5 Tips for Finding the Best Fitting Running Shoes for Beginners

For those already thinking of their 2019 New Year’s resolutions, exercising may likely top the list. So, for those ready to get off the couch, there’s a low cost and fun way to stretch those muscles and burn those calories. Consider running. Do it alone or with friends, it’s effective, economical and most of all, healthy.

The most important piece of equipment you’ll need are performance running shoes. Since you might be overloaded with choices online, it’s best to visit your local running store for some expert advice on finding shoes to suit your individual needs and foot type. Running in the wrong shoes can damage your feet and prevent you from achieving your goals, so start with the right footwear.

Here, Steve Crnic, manager of the Brooklyn Running Co., in Brooklyn, N. Y., has some tips for first-time runners to help guide their shoe purchase.

Locate the Best Places to Shop

Stores devoted to running have more likely to have sales associates more knowledgeable about the specifics of running shoes, advised Crnic, compared to big box retailers. Since this is the store’s specialty, it’s more likely to attract employees who share a passion for the sport.

Determining the Right Shoe for Your Running Style

To better understand the way you move, it’s important to have a gait analysis done in store, a tool used to evaluate the way you walk and run. Trained sales associates can simply observe you in motion, or a short video made as you walk on a treadmill, then analyzed for your particular stride and angle of pronation. A video can also give you an opportunity to see yourself in motion.

Find Shoes to Fit Your Foot Shape

Foot widths can vary, said Crnic, so finding shoes that match your individual foot shape is essential. For a lot of people, that ends up being shoes in a wider width. While some brands tend to run a bit wider, others offer specific wide-width options such as Brooks, New Balance, and Saucony. So, suggests Crnic, don’t settle by squeezing your foot in shoe that’s too narrow.

Address Arch and Pronation Issues

Individual arch type is another key point to consider. While enhanced arch support might be required for those with flatter feet, said Crnic, as long as the foot moves in a generally straight pattern, additional support may not be necessary.

There’s also the issue of pronation. According to Asics.com, pronation is a part of the natural movement of the body and refers to the way the foot rolls inward for impact distribution upon landing. While underpronators may require enhanced cushioning, neutral pronators can typically wear a wide range of styles, while overpronators should consider support or structured cushioning shoes.

Understand the Cost of Running Shoes

Price typically determines the level of quality and durability of a running shoe, said Crnic. So, consider how often you will be running when pricing shoes. And, once you know what brand and style fits you best, there are lots of deals to be found online.

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