How to Choose the Right Running Shoe

Not all running shoes are created equal.

Have you ever gone into a Footlocker and wondered why there are so many options? One would think that a shoe is a shoe, so outside of stylistic preferences, there wouldn’t seem to be a real reason to have so many available options. In reality, there is a science behind it all.

Different shoes are designed for different activities and sports, because those activities require specific actions that put stress on different areas of the feet. For instance, a sport that requires a lot of running might need a shoe with better traction. A sport that requires lots of jumping might need a more padded sole. A running shoe needs good arch support, as well as better shock absorption. So, when shopping for the perfect shoe it is definitely important to take into account what kind of activities you participate in.

Running is one of the best forms of cardio, but it can also be rough on our feet and knees. Here are five things to think about when selecting the perfect running shoe.

Consider your terrain. If you are running indoors on a treadmill you can forgo some of the padding you might need on an outdoor track or trail.

Think about the sole. Some people swear by running barefoot outdoors, while I prefer a shoe that keeps my foot perfectly padded. 

READ MORE: Five Mistakes to Avoid When Buying New Running Shoes

Think about your feet. Not all feet are created equal either, so if your feet are different sizes or you need a specific type of arch support, consider ordering custom shoes for the perfect fit.

Get the right fit. Your shoes should only be slightly larger than your feet, and should fit snugly, with no breaking-in period. Make sure they aren’t too tight when you buy them because they will only get tighter if your feet swell.

Keep your receipts. Especially if you are buying online, keep your receipts until after your first run with your new shoes. You will never know how well they perform for you until you actually try them out so it may take a few tries to find the perfect running shoe for you.

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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