On the hunt for your next pair of kicks? For over a century, New Balance has been at the forefront of technical performance and lifestyle sneakers. Their shoes empower you to keep moving in comfort whether you’re an athlete training for your next marathon or just strolling around town. With so many styles and technologies to choose from, this comprehensive guide will help you discover your ideal New Balance sneakers.
New Balance first broke into the sneaker game back in the 1960s, intent on making running shoes that provided superior fit and function. Before then, the brand focused on arch supports and orthopedic shoes. But founders saw an opportunity to innovate after watching the Boston Marathon. They developed early technical runners like the Trackster and 320 to meet runners’ needs for lightness, flexibility and support.
As the brand continued improving performance technologies in the 70s and 80s, certain models like the 990 rose to icon status for their cushy support. When jogging boomed in the 90s, New Balance turned models like the 574 and 1300 into lifestyle sneaker staples. Today the brand still caters to serious athletes while fueling the casual sneakerhead scene.
New Balance sneakers check all the boxes: science-backed engineering, comfort, style and quality craftsmanship. Before lacing into your next pair, keep these key factors in mind while shopping the brand’s extensive catalog.
Determine How You’ll Use Them
With over 100 years perfecting athletic footwear, New Balance designs sneakers tailored to specific sports and activities. So consider how and where you plan to use your new kicks most often.
For runners looking for speed, the FuelCell RC Elite serves up serious responsiveness and energy return mile after mile. Its carbon plate design propels you forward efficiently during tempo training and racing. Meanwhile the Rebel v2 is ideal for faster days, providing a firm yet energetic feel.
If you need a running shoe to handle easy miles, check out cushioned styles like the 1080v12. Its ultra-soft Fresh Foam midsole brings plushness without losing responsiveness. Stability models like the 1340v5 provide guidance for overpronators who need corrective medial support when running.
For the gym, the MX857v3 cross-trainer gives lateral support for training plus flexibility for cardio moves. The 680v6 is built for multidirectional agility needed in sports like tennis with its full-length ABZORB cushioning.
Casual wearers can enjoy iconic walking sneakers like the new 57/40 lifestyle model. And retro silhouettes like the 550 and 2002R Protection Pack merge classic style with modern tech.
Consider when and how you plan to use the sneakers to narrow options to designs that truly fit your needs and routine. New Balance assuredly has the right technologies tailored for you.
Dial in the Fit
While performance and style are important, the most vital factor is getting the fit right. An ill-fitting sneaker can lead to discomfort, sliding around or even injury down the road.
New Balance sneakers come in a wide range of sizes and widths to accommodate different foot proportions and arch types. When possible, get your feet sized properly at a New Balance store. Feet swell during activity so it’s best to size up later in the day for an ideal fit.
If visiting a store isn’t convenient, carefully follow the brand’s online sizing guides. Input your foot length and width along with arch type to find recommended sizes for each model. Or print their sizing chart and place your foot on it, matching up the edges smoothly.
When trying on sneakers, mimic your normal wearing conditions – wear same socks you’ll work out in and walk around the store. Ensure toes have wiggle room and heels don’t slip. Also consider inserts you may need for arch support. Dialing in your specific size ensures all-day comfort.
Select Cushioning and Support
From long runs to all-day wear, cushioning and support keep your feet feeling great. New Balance uses innovative technologies in their midsoles and footbeds to absorb shock and reduce strain.
Many running and lifestyle sneakers like the 990v5 and 57/40 boast plush Fresh Foam cushioning. This precise data-driven foam provides pillowy softness and responsiveness right where you need it most.
FuelCell foam brings a different adaptive feel to shoes like the FuelCell RC Elite. The energetic nitrogen-infused foam provides a light, springy sensation designed for pushing your pace.
For support, stability sneakers like the 1340v5 have T-Beam technology built into the midsole. This structure offers torsional rigidity right under the arch to prevent excessive foot rolling.
Other options like the 928v4 walking shoe provide a stabilizing platform via Rollbar technology in the outsole. Try on different models and focus on how the cushioning and support components feel best underfoot.
Think About Traction
Your sneakers need proper traction to keep you moving safely and confidently during activity or wear. New Balance designs athletic sneaker outsoles with tread patterns, rubber compounds and flex grooves tailored to the intended sport or use.
For road running, options like the FuelCell RC Elite have high-traction directional tread for grip and flexibility when picking up the pace. Trail running and hiking styles like the Hierro v6 boast aggressive multi-directional lugs that bite into dirt, mud and unpredictable terrain.
Lateral formats like the Two Wxy v2 basketball sneaker allow smooth pivoting and changes of direction on the court. Walking models like the 928v4 focus traction under the heel and toe to keep you steady during the rolling motion of each stride.
Consider how and where you’ll use the sneakers most to choose options offering traction aligned with those motions and surfaces. Proper grip keeps you moving confidently.
Express Your Style
While fit and function are key, sneakers also let you express personal style. New Balance serves up options galore to suit any aesthetic.
Vintage runners like the 990v3 come in suede/mesh combos and classic grey tones for a retro runners look. Or more modern classics like the 327 keep things simple with sleek, monochromatic designs.
For bold, head-turning flair, check out the 57/40 transformed with fuzzy textures and tie-dye designs. Or make a colorful statement in the bright “Rain Cloud” hue of the 2002R Protection Pack.
Collaborations also allow for unique styling, like the 550 created with Aimé Leon Dore with its luxe pony hair accents and earthy colorway. New Balance has insights on what’s trending in the sneaker world.
While narrowing options, think about colors, materials and designs that best express your personal tastes. Find sneakers speaking your style language.
Now that you’re familiar with the criteria for choosing New Balance sneakers, let’s explore top recommended picks for common needs and uses. Keep reading to discover the best of the best.
The Best New Balance Sneakers for Men
Running – Daily Training:
Combining soft cushioning and energetic response, the 1080v12 is built to help you log mile after easy mile. A wider toe box allows natural splay while Fresh Foam underfoot absorbs shock with each footfall.
A lightweight yet cushioned option, the FuelCell Rebel v2 employs a slimmed-down midsole for a natural feel. A seamless engineered mesh upper supplies a foot-hugging fit ideal for high mileage training.
Bringing elite performance down to earth, the RC Elite v2 boasts carbon fiber plates for explosive energy return with each stride. ZoomX foam provides exceptional bounce to help push your paces.
Running – Speed/Race Day:
Serious racers will love the smooth, stable ride of the FuelCell TC with its plated design made for PR crushing. Lightweight FuelCell foam gives you a fast feel during tempo days and long distances.
The low-profile FuelCell SuperComp Pacer allows experienced runners to pick up the pace, thanks to carbon plates built for speed. Exposed TPU midfoot cages supply a snug, supportive fit.
Combining soft landings and firm response, the FuelCell Rebel v2 is built for your fastest training days. A seamless upper allows easy airflow as you turn up your tempo.
Training – Gym/CrossFit:
Bouncing from box jumps to sled pushes, the MX857v3 cross-trainer provides medial and lateral stability for multi-directional security. Its bootie construction allows ankle mobility.
The Vongo v5 stability trainer takes you from heavy lifts to cardio conditioning thanks to cushioned Fresh Foam and dual-density medial posts for corrective support.
Blending flexibility with cushioned comfort, the 696v5 training shoe uses deep flex grooves to allow natural foot splay during lifts and lateral moves. Underfoot ABZORB lessens fatigue.
Combining heritage styling with Fresh Foam cushioning, the vintage runner-inspired 57/40 makes an ultra-comfy choice for all-day wear. Its premium nubuck leather upper looks great while holding up to daily use.
The 990v5 maintains its status as an everyday icon thanks to enduring comfort tech like ENCAP and EVA foam underfoot. Timeless grey colorways keep these laidback yet stylish.
Built for city explorers, the 247v3 sports trail-inspired outsole lugs to keep you steady on your feet, while Fresh Foam underfoot eats up sidewalk miles. A clean knit upper pairs well with casual fits.
Drawing inspiration from the original 1983 model, the 550 heritage sneaker employs premium suede in a classic grey and white colorway for vintage appeal. ENCAP cushioning provides modern comfort.
For throwback charm combined with plush comfort, the 2002R Protection Pack delivers with its authentic pigskin suede and mesh upper. Fresh Foam underfoot brings modern softness and support.
Contrasting fuzzy textured panels with smooth suede, the eye-catching 57/40 Experiment 4 puts a bold twist on a vintage court shoe. The abstract style captures the retro athletic aesthetic.
Designed with input from NBA star Kawhi Leonard, the KAWHI signature shoe provides lightweight responsiveness and containment for aggressive players. A unique lateral wrap enclosure locks in the foot over the midsole.
The Two Wxy v2 allows smooth pivoting and changes of direction thanks to deep flex grooves in the outsole and grooved midsole. Full-length FuelCell foam brings consistent energy return for jumping and drives to the basket.
Low to the ground for stability during play, the Omn1s basketball shoe positions FuelCell foam under the whole foot for continuous energy return when making cuts and crosses on the court.
This covers just a sampling of New Balance’s exceptional sneaker lineup built to empower your active lifestyle. Once you’ve narrowed down favorite models, it’s time to dial in sizing and find the best deals.
Find Your Size and the Best Prices
Getting properly sized for New Balance sneakers ensures all-day comfort and performance. Visit an official New Balance store whenever possible to get your feet measured and try on recommended models. Their experts can assess your fit needs in person.
If visiting a store isn’t convenient, order directly from Newbalance.com and input your sizing measurements to find your ideal size in each style. Many third party retailers like Road Runner Sports also include sizing calculators with their New Balance listings.
When buying online, search sites like Zappos, JackRabbit and Shoekicker for extra discounts and promos. Sign up for retailer newsletters to get alerted on sale events and clearance pricing on last season’s colorways. Hitting end-of-season sales can score major savings.
Wherever you buy, be sure to keep the receipt in case you need to exchange sizing. Dialling in the perfect New Balance fit for your feet means you can confidently purchase replacements online.
Caring for Your Sneakers
Getting the most life out of your New Balance sneakers comes down to proper care and maintenance:
- Keep sneakers clean by wiping down after wear and spot treating dirt/stains. Air dry fully after any cleaning.
- Store in a cool, dry place away from direct heat or sunlight to prevent materials from breaking down.
- Rotate between pairs to minimize repetitive stress in one spot. Allow 24 hours between wears for moisture to fully dissipate.
- Replace the insole around every 300-500 miles of wear to maintain arch and heel support.
- Inspect outsoles periodically and have sneakers resoled before tread wears thin to prolong performance.
With some TLC, your New Balance sneakers will log mile after mile in total comfort and style. Break them in properly and they’ll soon become your new favorite pair!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about New Balance men’s sneakers:
How do New Balance sneakers fit?
The majority of styles fit true to size but trying shoes on is recommended. Some may need to size up/down half a size depending on foot volume and arch type. Use their fit guidance tools online.
Where are they manufactured?
Some iconic models like the 990v5 are made in the USA while other styles are imported from Asia and Europe. Check product descriptions for manufacturing origins.
How long do they last?
With proper rotation and care, expect around 300-500 miles of performance wear but this varies based on use. Heavier runners or those logging high weekly miles may get less.
What are the most comfortable styles?
Top rated comfortable options include the 990v5, 1080v12 and 2002R Protection Pack. The 860v12, 1540v3 and 680v6 are great for flat feet. And the Rebel v2 and FuelCell RC Elite provide comfort with speed.
How do I clean New Balance sneakers?
Use a soft brush and mild soap and water for spot cleaning. Remove laces and insoles if washing the whole shoe. Air dry fully. Avoid excessive water exposure or machine washing.
Can I customize my own sneakers?
Yes, New Balance offers customization of select styles through their Made in US program. You can personalize colors and materials for a unique 1 of 1 pair.
Where can I find deals on New Balance sneakers?
Check the New Balance outlets and sale section online for discounts. Sign up for retailer newsletters for special promos and coupons. Holiday weekends and end of athletic seasons often feature sales.
Should I break them in before intensive activity?
Light breaking in is recommended to allow your foot to adjust and prevent blisters. But many styles require minimal break-in before ramping up miles or intensity. Listen to your body.
With the right info you’re ready to find the perfect pair of New Balance sneakers tailored to your feet and lifestyle. Get out there and log some comfortable miles!
With over a century of experience crafting technical performance and lifestyle footwear, New Balance has cemented itself as a leader in the sneaker world. Their shoes empower athletes and casual wearers alike to keep moving in sustained comfort.
Consider how and where you plan to wear your new sneakers to narrow down styles offering the right blend of cushioning, support, traction and style for your needs. Properly dial in your sizing for the ideal fit. Then take care of your shoes to get the most mileage out of each pair.
From ultra soft lifestyle sneakers to carbon plated speed demons, New Balance’s diverse catalog lets you find your personal match. Trust their proven heritage and craftsmanship to keep your feet happy mile after mile. Your ideal sneakers await, ready to lace up and get moving!