will need to look at before plunging further into the world of the runner/jogger.
The factors you need to look at regarding yourself are:
- your foot shape
- the extent of your foot’s movement
- your weight
- your budget
And in the future your weekly mileage will certainly determine the type of shoe you purchase.
Your foot shape
Some stores, have a facility to test the shape of your foot as well as to determine your biomechanics and gait. If you have a store such as that available to you, this should be your first port of call. However, if you do not have that luxury available to you, then it is possible to determine your foot shape the following way.
You have all probably seen your foot imprint when you step out of the bath, well that is one way of determining your foot shape. As a very basic tester you are able to determine the following, whether you have a normal, flat, or high-arched foot. Place your feet in a basin of water and the step onto a flat and dry surface. The following should appear :
A normal foot leaves an imprint with a flare, but shows the forefoot and heel connected by a wide band.
The Flat Foot has a low arch and will leave a nearly complete imprint, it looks like the whole sole of the foot.
The High-Arched Foot will leave an imprint with a very narrow showing between the forefoot and heel.
If your foot does all three, leave home now or re-do the test until you get a clear indicator.
Now that you have determined your foot shape you will need to address the extent of your foot’s movement. This would be related to your foot shape as well as other biomechanics which may effect your running/jogging style.
Your footshape and its movement
The normal foot: The foot lands on the heel, then rolls inward (pronates) slightly to absorb shock. Runners with a normal foot and normal weight are usually considered biochemically efficient and don’t require motion-control shoes; stability shoes with moderate control features such as a two-density midsole are suitable.
The Flat Foot has a probability towards overpronation of the foot that strikes on the outside of the heel and rolls inward excessively; over a period of time this may lead to different types of overuse injuries. It is normally recommended to use motion-control or stability shoes with firm midsoles and control features that reduce the degree of pronation. Stay away from highly cushioned, curved-lasted shoes that lack stability and control.
The High-Arched Foot will leave an imprint with a very narrow showing between the forefoot and heel. A curved, high-arched foot is generally termed a supinated or underpronated foot; this means it normally isn’t an effective shock absorber. Cushioned shoes with plenty of flexibility to encourage foot motion are recommended. Stay away from motion-control or stability shoes that reduce foot mobility.
Your weight will determine what type of shoe you should purchase. If you are overweight then the necessity to buy shoes to suit you, right from the start, is very important. Take into account that the jarring and weight bearing exercise will be difficult for your body to adapt to, so help your body a bit by paying a little more for the protection it will need and deserves.
Being a beginner it is unlikely that you will be doing high amounts of mileage, so to start with it is not important to purchase a highly advanced shoe with all the cushioning and motion control in the world. If you have certain biomechanical problems the purchasing of shoes specific to your needs is of high importance. Remember, what you save on the shoes you may land up paying for in medical bills, so please, show some wisdom when purchasing your shoes.
We have now covered the main things you need to know when “Buying your first pair of running shoes”. Now comes the fun part, choosing a pair to suit you.
Author: Gavin Doyle