- Best for trail running: Altra Lone Peak 4.5
- Best for road running: Altra Escalante Racer
- Best for treadmill runs: Altra Escalante 2.5
- Best for racing: Altra Torin 4.5 Plush
- Best for stability: Altra Provision 5
- Best cushioned: Altra Paradigm 5
- Best lightweight: Altra Soulstice XT
If you’re looking for a sturdy and comfortable minimalist running shoe, look no further than Altra.
A young upstart in the world of running shoes, Altra’s mission is to help people run consistently and instinctively.
Altra running shoes are designed to encourage a natural gait and stride. Specifically, they include three key features:
- A wide toe box. This helps your toes relax and allows your big toe to remain straightened for maximum stability and support.
- Proprietary Fit4Her technology. The shoes are designed with a narrower heel and midfoot to better fit women’s feet.
- Balanced cushioning. The cushioning is designed so that the heel and forefoot are at an equal distance from the ground, which helps improve stability.
However, while they’re designed with the same intent, not all Altra shoes are exactly the same.
To help you find a pair that best fits your running style, we considered the following factors:
- Value. While lower cost running shoes may initially save you money, if you’re looking for a solid, reliable shoe, you may need to spend a bit more. The shoes on this list provide the best value for the money.
- Quality. We looked for Altra shoes that are well designed and made from high quality materials.
- Customer reviews. All of the shoes on this list have mostly positive customer reviews.
From roads and treadmills to tracks and trails, here are the 7 best Altra running shoes of 2021.
Best for trail running
Looking for a solid trail running shoe? Look no further than the Altra Lone Peak 5.
This shoe features Altra’s MaxTech outsole, which is designed to help your foot connect with smooth, slick, and rugged surfaces.
As a result, you can feel confident that the Lone Peak 5 will give you plenty of traction and stability for running on uneven mountain terrain.
The shoe also gets high reviews from customers for its versatility, reliability, and support.
Best for road running
The Altra Escalante Racer is the perfect shoe for road runners who want a high performance shoe that encourages a natural, barefoot-style run.
Yet, despite its minimalistic design, this shoe still has a soft, comfortable fit.
It also features balanced cushioning to keep your heal and forefoot level, making it perfect for running long distances on smooth, flat surfaces.
Best for treadmill runs
While it may seem strange to purchase running shoes based on your running surface, many runners know that some kicks are better for treadmill running than others.
If you spend most of your time logging miles on a machine, you’ll want to try the Altra Escalante 2.5.
While they’re still minimalistic, these shoes offer plenty of flexibility and support. They’re also breathable, so you’ll stay comfortable when doing sprints or interval training.
Best for racing
The Altra Torin 4.5 Plush is ideal for race day, as it consistently receives high customer ratings for its speed and comfort.
The shoe features a breathable knit mesh upper, as well as a sculpted footbed and extra cushioning for added stability and support.
Yet, weighing just 7.4 ounces (210 grams), the shoe is still light enough that it won’t slow you down.
Best for stability
If stability is what you’re after, the Altra Provision 5 is your best bet, as it features GuideRail technology, which provides extra support for your ankle and foot.
The shoe’s arch is also specially designed to encourage proper, natural foot placement.
These features combined with Altra’s patented wide toe box result in a light and stable shoe.
If you prefer your running shoe with extra cushion, you’ll want to check out the Altra Paradigm 5.
The Altra Paradigm 5 features a padded insole and soft construction, with many reviewers noting that it’s a dependable, all-around great shoe.
The shoe is also a good option for those with pronation or supination, as it’s designed to help prevent your ankle from rolling excessively inward or outward.
The Altra Soulstice XT is a lightweight cross-trainer that’s perfect for both speed training and gym days.
While it’s considered a lightly padded shoe, it still provides plenty of comfort thanks to its balanced cushioning.
The shoe also comes equipped with a breathable mesh upper and grid-like grooves in the midsole for added flexibility.
If you’re looking to buy a pair of Altra running shoes, there are several factors to consider, including:
- Functionality. When choosing a running shoe, you’ll first want to consider the type of running you’ll be doing. Some, for example, are designed with extra stability for trail running, while others feature better arch support.
- Fit. Altra shoes are considered natural running shoes, meaning they’re minimalistic in construction and design. However, they each fit a little differently. When possible, try on a few models in person.
- Durability. While all Altra shoes are durable, customers have found that some styles are more resilient than others.
- Customer reviews. Whether this is your first pair of Altra running shoes or your fifth, you’ll want to read customer reviews for insight into whether the shoe is true to size and has any potential drawbacks.
Altra running shoes are known for their minimalistic design, while still providing plenty of stability and support.
By considering your style of running and using the list above, we’re certain that you’ll find the perfect Altra running shoe for you.