How to choose the right running shoe
These tips will help you select the most important piece of equipment you'll need when you run.
When it comes to running, all you need are some comfortable clothes and a pair of shoes. But don't underestimate the importance of getting the right pair of running shoes or you may find yourself with aching feet or an unwanted injury, such as plantar fasciitis or shin splints.
The key to selecting a good running shoe is to make sure it fits your specific needs. Don't rely solely on recommendations from friends, an article in a magazine, a brand name or the look of a shoe.
Here are some things to consider when buying running shoes:
- Shoe type – If you have relatively flat arches, you'll tend to overpronate when you run, meaning your foot will roll to the inside upon landing on the ground. So look for a higher stability shoe with support that will prevent your feet from turning inward. If you have high arches, choose a more cushioned shoe that supports your arch to make it less likely that you'll land on the outside edges of your feet (supination). People who have a neutral foot (not too high or low of an arch) have more flexibility in choosing a shoe type.
- Size – Many people have to go up a half size compared to other shoes they wear. You should have about a thumb's width of space between your longest toe and the front of the shoe. Your heel should fit snugly but not tight and you should be able to move your foot slightly from side to side within the shoe. Don't buy shoes in the morning because feet swell later in the day and may not be comfortable when you're ready to wear them.
- Feel – The true test of a shoe is how it feels on your foot. Take the shoes for a spin around the store and make sure they feel comfortable when you're moving in them.