June 23, 2023

How to pick the best running shoe for you!

If you were to walk into any shoe store, you'll find an overwhelming amount of shoes on a wall with price tags all over.  It can be quite daunting to know what shoe is going to be right for yourself!Here at Undefeeted Podiatry we have some handy tips and tricks to best determine the right running shoe for you!First and foremost, as handy as online shopping is these days we would highly recommend going into a speciality running shoe store to try them on yourself and get assessed by a fit technician.

What type of running?

The types of surfaces you run on will play a huge part in deciding what shoe is going to work best for you:For road running, you will want a light shoe that has a good amount of cushioning, to provide shock absorption as concrete is a taxing surface on the body.For trail running, a shoe with a grippy outsole will provide the traction you need to tackle those rocky and gravel terrains.However, if majority of your training is at the gym, or in a group class activity then consider a cross-trainer as they provide more stability around the ankle and are a more planted shoe.

Shoe fitment

The upper of a shoe nowadays is made from a variety of different materials to accommodate for different needs, ranging from leather all the way to one-piece knit fabrics.  Leather is typically a more durable upper compared to a traditional mesh or knit, however it is not quite as durable.  In saying that, a lot of manufacturers now make a double layer mesh to try and increase the durability of the mesh shoes.  Pop in store and talk to a shoe specialist to determine what type of upper will suit your needs.The other important component of a shoe is the heel counter. This is located right at the back of the shoe which is where your heel slides straight into.  The role of a heel counter is to provide rearfoot stability, by providing a cradle on the medial and lateral sides of your feet.  In addition to this, it also provides longevity for the shoe as well.  Without a heel counter, the shoe could begin to lose it's shape and wear out much quicker than usual.If you wear orthotics, ensure the shoe has a removeable insole and has the depth to accommodate for the extra bulk of an orthotic device.

Determine your foot shape

Your particular foot shape will hold a significant role in deciding what shoe is right for you!   Here at Undefeeted Podiatry we can assess your feet to ensure you are picking the correct category of shoe based off your foot type.

Assess your GAIT and running style

The way your feet move through the GAIT cycle whilst running and walking will arguably be the most important factor to consider when buying your new running shoes.  The GAIT cycle is the time interval between two successive moments of the same repetitive movement.   (E.g. The time difference between your left foot landing on the ground the first time and the second time.)  Many manufacturers use different types of technology to try and prevent the foot from succumbing to excessive motion throughout your running.  Some of these can include: Guide rails, varus wedges, medial posting and dual-density foams.    The podiatrists here at Undefeeted Podiatry are fully equipped to assess your GAIT patterns through the use of a treadmill and even state of the art GAIT Scanners.  In addition to this, a specialty running store may have fit technicians there to assist in assessing your GAIT as well.

Easy mistakes to make when buying new running shoes

Function over form - We understand that style and fashion is important when buying new shoes, however try to prioritise the comfort of the shoe over the looks.  If your shoe is not comfortable, you will have a great looking shoe that sits on the shelf collecting dust!Socks and orthotics - When you go to try shoes on, take the socks you would typically wear when running.  If you have been prescribed orthotics, take these with you as well.Shoes that are too small - This sounds simple, but often our feet can change size as we get older and even in different climates.  As well as this, every brand and model will size up differently to others. Make sure to get your feet measured professionally to minimise blisters and bruised toenails.Now that you're equipped with this new info, you can make a well-informed decision on what type of shoe is going to suit your running needs best!