Best New Balance Running Shoes Compared

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Searching for New Balance Running shoes? Take a look at the best Pairs of 2017, Pros & Cons and what to be aware of before buying them online or in a store.

Proudly made in the United States and England and keeping the same quality for over 100 years has made New Balance one of the best running shoe companies in the world.

Unlike its competitors who run to China to manufacture their shoes, New Balance carefully selects its materials and comes up with an unmatched shoe of its highest quality to cross the finish line. The company portrays their care for craftsmanship in a shoe which goes hand in hand with their belief, “We Were Born To Move” and “Let’s Move The World” and through their motto, they stand out and show how to be different and still excel in a competitive industry.

The result? New Balance running shoes that give you great quality, performance technology and fashion that is shown in hundreds of shoes. A company that focuses on its customers’ needs and constantly improves its technology to improve the runner’s performance. Millions return to the New Balance shoes and wouldn’t even dare to try running with other shoes.

Coming up with a top 10 list for New Balance shoes can be daunting, especially since they produce so many great options. From classic looks, to modern, here are our top 10 running shoes from New Balance.

Last Updated: October 31, 2017
By Brian Price:

Among the changes and new additions to our list, you’ll find version 7 of the 860 has been added to the top. This stability is an update to one of the brands longer lasting models, which continues to do really well.

You’ll also find some more addtional info and frequently asked questions below.

860 v7
  • 860 v7
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Designed for stability
  • Price: See Here
990v4
  • 990v4
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • ENCAP midsole technology
  • Price: See Here
M940V3
  • M940V3
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Ideal for overpronators
  • Price: See Here

 

10 Best New Balance Running Shoes

 

860v7

If support is what you are looking for, We're sure the seventh version of the 860 will not disappoint. This model what designed around support and the ability to provide confident stability to runners who need it.

It has all of the basics as well. Responsive cushioning, seamless interior construction, Good foot lock down and positioning when sized correctly, etc.
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Comfort / Stability
As far as comfort goes, this brand usually does pretty well. The 860v7 falls right in line with most of their stability models, as far as that goes. The cushioning is plenty, without being overly done for those who don't want super bulky shoes. They might be slightly heavier than a lower profile model, but that is something you'll get from the added cushioning in the sole.

The stability that this one provides is ideal for runners who are dealing with slight pronation issues, as well as some other foot conditions which require more support.

Quality / Durability
There haven't been many complaints with regards to these having any notable problems with falling apart. In large, this brand does pretty good in the durability department.
Pros

Designed for support and stability

The heel does a good job of locking the foot down for most

Seamless interior prevents irritation and blisters

The cushioning is soft yet very responsive

Cons

A bit expensive for New Balance



990v4

990v4
These running shoes have thousands of reviews out there, and everywhere, they’re just short of a perfect score. They’re a bit expensive for NB, but they’re some of the best New Balance running shoes for so many reasons. You can get these in almost any color from gray, black, and beige to red, light green, and royal blue. They’re supportive for mild-pronators and offer great stability for road running. Think daily trainers that will last you a long time.
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Comfort / Stability

The 990 is a excellent combination of comfort, stability and support, wrapped up in a classic looking package. The superb stability and comfort make these a reliable choice for many different sports activities, as well as everyday casual wear. The 990 tends to work well with a variety of different foot issues.

Quality / Durability

The large amount of customer reviews are pretty good, however there are some who complain about the sole coming apart quickly. The issue could be relative to the type of use that the shoes undergo, so that may be something to consider. In all, these perform quite well
Pros
  • ABZORB crash pad on midsole for smooth transitions
  • Classic, attractive style in many colors
  • Comfort that lasts for many miles
  • Durable carbon rubber Ndurance outsole
  • Reflective detailing for night runs
Cons
  • Expensive for NB


M940v3

M940v3
Minimalists, these are for you! The M940V3 running shoes are ultra-lightweight and come with a low top arch. If you crave heavy cushioning, opt for a more maximalist shoe. If you want a shoe that’s high on responsiveness and bounce, go for these. The soles are just thick enough to protect your foot and just light enough to feel weightless.
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Comfort / Stability

Very comfortable. The M940V3 is received really well, especially with those who want a minimal amount of shoe, but desire responsiveness and a bit of bounce. The shoe has stabilizing overlays, 4 mm drop and a durable Vibram outsole, all of which help with additional stability and support.

Quality / Durability

As these are lightweight shoe of a very attractive design, with very little stitching, they do have some issues with the sole peeling away a bit after constant use, for some.
Pros
  • Antimicrobial features keep the foot clean and dry
  • Durable and breathable upper construction
  • Great option for overpronators
  • Lightweight build
Cons
  • Sizing runs small


Minimus 20v5

Minimus 20v5
These minimalist New Balance runners are the top rated within their category. Testers loved the Vibram outsole and the incredible amount of comfort that these lightweight runners offered them.
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Comfort / Stability

Highest marks in comfort, these minimal running shoes are far from a thin, compromising shoe. Runners prefer these over most minimal running shoes.

Quality / Durability

Strong quality and great feedback in terms of durability from runners that log in a lot of miles.
Pros
  • Breathable lining
  • Cradles foot for great support
  • Durable rubber sole
  • EVA footbed for comfort and support
  • IMEVA midsole for comfort and support
Cons
  • Some testers found them to get dirty quickly, no issues with durability. 

Leadville v3

Leadville v3
If you’re looking for trail running shoes, the Leadville by New Balance might as well be classics. As is the case with a lot of the best New Balance running shoes, these babies are unparalleled in affordability. These shoes are particularly popular for runners looking for great arch support and stability for tough terrains. The outsole is really strong and durable, which means you can hit the trails for a long time in these.
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Comfort / Stability

Intended for off-road treks, the Leadville provides great comfort, stability and support when hitting the trails. The PU foam sockliner take a little time to break in, but adds some additional overall support. These get mixed reviews, but the overwhelming majority are positive.

Quality / Durability

The Leadville come with excellent customer feedback in terms of quality and durability. They are built to last!
Pros
  • Highly rated trail runner
  • Comfortable foam sockliner
  • EVA midsole for custom, comfortable fit
  • Very comfortable for long, tough runs and trails
  • AT (all-terrain) outsole makes these versatile for various terrains
Cons
  • Some testers found them to be a little smaller

675v2

675v2
These running shoes are bought over and over again for many reasons, but one clear reason is that they’re massively affordable. For the quality you get, they are yet another steal.
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Comfort / Stability

The 675V2 gets excellent marks for overall comfortability. With the IMEVA foam midsole, Padded tongue and collar and Memory top insert, these have good supportive properties that provide comfort and stability. These do, however, run about a half size small.

Quality / Durability

The reviews are pretty mixed with regards to the durability of the 675V2. There are some complaints about strength of the mesh upper.
Pros
  • Breathable mesh
  • Runners rave about their comfort
  • Supportive for those with plantar fasciitis
  • Versatile – great for any athletic activities
  • Well-cushioned IMEVA foam midsole
Cons
  • The sizing is a bit small

Fresh Foam 1080v6

Fresh Foam 1080v6
These running shoes are another highly rated running shoe from New Balance. An extremely breathable upper mesh keeps your feet nice and cool, even on longer runs. The OrthoLite sock liner and padded tongue and collar were very comfortable according to testers.
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Comfort / Stability

This neutral runner sports an IMEVA foam midsole, Abzorb shock-absorbing heel, Dual comfort insert and a rubber wrap for medial stability. The mesh upper allows good breathability. There are even some customer reviews that say these worked well for plantar fasciitis.

Quality / Durability

As the overall comfort, stability and support rate very high, the durability of the 560V6 tends to be a little lacking. Several customer complaints mention holes developing in the mesh upper early after use. However, it may depend on the type of activities these shoes are used for.
Pros
  • ABZORB heel absorbs shock
  • IMEVA foam midsole for support
  • Outsole with protective, durable rubber
  • Rubber wrap for stability
  • Stitched overlays for customizable, snug fit
Cons
  • A little expensive

890v4

890v4
These neutral running shoes are some of the best New Balance running shoes because they’re versatile. You can go to the trails to track to treadmill to Zumba with no trouble. Since they’re comfy, you might as well go on a walk too. If you struggle with over-pronation, these are a helpful, supportive pair of running shoes. The pros list is long for these. Check it out!
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Comfort / Stability

The padded tongue and collar, Ortholite insole, RELite midsole and Blown rubber outsole offer outstanding comfort, stability and shock absorbent properties. Overall, the 890V5 get great reviews from customers when it comes to the shoe’s comfort.

Quality / Durability

Although the comfort is exceptional, the quality has a few issues that affect the shoe’s durability. There are several customer reviews which claim that the overlays peel off and the seems begin to come undone.
Pros
  • FantomFit tech upper for great fit and breathability
  • Helpful for over-pronators
  • Highly versatile
  • Ndurance rubber outsoles are durable and resistant to rough terrains
  • REVlite midsole foam for smooth heel to toe transitions
Cons
  • Narrow fit

1260v5

1260v5
Wanna get some good looks from other people at the gym or the track? Go for the 1260s. With neutral to bright colors and dynamic dash patterns, these shoes are an attractive option. They’re some of the best New Balance running shoes because they’re jam-packed with high-tech features. The technology comes at an expense, though: these shoes are somewhat heavy. They might be a little too heavy for long distances, but they make for great daily trainers.
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Comfort / Stability

Sharing many features in common with others from the latest lines of New Balance, this version of the 1260 offers great comfort. Their ABZORB cushioning is specifically designed to handle shock from impacts, and the T-BEAM midfoot shank helps to provide added stability. These are ideal shoe for those who are over-pronators. They are a bit more narrow than the previous version, so keep that in mind.

Quality / Durability

There aren’t really any quality issues which affect the durability of these. They seem to do pretty well.
Pros
  • ABZORB crash pad for stability and shock absorption
  • Attractive
  • Ortholite Premium insole for arch support and cushioning
  • Stable for over-pronators
  • T-BEAM midfoot stability
Cons
  • Heavier than they look
  • A bit higher priced

Fresh Foam Zante v2

Fresh Foam Zante v2
These shoes are attractive and available in a variety of bright, energizing colors. They’re minimalistic, but they’ve got just enough support and protection for trail running. They easily transfer to the streets and tracks as well. What makes these shoes some of the best New Balance running shoes is that they’re highly durable. They can stomp over a variety of terrains without wearing down. Although they’re stable and supportive, they retain flexibility, which is unique for a trail running shoe.
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Comfort / Stability

With a well ventilated mesh upper, ACTEVA midsole for cushioning and compression resistance and a Vibram outsole for maximum surface contact and great multidirectional traction, these shoes possess all of the comfort and stability features that make up an excellent minimalistic running shoe. If this is the type of shoe that you like, then this one is an optimal choice. The internal construction of this shoe is supposed to be barefoot friendly, but it is really recommended to wear socks in order to avoid blisters.

Quality / Durability

In general, many customer reviews suggest that these don't hold up too well with aggressive trail running over rougher terrain. For light trails and semi-rough paths they seem to do pretty good though.
Pros
  • Flexible
  • Great grip and traction on a variety of terrains
  • Outsole durability is strong
  • Quick to dry
  • Versatile from trails to roads
Cons
  • A bit narrow in the forefoot, but only to a small percentage of users

870v4

870v4
The N symbol is big on the 870s, and this could be because New Balance is so proud of these running shoes. For such high-quality shoes, the 870s are highly affordable. They’re just lightweight enough to allow runners to endure long distances. With their arch support, they make great trainers for neutrals and slight over-pronators as well. To avoid injury and feel comfortable for long runs, these are a good pick.
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Comfort / Stability

These are comfortable running shoes. They offer a good amount of support and stability to see you down the road comfortably. With its breathable mesh upper your feet should stay nice and dry on those longer runs. Adiitionally, Their ABZORB shock absorbing cushions comfortably helps to protect your feet from impact.

Quality / Durability

Although the comfortability of these shoes seems to be superb, there are some durability issues. For some, the sole seems to peel off after a small amount of continuous use.
Pros
  • ABZORB shock-absorbing cushioning
  • AirMesh upper is lightweight and breathable
  • Fairly lightweight
  • Flexible
  • Heel counter support
  • Helpful for mild over-pronators
  • No-sew overlays for security and comfort
Cons
  • The sizing runs a rather narrow

The jury has spoken: you can’t go wrong with the best New Balance running shoes. This list really only scratches the surface when it comes to the wide variety of shoes made by NB. Whether you’re hiking, hitting the treadmill, or just taking an easygoing walk in the neighborhood, there’s a shoe that will fit your needs.

New Balance is top-rated in many regards. For one, the comfort factor is high. Readers rant and rave about how comfortable NBs are, especially for over-pronators who need extra help. You can avoid injuries like shin splints when you go for more maximalist NBs. On the other hand, NB makes more minimalist models that really appeal to those looking for the near-barefoot feel. They’re available in all sorts of colors, whether you’re craving boldness or an understated style.

In short, there’s a New Balance out there for you, and it’s going to be comfortable. New Balances score high on durability and support. They’re appealing to long-time runners and beginners alike. They’re so affordable but so well-made, making them a total steal. It’s almost unbelievable how inexpensive yet high-quality they are! They’re a running shoe you can count on.

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The Criteria Used When Choosing The Best New Balance Running Shoes:

 

New Balance; made with attention to quality, in the USA and UK

Craftsmanship. It’s something that New Balance prides itself in. This is why chances are you’ve never heard of someone’s New Balance shoes falling apart on them. In fact, they are the only major shoe company to make their running shoes in the US (four million pairs a year, across five factories). They also employ about 210 employees in the UK, with the same attention to quality construction and craftsmanship. While New Balance doesn’t boast about their environmental initiatives, philanthropy work, or positive social impact, they are a thoughtful footwear company that delivers on their promises. What is very clear, is that they are focused on research and development, and do not rest on their past successes.

That’s one of the reasons why New Balance focused their attention on providing the best quality in a shoe. Up until 2009, their marketing wasn’t focused on celebrities wearing their gear. The companies prides itself in having their own customers become raving fans. It’s about how they feel on your feet and how comfortable they feel.

Let’s take a look at some of the highest rated models that have been put through their paces, and select the options that will be the perfect match for you!

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 Popularity Based On Performance

We at Runnerclick are always aware of the most popular running shoes and the latest trends. Lately, New Balance running shoes have spiked in popularity and it seems that we’re seeing more and more of the brand when we go out running. It’s important for us to provide our readers with a selection that comes with high reviews from novice runners, long-term enthusiasts, and hardcore runners in terms of how the running shoes are performing for them, not how many heads they turn. We know that style matters, and it’s a check box for our list as well, but we start with great reviews for specific purposes to ensure that you get exactly what you need for your regimen.

 

A Closer Look At Materials

In order to provide our readers with the best information to match their needs, we listened to what runner feedback had to say about the materials utilized in different models. New Balance likes to use a combination of synthetic material, suede, and mesh to give runners additional support and comfort. This is why is was essential to note which model sports which, so that our readers have a better understanding of what their running shoes are composed of.

Proper Cushioning

New Balances patented N-ergy cushioning technology goes into every single pair of running shoes they make. We made sure to include options that have top tier shock absorption to reduce the impact on the runner’s body and to minimize the stress placed on the foot. This is why most long distance runners gave New Balance high marks on lasting and consistent comfort.

Ratings On Outdoor Terrain

Because New Balance provides running shoes for all terrains, we didn’t forget to include solid trail rated options. While some review sites focus in on treadmill and road running shoes; we feel that having a well rounded guide can help outdoor enthusiasts and trail runners make a selection from the New Balance line and be prepared for anything that Mother Nature can throw their way.

 

Wide Variety Of Stability Levels

We are aware that runners with over-pronation or flatter arches have a strong need for reliable, multi-layered support to compensate for the lack of natural support from the foot. When looking at each model, we took note of feedback from runners that tended to have more inward rolling when they run to determine which running shoe can be the best match. The longer the distance, the higher the discomfort inward rolling can give you, so we made sure to take the guesswork out of the selections.

That Well Known New Balance Style.

It’s subtle, but world renown. The New Balance brand has solidified their particular color combinations, design patterns and material use. We made sure that our selections are both high performing and stylish. Our buying guide is jam packed with on-trend offerings and the latest color ways to ensure that our readers can express their own sense of style.

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Other Important Things to Consider When Choosing Your Pair

Selecting a pair of New Balance running shoes is a safe bet because no matter which model you choose, you are sure to get their cutting edge features and unique designs. However, before you go, take a look at the wide range of feedback and data we went through when compiling our selections. This will help you choose a running shoe that’s right for you. It’s important that you make a selection that makes sense for your purposes and what you plan to do with them. Below you will find some personal factors to take into consideration when making your choice.

 Match Your Pronation Needs

There are some New Balance running shoes that are better than others for runners with over-pronation. If you have this problem, or what is referred to as fallen arches, then make a selection with higher motion control properties and higher stability to counteract a flatter heal. If you have a high-arched shaped feet, you’re going to lookout for the New Balance runners that have more cushioning. The good news is that selecting a New Balance the best matches your arches is a pretty simple way to combat any discomfort.

Select The Right Size For Your Foot Width

Novice runners commonly make the mistake of only considering the length of their footwear. Width is a crucial factor in selecting a pair of running shoes that will enhance your natural strengths and support any weaknesses in stride. If you have wider feet, or have experienced issues with the narrowness of your shoes in the past, New Balance can help you select the right pair for you by offering width size options as well. Don’t forget that feet tend to swell at the end of the day, or after long hours of working, so be sure to measure your feet after a long run and then make a size determination from there.

Will You Be Trail Running Or Road Running?

Take a moment to consider what type of running surface you will be encountering and choose a pair that is geared towards your terrain. Remember that trail runners are purposely constructed to give added traction for outdoor surfaces and more durable materials coming across rocks and dust. You want to make sure you have a lightweight, breathable option for marathon running, and a more rugged, higher protected option for outdoor trail running.

Transition From Standard To Minimalist Slowly And Carefully

Remember that safety should always come first. There isn’t any need to be kept off of your feet because of an injury or foot inflammation. This is why if you’re choosing a more minimal New Balance running shoe from our selection, make sure that you transition slowly. Especially if you are coming over from a more padded and cushioned runner with a high heel-to-toe drop. We suggest shorter distances until your leg muscles adapt to the change of bearing more of the brunt of impact forces and additional muscle group implementation. Even seasoned runners experience added stress on their legs and feet when switching to minimal running shoes.

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 FAQ

We’re confident that by taking some of these factors into consideration when making your choice, you’ll find a New Balance running shoe that is perfect for you. Before you get out there and run, we’ve also compiled some frequently asked questions that commonly arise when searching for a new running shoe.

 

Q: There are a ton of New Balance models out there with a lot of versions; how do I know which one is for me?

A: This is a common concern if you are just coming to know the New Balance brand. We’re here to help, so we have done all of the legwork for you. Our buying guide is a reflection of the very best and the latest versions that the company currently has on the market. Trust us when we tell you that you will soon become very familiar with the model numbers. This is because people tend to gravitate towards a particular model and stick with it through all of its version updates. You may even find yourself purchasing several pairs of your favorite New Balance model.

Q: Is the suede on some models durable, or will it get worn?

A: New Balance suede is the most resilient that you will find on the market. In addition, the company is careful to use suede colors that are much more forgiving than their brighter counterparts. You will find that New Balance runners show off the wear on their suede as a badge of honor, not as a fragile fashion statement.

Q: What are the differences between New Balance running shoes and trainers?

A: Runners have more cushioning in the heel for impact and less protection through the ball of the foot. This is because they are meant for forward moment. When runners are in motion, they tend to generate more heat, so runners also feature mire mesh and breathable materials to keep feet cool.

Trainers in contrast, have more ankle support for not just forward movement, but lateral movement as well. They are great for light runs, weights, aerobics and similar activities. We suggest making a selection for the activity that you will be using them for. The ideal situation is to maintain a versatile rotation of footwear, much like tools on a tool belt.

Q: Are the New Balance selections good for trails that are more technical?

A: Absolutely. These are rugged and capable trail running selections. In fact, the models on our buying guide have been put through their paces and come with hundreds of positive reviews from real world users that rely on their footwear while they are out in nature and count on the durability of their New Balance trail runners. We’ve included some links to New Balance running shoes on the most grueling of trails for added inspiration.

Q: Are New Balance shoes true to its size?

A: As far as length, there are many people who have suggested to order their shoes half a size bigger than your average shoes. As far as width, New Balance also has great options for wide feet. To make sure you order the correct size, be sure to check out New Balance size charts for both length and width that can be found on their website for their sizechart and activity guides.

Q: How do I know what the numbers mean in each model?

A: This is a very basic question that we all wonder when we look at New Balance model numbers. New Balance established the numbers to differentiate between “more technology” in a shoe. The higher numbers have more technology than the lower numbers. However, this is not true 100% of the time, so make sure the shoe you get is exactly what you’re looking for in both, needs and personal preferences.

Q: How do they perform in wet terrain?

A: Because of their breathability, it’s not recommended to use them in wet terrain as the water and other wet elements can easily make its way inside the shoes. Though the suede, mesh and other outside quality elements of the shoe are carefully selected for running, walking and good performance. If you really need New Balance shoes in wet terrain, then be careful in selecting the right New Balance shoe, but don’t bet on staying dry.

Q: Do they expand when I put them on?

A: They usually stay true to its size and do not expand. Therefore, when you try them on make sure they feel comfortable. Not too tight and not too loose. Make sure you try them on later in the day as feet tend to swell during the day or after a workout…

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This was our approach when selecting the right pair of New Balance running shoes. Remember that selecting the right pair of running shoes is an investment and making a selection that is based on personal use and needs is crucial. We really hope this guide provided you with all the information you need when making you choice between form and function. Thanks for following along with us. Now make the perfect selection for you and keep running!


 

 Here are some sources used while conduction our research

Sources

  1. Amazon, Amazon, Product Reviews,
  2. Run Blogger, Run Blogger, Running Blog,
  3. New Balance, New Balance, New Balance Blog,
  4. Runner’s World, Runner’s World, Running Magazine,
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