There are lots of great reasons to take up running. Not only is it a good way to help you reach and maintain a healthy weight, but it’s also a fantastic stress reliever. Unfortunately, this form of exercise can also be hard on your feet. So, taking the right steps to find the perfect pair of shoes is an important step in avoiding numerous painful injuries, from strains and sprains to corns, ingrown toenails, heel pain, and plantar fasciitis.
As a leading foot surgeon with more than 31 years of experience in podiatry, and as an avid distance runner himself, Dr. John Jurcisin at Precision Footcare recommends taking the following steps to find the best running shoes for your feet.
When it comes to feet, you typically have a low, neutral, or high arch. This part of your foot supports your body weight and determines the direction and severity of how your foot rolls — or pronates — when it strikes the ground. Having a proper or neutral foot strike reduces the stress by balancing the impact evenly from the outside of your heel to the ball of your foot.
Here’s how your arch type affects your foot strike while running:
You can usually figure out which type of arch you have by standing with wet feet on a paper bag. A normal arch has a distinct curve along the inside of the foot from heel to big toe. When you have a low arch, there isn’t much curve in this area, and a high arch has a very noticeable bend, with only a thin band of tissue connecting your heel and toe.
Once you know which arch type you have, you can pick a running shoe that controls your pronation. If you have problems identifying your arch type, Dr. Jurcisin can help.
There may be hundreds of running shoes to choose from, but they generally fall into three categories based on your arch type.
This type of running shoe is best for men and women with a low arch because they have arch areas designed for increased stability and support. This helps keep your foot from overpronating while you run.
Stability shoes are best if you have neutral arches. Their design focuses on providing extra support for the sides of your arches, along with a gentle foam cushioning from front to back, which offers more stability in the rear of your foot but flexibility at the front.
When you have high arches, a cushioning shoe provides a small amount of rigidity in the arch area from lightweight materials that also provide optimal cushioning.
The last step to getting the best running shoe for your foot type involves shopping at a quality running store. These experienced employees have extensive knowledge of athletic shoe brands and how they can support your individual foot type.
When shopping for your running shoes, Dr. Jurcisin also recommends:
In addition to buying the best running shoes for your feet, Dr. Jurcisin suggests replacing them every 400–600 miles because they lose their shock absorption over time.
For more tips on finding the best running shoes, contact Precision Footcare in Midtown East, New York City by calling 212-750-8344 or by booking an appointment online today.