Are Your Sneakers Ruining Your Feet?
You already know better than to wear pumps all day, every day. And we’re going to guess you can resist the temptation to pick a shoe (well, a running shoe, at least) based on looks alone. But even the most reasonable, unfussy runners and walkers might be making poor choices when it comes to shopping for the right shoe, according to podiatrist Katherine Dux, DPM, of Loyola University, Chicago.
To test her theory that improperly chosen sneakers might be a culprit in chronic foot pain for runners, she piloted a first-of-its-kind study yesterday at the Bank of America Marathon in Chicago. She and her team surveyed athletes with foot and ankle injuries onsite during and after the marathon, and their findings—which we’ll report on as soon as we get them—could be a boon for walkers and runners everywhere.
This is the first time that researchers have studied the general (athletic) population—as opposed to people already afflicted with foot problems, such as diabetics, the elderly, and people with gout. But since their findings are not yet available, and it’s race season all over the country—check out our inspirational 0-to-5k Countdown and Race Finder to find one near you—we put together some tips to get you active outside, pain-free.
1. Let the pros help you.It’s amazing what a free in-store session with a pro can do. Some shops (like Road Runner Sports) can do an in-depth gait analysis—some go so far as to videotape your feet while you run or walk on a treadmill—to identify a shoe that will offer you the perfect amount of support and cushion. To help narrow down your search, carry along our list of the best walking shoes and running shoes, and work with the pro to find which one is just right for you.
2. Bring your old kicks with you."The wear patterns on the sole of your old workout shoes offer many clues as to how your foot strikes the ground, which can help us determine the type of shoe that will fit you best," says Margaret Buehler, senior sales associate and expert shoe fitter at Fleet Feet Sports Chicago.
3. Don't be silly about sizing.Running shoes often run about a size smaller than flats or heels, says Buehler. So if you're normally a size 8, don't be afraid to try on a 9.
Video: How To Protect Your Sneakers!! IS CREP PROTECT WORTH IT?
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