Proper Running Shoes
The function of a running shoe is to protect the foot from the stress of running, while permitting
athlete to achieve his maximum potential. While in some parts of the world athletes run and participate
in sports barefooted, most of us require and benefit from the use of sport specific shoes. The forces and motions
that occur in different sports avry greatly. Because of these differences it is important that
active participation in varied sports will require various shoes. If the shoe is unstable when the athlete ismoving to one side to return a ball, the likelihood
is great thatthey may suffer an ankle sprain. Walking and running both occur in a straight line and the similar requirement of these activities suggest that one would be off using running shoes
for walking, rather than a shoe that resembles a tennis shoe.
Flaws in "Walking Shoes"
The majority of Sport Walking Shoes as already are not well designed. The one item that appears to be well
designed about them is their marketing strategy. The usually observed flaws in their design follow:
- Lack of forefoot cushioning in comparison with runnning shoes
- Flexibility in incorrect location- usually too proximal
- Lack of room in forefoot
- Inadequate support in rearfoot
- Skimping on quality of material
Shoe Wearing & Buying Tips
- A Shoe's midsole ony lasts so long. It degrades from use and the resultant useful life of a running shoe is 350 to 550 miles.
This means thatif you are running 20 miles a week, you should consider changing your shoes approximately every 20-25 weeks. The shoe may stillserve a useful purpose; casual wear for walking.
- Sole wear does not necessarily reflect the loss of shock absorption by a shoe. Even with a new looking shoe, adequate shock absorbtion may be lacking. Use the 350 to 550 mile guideline instead of trying to guess how worn your shoe should look.
- Buy your shoes at the end of the day, when your feet are somewhat larger from he day's walking.
- Make sure there is about a finger's width at the front of the shoe. This will help prevent runner's (black) toe. The shape and depth of the front of the shoe also have an effect on this problem.
- If you have had no problems while running in a shoe, you should probably try to obtain another pair of the same make and model.
- Don't dream of running a marathon in a enw pair of shoes. Your shoe should have atleast 100 miles on it to be broken in well enough to run a marathon.
- Make sure you carefully lace your shoe before running. Too tight a shoe may make parts of the top of your foot sore or squeeze your metatarsals too tightly. Too lose a shoe may make your foot move
excessively and be less stable, resulting in more than normal pronation.
Picture from The Foot Owner's Manual by Krames Communication.