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Running Shoes: Which Ones Do I Choose?!

How to Select the Ideal Running Shoes

Author: Alexandra Devrelis

Last weekend our team at PhysioWest attended the annual Salisbury.RUN! We had so much fun cheering on the different runners throughout the day, and assisting their recovery with some free massages for the finishers.

Running is an exceptional way to maintain fitness, but the importance of selecting appropriate footwear cannot be overstated. As a physiotherapist with extensive experience, look no further for practical advice on choosing the best running shoes and my recommendations to support your running endeavours. Whether you’re a beginner or NYC Marathon finisher – I’ve got you!

Understand Your Foot Mechanics

Firstly, before delving into shoe selection, it’s crucial to understand your foot mechanics. Three common foot types exist: neutral, pronated, and supinated. You can identify your foot type through a simple test. A neutral foot has a distinct curve along the inside, a pronated foot might have a flat arch, and a supinated foot has a high arch. Check which one you are and then move to the next step.

Assess Your Running Technique

Your running technique influences the type of shoes that will suit you best. We need to check whether you overpronate, underpronate, or have a neutral stride. What does this mean? Overpronation occurs when the foot rolls inward excessively, while underpronation (or supination) happens when the foot doesn’t roll inward enough. A neutral stride indicates a slight inward roll to evenly distribute impact. Don’t worry if you find this difficult to assess – it can be a little complicated. If you aren’t sure what running technique you are, we recommend you book in and have your technique assessed by one of our physiotherapists. This will help you assess your running style holistically and ensure you have the most accurate advice.

Consider Cushioning and Support

Running shoes offer different levels of cushioning and support. We sometimes assume that the more cushioning the better. However, this is not always the case. Neutral runners typically benefit from shoes with moderate cushioning and support. For overpronators, shoes with additional support along the inner edge can enhance stability. Supinators should opt for shoes with generous cushioning to absorb shock effectively. The shoes should fit to your feet, not your feet to the shoe. And that doesn’t just mean length!

Ensure the Proper Fit

As we just mentioned, the fit of your shoes is paramount. Your toes should have ample wiggle room, while the shoe should snugly fit around the heel and middle of your foot. There should be approximately a thumb’s width of space between your longest toe and the shoe’s end. Remember, your run is probably only as good as the fit of your shoe. Great shoes = great run!

Have you checked all of the above? Do you think you know what kind of running shoe you need?

Remember, these steps are simple, but assessing your foot and running style is not always easy. We always recommend checking in with one of our physiotherapists to get the best advice. If you’re keen to book in, just hit the ‘Book Online’ button in the top right hand corner or at the bottom of this page!

 

If you’re on the hunt for some new runners, these are the Running Shoes I recommend:

For Neutral Runners:

– Brooks Ghost 14: Provides a plush feel with excellent cushioning and a comfortable fit.
– Asics Gel Nimbus 24: Offers a smooth ride with adequate cushioning and support.

For Overpronators:

– Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22: Provides superior support and stability for overpronators.
– New Balance Fresh Foam 860v12: Offers a secure fit with enhanced cushioning and support.

For Supinators:

– Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38: Delivers responsive cushioning and a supportive fit for supinators.
– Saucony Triumph 19: Provides a plush feel with excellent cushioning for supinators.

 

Selecting the right running shoes is essential for an enjoyable and injury-free running experience. By understanding your foot mechanics, running technique, and the level of cushioning and support you require, you can find the perfect pair to support your fitness journey.
As physiotherapists & exercise physiologists at PhysioWest, we are experienced in sports and running techniques and helping you reach your goals whilst staying injury free. If you are looking for assistance with any aspect of your running journey, we would love to be a part of it.
Book online via the link below, or give us a call on 8352 3582. We can’t wait to see you in the clinic soon!
Happy running team!

 

 

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