Different shoe designs support the foot and ankle in different ways to enable maximum comfort and minimise chances of injury.
Here are some top tips from sportwear specialist Sims Sports on how to choose the right shoe for your training style.
Fitness classes and activities like HIIT, Pilates, F45, CrossFit, gym or weights training often involve side-to-side movement (as opposed to the one-directional movement of walking and running)
This means you need to opt for cross-training shoes rather than ones designed for running or walking.
If you’re doing any sort of strength and weights training, you also need to make sure that the cross-training shoes you choose have plenty of tread, so they provide you with plenty of stability.
Tread relates to the pattern on the sole of the shoe, and impacts how non-slip the shoe is, so having high tread will minimise the chances of slipping and injuring yourself. Definitely do not opt for a simple running or walking shoe if you are a gym junkie.
Did you know that when you’re running your shoes can be absorbing up to five to twelve times your body weight? That’s one of the major reasons why running shoes are designed differently to walking shoes. These are the biggest considerations when buying shoes for walking/running:
Running shoes need to be more flexible than walking shoes, because your shoes aren’t absorbing anywhere near the same weight when you’re walking.
When a shoe is absorbing as much weight as a running shoe is, that can have a significant impact on the stress that is placed on the joints in your leg. So cushioning is very important in running shoes. They need to have more cushioning than walking shoes.
Your running style
Just as important is where that cushioning is distributed in a running shoe. The design of running shoes tends to be more scientific than the design for walking shoes because different people have different running styles.
For example, some people run on their toes, others hit the ground more flat-footed, while others hit with their heel first. Then there are those runners that tend to hit the ground on the inside of their feet rather than more evenly.
Walkers on the other hand usually hit the ground heel first. Walking shoes can be designed more with comfort in mind.
But the cushioning to absorb all the added weight stress in a running shoe needs to be distributed differently to cater for different running styles. It’s important that you understand your running style and that you choose a shoe that is designed for that style.
It’s also important to understand whether you have an arched or flat foot when you’re choosing both running and walking shoes. For example, if you have a high arch (in other words, the middle part of your foot is high), you don’t have a lot of natural shock absorption in your feet and you’ll need more cushioning.
How often do you want to run or walk?
Another important buying consideration is knowing how much running or walking you want to do in your shoes. For example, are you in training for a half-marathon or marathon and doing plenty of long-distance running? If you are, you’ll also need plenty of cushioning so that your shoes will last you as long as possible.
Choosing the right shoe is an important decision.
If you choose the right shoes for your individual needs, you’ll enjoy plenty of hassle-free use of them for as long as possible.
If you choose the wrong type of shoe to support your training style, at best you might end up with an uncomfortable walking shoe, and at worst you could injure yourself unnecessarily.
Sims Sports Store stocks a HUGE range of sports footwear and apparel in their Moonee Ponds store in Melbourne, including leading brands like ASICS, Nike, Adidas, Puma, Brooks, New Balance, Mizuno and Converse.
You can check out the hundreds of products they stock either in-store or online. They offer fast shipping Australia-wide.
What we love: They’re a family-owned and operated business that have been going strong since 1935, so you’re guaranteed great customer service and great prices for all the latest gear. You can get exclusive access to special deals if you sign up for their monthly newsletter.
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