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How Soft You Say? We Rank Shoes by Softness and How it Can Differ from Runner to Runner
Doctors of Running Podcast, Episode 175

If you're in the running shoe world at all, you know cushion and softness are the name of the game. Every shoe brand claims that each new version of their shoes is softer than the last, but what does it even mean for a shoe to be "soft"? How do you compare the softness of one shoe to another? In this episode, Nathan, Matt, and David do just that. They take a list of 10 of our favorite shoes from the past year or two (like the Brooks Hyperion Max, Asics Novablast 4, Nike Alphafly 3, and more) and see how their cushioning stacks up. No spoilers here, so you'll have to tune to see how the rankings turned out!

Watch the Episode!

Listen to This Week's Podcast Here!

Direct Links: Apple | Spotify | Anchor


0:00 - Intro
2:06 - Defining "softness" in shoes
14:23 - #10: the firmest shoe
17:15 - #9
21:11 - #8
22:48 - #7
26:38 - #6
30:12 - #5
36:46 - #4
40:20 - #3
43:21 - #2
49:29 - #1: the softest shoe
1:00:30 - Wrap-up

Recent Episodes

#174: Mailbag | Link
(Shoes for different runners and their foot types

#173: Science of Shoe Fit |
(Matt breaks down fit from beginner to advanced

#172: Nathan's Favorite Shoes of 2023 |
Nathan talks about a difficult year)

#171: Best of 2023, Part 2 | Link
We share our favorite racing shoes of the year)

#170: Best of 2023, Part 1 | Link
We share our favorite training shoes of the year)

#169: Mailbag |
The Role of Plates in Shoes, Matching Super Shoes to Your Own Mechanics, the Best Shoes for Bunions and More)

#168: Post-Marathon Recovery Strategies and Training | Link
(Andrea and Megan return for a discussion on post marathon tips)

#167: Strength Training for Runners Q&A |
(DPT Victoria Sekely shares strength tips for runners)

#166: Mailbag! |
(How long do shoes last? Health and marathon? And more)

Check out some of our favorite episodes!

#160: Bone Health for Runners |
(Montana Running Lab's Rich Willy breaks down bone health science)

#154: Ashley Mateo, Running Journalism |
(Running journalist Ashley Mateo joins for a conversation on sources)

#138: The Latest Findings on Super Shoes | Link
(Geoff Burns and Dustin Joubert share research on super shoes for slower runners)

#123: Amelia Boone, 4x World Champion in Obstacle Course Racing |
(Andrea and Megan have a fun and insightful conversation on OCR, injuries, and eating disorder with the Queen of Pain, Amelia Boone)

#111: Mastering the Art of Running Over 40
| Link

(Digging into Chief Editor Matt Klein's academic work, he and Andrea discuss the science of running at an older age. They cover a lot of ground from injuries to injury prevention.)

#95/96: Science of Footwear Design/Biomechanics with Saucony | Link (95)/ Link (96)
(In these episodes, we got a chance to speak with the footwear designers at Saucony to go in-depth on the design process there year-in and year-out. High level conversation on shoe design!)

Follow Doctors of Running on Social Media

Facebook: Doctors of Running
Youtube Channel: Doctors of Running
LinkedIn: Doctors of Running
Instagram: @doctorsofrunning
Twitter: @doctorsrunning
Podcast: Virtual Roundtable

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