Choosing the Right Pair of Shoes

Before you blow your money on a pair of shoes, it’s important to understand the sport for which the same are being chosen, walking, running, jumping etc.

In 1996 MBT (Masai Barefoot Technology) shoes came into existence, proclaimed as a healthy version of the original “anti-shoes”. According to the introduction, these shoes can accelerate recovery after tough workouts and support the treatment of injuries, which make them perfect for everybody. With few exceptions, all sports require some type of footwear depending on kind of motion and stress-level.

Shoes vs. Specific Sport:


Choosing the Right Pair of Shoes Running: Shoes for sport involving forward long distance running, require relatively little lateral support, they incorporate a great deal of padding underneath the feet to act as shock absorbers. In addition, most running shoes include a slightly elevated heel (to reduce the transfer of stress to the Achilles tendon) as well as a much larger toe box (to accommodate the forward motion of the foot). It is recommended that you replace running shoes between 350 to 550 miles depending on your running style, body weight, and the surface on which you run.


Walking: A walker’s foot hits heel first and then rolls gradually from heel-to-toe. So, you will need a flexible sole and more bend in the toe than a runner. You should be able to twist and bend the toe area. Keep track of how many miles you have put on your shoes, and replace them every 300 to 600 miles. (If you are wearing very light weight shoes, are overweight, or you are hard on your shoes stay toward the low end on mileage.) To extend the life of your shoes be sure to only wear them only for your walks. Also rotating two pair of shoes will give them time to “bounce back” between walks.


Sprinting: While you watch someone sprint, it appears that their feet are not touching the ground. Why is that so? When an athlete sprints, they are actually landing on the toes with every stride. There are specific shoes for sprinting, known as spike shoes, or track shoes. Sprinting events, usually take place on the track. The track is made up of special materials. Sprinting shoes are spiked in front so that the ball of the foot can grip the track while running. Since the heels are not used, there is no cushioning in the back of the shoes.


Outdoor Sports: Sports like mountain climbing or hiking require a pair of high-quality cross trainers. These allow for a wide range of movements. You can run, jump, or move sideways or backwards in them. For this reason, it is always wise to buy a pair of cross trainers. Replace cross-trainers and sport-specific shoes every 60 to 70 hours of activity. This includes only the time you’re actually playing huddles, time-outs, and sitting on the bench between innings don’t count. A cross-training shoe is appropriate for both weight training and low impact activities.


Indoor sports: Many sports are played indoors. For example, you can play badminton, basketball, volleyball, and even soccer. The court surface is very different from that of the outdoors. Usually, the surface is much more slippery. You are going to need a pair of shoes with very good grip. Without a good grip, you may slip and fall. Also, such sports may require you to move sideways or backwards. Your shoes must provide you with ample protection, especially around the ankle area. Therefore, you often see basketball shoes that semi high cut.


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Filed Under: FeaturedHealth

About the Author: Namita Nayyar, (M.Sc.) Gold Medallist, Nutrition & Fitness Expert (IFA), President of Women Fitness (WF), she is the author of all five "on-line books" of complete fitness and has designed the customized strength training, cardiovascular training and flexibility training programs for women, she has also a M.Sc. degree in child development