Runners who are on a budget may consider purchasing one of these minimalist running shoes. Although some advanced running footwear have features that increase comfort, safety and performance, most of these shoes are rather expensive. These minimalist running shoes may not have all the bells and whistles found in high-end running shoes, they are more than enough for most runners.
- Saucony Grid Cohesion 4. Saucony has a reputation for crafting simple looking but comfortable footwear. The Grid Cohesion 4 is certainly no exception. Perfect for those with neutral pronation, it comes with a breathable air mesh upper and an HRC Strobel Board for extra cushioning. Admittedly, it is a little on the heavy side, weighing in at almost 12 ounces.
- Saucony Grid Ignition 2. Another in Saucony's line of minimalist running shoes is the Grid Ignition 2. Available in black with silver as well as gray and black with a touch of orange, the Grid Ignition 2 is another shoe designed for those with neutral pronation. Retailing for around $65, the shoe tips the scale at 11.2 ounces.
- New Balance 525. New Balance is known for their high quality footwear. While the 525 is one of their cheapest models, it is still a well made shoe. The retro look is popular among runners and although the predominantly gray and black look may be a tad boring, it may be the most durable minimalist running shoe on the market. The suede and mesh upper is incredibly tough and the rubber outsole can withstand insane amounts of wear and tear.
- Asics Gel-Strike 2. The Gel-Strike 2 is on the lower end of the price spectrum in as far as Asics running shoes are concerned. It only sells for around $50 but it does have features found in more expensive models. For instance, these shoes uses reflective materials in the design which makes them more visible in low light conditions. It also employs the patented GEL cushioning system which provides excellent shock absorbing properties.
- Asics Equation 4. Another no-frills shoe from the Asics' line of running shoes, the Equation 4 only sells for around $50. The sole is made of solid rubber which may add to the weight but makes it extremely long lasting. Runners can also look forward to superior cushioning thanks to the Asics GEL technology.
- Converse One Star. Converse is normally not known for their running shoes. However, the company has released running shoes in limited numbers which cater to budget-conscious runners. The One Star from Converse is as simple as they come. It retails for under $30 and comes in both white and black.
- Adidas Galaxy Elite. While the majority of minimalist running shoes are conservatively designed, the Galaxy Elite from Adidas is quite the looker. It incorporates an internal fitted cage which is a relatively new feature in footwear. The technology allows not only for a more comfortable experience but also a truer fit.
- Adidas Dragon. The Adidas Dragon has been a favorite since the 70s. Little has changed from the original design. Available in wacky retro colors, the shoe retains the distinct wedge midsole. While it may not be as comfortable as more modern models, the shoe is definitely a looker. This is one of the few true running shoes that also looks good with a pair of jeans.
- Nike Dual Fusion ST. Nike has quite the reputation for their trailblazing designs. They are also known for higher-priced footwear. For runners who wish to don the famous swoosh logo, the Dual Fusion should be seriously considered. Sporting a clean-cut design, the shoes perform extremely well. Perhaps the only drawback is the lack of Nike's Air technology.
- Puma Voltaic 2. The Puma Voltaic 2 is a bare bones, minimalist running shoe. Available in both white and black, the Voltaic uses reflective 3M strips in the fabric to maximize visibility. It is rather hard to come by stateside but runners lucky enough to find them stateside are sure to be mildly surprised by the affordable $80 price tag.
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