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Which Type of Running Shoes are Right for You?

Which Type of Running Shoes are Right for You?
With so many types of running shoes in the market, it is quite understandable that most people are left confused and bewildered as to which one to buy. The most important aspect to consider while choosing running shoes is whether they fit you right and whether they satisfactorily serve the purpose for which you require it. Some people simply want a pair to walk in daily while others are occasional joggers and gym goers and some are serious runners who run most days of the week on a regular basis. Using the wrong pair can cause injuries and is ultimately a waste of money as well as being harmful to your body.   The problem is that most running shoes feel comfortable when you’re trying them on in the store, even though you’ve walked around in them for a few steps. You only truly realise the true fit of a pair of shoes once you’ve walked or run in them for a few miles. The ideal running shoe is one that accommodates your feet properly given your running style and the shape of your feet. So, choosing the right pair depends on first determining what your running style is (how you run) and what surface you’re going to be running on.  

Figuring out how you run

  You can figure out the mechanics of how you run by checking the wear pattern on the soles of a used pair of running shoes. Pronation is identified by a wear pattern in the area of the balls of the feet and a little bit of the heels. Neutral pronation absorbs impact while running and protects your ankle and knee joints. Overpronation is can be seen by wear patterns along the inside edges of the shoe which indicate that the runners' natural inward roll of their feet are exaggerated. Overpronators are at risk of knee injury, so they need shoes that will provide stability and motion control. Conversely, underpronation (or supination) is an outward rolling of the feet indicating that impact during landing is not being absorbed sufficiently. This can be seen when shoes have wear patterns along the outer edges of the shoes. Underpronators need shoes with a lot of flexibility and cushioning.  

Running shoes types


Motion control shoes

Also called maximum support shoes, these are for overpronators. They have soles that emphasize medial support (inside support) made of higher density materials for extra support in order to slow down excessive pronation.  

Stability shoes

These are for neutral pronators and are the most popular kind. They combine cushioning and support features, offering a balanced blend of motion control and impact control. They’re not as heavy as motion control shoes  

Cushioning shoes

These are for supinators (underpronators). They are designed to disperse shock in the midsole and outsole by adding material for cushioning to the forefoot and heel areas.  

Barefoot shoes

Nowadays there are shoes in the market that feature a heel to toe ‘zero drop’, meaning that there is no difference in height of the heel and the toe, where traditional running shoes

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  • Sarah Nicks