Choosing running shoes can be a very difficult process. There is an incredible number of factors that must be considered. These include cost, fit, style, technology, support, and comfort. In this article, I will briefly run through some of the important factors in regards to how to choose running shoes. At the end of this article, you should have a good idea about how to choose running shoes for yourself.
What shape are you in?
The first question that you need to answer when you are considering how to choose running shoes is – what shape are you in? Everyone’s foot is unique and comes in a variety of different shapes. One way to determine what shape your foot is in is to stand with your feet on a chair. If your feet are in the awkward position where your toes point away from your body inwards then you are probably shaped like a grape. If your feet are in the perfect position where they line up with your hips and your waist then you are most likely shaped like a round ball.
What is my personal gait?
Another question that you need to answer when considering how to choose running shoes is – what is my personal gait? The gait of a runner is an important factor in how to choose running shoes. Some runners have a longer, faster gait than others. This may be due to the type of activity or genetics but most runners have a fairly similar gait to high school athletes.
Do I have pronation or supination (front foot rolling inwards) control?
The third question that you need to answer when considering how to choose running shoes is – do I have pronation or supination (front foot rolling inwards) control? Pronation is the normal motion of the foot as it rolls over during the forward leg strike. Supination is the opposite of pronation. Again, both pronation and supination are very important to runners.
Do I need extra support in the middle?
The fourth question that you must answer is – do I need extra support in the middle? Runners who need extra support in the middle include middle to long-distance runners, long-distance marathoners, and cross-training and trail runners. Runners who don’t need the extra cushion in the middle include flat or low-handling shoes that don’t need much cushioning. And finally, runners who need more stability in their middle area include uphill running and marathoners. Midsole stability should be considered if you are going to be in one of these sports for a long period of time. Examples of athletes who need stability in their middle area include track and field, tennis, volleyball, and football.
Consider the design of the shoe
Once you have answered the questions above about your gait type and pronation or supination control, you are ready to consider the design of the shoe. Many people fail to think about gait type and end up with a pair of shoes that do not suit their gait type. This can lead to problems with the way in which the shoe rolls on the foot and can cause pain. Another problem that can occur is a flat pair of shoes can lead to a lot of foot pain and injury because the flat bottom of the shoe can rub the ground while walking or running. A properly fitting shoe will roll onto your foot in a way that is comfortable for you. Consider searching on the internet for the best gym shoes, for example, to give you some ideas on the style of shoes you want.
You also need to consider arch type when buying a new pair of shoes. There are two types of arch types, normal (also called flat) and reverse (also known as a high arch). Most people prefer to have a normal arch type of arch so that they can run easily but some high arches can cause problems for people with flat feet.
To sum up
If you are trying to find the right level of arch support you need to know that most people need extra support in the front of their shoes. If you have normal pronation you will not need much extra support in the front of your shoes because your feet are already tracking along the normal pronation path. If you have over-pronation, your feet will need extra arch support to keep your feet on the normal rotation path. Most runners need support in the front of the shoe because runners with over-pronation will tend to sink into their shoes, which increases the risk of a knee injury. You need to try out lots of different brands before you buy so you can find out which type of arch support works best for you.