Sneakers have their origin in the running shoes created by the British company J.W.Foster and Sons in the early part of the last century, before the likes of adidas (founded by the Dassler Brothers in 1924), and Puma (founded by the estranged Adolf Dassler in 1948), transformed them into an indispensable part of any athlete’s arsenal. The best running shoes these days, of course, are a triumph of modern technology. In my opinion, these are the best ones to have been launched this year.

 

Nike Epic React
This was my top contender for shoe of the year, for no other that I have run in yet has come close to matching it in comfort and lightness. It is a very deftly executed shoe — from the uppers to the inner linings, and right down to the sole — and the pedigree shines through when you wear it. The upper sock is perhaps among the best among Nike’s own brands too.

 

 

Nike Pegasus Turbo
Pegasus has been the most sold running shoe in the history of running shoes, but I must say that this one changes the dynamics of the old mould completely. I loved the pink stripe running down the middle of the shoe. From the tapered heel to the measured cushion and the springy heel-to-toe energy transfer, this shoe is clearly made to go fast.

 

 

Puma Hybrid Rocket
Puma has combined their two leading technologies — Ignite foam and NRGY beads — for this colour-blocked design with a pebbled sole. The knit uppers are caressing yet firm, the big tabs are useful for a quick on/off (triathlon shoes, anyone?), and for all their chunkiness, they are pretty light. This is definitely a running shoe with some street cred.

 

 

adidas PureBOOST Go
The shoe is aimed at the more casual runner — from my experience, I can share that it packs in ample Boost cushioning: a broad heel gauge coupled with a broadened forefoot, which is forgiving with lateral moves — the kind one may need to execute while running through a crowd.

 

 

Asics Gel Kayano 25
The most reputed Japanese running brand has delivered consistently with their gel tech, and this is the latest incarnation of their most popular shoe yet. A bit heavy (but lighter than earlier models) with super cushion and a punchy toe-off, this is a reliable shoe for long runs or training sorties.

 

 

Reebok Flexweave
A simple, lean looking shoe with decent running cred, woven uppers and a soft sole. An excellent light trainer, and for the price, it punches (pun intended) way above its weight class.