Proper Running Footwear

Often when patrons come to the fitness staff asking questions about running they usually begin with, “it hurts here when I run.” Approximately 63-74 % of runners sustain and injury every year. Running with improper form or footwear is usually the cause of this pain or injury. The first thing that I ask someone inquiring about such information is, when was the last time they changed their running shoes? Proper footwear is really important. Depending on the surface that you run on, your foot type, and the distance of your runs you might require a different shoe. So take this into account when purchasing a shoe.

 Your shoes are designed to absorb shock from your body and over time this material breaks down causing you to absorb the shock in your ankles, knees or even hip instead. If you consider how many miles you run on a pair of shoes, the surface you run on and how much you weigh you can actually calculate the breakdown of the rubber in a shoe.  Classic rule of thumb is to replace a shoe between 300-400 miles.  Most importantly listen to your body, when your knees start to hurt or you begin to get shin splints think about the last time you replaced your shoes.

A trend in the shoe world today reverts to the minimalist shoes or barefoot shoes. These shoes are designed with less rubber so naturally they absorb less shock than the everyday running shoe, take time breaking these shoes in. Minimalist shoes have been a controversial topic in the running industry but if you choose to go with them make sure that you condition your body correctly. Start with wearing them for 25% of your normal run and work from there. Again, listening to the needs of your body is really important.

Next time you have a minor pain in your body check in with when the last time you purchased new shoes. Then from there asses what your running goals are when you go out to purchase these new shoes.

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