Puma vs Nike vs Adidas: Running Shoes Compared

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Puma is a good choice for runners who are undecided about their running shoe choice due to their “test run” feature. This lets you try out the shoe for 30 days and return it even if dirty. Nike has some of the best customer service options so it will

Running shoes are one of those items of clothing that you especially want to be comfortable and resistant to the elements. It makes a lot of sense to spend extra effort making sure that the running shoe you eventually settle on is going to keep your feet dry and comfortable while you’re going on your runs for whatever reason. Injuries are often a problem for runners, and the truth is that the type of shoe you have can make a difference. Here are a few running shoe companies so you can compare and contrast them.


Puma has been around for 65 years now, and they are one of the more recognizable names in running shoes.


  • Free Shipping for Orders Over $75-Buy more than one shoe or accessory from Puma and you’re almost always going to end up with free shipping this way.
  • Choose from Dozens of Different Countries-If you want an experience on the site more adapted for your particular country, you can click on the little flag symbol in the bottom left corner of the site to pick a new one.
  • Score Big Rewards Program- Programs like this give you $25 for every $50 you spend. These tend to be short-term deals though, so it’s a good idea to check for them periodically.
  • 1-Day Shipping-If you want to get your running shoes the next day, you have to process them by 2 PM EST Monday through Friday. If you miss the deadline, the processing won’t occur until the day after.
  • 24/7 Toll-free Number-Call Puma’s line at any time of day or night to get help with your purchases or answer your questions about their shoes.
  • 30-day Test Run-You can try out the shoes for 30 days, and return it for free regardless of how dirty it is if you don’t like it.


Nike specializes in sports shoes of all stripes and running shoes are definitely included.


  • Free Shipping on Orders of $150-This is more of a minimum than many other sites, but it’s still useful. You also don’t need any codes since it’s just always in effect automatically. Most shoes will get to you within 2-4 days with free shipping unless you order something special like NIKEiD. You can also get free shipping on every order if you join the Nike+ program.
  • Schedule a Call-If you hate waiting for a customer service agent to get off hold and actually help you out, Nike has a call schedule option.
  • Live Chat-Hit the Live Chat option from 6 AM to 8 PM PST every day of the week if you’d rather avoid voice communication.
  • NIKIEiD Customization-If you see a circle rainbow icon in the listing for a shoe, it means you can add your own customization. This includes choosing design from solid, single tone fade or 2-tone fade. You can choose accent color from 9 different colors for a shoe like the Air Zoom. You can choose your base color option. You can also choose lateral magwire options, lace wire, sock liner and just about everything else.


Adidas has many no-nonsense running shoes with extra features for easier running like energy boost or their multi-surface track grooves.


  • Boost Energy Tech-This is a shoe design property that helps give you an extra spring to boost your step when you’re running.
  • Techfit-This feature is designed to make your running shoes feel as comfortable as socks.
  • Personalize-You can add up to 8 characters of text to your shoe. You can also choose what logo to put on it, what pattern, and a variety of different colors.
  • Synthetic Mesh Overlays-Some shoes like the Mi Speed Trainer 2 have an extra layer of mesh that keeps the shoe breathable, but that also helps to make it last longer.
  • Multi-surface Outsole-The Mi Speed trainer, for example, has a special outsole that’s designed to make it easier to run no matter what surface you’re running on. Flexible grooves in the sole allow for traction on different surfaces.

Head to Head


Running shoes at Puma can vary from $66 to $125 depending on sales. An example is the Ignite Mesh Men’s running shoes which go for $100.This includes EVA sock liner and IGNITE foam midsole.

Nike has a shoe called the Nike Air Zoom Structure 18. If you get it through the NIKEiD program and customize it however you want, it’s $155.

The Adidas Mi Pure Boost shoe goes for $140. There’s a “personalize” option here as well. You can even add text of up to 8 characters. The cost can go up depending on what pattern you add.


It’s a bit counter-intuitive, but the contact link for Puma is actually on the left side of the main screen. Their email address is there, or you can use the online form to open a ticket. They also have a 24/7 phone line. They also have free returns no matter what condition your shoes are in if it’s within 30 days. This is for shoes that have the “30-day test run” label on them.

Nike has a lot of support options including the option to schedule a call so you don’t have to wait around on hold. You can get here through the “Contact Us” link which is all the way at the bottom under where it says “Get Help” on the main page. The Schedule a Call option is on the side. All you need is name, reason, and number to have them call you. Live chat and phone support are available every day during wide hours.

The Customer Service link is for Adidas is again at the bottom of the page, and the new screen has a “contact us” link in the top left. The “click to contact” link on the screen after gets you to a form email. There’s also a phone number here with hours until 11 PM every day. Adidas also has many custom features for shoes like energy boost or adding your name.

Overall, Nike and Adidas have similar phone hours, but Nike offers the call back service which is better. They also have live chat available for many hours every day as well