Running shoes are designed to protect your feet from the road, provided traction on different surfaces, cushion the landing shock and support your feet. … running shoes are designed to handle the shock of 2.5 times your body weight that is created by the impact each time your foot strikes the ground.
A running shoe should protect the foot and the runner from injury. It provides stabilization of the foot and protects skin from damage. It should also limit potentially harmful impact forces as the foot strikes the ground, while returning energy to the runner.
Running shoes are designed in a way that improves running efficiency. Science suggests that if you can reduce the energy it takes to run, then in theory, you should be able to run faster and for a longer period.
Every runner is different: The design and engineering that goes into a running shoe is quite heavily dependent on the runner, and their requirements. Each person will have his or her own running style and, of course, every foot is unique. There is never going to be a one-size-fits-all in shoe design.
How to Choose Running Shoes:
Here are the key decision points to help you find a shoe that fits and feels good:
Consider where you’re planning to run. Do you mostly hit the road? Or do you hit the trails and gravel paths? Your choices are road-running, trail-running or cross-training shoes.
Decide if you want more or less cushioning underfoot. Do you want to feel like you’re running on a cloud with maximum cushion or to feel the ground underfoot? Cushioning—the thickness of material under the midsole and the firmness of the foam—and heel drop are two factors to consider in the construction of a running shoe.
Understand whether you need a specific type of support for your gait. Most runners will be able to choose a neutral shoe, but if your foot tends to roll to the far outside or inside, there are shoes that can help you.
Make sure the shoe fits. Your shoe should fit well from the start with no breaking-in period.
How long should running shoes last? In general, a pair of best running shoes should last between 400 to 500 miles of running (3 or 4 months for regular runners). Take a look at your shoes and check if the midsoles and outsoles are compressed or worn. If they are, it may be time for a new pair.
Better Buying Advice
So if recent scientific data and today’s running experts are saying that shoe type doesn’t really prevent injury, how has this myth managed to survive for so long?
“Trends come and go,” Walker says. “But none of them have been shown to reduce injury.”
He adds that the research surrounding barefoot, minimalist, traditional and maximalist shoe options has largely come to the same conclusion: It’s the runner’s mechanics, not the type of shoe on his or her feet that cause or prevent injury. Walker notes that for some runners with specific injuries, a gradual progression from one type of shoe to another can have favorable results, but only if overall running mechanics are modified in conjunction with the shoe change. Runners should avoid switching to a drastically different type of shoe and running the same number of miles with the same running form.