Training Shoes Fact Sheet

Choosing the right running shoe is important to prevent injuries. Footwear that is properly fitted can provide protection from overuse injuries, help the athlete avoid blisters and allow for a more enjoyable experience.

Below are some guidelines in choosing the running shoe best suited for you.

  1. Perform a wet test to determine if you have high arches, flat feet, or normal arches. Place your feet in water and step onto a towel or paper bag. Notice the foot formation. If you see only toes and heels, this indicates that you have a high arch and you may be an underpronator. If the outline of the whole foot is visible, generally you are flat-footed and considered an overpronator. A curve in the middle of the foot with an outline of the toes and heels indicates a normal foot.
  2. Shop at a specialty running shoe store so that trained salespeople can help identify the type of shoe best suited for your feet. Tell them what kind of arch you have. Usually overpronators benefit from a motion control shoe and underpronators benefit from a stability shoe.
  3. Buy a shoe with a removable arch insert. This is helpful if you need to put orthotics in your shoes. If you already wear orthotics, bring them to the store to make sure they fit comfortably in your new shoes.
  4. Take your old running shoes with you so the salesperson can look at your tread pattern for clues about your running form.4. Take your old running shoes with you so the salesperson can look at your tread pattern for clues about your running form.

Other Shoe Tips

  • All running shoes should be flexible when you bend them from heel to toe.
  • To increase the life of your shoe, don’t use it for other activities.
  • Consider buying two pairs of shoes and alternating them on each outing. If you are running frequently, this allows time for the shoe to dry out.
  • Write the date that you purchased your shoes on the inside tongue.
  • Track your miles on a calendar and total it weekly and monthly. Make sure to replace your shoes around 300 to 400 miles.
  • Consider visiting www.aapsm.org for running shoe reviews and other tips.