Are Running Shoes Necessary?

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The benefits of wearing running shoes.

Running Shoes
Heading out for a run can be as simple as tying your shoes and putting on a shirt and pair of shorts. But the stress and pounding from each stride makes it important to have the sufficient cushioning and stability with the proper pair of shoes. While you can run with any type of, such as cross-trainers, specific running shoes are recommended if you participate in a regular running program.

Control

The most important consideration for running is your foot shape, including flat feet, or neutral or high arches. As a result, running shoes are available in a variety of styles to maximize the amount of control and stability for your foot. If you have flat feet, your foot strikes on the outside and rolls inward, requiring a semi-curved insole. A neutral foot type lands on the outside and rolls inward slightly, requiring a straight insole. High arches mean you have a rigid arch that doesn’t absorb shock, making it essential that you use a curved insole.

Terrain

When you leave for a run, you may encounter various terrain ranging from asphalt, crushed rock or dirt trails. There are running shoes designed to tackle each type of terrain. For example, competition flats are designed for road races such as half-marathons and marathons. Trail runners, however, are built with dense cushioning materials for added cushioning while running over branches and rocks along with added traction on the sole for stability on the off-road terrain.

Cushioning

Every stride during your run places stress on your muscles and joints. Running shoes contain various materials designed to maximize cushioning and shock-absorption without adding excessive weight. The midsole of running shoes are made with a combination of foam materials, including EVA or polyurethane. Both materials provide a lightweight platform for stability, cushioning and durability. The increased cushioning in running shoes maximizes your running ability while decreasing the potential for injuries.

Replacing

Running shoes are designed to last a specific number of miles. Most running shoe manufacturers recommend replacing your shoes every 300 to 500 miles or every six months. Over time, the materials and cushioning in the shoes breaks down that can eventually lead to an injury. Look at the soles of the shoes and replace if they are worn out or wearing unevenly.

Conclusion

Running shoes provide numerous benefits and are a available in a wide variety of models to fit your exact needs. What are the main things you look for when choosing a pair of running shoes?

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