Best Running Shoes for IT Band Syndrome in 2020

Knee pain is one of the common problems with most active people. It could get worse for those who love running, especially the athletes. A majority of them suffer from knee pains each year. This pain hinders you from enjoying your daily sports activities and might even become worse with time if not treated correctly. There are causes and cures for such pains that this article is going to look at, but the main focus is on the best shoes for knee pain, also referred to as Iliotibial (IT) Band Syndrome.

This can happen due to various causes like overtraining, running many hills, and wrong running form, among others. These injuries are very frustrating as they can take up to months to go away. This is the reason different companies have designed shoes that will offer you support for any knee problem.

5 Best Running Shoes for IT Band Syndrome




My Rating


Asics Gel Kayano 23 Running Shoe


New Balance Fresh Foam

1080v9 Running Shoe


New Balance  M890 Neutral Running Shoe


Puma Faas 600 V3 Running Shoe


Saucony Hurricane Running Shoe

5 Best Running Shoes for IT Band Syndrome (Review)

These shoes have been selected with the runner's welfare in mind. They will help deal with the ITBS, which is a problem for most of them. Since one way of dealing with this condition is getting good running shoes, here is a review of such products.

Asics Gel Kayano 23 Running Shoe

It tops the list of 5 best running shoes. This upgraded version is lightweight to help with any knee problems. It offers you comfort through cushioning that help absorb shock as you run as well as other features like grip, fit, and durability. The shoe has an added outer sole to ensure it lasts you as long as possible.


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    ​Gel cushioning will act as a shock absorber for more comfort
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    ​Has superb breathability feature
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    ​Is ideal for overpronation and knee pain
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    ​The outsole's traction will offer the intended support on various surfaces


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    ​It is a bit pricey

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v9 Running Shoe

This is another great choice on the list. It is one of the New Balance Fresh Foam Series. Its midsole offers you the required support coupled with comfort to eliminate knee pains.


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    ​Very durable
    Very durable
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    ​Enough breathability for long runs
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    ​Good amount of cushioning and support from the Fresh Foam midsole
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    ​It fits like a sock giving you a confident use
    It fits like a sock giving you a confident use


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    ​The upper design is not seamless
    The upper design is not seamless
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    ​Can be stiff
    Can be stiff

New Balance M890 Neutral Running Shoe

This pair offers all the below functionalities too, making it your best choice.


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    ​It comes with one of a kind breathability and fit due to its great FantomFit design
    It comes with one of a kind breathability and fit due to its great FantomFit design
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    ​Its smooth upper construction will ensure no irritation occurs
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    ​The REVlite midsole will give you much needed cushioning


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    ​It has a narrow toe box and might not fit a person with a wide foot

Puma Faas 600 V3 Running Shoe

Puma models have never disappointed, and this one is no exception. Puma Faas 600 is the solution to your knee pain. It is also an affordable option for the short-handed.


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    ​Great breathability
    Great breathability
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    ​Comes at a reasonable price
    Comes at a reasonable price
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    ​It's lacing system and fit offers you a secure and comfortable run
    It's lacing system and fit offers you a secure and comfortable run
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    ​It is designed to fit perfectly
    It is designed to fit perfectly


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    ​There have been reported concerns about the outsole's durability
    There have been reported concerns about the outsole's durability

Saucony Hurricane Running Shoe

This is the 16th edition of the Saucony Hurricane, which offers a combination of steadiness and protection. Those with knee pain have agreed with the stability offered by this shoe. It is also cushioned to help you go for long runs without any pain or injury. It is perfect for heavy runners and those who are out of shape due to inactivity.


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    ​Superb stability
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    ​Lightweight rubber offers protection and cushioning
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    ​Great ground contact
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    ​Reflective parts allow you to have a safe run
    Reflective parts allow you to have a safe run
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    ​Comes with Sauc-Fit Technology that enhances its comfortability
    Comes with Sauc-Fit Technology that enhances its comfortability


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    ​It is a bit narrow
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    ​Limited colors to choose from
    Limited colors to choose from
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    ​Might be heavy for fast runners
    Might be heavy for fast runners

If you are a long-distance runner, it is good to know that your shoes cushioning will wear out quite easily and you might be tempted to continue using them since they look good on the outside. This is a big mistake. The following will help you prevent any more ITBS recurrences:

  • Replace running shoes frequently to avoid wearing those with worn out inner cushioning
  • Always give your shoes time to rest so that the cushioning can get restored; it would be wise to have two pairs of running shoes.

Although shoes can offer you relief from ITBS, it is better to look out for other ways of helping you cope with or eliminate the pain entirely. Also, know what triggers the problem and avoid it at all costs.

What is iliotibial band syndrome

The iliotibial band (ITB) is usually a structure whose job is to provide leg stability whenever you take a step. It works with the hip muscles in a thigh's outward movement and also helps counter the movements within the knee joint. This band starts in the hip and ends just under the knee joint.

Repeated use of the ITB leads to stress, causing knee pain. You will also notice clicking sensations from the joint as ITB snaps across it. This pain is always experienced when the heel comes into contact with the ground; running slowly or downhill tends to make the symptoms worse.

ITBS will usually start as tightness while running but continues to a point where the pain is severe and unbearable. Although ITB continues to tighten when overstressed or injured from training, this is not the main problem. What causes the injury is how the ITB functions and the weakness around it.

The ITB is generally a weak structure and any weakness around it will lead to injury. Most runners have weak core muscles due to the fact that they don't do strength training or have never been in any sports with side-to-side movement.


Signs of IT Band Syndrome

If you are a runner, you will be able to distinguish ITBS by:


  • A swelling
  • A cracking feeling when stretching the knee
  • A feeling of burning, stinging and aching on the outer side of the knee that might migrate to the thigh. You will notice these discomforts especially, on your second half of the run.
  • Bending the knee at 45 degrees causes severe external knee pain

Criteria You Should Follow When Selecting the Best Running Shoes for ITBS

There are various things that you should always consider when buying running shoes. Since most runners experience knee pain, it is wise to look for shoes that will help alleviate this pain without slowing them down. Below are some of the features to look out for in running shoes:

Stability/ Support

Since it is common to have knee pains due to lack of motion control and lack of stability, it is good to choose shoes that will offer you the support you need while running. If your running shoes don't have any stability, you will end up stressing out your knee, which will result in pain and discomfort while running.


If you want to do away with pain, you might consider looking for a fit pair of shoes as they will reduce any pain, causing issues in the long run. Pay attention to small specifics like shoes that offer enough heel space, sufficient toe box room, and enough space for wide feet. Your toes should be able to move freely without being constricted.

If your foot cannot move freely and the toes are restricted from spreading, it could lead to painful issues in your feet, legs, and knees.

Motion control footwear is not the whole solution; you need to ensure your feet can still function naturally as they are supposed to.


No one wants to wear uncomfortable shoes! Each of these selected best shoes come with upper and underfoot comforts to ensure you get to enjoy your run.

Most of these shoes are made with DNA technology, Gel cushioning, and REVlite midsole for ultimate comfort.


Your running shoes should run their course without falling apart as this will cause you pain in the long-run. If they promise to offer you support, they should do just that and not start peeling off and tearing when you are on the run.

The above 5 shoes have passed the durability test to ensure they give you maximum performance.


Although this has nothing to do with knees, it is paramount that your running shoes have enough breathing space to avoid accumulating excess moisture, which might bring discomfort and other feet related problems.

There is no magical cure for knee pain and you should always know the root cause. This way, you will be able to come up with the best solution of minimizing or even eliminating the pain entirely. Although there are various causes of knee pain, this article is focusing on ITB syndrome which happens to be one of the causes.


These shoes have been tried and tested and found to offer support and help in managing the iliotibial band syndrome. Asics takes the lead on these best shoes. It comes with gel cushioning that will offer you the best shock absorption and maximum comfort as seen above. Its sole is also made to help you tackle any terrain and you can be assured that your knees will thank you later. The only drawback is the price, which is on the upper-side. However, always remember that cheap is expensive.

If you are an active person or an athlete suffering from ITBS, go ahead and get yourself a pair of these shoes as per your preference and choice.

Patricia Nolan

Patricia is a podiatrist (foot and ankle specialist) practicing in Pennsylvania Hospital. Dr. Nolan completed her undergraduate education at Temple University, Podiatric Medicine, and went on to the New York University of Podiatric Medicine to continue her medical training. She is board-certified in Emergency and Podiatric Medicine. Her biggest expertise is foot and sport injuries. She is a big fan of running; furthermore, she’s an expert in choosing the proper footwear and shoes for running and other sports.

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