When shopping for running shoes, you first need to determine what type of runner you are. Do you take powerful strides up an unbeaten path or do you prefer the predictability of a secure track? There are different running shoes for each running style. Your running shoes are your support system, your teammate, your BFF on the open road. You must be sure to select the right “partner” for your running style or your overall physical health could be in jeopardy.
Do you prefer to run on the road, track, or your favorite gym? These locations usually have flat, predicable surfaces, therefore you don’t have to worry quite as much about making accommodations for your surroundings and you can choose the ideal running shoe based on your arch and the type of runner you are. High, medium, and low arches can easily be assessed by exploring your footprint. As far as your running style, you must determine if each stride hits the ground neutral or if you enter overpronate or underpronate. The right shoe can work to compensate for any non-neutral steps and help to protect your ankles, knees and overall ailment.
Running Shoes for Minimalist Runners
Would you call yourself a minimalist runner? This type of runner likes to take off running with only the clothes on their back and the shoes on their feet. Just make sure they’re the right shoes! Light and comfortable shoes are your ideal option, such as the New Balance Minimus or Vibram FiveFingers. With these shoes, your toes can grip the surface and gain a true sense of the path ahead. These shoes also reduce the chances of injury and improve balance.
Running Shoes for Competitive Runners
Competition runners that run mostly on a track need a completely different type of shoe. Running shoes typically provide shock absorption for the runner, however, most tracks are already built to absorb much of the impact. As a result, track shoes with racing spikes can be a better option. These competition shoes for sprinters are very lightweight and have plastic or metal spikes made for gripping the track.
Running Shoes for Off-Road Runners
What about those who enjoy running going off-road, or trails and other natural settings such as the beach? Running at any of these locations is an indication that you need a sturdy shoe that offers great support from the toes to the arch and the heel such as barefoot running or trail running shoes. Not just any running shoe is going to give you the traction you need in these environments. Look for supportive shoes with deeper tread that can handle the uneven ground.
Make sure you consider what type of runner you are before selecting your next pair of running shoes. Your feet will thank you.