5 Best Japanese Running Shoe Brands For Ultimate Comfort and Durability

5 Best Japanese Running Shoe Brands For Ultimate Comfort and Durability

Apr 24, 2024Rasmiya Assadi

We tried the best Japanese running shoe brands. Yes! We actually tried them on and went running, jogging, and walking all to figure which running shoe brand in Japan gives the best comfort and support. And here are the results! 

Step into comfort and performance with the best Japanese running shoe brands. Renowned for their innovative designs and quality craftsmanship, brands like Asics, Mizuno, and Onitsuka Tiger offer a wide range of options for every type of runner. 

Discover the perfect blend of style and functionality for your next run.

Exploring the Japanese Running Shoe Market

The Japanese running shoe market is a testament to innovation and quality, attracting attention from runners worldwide. Let's delve into the factors that contribute to the popularity and uniqueness of Japanese running shoes.

Popularity of Running in Japan

Running has witnessed a surge in popularity in Japan over recent years. While marathons have long been a tradition in cities like Tokyo and Osaka, the sport has now captured the interest of the general populace.

This rise in popularity can be attributed to various factors. Running is viewed as an effective way to maintain health and fitness, a priority for many amid Japan's aging population. 

Additionally, running is a relatively inexpensive sport, requiring minimal equipment—just a good pair of shoes and comfortable attire.

Innovations and Technology

Japanese running shoe brands are renowned for their innovative designs and cutting-edge technology. Many of these brands boast a rich history of producing high-quality running shoes.

One notable innovation in Japanese running shoes is the incorporation of "air" technology, initially introduced by Nike in the 1980s. 

This technology involves integrating air pockets into the shoe's sole to enhance cushioning and support. Japanese brands like Mizuno and Asics have developed their own iterations of this technology, claiming superior shock absorption and energy return.

Another area where Japanese running shoe brands excel is in their use of lightweight materials. Shoes made from synthetic materials like mesh and nylon are lightweight and breathable, ideal for long-distance running where every ounce matters.

Top Japanese Running Shoe Brands


Asics, a Japanese multinational corporation, is renowned for its comfortable and durable running shoes. 

The brand offers a wide range of shoes catering to different types of runners, including overpronators, neutral runners, and underpronators. 

  • Popular models include the Gel-Kayano, Gel-Nimbus, and Gel-Cumulus.


Mizuno, a Japanese sports equipment and sportswear company, produces a variety of products, including running shoes.

Mizuno's running shoes are celebrated for their exceptional comfort and performance, designed to provide robust support and stability. 

  • Popular models include the Wave Rider, Wave Inspire, and Wave Sky.

Onitsuka Tiger

Onitsuka Tiger, a Japanese footwear company, offers a range of shoes, including running shoes.

Their running shoes are renowned for their classic and stylish designs, offering excellent comfort and support for runners. 

  • Popular models include the Mexico 66, Serrano, and Ultimate 81.

Hoka One One

Hoka One One, though not Japanese, is known for its maximalist running shoes. These shoes provide maximum cushioning and support, making them popular among long-distance and trail runners. 

  • Popular models include the Clifton, Bondi, and Speedgoat.

Features of Japanese Running Shoes

  • Comfort
  • Comfort is a top priority for Japanese running shoes. Brands use advanced materials and technology to ensure maximum comfort and support, with snug fits and ample cushioning to absorb shock. 

    Many Japanese running shoes come with removable insoles, allowing for a customized fit.

  • Durability
  • Japanese running shoes are renowned for their durability, thanks to high-quality materials that withstand rigorous training and long-distance running. 

    Proprietary materials and manufacturing processes ensure these shoes are lightweight yet durable, promising longevity even with regular use.

  • Design and Aesthetics
  • Japanese running shoes excel not only in functionality but also in aesthetics. Brands prioritize design, offering shoes that are stylish yet practical. 

    From minimalist designs to vibrant patterns, there's a Japanese running shoe to suit every taste. 

    Collaboration with renowned designers often results in limited-edition shoes coveted by collectors.


    In conclusion, Japanese running shoe brands offer a compelling blend of comfort, durability, and style. With their innovative technology and materials, these brands continue to lead the industry, catering to runners of all levels. 

    Whether you're a novice or a seasoned runner, Japanese running shoes are sure to help you achieve your running goals.

    When selecting the right Japanese running shoes, consider factors such as your running style, shoe size, and budget. By doing so, you'll find the perfect pair to enhance your running experience and performance.

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