Each year, nearly 50% of recreational runners injure themselves in some way!
That’s why the running shoes industry is so focused on making the best products possible to keep you stable. A good running shoe supports your foot and ankle to help you avoid injury. But even the most well-designed running shoe is useless if it doesn’t fit you right.
That’s why it’s a good idea to visit a shoe shop to try on running shoes. But before you start searching “running shoe shops near me,” we have some tips for you. Read on to learn how to choose the best running shoes for you.
Before You Go Shopping
Before you even step into a shop, there are a few things to be aware of to help you find the best running shoes.
First of all, check your previous running shoes. They can teach you something about which style you should buy next. For example:
- Which styles were comfortable?
- Which shapes gave you blisters?
- Do you want more or less cushioning in the future?
This equips you with helpful knowledge before you even try on a new shoe.
Secondly, always shop for running shoes at the end of the day. Your foot swells throughout the day. If you go shopping too early, you may be stuck with a shoe that’s too small.
Finally, go shopping with the socks you’ll wear running. This ensures you’ll get the exact right fit!
What to Look For in Running Shoe Shops Near Me
The best running shoe shops have knowledgeable staff. They can advise you on everything from cushioning to lacing techniques. Without these helpful tips, finding the right fit becomes much more hit and miss.
Once you’ve found a store that fits this description, check their variety. Brand stores have lots of stock, but only one brand of shoe. It’s a much better idea to visit a shop that lets you try on several different brands to find the right one for you.
Finally, check if the store has a treadmill and gait camera. This may sound excessive, but running shoes aren’t cheap! Rather find a shop that’s got the kit to ensure you’re investing in the best fit.
How to Choose Running Shoes
You’ve done the research and found the right store. Now it’s time to choose the right shoe.
Assess the following four areas. They have the greatest impact on comfort and fit.
1. Running Terrain
The terrain you run on has a huge impact on the shoe you’ll choose. And the two common styles feel very different.
Road Running Shoes
If you run on flat roads, you may want a lighter shoe. Road running shoes are designed to be lighter, more flexible, and more efficient. This allows you to run comfortably against the road’s flat surface.
Trail Running Shoes
However, trail running shoes are very different. They are designed to support your foot against changing terrain. Therefore they are far more rigid, with more grip and tread.
2. Running Style
How long do you typically run for? And how fast do you like to run? Both of these questions have an impact on your shoe choice.
If you’re running miles and miles, you’ll likely want a more cushioned shoe. This will help support your foot and ankles during endurance running. But this type of shoe is heavier.
If you’re going for speed, this cushioning may slow you down. You may prefer lighter shoes.
3. Cushion Preference
Of course, your cushion preference may be different from these typical two categories. Maybe you enjoy a well-cushioned shoe even though you run in sprints.
Don’t be put off by the typical categories! Try on several different types of cushioning to decide which feels best for you.
4. Heel Drop Preference
Heel drop is the difference in height between where your heel and toe sit in the shoe.
Some shoes, like Jordan 1 Mids, keep your heel and toe at the same height. This distributes running impact more toward the middle of the foot.
Other shoes have a heel drop, where your heel is raised by a cushion. This increased heel impact.
Experts still debate whether a flat shoe or a heel drop is better for avoiding injury. But they do agree that the different styles change how your weight is distributed when you run, which impacts running style. Try on multiple styles to see what feels most comfortable.
How to Try On Running Shoes
You’ve found a shoe that perfectly fits the four criteria for you. Should you just pick your size and buy them? Absolutely not!
You should always try them on before buying running shoes.
When you do, look for immediate comfort. Running shoes should not feel stiff, tight, or like they need breaking in.
And don’t forget to try on both shoes! Many people’s feet are slightly different sizes from each other. Make sure both feet feel comfortable in the shoes.
Also, don’t assume your typical size will be the right one. Be willing to try on one size larger or smaller than normal to find the best fit. The perfect running shoe has roughly a thumb’s-width of space between the end of your toe and the inside of the shoe.
Once you’ve found a shoe that ticks all the boxes, ask the staff about lacing techniques. There are several ways to tie your laces that support your feet in different ways. They can help you find the best style for you.
Keep Up To Date With Fitness and Fashion
More and more as time goes on, fashion and fitness intertwine. The best running shoes may be the best-looking ones, but always choose substance over style!
When you search “running shoe shops near me,” look through the reviews. Find a store whose staff is qualified to help you make the best decision for your needs.
For more fitness advice and the latest in sportswear, stay up to date with our articles. We have the most current information on how to choose pieces that look great and feel even better.