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Running Shoe Myths & Choosing Your Running Shoes

Congleton running shoes, buying running shoes in Congleton

Traditional running shoe prescription was based on matching shoe features to foot type (e.g. motion control shoes for pronated feet). 

The belief that wearing the wrong shoe type for your foot leads to injury has led to many footwear trends including minimalist, maximalist, motion control, zero ‘drop’ etc

Unfortunately, there is a lack of good quality evidence that any shoe of any type is effective in reducing the risk of running related injury.

A study by Nigg et al (2015) looked at running injury and shoe selection. Impact characteristics and foot pronation, thought to be prime indicators of running injury, were found to have a distinct lack of conclusive evidence with regards to footwear choice. 

Nigg et al proposed 2 new paradigms ‘the preferred movement path’ and ‘the comfort filter’ which suggest that a runner intuitively selects a comfortable product using their own comfort filter that allows them to remain in the preferred movement path which may automatically reduce injury risk.


Tips for choosing a running shoe

  • Avoid rapid changes to the type of shoe you have become accustomed to running in

  • Ensure the shoe fits well and is comfortable to run in

  • If you have several running shoes, rotate these regularly

  • Wear the correct outsole for the running terrain 

  • What feels ‘right’ for you probably is!

  • See our guide for fitting shoes

If you’re injury free don’t sweat about which type of shoe is the right one, just go for what feels comfortable, fits well and is appropriate for the terrain. However, if you are currently suffering with a running injury we would advise a professional assessment as certain features in a running shoe can aid recovery from particular injuries.

Runners should consider that footwear is in fact a very small part of injury prevention. Appropriate training protocols such as carefully managing load progression and implementing running specific strength training has a stronger evidence base for reducing injury risk.

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