For recommendations on shoe brands, please click the recommendation list link on the bottom of the webpage. To have your shoes evaluated for appropriateness and health please see Dr. Hoy.
Research has indicated that running shoes are the most important purchase a runner can make. There are several choices available, which is why it is beneficial that proper knowledge is acquired before a purchase is made. There are three portions of each running shoe, consisting of the upper, midsole, and outsole. The upper keeps the foot stable, and consists of the laces and tongue of the shoe. The midsole contains cushioning and governs how the foot moves in the shoe. The outsole controls the traction of how the shoe operates on pavement or trails. Some runners prefer a minimal shoe, which may feel similar to running barefoot. Other runners may enjoy running in shoes that have maximum cushioning and support. If you are interested in buying running shoes, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist for advice on what style of shoe is best suited for your running preferences.
If you are a runner, wearing the right running shoe is essential. For more information, contact Dr. John Hoy from Seattle Foot and Ankle Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Choosing the Right Running Shoe for Your Foot Type
To increase performance and avoid the risk of injury, it is important to choose the right running shoe based on your foot type. The general design of running shoes revolves around pronation, which is how the ankle rolls from outside to inside when the foot strikes the ground.
Neutral runners are able to choose from a wide variety of shoes, including minimalist shoes or even going barefoot.
Runners who overpronate, or experience an over-abundance of ankle rolling, should choose shoes that provide extra motion control and stability.
Runners who underpronate, or supinate, have feet that have high arches and lack flexibility, preventing shock absorption. They require shoes with more flexibility and cushion.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Seattle, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.
Choosing the Right Running Shoe for Your Foot Type
Running may seem like a simple to do. However, running is actually a complex movement that puts stress on the ligaments, bones, and joints of the body. Selecting the correct running shoe is important for increasing performance and avoiding risk of injury. Running shoes should be selected based on your foot type. Considerations such as trail versus road shoes are important. Your foot type dictates the degree of cushioning, stability and motion control you require. The most accurate way to learn your foot type is to visit a local shop that specializes in running shoes. Professionals can measure your arch type, stride and gait and help you with your shoe needs.
The design of running shoes is created around the idea of pronation. Pronation is the natural rolling movement of your ankle from the outside to inside when your foot strikes the ground. If you run properly you strike the ground on the outside of your heel and roll in the direction of your big toe before pushing off once more. Pronation is beneficial because it assists the lower half of your body in absorbing shock and storing energy. Those considered neutral runners pronate correctly and do not need running shoes that help correct their form. Neutral runners can choose from a wide variety of shoes, including barefoot or minimal types. However, those who have arch problems or who adopt an incorrect form while running may experience too much or too little pronation. They may require running shoes that offer additional support.
Those who overpronate experience an over-abundance of ankle rolling. Even while standing, those who severely overpronate display ankles that are angled inward. It is not uncommon for them to have flat feet or curved legs. The tendency to overpronate may cause many injuries. Areas that tend to become injured are the knees, ankles, and Achilles tendon. If you find that you have a tendency to overpronate, you should look at shoes that provide extra stability and motion-control. Motion-control shoes are straight and firm. Shoes of this type do not curve at the tip. The restricted flexibility along the middle of the shoe prohibits the foot from rolling too far inward as your foot strikes the ground.
A less common problem is underpronation. Underpronation, also called supination, is when the feet are unable to roll inward during landing. Those who underpronate have feet that lack flexibility and high arches. This prevents any kind of shock absorption, even though it does place less rotational stress on ankles and knees. This added force can cause fractures, ligament tears, and muscle strains because the legs are trying to compensate for the impact. Those who underpronate need shoes with more cushioning and flexibility. If you have a tendency to underpronate, selecting stability or motion-control shoes may cause you more problems by continuing to prevent pronation.