What is the importance of using the right running shoes?
Running is a popular and freely accessible sport. You hardly need any equipment and you can do it completely free of charge in your own environment. Also, clothes don’t matter much, as long as you have the right shoes. Most people will train in their regular sneakers or other shoes in the beginning for practice, but you should not do that either. While running shoes aren’t cheap, they do help with performance.
Although you can in principle also run in sneakers or indoor shoes, running shoes often work just a little better. This has to do with the way they were developed. Running shoes, for example, have a slightly raised nose that helps to unwind while walking. They also often have a slight curve in the sole, which makes it easier for you to move forward. Basketball shoes and futsal shoes, for example, do not have this, so it can seem that you are more difficult to progress when you are wearing them.
In addition, it is important to have shoes that mold well to your feet and that improve your posture. Are you walking in? Then take shoes with a small correction that will make you walk straighter.
Can running shoes improve your performance?
The idea with running shoes is often that they can improve your performance, but this is not entirely true. While running shoes can improve your posture and feel when you walk, they won’t make you go faster or improve your stamina. It is possible that other shoes are less comfortable, so that you walk more slowly. When you switch to running shoes, you run a little faster, but that’s only because you can put your feet more comfortably.
There is no single recipe for the perfect shoes. These differ per person. It depends on how often you run, how your feet are built, how you place your feet, etc.
Know more about running injuries?
How do you choose the best running shoes?
Everyone has a different body, which is why there is no one perfect pair of running shoes that can help you. It is important to look at a number of points to see if the shoes are suitable for you. We have written down a step-by-step plan for you to see whether the shoes fit you or not.
1. What is your pronation?
Pronation refers to the way you put your foot down. With neutral pronation you place your foot on the outside of your heel, after which the foot turns slightly inwards. With overpronation you place your foot on the outside of the heel, after which the foot turns inwards a lot. Underpronation involves little to no inward movement, which puts a lot of pressure on the outside of your foot. Depending on your type of pronation, there are shoes that will help you put your foot down without having to walk in or out too much.
2. Pay attention to the fit of your running shoes
Certain brands have a so-called “signature” for their shoes. For example, Asics shoes will often run a bit smaller than shoes from another brand. Each brand has its own fit. Pay close attention to this and compare it to the shape of your foot. Do you have wider toes? Then don’t take shoes with a narrow space for your toes, but choose a pair that fits comfortably around your foot. The same goes for narrow heels, or flat feet. A good shoe store can support you with this.
3. How much cushioning do you like?
Damping represents the amount of impact absorbed per step. If you’ve ever run barefoot, you know what it feels like. How much cushioning you like differs per person. That’s why it’s important to try on and try on several pairs of running shoes to feel how the cushioning feels and whether you find it comfortable.
4. Pay attention to the weight of the running shoes
The weight of the shoe matters more than you might expect. This has to do with the running style and your own weight. Light shoes are generally more responsive and allow you to make sudden movements more easily, such as in high-intensity workouts where you sprint for short periods. Heavier shoes often offer more support, which is nice for people with a slightly higher weight. This also reduces the chance of injury.
5. Look at the bottom of your old shoes
It sounds crazy, but it can provide a lot of insight by looking at the bottom of your old running shoes or sneakers. Ordinary sneakers also offer some insight. This is due to the wear of the sole. The way the shoe is worn says something about the way you walk. So you can easily see what your pronation is and how hard you put your feet down. Insight into this can then help you find a suitable pair of running shoes.
Have a gait analysis done
A gait analysis is actually exactly what it says: you go to a special running store and have your run analyzed by an experienced employee. They can see how your posture is, what the way you put your feet is and which cushioning will be comfortable for your feet.
After an analysis you will receive an advice for the type of shoe that will suit you well. You don’t have to follow this advice, of course, but it is often better for your feet. Then you can try on a number of shoes, take a test run with them and then decide which one you like the most.
Don’t be afraid not to buy a pair of shoes right away. It is also very wise to look for another store first. This way you immediately get a second opinion and you can see whether the first analysis corresponds with the second. Take the time to make your choice, because then you can be sure that it was a good, well-considered choice.
Would you like to take it easy? Then you can also morning walk to do.
Other tips for running
When you just start running, it will still be difficult. If you build it up more and more, at some point you will get further and further. To get you started, here are some handy running tips that can support you in your new sports adventure.
- Don’t go too hard. In the end it’s all about the distance you travel. Going too fast at once will exhaust yourself much more. Run at a nice slow pace and build up your distance over time. Then you can improve your speed.
- Give yourself enough rest. It is of course very nice to want to run as much as possible in the beginning, but this exhausts your body, especially if you are not used to suddenly moving so much. Take plenty of rest days between running and take good care of your body immediately after running, for example by stretching.
- Watch your attitude. Your posture is also very important when walking. Keep your back straight and look ahead. By looking ahead you reduce the chance that you will look at your feet and therefore walk more bent over.
- Drink enough. While running you will sweat and you may get thirsty. Take a bottle of water with you for long distances and make sure you drink enough water at home after a short distance.
- walk together. Running together and building up your training is often more fun than alone. In addition, you now have someone who can hold you accountable if you would rather skip. Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of group sports.
Short summary about choosing the right running shoes
When you go running, it is important to have good running shoes. These won’t necessarily improve your performance, but they will help make walking as comfortable as possible. When looking for a pair of running shoes, it is useful to pay attention to the pronation, fit, cushioning, weight and bottom of your current shoes. Based on this information, you can then buy a good pair of shoes for jogging. You can also have an analysis done by an experienced employee who looks at the way you walk and the way you put your feet down. This gives them information that they can use to introduce you to a good pair of running shoes. Please take the time to make a choice.