I was recently walking through the shopping center close to my house and since the holiday season Is right around the corner I thought I get myself a new pair of running shoes.
I walked into Nike and saw that their Blazers were all on sale. I used to work at a Nike store and I would get asked all the time; are Nike Blazers good for running or not? Well, as a self-proclaimed shoe expert, let me explain.
- Nike Blazers were first made in the 70s.
- They were worn by professional basketball players.
- Blazers are flat and stiff with is not ideal for running.
- If you are not a professional marathon runner you want to get soft shoes with an elevated heel and good cushioning.
- Nike Blazers are good for lifting heavy weights in the gym.
Can I run with Nike Blazers?
Technically you can run in everything, including Crocks, but that doesn’t mean that you will have the best experience or that they are meant for running. The Nike Blazers are not good for running, they lack some important features that running shoes should have.
The Blazers were made in the 70s by Nike. They were worn by basketball players, and they did a lot of running in them, a lot. So we could assume that they are meant for running right? Well not exactly, there is a reason why NBA players nowadays wear Jordans and Air Max Pros.
Why Nike Blazers are bad for running
People have different preferences when it comes to running shoes, but all can agree that they are looking for a comfortable, breathable, and durable pair that will last them for a long time.
While Nike Blazers do count as comfortable, I can’t say that they are good for running and there are a few reasons behind that.
I had to start with this one because this is one of the most important factors for me when it comes to cardio. If my shoes are not breathable my feet will overheat and will take all my attention away.
I do HIT cardio, and let me tell you, 30 minutes of being drenched in sweat is no joke. However, my feet need to feel some air circulation or I’ll just end up taking my shoes off and finishing my session barefoot.
The Nike Blazers are not breathable shoes, they don’t have any holes or mesh fabric on them and they are made from leather. This means that no cool air can get in, which is great for the colder days, but not for cardio days.
Stiff and rigid
All running shoes should fit your foot width and leave a bit of space in front of your toes so that you won’t feel pain upon impact. Good running shoes are designed with this in mind, but not the Blazers.
Nike Blazers are meant to fit tight around your foot and ankle thus keeping your foot secured in one position. Also, they are pretty stiff even after you wear them for a long time.
This may be a good thing because it means that they are durable, but you want your running shoes to be softer and lighter in order to fit more comfortably.
It doesn’t help that the Blazers go around your ankle which limits your mobility even further.
Running is stressful on your joints, so you want your perfect running shoes to have some cushioning action going on. Not too much though. If your shoes are too soft all around you will have problems with instability.
If on the other hand, your shoes have no cushioning at all, your feet will hurt because of the high impact while running.
Nike Blazers don’t offer a lot of cushioning, so there is a high chance that your feet and joints will start to hurt after a long run.
It is generally considered that in order to have comfortable running shoes the soles must have an exaggerated heel to absorb the impact. But, when we see professional runners they often have zero drop shoes on, which is when the shoe sole is designed to be in a single plane.
Also, football players have flat football boots with spikes under them, and they do a lot of funning during games. So which one is it?
Okay so, professionals wear flat shoes in order to be faster, that is basically their job. If you are not a professional athlete, then you should go for shoes with an elevated arch and thicker soles to prevent too much pressure on your heel.
What is Nike Blazers good for?
Don’t get me wrong, just because Nike Blazers aren’t good for running, that doesn’t mean that I didn’t buy 3 pairs. Who can resist a Nike sale, right?
There are benefits to wearing these types of shoes and they can be a crucial part of a good workout.
Although I recommend skipping Blazers for cardio days, leg days on the other hand are a different story.
You want to wear flat sole shoes on leg days, especially if you go heavy with your weights. The flat sole will distribute the weight evenly and will give you good stability for optimal muscle development.
You should always focus on your form rather than how heavy you lift, and a flat shoe will help you with having proper posture and protecting yourself from injuries.
Flat shoes are ideal for squatting for the same reasons we discussed, stability, and even weight distribution. The Blazers offer these qualities, but you need to keep in mind the ankle support.
Blazers go around your ankle and this can sometimes get in the way of your squat performance.
Imagine your legs during a squat. If you’re doing a goblet squat your feet are probably facing forward and your knees bend above and slightly in front of your ankles. In this position your ankles also need to go forward and having your Blazers tied tightly may limit the movement.
If you are doing a back squat, chances are t your feet are facing slightly outward, I know mine always are, and in this case, it’s better to have better ankle stability.
This will of course depend on your proportions and how your squat looks, but you can always tie your shoelaces below your ankle if you feel that you lack mobility.
It’s a similar principle when it comes to lunges. You need both stability and mobility in your ankles. I found that when I do lunges, and I go heavy, it is best to have the shoelaces on the working foot (the one in the front) tied tightly around my ankle for better stability.
However, my back ankle needs more mobility depending on the type of lunge I am doing so I tend to tie my shoes below my ankle so that I have more movement.
Out and about
Just because you bought shoes from a sports store doesn’t mean that you have to only wear them while working out, far from it.
I wore my newly purchased Nike Blazers to a 3-hour concert last weekend and my feet didn’t hurt at all. Not to mention that I got a lot of compliments on them.
Blazers are stylish and you can mix and match them with all kinds of clothes, from sweats to summer dresses.
In the beginning, I probably got you thinking that I passed on the Nike sale, but no! I got 3 pairs of Blazers and I am in love with them. There are not my first Blazers so I know what I am in for.
Different shoes are meant for different activities, even if you don’t do any sports you can still wear sports shoes. So to answer your question are Nike Blazers good for running, I’d say no.
I don’t know how basketball players in the 70s did it, but I’m going to stick to wearing my Blazers on heavy leg days in the gym and for fun date nights in the city.
It’s been more than 15 years, and I’ve been running 3-4 times a week ever since then. I’ve achieved goals, won marathons, went through injuries and learnt a lot along the way. That’s why, I created Suzlyfe together with my husband (Ken) to share my findings and help others reach their goals. Both me and my husband are avid runners, and it’s a big part of our life.