a runner does that the problem becomes more intense. 

Whether you go for high-intensity running or low-intensity jogging it’s highly recommended to keep yourself hydrated to save yourself from sudden calf muscle cramps. 


This is a simple and ultra-effective thing you can give yourself for your calf pain. Elevate your leg at a minimum at heat level or a bit more to reduce swelling. Apply an ice pack every 15-20 minutes and rest for hours will keep your pain at ease. 


Even if you wear the best running shoes in the market you should also do related things like stretching and calf-strengthening exercises. 

No matter how less or severe your calf muscle pain is, don’t ignore it and try to sort it out as soon as possible. 

I hope among the 9 best running shoes for calf pain at least one is going to meet your needs.

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