A brisk morning walk in your favorite park is something that keeps you happy and active. Now that fitness is gaining attention, everybody is trying to stay in shape; what better way to do so than in a long run? but finding the right fitted pair of running shoes is an obstacle.
If you are a newbie and have started running just recently then pull your socks up and get ready to learn some new things about running shoes. From gel-filled soles to the cushioned ones here’s everything that you need to know about your ideal running shoes.
Gear Up With the Right Running Shoes:- Buying Guide
Shoe Anatomy 101
If you want to get the proper running shoes then knowing about its components is necessary. Materials used, features, type of build are some things that can highly affect the shoe comfort and your foot. Picking The wrong shoe will get you a history of spinal problems and aches in the body. Know about the different parts of a running shoe and understand which shoe will fit you.
One-piece uppers are created by knitting; it is present above the sole of the shoe and it provides support to the foot and stretches accordingly. What to expect: look for an upper that doesn’t irritate your skin and that isn’t rough, make sure that it isn’t too tight.
The ankle collar is the part of the shoe from where the ankle is hugged by the shoe padding which prevents the heel from slipping out of the running shoe. Some shoes have thicker cushioning to ensure that the shoe is comfortable around the ankle. What to expect: after trying the shoe on try to walk and jog if the heel slips out then go for a thicker ankle collar. Just make sure that the running shoe feels comfortable.
A heel counter is like a cup that sits over or under the sole of the shoe and supports the heel. it is fitted to ensure support and stability when the foot lands; although heel counters are already present in some shoes, they can be added if needed in the shoes that do not have them installed already. What to expect: the heel counter should be comfortable while running and should fit the heel appropriately.
A saddle is an arch present between the ankle and the toes of the foot. Generally, shoelaces are present on the top part of the saddle joints in many running shoes.
A saddle ensures that shoelaces are tight and secure.
What to expect: see to it that the saddle is tight but not binding too much, it should be secure and this will ensure that the shoe doesn’t slip out while in motion.
The toe box is the section of footwear that surrounds the toes on closed-toe shoes. Toe boxes that do not fit can cause injuries and foot deformities.
What to expect: look for a toebox that isn’t too tight and doesn’t touch your toe or thumb; make sure that the toebox allows you to wiggle all your fingers freely.
The outsole ensures that the wear and tear caused to the shoe overtime remain minimum. Rubber or foam material is placed inside the shoe to make sure that it provides comfort and support.
What to expect: look for a running shoe that has an outsole providing flexibility and bounce while ensuring that the shoe remains light.
Flex Grooves and Toe Spring
These two components ensure bending during swift moments . while running in high speeds your foot bends like your toe due to flex grooves that ensure stability and toe springs that ensure bending.
What to expect: look for a running shoe that bends and moves according to your feet movement when you run at high speeds.
A midsole is a type of foamy cushioning that ensures that while running at high speed the foot isn’t damaged due to the force exerted. It is present between the outer and inner sole. What to expect: a midsole should provide comfort to the foot and should fit perfectly without being too heavy. Also, make sure that the sole isn’t too hard or just too soft.
Heel cushioning is the padding of soft material added to increase the comfort of the running shoe and lower the impact of the shock on the feet while running. Its proven by researchers that more cushioning tends to give more shock on the feet than lesser cushioning.
What to expect: the shoe should feel comfortable right away. Cushioning shouldn’t feel too stiff or too hard it should provide your feet stability comfort and flexibility.
Forefoot cushioning provides support and comfort to the forefoot. The body of the running shoe provides support to all parts of the foot but not the forefoot hence the sole and forefoot cushioning are important to ensure comfort while being flexible. What to expect: look for comfort flexibility and support in forefoot cushioning and keep in mind how the running shoes feel in motion.
Heel-toe drop, sometimes referred to as offset, are the difference in the amount of material under the heel and the amount of material under the forefoot of a shoe. What to expect: looks for a shoe that feels comfortable and doesn’t add pressure on any weak parts of your foot.
Stabilizing features are added to the shoes specifically for professional runners. Most brands have running shoes according to the foot type.
Stabilizing features generally help people who have irregularities like high or low arches but most people have neutral arches.
What to expect: if you opt for a running shoe with a stabilizing feature then you can expect that your feet will remain steady throughout the run and support will be provided to people with irregularities.
The comfortable cushioning provided to the feet when you first wear your running shoe is caused by the sock liner fitted over the sole of the shoe. It tends to help people with arch problems and provides firm support.
What to expect: a sock liner isn’t always better if it’s soft or too stiff just look for comfort and flexibility.
Avoid Common Shoe-Buying Mistakes
With so many varieties of running shoes available in the market even the experts can feel confused; but to make sure that you don’t make common mistakes that are made by everybody, go through this list of the most commonly made mistakes:
1. Buying for the looks-
The most common mistake while buying any shoes is getting fooled by the looks of the shoes. Do not buy shoes that look appealing but aren’t comfortable. While buying a running shoe always consider its fit comfort and flexibility.
2. Buying shoes that are too small-
Most people buy shoes that are too small for there size just because it feels more secure and tight. This can lead to foot injuries or even infections, sure shoes should be secure and tight but they shouldn’t be too tight; all the toes should be free enough to wiggle around freely.
3. Buying at the wrong time of the day-
Feet tend to swell and expand during the morning and stop around 4:30 pm;so the correct time to shop for shoes is around the evening, that is when they are in perfect shape.
4. Assuming your size-
It’s not true that shoe sizes do not change over time; even in adults shoe sizes change so keep in mind to measure your shoe size every time you buy a new pair or at least once every two years. Also, remember that different brands have different size charts and shoe sizes.
5. Not asking for deals-
While purchasing shoes always ask for deals and discounts; especially when a sale is going on it’s the perfect opportunity to grab those shoes that you had your eyes on.