7 Best Treadmill Running Shoes in 2022

Jovana Subic
Jovana Subic on
7 Best Treadmill Running Shoes in 2022

Running on a treadmill resembles road running more than trail running, because there are no twists, turns, puddles, obstacles. Ideal for speed runs! But, the surface is softer than roads.

That’s why nearly all road running shoes (which is ⅔ of the market) can be used for running on a treadmill. We have tested more than 100 running shoes that are treadmill-ready to pick out the best ones for you.

We have selected five categories depending on what you may consider a priority. It is the shoe’s versatility? Cushioning? Support? Ability to go fast? Price? You’ve got the top pick in each of these.

In this guide you will also find expert advice on how to choose the best treadmill running shoes.

How we test running shoes

With nearly 500 shoes for treadmill running, it is our goal to help you choose the right one.

Our team spends hours scrutinizing every single release through our independent shoe testing lab:

  • Our committed testers log 30-50 miles in each pair to provide extensive feedback.
  • We then slice the shoes up into pieces and measure over 30 different parameters to translate "performance" into comparable data.
  • All tested shoes are purchased with our own funds to help us stay unbiased.
  • To make it even more comprehensive, our system collates thousands of expert and user reviews on all treadmill running shoes.

In the end, each shoe gets a CoreScore. It is a number from 0 to 100 that allows us to compare and rank all running shoes.

The best shoes for running on the treadmill end up on this list.

Best treadmill running shoes overall

Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38
Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38

Corescore

86
Great!
4.3 / 5 from 2,724 users
88 / 100 from 21 experts

Pros

  • Wider than Pegasus 37
  • Very stable ride
  • Peppy toe-off
  • Hugs your feet 
  • Padded upper
  • Very durable (400-500miles)
  • Grippy even on dirt roads
  • Legit workhorse
  • Doubles as a gym shoe
  • A joy to run in

Cons

  • Runs warm
  • Above-average weight

Verdict

Now on its 38th iteration, the Nike Pegasus continues to convince us that it’s the GOAT of all workhorse shoes. It has surpassed everything we threw at it with flying colors! 

We love to put our shoes to the test to really see how they’d perform, and this shoe has been nothing short of AWESOME. From daily runs, tempo sessions to gym training, it eats them all up. 

To reach this rank, of course, we had to evaluate it as a treadmill shoe, and it’s been fantastic! When it comes to blending comfort and pop, nothing does it better than the Pegasus 38. 

And its stability was just as great. In our lab tests, we have gathered that it’s 109.5mm wide in the forefoot and 80.7mm wide in the heel. In essence, it’s as stable as you can get! 

Like a true Pegasus, this version doesn’t skimp on durability. Although its React midsole is 18% softer than average foams, it still is dense. After a series of rough wear tests, it’s still not bottoming out. Because of this, we’re estimating it’s going to last well between 400-500 miles. 

If you think the party stops there, it only gets better! 

The traction of this shoe is INSANE. Even on dirt, we felt confident. And its superb lockdown takes everything to a whole new level. The upper hugged our feet so well, we had NO issues with slips. 

At $120, the Nike Pegasus 38 is terrific!

See our full review and facts

Treadmill running shoes with best cushioning

Brooks Glycerin 19
Brooks Glycerin 19

Corescore

91
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 37,631 users
89 / 100 from 24 experts

Pros

  • Plushy 
  • Wide-feet friendly
  • Tongue stays put
  • Perfect midfoot lock
  • Soft and stable ride
  • Durable
  • Great grip even on dirt roads
  • Roomy toebox
  • Smooth ride
  • Perfect for daily runs

Cons

  • Lacks pep underfoot
  • Too warm for summer days

Verdict

The Brooks Glycerin 19 is dubbed as Brooks’ softest running shoe yet, and we couldn’t disagree. Seriously, its cushioning is just out of this world! 

We’re telling you, this shoe’s comfort is just a solid 10/10. It’s very plush underfoot, it’s almost like our feet were enveloped with fluffy clouds! And because we’re geeks for everything shoes, we’ve measured that it’s 75% softer than other shoes. 

If the feet had dreams, it’s this one right here. 

And the upper only makes this shoe streets ahead! It’s soft and well-padded, it’s been giving our feet nothing but pampering from the first stride down to the last. 

With the gusseted tongue, our feet are locked securely in place. No wobbling, no rolling. It’s just pure goodness when it comes to lockdown. 

And if you’re thinking this shoe forgoes sturdiness in favor of comfort. Well, it’s here to prove you wrong. After pacing it through, the midsole is just as lively as it was fresh from the box. The outsole is not wearing out either! With its high-strength qualities, you can easily get 400-500 miles before retiring it in your closet.

See our full review and facts

Best treadmill running shoes for speed

Saucony Endorphin Speed 2
Saucony Endorphin Speed 2

Corescore

91
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 1,529 users
92 / 100 from 18 experts

Pros

  • Fun, peppy ride
  • Runs like a race shoe
  • Lightweight
  • Plenty breathable
  • Smooth rockered transitions
  • Great lockdown
  • 2 pairs of laces
  • One shoe Race, Tempo, Trainer
  • More flexible than other carbon-plated shoes
  • Reflective detail for night runs
  • Easy to put on (pull tab on the tongue and heel)

Cons

  • Learning curve needed for heel strikers or slower paces
  • Slipper on wet surfaces

Verdict

It can break records, and it sure has got everything to pace you on your treadmill. If we can pick one shoe that screams fast, the obvious answer is the Saucony Endorphin Speed 2. 

It’s the superlative of bouncy. So much so, we felt like we were zooming through the blocks with each step in it! 

And unlike other speed trainers, it doesn’t fall short on comfort. It’s NOT harsh to the feet at all. If anything, all we got underfoot was pure softness. 

In our lab tests, we have gathered that it’s 39.6N flexible (contrary to the average 37.2N). In simpler terms, it’s more supportive than other daily trainers and it doesn’t lose its ability to be a fun ride! 

At 8.1 oz, it’s got the makings of a dedicated race-day shoe. It’s super lightweight, we totally forgot about it on the run. 

Even better, its lockdown is king! The upper just molded into our feet, keeping everything nice and tucked in. ZERO wobbling and slips in this shoe. 

Ultimately, the Saucony Endorphin Speed 2 is true to its name. It’s made for speed, and it sure does run like it! And if you want one shoe for your tempo training runs and race day, this is THE shoe. 

See our full review and facts

Best road treadmill running shoes

Hoka One One Mach 4
Hoka One One Mach 4

Corescore

92
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 8,554 users
94 / 100 from 28 experts

Pros

  • Glove-like fit
  • Perfect lockdown
  • Has an elf tab
  • Lightweight
  • Balanced 
  • Superb comfort
  • Extremely stable
  • Large reflective elements

Cons

  • Stiff for an everyday trainer
  • Not a tempo shoe either
  • Break-in period needed

Verdict

Among all the shoes we've tested, nothing comes close to how the Saucony Endorphin Speed fits the bill as a speedster that can certainly go the distance! Whether it's a 10K, half marathon, or marathon, you can set PBs in this baby! Might feel weird while walking or jogging, but becomes a perfect fit when you really pick up the pace. It's made for speed, and it sticks to that!
See our full review and facts

Best treadmill running shoes for flat feet

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21
Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21

Corescore

92
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 70,269 users
90 / 100 from 18 experts

Pros

  • fits true to size
  • secure fit
  • great stability
  • gusseted tongue
  • soft but not mushy
  • superb durability
  • no lace bite

Cons

  • not for speedy runs
  • could be lighter

Verdict

Being a staple among runners who overpronate, the Brooks Adrenaline GTS sure does everything right. And having tested past editions, the Adrenaline GTS 21 is easily our choice for the best of the best! 

Unlike other stability shoes in our arsenal, it’s not rock solid. On the contrary, it’s a very balanced ride - an amazing blend of support and comfort. In each step, we were surefooted and cushioned. 

Even better, stability is only there when you need it. So if you’re a neutral runner in need of extra support, this shoe is just as enjoyable as it is for those with moderate to severe overpronation. 

And the upper has been nothing but cozy. Even better, it does a stellar job in locking the feet in place, taking support a step further. 

Like a true Brooks, it doesn’t shy on strength! We love to really hammer our shoes on the pavement, and this one is no different. And boy did this shoe wow us! It still looks and runs like brand-new. 

At 10.2 oz, this shoe just tips our scales! But if it means more support and comfort, plus a solid durability, we’d be more than willing to take it any day.

See our full review and facts

Best value treadmill running shoes

Reebok Floatride Energy 3
Reebok Floatride Energy 3

Corescore

92
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 1,151 users
92 / 100 from 16 experts

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Responsive
  • Peppy ride
  • Heel tab
  • Lugged outsole
  • Durable
  • Price

Cons

  • Feels a touch long
  • Runs a bit warm

Verdict

If you want comfort that lasts, nothing does it better than the Reebok Floatride Energy 3. For a shoe that doesn’t break the bank, we were more than surprised! 

Upon step-in, our feet were welcomed with a 360-degree plushness. The upper was soft, we swear we could run barefoot in it. And the midsole? It’s as pillowy as it could get. 

The breathability just won us over! When we tested it out under hot temps, this shoe was marvelous. 

And good news to our fellow wide-footed runners, this shoe has more than enough room to open up to our feet. The toe box is amply spaced, you can wiggle your toes with no sweat. 

With its gusseted tongue, lockdown is taken up a notch. The tongue stays in place, and the feet are tucked in. In our test runs, we had NO issues with slips. 

Because we love to really bruise our shoes (to see how good they are), we had to really beat up the Reebok Floatride Energy 3. And amazingly, it withstood everything we threw at it! 

After clocking 100 miles, its quality is A-OK!

See our full review and facts

4 things to look for in treadmill running shoes

If you’re new to running and you’re buying your first running shoes, get familiar with the terminology and make the best choice by reading our guide about buying running shoes.

Treadmill-running-shoe-features.png

1. Lightness

The treadmill is great for doing tempo runs, but also long runs. The best thing: it’s running on a somewhat soft surface under controlled conditions. This means you don’t need the features (e.g. fancy grip, rugs, plates) that would make your shoe heavier and durable. Lightweight treadmill running shoes are already ranked and at your fingertips.

saucony-kinvara-12-weight.jpg

2. Breathability

Running indoors usually means no natural airflow. Avoid too much sweating by choosing highly breathable shoes. On RunRepeat, you can filter only breathable treadmill running shoes.

The most breathable shoes come with an ultra-thin see-through upper.

3. Pronation control

If this is something you usually look for in running shoes, don’t deviate. Running on a treadmill means more repetitive movements without oscillating, so make sure you have all the control you need.

The table below will help you understand if you need a neutral, stability, or motion control treadmill shoe.

Arch types and recommended shoes.png

See how the level of support increases from neutral to motion control running shoes:

neutral-stability-motion-control.jpg

neutral shoe (left) vs. stability shoe (center) vs. motion control shoe (right) 

Still confused? Go with a neutral shoe or read our in-depth guide on arch support and who needs it.

4. Cushioning

Don’t avoid cushioning you’re used to, especially if you’ve been running on softer terrain before.

asics-shoes-cushioning.jpg

Novablast has a visibly thicker cushioning under the heel (7 mm more)

Advanced tip: try running on a treadmill and see if your foot strike changes. Since you’re not moving forward, you might use your heel more. This might call for heel-strike cushioning options.

Expert advice for running on a treadmill

  1. Since there’s no wind resistance nor variation in the terrain, running on a treadmill with no incline equals to running on an easy downhill outside. That’s why setting a 1-2% incline works the best if you want to run as hard as you would outdoors. To learn more, read this study that proved that 1% treadmill grade most accurately reflects the energetic cost of outdoor running. 
  2. The perception of speed differs when running on a treadmill and overground (as explained here). Runners might run slower than in overground conditions while feeling like they’re achieving the same speed. In order not to overtrain, set the treadmill speed according to your running abilities. This might be your perfect opportunity to work on a step count (cadence). Shorter strides, improved cadence. To improve cadence usually refers to getting that number higher.
  3. Keep your hands moving naturally while running and don't hold on to the handrail.
  4. Keep your body in an upright position and don’t look down, it will help with your balance.
  5. Shoes you’ve chosen for treadmill running might be used for easy gym sessions too.

Expert-advice-for-running-on-a-treadmill.png

If you happen to enjoy spending time in the gym and want to level up, RunRepeat has a database of workout shoes, training shoes and weightlifting shoes ready for you. 

Treadmill shoes vs. other running shoes [FAQ]

Can I run on a treadmill in my regular running shoes?

Yes, under a few conditions.

  • You have shoes for road and not trail running. Lugs/crampons aren’t suitable for a treadmill. 
  • Your shoes are comfortable, breathable, and lightweight. 
  • You need to wash/clean your regular running shoes. 

Can I use treadmill running shoes for gym workouts? 

Yes, if you’re doing light gym workouts (easy functional training, easy weight-lifting). If you’re doing specific workouts, you should look for a type of shoe that offers features (stability) needed for such a workout. That’s why we have a collection of CrossFit shoes, weightlifting shoes, training shoes, and HIIT shoes ready for you.

treadmill-shoe-vs-cross-trainer.jpg

Saucony Ride (left) is a well-cushioned running shoe that is best for continuous forward movement. Nike Metcon (right) is one of the best-rated gym shoes. It has a low, firm platform for weightlifting and plenty of side support for agility movements.

Can I use gym shoes for running on a treadmill? 

Yes, if you own a regular training shoe that’s a perfect fit for you and you’re not running longer distances. 

No, if you have shoes made for specific workouts such as weightlifting, HIIT, CrossFit. Basically, a shoe needs to fit in the treadmill-running shoe description for you to be OK to run in it on a treadmill. 

When to replace treadmill running shoes? 

A shoe can last only so much. It depends on how much you run, how you run, and shoe features. It’s time to change your treadmill running shoes once you notice: 

  1. Pain or muscle soreness that hasn’t happened before, during, or after a run. Pay special attention to pain in your (both) knees. 
  2. You’re wearing the shoes unevenly (because you overpronate or underpronate) and you start to miss original functionality - stability, control, or cushioning. You’ll recognize this happening because you will feet will be aching after the run, you’ll feel pain at each impact, or your feet won’t feel stable enough during the run.

What are the cheapest treadmill running shoes in 2022?

  1. Reebok Flashfilm 3.0 - from $30
  2. Reebok Energylux 3 - from $37
  3. Adidas Questar - from $38
  4. Adidas SL20.3 - from $39
  5. Reebok Energen Plus - from $40
  6. Adidas EQ21 - from $40
  7. Under Armour Charged Vantage - from $40
  8. Reebok Lite 3 - from $42
  9. Adidas Response Super 2.0 - from $43
  10. Nike Flex Experience Run 10 - from $43
  11. Asics Gel Contend 7 - from $44
  12. Adidas Alphatorsion - from $44
  13. Asics Jolt 3 - from $44
  14. Under Armour Runplay - from $44
  15. Adidas Runfalcon 2.0 - from $44

See all treadmill running shoes sorted by lowest price

Author
Jovana Subic
Jovana Subic

Whether it's a vertical kilometre or an ultra, climbing in the Alps or exploring local mountains, Jovana uses every opportunity to trade walls and concrete for forests and trails. She logs at least 10h/week on trails, with no off-season, and 4x more on research on running and running shoes. With a background in physics and engineering management, she prefers her running spiced with data.