5 Best Running Shoes for Bowlegged Runners

Are you looking for the best running shoes for bowlegged runners? For a lot of people, running seems like the easiest thing to do. No rocket science needed. But when you have special needs or your feet are shaped differently, it can be more than you bargained for. The shoes you wear when you run can help you a great deal when you have bow legs. 

Shoes are the one part of your running outfit that you can not negotiate on. You can skimp on the other bits but your shoes are vital for comfort, for protection and so much more. However, shopping for shoes for bow-legged runners can get complicated quite fast. 

Best Running Shoes for Bowlegged Runners

Photo Name What We like
Skechers Energy Afterburn Lace-Up Sneaker These are clearly well-made shoes There are various designs/colours to choose from. They are well-padded for comfort.
Saucony Ride 6 GTX Running Shoe The shoes are very brightly coloured. They keep your feet dry and odour-free. They are highly breathable.
Newton Running Gravity 8 There are 3 colours to choose from. The shoes are fairly lightweight. They provide good grip for running.
Nike Downshifter 7 Running Shoe These shoes provide good grip. They are quite lightweight. There is zero stitching on the midfoot saddle.
HOKA ONE ONE Speed Instinct 2 Running Shoe There is a great deal of underfoot padding provided. The shoes are fairly lightweight. They provide you with good grip.

Being bow legged is also known as congenital genu varum. It is a condition where a person’s legs appear bowed out, and their knees stay wide apart even when their ankles are together. It’s quite a common condition in infants especially and there is no treatment necessary. A child’s legs will straighten as they begin to walk. However when they go beyond the age of two then you can contact a doctor. 

Treatment may be recommended if your case of bowlegs is extreme or getting worse, or if an accompanying condition is diagnosed. you can get Treatment options include getting specially fitted shoes, braces, casts, surgery to correct bone abnormalities and treatment of diseases or conditions that cause bowlegs.

If you have bow legs but still enjoy your time running, then you may need some help in pointing you in the direction of the best running shoes made for you.

In a Hurry

Do you need a quick guide to finding the best shoes for you? There are a few factors that you will need to consider. Your feet tend to swell during the day because of elements such as heat and the fact that you have been up and about, make sure you go shopping in the afternoon. Wear socks that are the same thickness as the socks you wear when running.

This will help you ensure you buy the right size. Ensure that the shoes will provide you with the support and stability that your feet need. The shoes you pick will need to be comfortable and sturdy too to help protect you from inadvertently rolling the inside or outside of your foot, according to the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide.

Our Top Pick

HOKA ONE ONE Women's Speed Instinct 2 Running Shoe

We have done our research and found our favorite to be the HOKA ONE ONE Women’s Speed Instinct 2 Running Shoe. It is made of polyester fabric and has a 3D Puff print frame for lightweight, adaptive, and detailed support. The shoes also have a padded tongue for additional comfort and early stage Meta-Rocker for a smooth ride.

Reviews of Running Shoes for Bowlegged Runners

Skechers Men’s Energy Afterburn Lace-Up Sneaker 

Skechers Men's Energy Afterburn Lace-Up Sneaker

Skechers have long been famed for producing shoes that provide for those having trouble with their feet and legs. They are known to be very comfortable and durable. These are as expected.

Depending on the colour that you choose to go with, the first thing that you may notice is that these shoes are that the upper part of these shoes is mainly made of leather. 

It is conveniently mixed with some synthetic material to deliver a good amount of breathability. We should probably mention that having leather on the upper part of your shoes ensures that they are less porous. This would make them water-resistant if not completely waterproof. It will also mean that your feet will be kept warm.

As you would want from your running these have rubber soles to deliver a good amount of traction as you run. The rear end of the heels has the perfect cushioning. If you look at the shoes from the side you can see two air pockets that are of a clear colour.

They are there to protect you from impact and to absorb shock as you run. For the sake of comfort, both the pad and the tongue are padded. There is much less room for debris to sneak into your shoes.

Don’t worry, it is not all just function without fashion. These are fairly good looking shoes. They come in a variety of colours and designs that you can choose yours from. Most of the colours are rather bland. If you are looking for more cheery colours, these may not be the right shoes for you.    


  • These are clearly well-made shoes
  • There are various designs/colours to choose from.
  • They are well-padded for comfort.
  • The size accommodates those with wide feet.
  • There is ample support for feet and arch.
  • They are reasonably priced.


  • Some users reported squeaking sounds.
  • All available colours are quite plain.
  • Sizes tend to be within half a size in error.


Saucony Ride 6 GTX Running Shoe 

Saucony Ride 6 GTX Running Shoe

Having criticised the Skechers shoe above for lacking in bright, exuberant colours we had to find an alternative shoe that met this desire. The Ride 6 GTX is one such shoe. It is made by a brand that we are all too familiar with. Their products speak for themselves.

The upper part of this shoe is made out of synthetic material. It is a perfect cocktail of colours put together to great visual effect. If you want a shoe that will be noticed, you cannot possibly go wrong with this one. It features the waterproof yet breathable Gore-Tex membrane that we love. You will notice the air mesh on the upper forefoot region of the shoes. It is clearly breathable. 

As you run and inevitably begin to sweat, you will derive great benefit from having the moisture-wicking hydra-MAX collar to depend on. It keeps your feet dry and free of bacteria that thrive in wet conditions.

To provide you with the sort of comfort that you desire, you can certainly depend on the sock liner that has foam embedded in it. The cushioning in these shoes runs the full length. It gives as much comfort to your heel as it does to the toe region. This is what makes them a good pick for bow-legged runners.


  • The shoes are very brightly coloured.
  • They keep your feet dry and odour-free.
  • They are highly breathable.
  • The cushioning runs the entire foot length.
  • The sock liner also has foam in it.
  • They are waterproof.


  • Some users reported getting a squeaking noise.
  • They are not as flexible as some runners like their shoes.


Newton Running Gravity 8

Newton Running Gravity 8

Perhaps you like your colours with a little more subtlety. Here is one shoe that we think fits the bill quite perfectly. The Newton Gravity 8 is a lightweight running shoe that is made up of a three colour pallet.

One colour makes up the main part while there are two others added to complement or complete the look. Which of the two you choose to go with depends on your view of the world and how you like your shoes. These shoes are designed to be very responsive as you run. This is to say that they do not bow to the terrain. A key part of this responsiveness is down to the flexibility of the soles. 

They are an improved version of the popular Gravity 7. Just when you thought it could not get much better, Newton took feedback on board and came back with the Gravity 8. The describe the support provided by these shoes as being neutral. This is to say that there is no clear emphasis on one type of running surface over another. This is a shoe that you can use on all sorts of surfaces. 

For those that are after something different as far as colour is concerned. They are three options that you can choose from. There is a light blue one, a grey and purple one as well as a black one. Each of these trainers has a dual pallet sort of design.

This is to say that two colours are used together to complement each other beautifully. Which one of these you go with will come down to your personal preference.


  • There are 3 colours to choose from.
  • The shoes are fairly lightweight.
  • They provide good grip for running.
  • The soles are sturdy and steady.
  • The feet are well-cushioned.


  • The occasional user will mention size issue.


Nike Downshifter 7 Running Shoe 

Nike Downshifter 7 Running Shoe

This is a design that will be quite familiar to us users. The other part of the shoe is made out of synthetic material. As you may already expect the souls are made out of rubber. They are known to provide a good amount of grip, which is something that we expect from Nike shoes.

Once you have these shoes on, you will realise that they are quite lightweight. The good part is they look lightweight which goes along way. They are incredibly breathable which allows you to use these in all sorts of weather conditions. This feature is most useful when the weather is very cold. The breathability from the shoes is a result of the mesh that is used in the upper part of the shoes. 

To ensure that you get a good amount of support these shoes have a normal so midfoot saddle. This means that there are no stitches involved in the construction of this part of the shoe. One of the inferences that you can make from this is that there is some durability.

Where there are no stitches in place, there are no stitches to fall apart. The rubber sole runs the full length of the shoe which makes it very stable and gives you a good amount of traction.

The midsoles of these shoes are made out of Phylon. This is part of what makes them quite lightweight. The cushioning is fairly resilient. This resilience is what makes them ideal for runners will need additional support for their feet. We have yet to mention the flex grooves. These are designed to ensure that the tour motion and range are unimpeded.


  • These shoes provide good grip.
  • They are quite lightweight.
  • There is zero stitching on the midfoot saddle.
  • There is a good amount of cushioning.
  • The shoes allow for full range motion for the toes.
  • There are various colours to choose from.


  • The toes box may be too small for some users.
  • The overall quality could be better.


HOKA ONE ONE Speed Instinct 2 Running Shoe 

HOKA ONE ONE Speed Instinct 2 Running Shoe

Our final choice in this post is not any less prominent or any less favourable than the other ones. If you’ve not heard of this brand, you are forgiven. We only found out about it quite recently. This is a shoe that has an upper part that is made out of polyester. This makes it a good balance between being breathable and also quite durable.

As you notice the hill is quite thick. This ensures that you get a good amount of protection for your feet whether you’re running or walking at a fast pace. The inside of the shoe also has quite a bit of padding. Your soles are made out of rubber. You are guaranteed to get a good amount of traction when you’re moving at a fast pace. This is regardless of whether the surface is wet or dry.

To keep the shoes lightweight the manufacturers used a 3-D puff print frame. This is also what makes them quite adaptable and supports the amount of detail that goes into the shoe. The tonnes are also padded to provide you with additional support together with what you already get from the padding on the inside of the shoes.

Although there are various colours that you could choose from they tend to be quite difficult to come by from the same supplier. While one cannot say anything negative about the aesthetics of the shoe. It is nothing to write home about.


  • There is a great deal of underfoot padding provided.
  • The shoes are fairly lightweight.
  • They provide you with good grip.
  • They are known to be durable.


  • Not as many colours to choose from.


Buyer’s Guide

Does being bow-legged affect running?

When you have bow legs, it means your legs look like they are bowing outward from your body. Most children have bowlegs and in most people, they naturally align, for some, they develop more knee alignment problems as they grow older.

Running with any misalignment of the knees like bow legs can be painful and difficult. However, it is not a lost cause because there are ways of exercising safely and comfortably. 

Why are athletes bow legged?

Bowlegs can be caused by different reasons. The most common occurrence is children being born with them. However, they tend to straighten out by age four. When they do not straighten out and continue to develop in adults, it can be as a result of a couple of reasons. These include bone fractures that may not have healed properly or due to abnormally developed bones or bone dysplasia

They may also be a result of lead or fluoride poisoning. 

Bowlegs also develop in adults because of particular medical conditions such as Blount’s disease which happens when a child’s skin develops abnormally, curving below the knees. It gets worse as the child begins to walk and the bowing gets more pronounced. In some children, the symptoms are more pronounced and recognizable as the child gets older and reaches adolescence. 

Bowlegs are also caused by diseases like rickets which are caused by a prolonged deficiency of vitamin D. Rickets soften and weaken the bones and can cause the legs to bow. Paget’s disease can be another cause of bow legs.

It affects the way your bones break down and rebuild. The bones do not rebuild as strongly as they should. After some time, this can lead to joint pain and bow legs. It can, however, be treated with early diagnosis. 

Another condition that can cause bow legs is dwarfism. According to Healthline, the most common form of dwarfism is caused by a condition known as achondroplasia. This is a bone growth disorder that can result in bowlegs over time.

Are bow legs genetic?

Bowlegs usually develop in babies as they would have had to adjust themselves to fit in the womb and this may have caused the bones to distort slightly. However, physiological bow legs tend to straighten out over time. Bowlegs can also be the result of several other diseases such as dwarfism or rickets. Some of the more serious diseases are hereditary and hence the symptoms will be too.


It is important to know what type of running you intend to do, the impact it will have on your feet, the surface you will be running on and also know the state of your bow legs. Knowing this will help you find shoes that are specially made for you. You will find it much easier and more comfortable to run when you are in the right shoes.

If you now you have bow legs, then make sure that you get shoes with the right support. Having bow legs can put you at a higher risk of joint pain, and so you must wear shoes that provide the right amount of cushioning. We hope the options we have reviewed help you find running shoes that will give you the stability and support your feet need. Happy shopping!

Hi there. This is Clare. Dave and I manage this site. We are outdoor enthusiasts. Most of the content is about products that we love using or have researched.
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