Injury, it’s those words that can strike fear into anyone, especially runners. And a lot of injuries occur around your joints. The joints are just as important as your muscles when running, it’s very difficult to run with sore or damaged joints. So, it’s unfortunate that they are much more susceptible to injury than muscles, and in addition, they heal much slower than muscles do; so, you always want to make your best effort when protecting them. Fortunately, there is no shortage of ways to do that. Properly resting and analyzing and then subsequently correcting your form are among two of the ways. However, the real culprit of injury might be right on your feet the whole time - your shoes. Your choice in footwear is a key factor in injury prevention as proper shoes can unload stress and eventual strain from your joints. Therefore, it’s important to look for the best pair of shoes for you. But before that, you must learn a bit about your feet.
Your foot size and width are a very important factor to consider when choosing your shoes. Make sure you find out your foot size and width before choosing your shoe as some brands fit some people better. For example, Nike infamously has very tight shoes, so if you have a wide foot it might be better to go for a different brand.
You must also determine what your arch type is. This is important because this will dictate the way your foot rolls when you run and will be important when picking out shoes. To find out your arch type, you should perform the wet foot test.
To do the wet foot test:
- Wet your feet and walk on dry pavement.
- Examine the footprints left behind.
- Determine your arch type by matching your footprints with the arches above.
What do these results mean?
Neutral Arch (normal)- If you have a neutral arch this means that you can wear almost any shoe that you want!
Flat Arch (flat foot)- If you have a flat arch you will need to have more stability in your running shoes however don’t be frightened because there are many different options.
High Arch- If you have a high arch you will need more cushion in your shoes than the other two arch types. Again, don’t be worried, there are countless options.
Different types of people have different types of running styles (Foot Strike). This is important to consider when choosing your running shoe. Here are some common running styles:
Backfoot running- Do you land mostly on your heel and transition to your forefoot when running? Well, you might just be a backfoot runner. This means you are going to need greater cushioning near the heel.
Midfoot Running- Do you land on your midfoot when you run? Well, then you are a midfoot runner. This means you won’t have to worry as much on heel cushioning when running.
Forefoot Running- Do you land on your top of your feet when you run? Well, then you are a forefoot runner. This means you should consider choosing shoes that will support your Achilles and lower calf and consider insoles that will help reduce the stress on the Achilles.
Here’s a short list of some great options, however, this is only a fraction of the options that you will have when picking your shoes. Make sure to keep in mind that some shoes aren’t outright better than others so it’s important to research and read reviews and make sure the shoe is a perfect fit for you. If you have the chance, going to a physical running store near you is also a great option as they can usually measure your feet to find the perfect shoe.
-HOKA Clifton 6
-IKONI ORTIX HIVO
-Fresh Foam Roav Tee Shirt
-FuelCell Echo Heritage
-Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 37
-Solar Glide ST-19
-GT- 2000 8
-GEL Kayano 26
-Adrenalin GTS 20
-Nike Support 22
-Nike React Miler
-Nike Infinity Run
-Liberty ISO 2
-Opening Ceremony Bondi
-Fresh Foam 1080v10
-Nike Renew Run
-Nike Infinity Run
In conclusion, picking out running shoes has much more depth than many would think. So, that’s why it’s important that you do your research and choose accordingly.
So with that being said, Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, & StayRunning!