What kind of running will I be doing?
For any runner, it is important to know where you are going. Having a goal will help keep you motivated, hold you accountable and help you run further and faster. If you are training for a marathon you will need different shoes from once a week, weekend joggers. This will also help you sift through the infinite pairs of running shoes that are on the market.
Where will I be running?
Running on asphalt without the right shoes can be tough on your joints and lead to a host of injuries. Bitumen doesn’t have much give which is where a shoe with extra shock absorption is the best option for injury prevention and longevity.
On the contrary, if you mostly run on trail runs and uneven bush tracks a sturdier trail shoe with extra support is necessary. Generally speaking, they offer a more structured exterior and have less cushioning.
“When I first started running I didn’t give much thought to my shoes. It wasn’t until a couple of weeks into my training when I couldn’t work out why I was so sore that I realised I was wearing the wrong shoe. As soon as I made the switch to shoes that were right for my running technique, I could feel the difference. ”Lucy Bode
What is my foot pronation?
Pronation is the way your foot naturally moves as you run. When your foot strikes the ground, it rolls inward to absorb the shock. This natural movement helps you push evenly from the ball of your foot and is an essential part of your overall gait cycle (the way you move).
There are three different foot types and understanding the way, your foot moves is a big part of improving your shoe selection, assists in improving your overall running performance and can potentially minimise the chance of injury.
Those with a neutral foot type is the normal or ‘ideal’ foot type. When you run your heel strikes, then the foot comes down in a stable platform and then you push off ever so slightly from your big toe. People with a neutral foot are less likely to get injured.
For overpronators, the foot rolls in excessively on impact which puts a lot of pressure on the inside of the foot. It is important for overpronators or those with flat feet to find a shoe that offers extra support as without the right shoes, overpronators are susceptible to a host of injuries; for example, shin, arch and heel pain.
With a 26-year heritage, the GEL-KAYANO™ 26, for example, is built for overpronators, which accounts for 43% of runners tested by ASICS FOOT ID™. It boasts a purpose-built DUOMAX midsole which helps smooth the foot as it naturally tries to roll inwards. It also has extra comfort, support and cushioning which helps to reduce the risk of flat feet and bunions.
Having a supinating or underpronating foot type means that when your foot hits the pavement weight transfers to the outside of your foot, causing you to push off from the outer toes and lateral side of the foot. Without the correct shoes, supinators are prone to plantar fasciitis, shin pain and ankle strain.
If you’re not sure of what shoe you need, ask the experts. Head to an ASICS store or running specialty retailers where their trained staff will be able to run a complimentary gait analysis or 3D foot mapping on your feet, so you know your foot-type for life.