Are you wearing the correct running shoe?

A lot of ‘wear’ on your running shoes? What does this mean?

Often patients ask me what are the best brand of running trainers to buy.  There are some great trainers out there. However, all too often patients tell me of their visit to the sports shop which usually entails a run on the treadmill only to be told ‘you are pronating so you need a pair of anti-pronation trainers’.  A hundred pounds plus later and now considerably lighter in pocket and wondering.  What is pronation? Why do I pronate? Will my new trainers deliver on their promise?

What is pronation?

Pronation is the natural inward movement of the foot with heel to ground contact needed to provide shock absorption for our lower limbs. Natural pronation is a key component of our walking/running cycle.

Can I pronate too much or too little?

Yes.  Excessive inward movement of the foot can occur and this is known as Overpronation.  Overpronation can result in abnormal forces being distributed through our feet leading to increased stress on important lower limbs joints and soft tissues.

Underpronation or supination is the opposite of pronation with the outward movement of the foot.  Natural supination helps to stabilise the foot as the heel leaves the ground.  A foot that excessively supinates or rolls outwards may struggle to achieve sufficient enough pronation and shock absorption.   Patient’s who excessively supinate often complain of ‘walking on the outsides of their feet’.

What to look out for on the soles of your trainers

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What type of trainers should I buy?

So, if you find any of the above wear patterns it’s important to purchase the correct type of trainer.

For overpronation an anti-pronation trainer should be worn and as a general rule with neutral/normal pronation and underpronation/supination a neutral trainer should be worn.  Most popular brands of running shoe should accommodate for the above so be sure to do your research before making your purchase.

I'd love to hear any comments on your experience of purchasing running shoes.

written by John Conlon podiatrist at Happy Feet Podiatry Services

If you would like an assessment of your feet and running shoes please get in touch with us at Happy Feet Podiatry Services  on 028 9020 5495