In my house, we honor the ancient custom of keeping shoes in a chaotic pile on the floor of our vestibule — and I recently noticed something that made me do a double-take. There were not one but two pairs of bouncy-soled sneakers from the runner-beloved brand Brooks, in identical navy blue-and-turquoise colorways. Had they… cloned themselves? While such technology would certainly be an exciting development for this shopping enthusiast, the answer was much more predictable. It turns out my mom and my daughters’ nanny — both active older women in their 60s — rely on the exact same pair of Ghost 14 running shoes to stay light on their feet while they garden, run after kids (and grandkids) and do a whole lot of walking.

My mom, who has undergone bunion surgery and has hammer toes, told me that she likes that the shoes are available in wide widths to accommodate her custom orthotics. She finds the toe box to be roomy and well-constructed enough to comfortably accommodate her feet. (She’s actually on her second pair; the first lasted her almost four years before she needed to replace them a little under a year ago.) While there are a whopping 39 colors available on Amazon, she chose the navy combination on the basis that it felt “a little snazzy” while still complementing a lot of her clothes. “I wear them every day,” she told me, “and I do a fair amount of walking.”

Speaking of walking: I personally don’t know many women in their 60s who log quite as many miles as my kids’ nanny, who estimated that she walks at least 45 minutes every day just commuting from our home to hers, not even taking into account the steps she takes shuttling my kids to and from the playground or the library every day. She told me that her Ghost 14s are “very soft inside” with room for toes and bunions and a higher, supportive heel. “Some shoes look nice but inside [your feet will be] hurting a lot. These shoes are the best,” she explained. “Getting old, shoes is important.”

According to Brooks’ website, the brand has been making the style since 2008, and named it for a product director who earned the nickname “the Ghost” thanks to his preference for nighttime jogs. The shoe is known for its signature cushioning, which provides firm support without — in their words — “feeling squishy,” and a midsole that evenly absorbs the impact of your foot no matter how it lands.

If you’d like to read up on the sneakers’ performance, we’ve rounded up some promising reviews from Amazon — or you can just go ahead and add these shoes to your cart to stay light on your feet all summer long.

“I have really bad plantar fasciitis in my right foot. I recently had surgery for it 4 months ago. It has taken me a while to recover. I have been referred to Brooks shoes by two different foot doctors. These shoes are very supportive and fit me well. I am able to put in my green Superfeet orthotics inside these shoes. I highly recommend these shoes for every day comfort and support!” — Angela Baker

“Oh my God, I love these shoes it’s like they make my feet walk right? I am a walker about 4 miles a day. I’m 70 years old and I love to walk. My toes have been getting painful on me on my right foot and now I can walk my 4 miles without any pain. Thank you so much Brooks.” — paula morgan

“About a year ago I bought my first Brooks athletic shoes. I don’t run, but I have some foot issues and wanted a good pair of shoes I could wear every day. Podiatrist recommended Brooks, among other choices. My Ghost 14 shoes have been worn almost every day all day for almost a year and still look and feel great. So I bought a new pair. Only possible issue is that the color is not quite what I expected – more blue than violet/lavender. But it’s a beautiful pair of shoes so I’m keeping them. I know photos on computers aren’t always entirely accurate. So I warn you – if you are a purple addict, try the real purple Ghost 14s. But the ones I purchased go better with summer wear, and look better with my many blue things than a tint that was heavier on the purple tone. The shoes are great, hold my custom inserts, and provide lots of cushioning. Love them.” — Ruth

“I have been wearing Brooks Ghost series exclusively for the past 6 years. They are supportive and cradle my feet after a long day of work. These shoes can withstand hours upon hours of walking/running. Other shoes have pinched my feet, but these provide the perfect fit. I really like how they are also stylish. Can be worn in athletic or casual events.” — Sandra Adams

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