Are You Wearing the
Right Shoes for the Right Workout?
Plus, 7 Tips To Keep In Mind…
It might seem like
a luxury for non-workout enthusiasts, but it’s a fact that there are specialized
shoes for different kinds of workouts.
This is because the type
of foot impact differs from one workout or sport to another, and this is where
shoe engineering comes in.
Scientists use modern technology to study the physics of workouts.
Their findings are then utilized by shoe designers who make sure that
function go hand in hand with aesthetics.
Allan Roberts, a personal trainer from Leamington, agrees that “function
should supersede style.” But if you won’t be
caught dead wearing running shoes that look like your dad’s, there’s
actually a lot of brands that mix
‘trendy’ with ‘functional.’
Before you set off buying the first pair of shoes that grab your
attention, first follow the recommendation of the American Orthopedic
Foot & Ankle Society: When engaging in a specific activity at least
thrice a week, your
shoes must be sport-specific/ workout-specific.
With fit, stability, and cushioning in mind, let’s take a look at
some of the most popular workouts and the shoes that go with them:
If you opt not to
use your running shoes for walking, that’s your decision.
The major differences between them are that walking
shoes have less cushioning and less wiggle room for your toes than
Running shoes are among
the top-selling footwear because they’re
also great for low-impact activities and walking.
They’re also low-profile enough to be worn on casual trips and whenever
you just want to dress casually.
You should not,
however, use running shoes for workouts that involve a lot of lateral
motion because they lack enough support around your ankles.
The shoes worn for
aerobics and sports such as basketball or tennis should have good
ankle support, better traction, and more dependable cushioning.
Shoes for these activities are designed to respond
to forward/backward as well as lateral movements.
They also feature flared soles which not only make your shoes look as
if they mean business – they also promote ankle support and prevent
possible ankle roll-overs from sudden lateral movements.
Shoes for weight
training? Believe it!
Otomix has specialized shoes for low-impact workouts and weight
The shoe has a balanced
foot bed for support, control, and comfort. The design puts you
in a more level position during leg presses and squats, and they are
This is a good
alternative for beginners who don’t really want to
spend a fortune on workout shoes but want something they can at least
rely on to be comfortable.
They are designed to be versatile and can be worn for
aerobics, volleyball, basketball, walking, running, or racquet sports.
If you exercise very often, though, it
is still recommended that you buy shoes specialized for your sport or
say, you are a runner, you will still be better off with running shoes
because cross-training shoes don’t have strong ankle support and
Advice in buying
- If you are on a
regular workout schedule, have at least two pairs
of shoes to
If you’re into sports, especially, your shoes are just as essential as
any piece of sports equipment.
- Don’t be tempted to buy shoes from
These are most likely products with factory defects, such as protruding
glue or inferior stitching, or whose designs are outdated.
- Choose shoes with good arch and heel
Observe how your foot is designed, too – your feet are either
high-arched or low-arched, and some are flat-footed.
The former require
shoes with better shock absorption while the latter require trainers
with better heel control and support plus less cushioning.
- If you’re used to
shopping for “breathable socks,” then your shoes should offer good
ventilation as well.
- Keep in mind that shoes lose their
effective cushioning between 3 and 6 months,
so if you want to avoid ankle and knee injuries caused by jarring, make
sure you always have fresh shoes with dependable support.
- After 200-300 miles, the shoe inserts wear
out. Find out if what you’re looking at could be changed in the
both shoes on and lace them fully.
Don’t rush yourself
while buying a pair of workout shoes. After all,
they’ll be your companions for several hours a week, and they’re not at
all cheap – a good pair can set you back $50-$80. Moreover,
try them on preferably in the late afternoon, when most people’s feet
swell a bit.