Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Choosing a Shoe

Out of all fitness attire and equipment properly fitting shoes is the very most important thing for an athlete (that's you!) to choose correctly. There has been a lot of advancement in the last few years in shoes. There are many aspects that you should realize when selecting which shoe to buy, but one major aspect is what type of activity are you going to do with the shoe. Many types of athletic shoes are better than your average sneaker, but athletic shoes have their own categories.

Walking shoes are manufactured in such a way that supports your foot more stiffly. Of course it can be worn for most other activities but walking shoes have a lot more cushion on the inner soles. Walking shoes are meant to be supportive while walking.

Many people ask what the difference is between running shoes and walking shoes. Running shoes have become quite the different shoe. They come in different widths and have different types of soles to help the runner out. Many running shoes have springs, air bags, and gels in them. Running shoes can vary from weight and the lightness of the material used. One of the huge differences you will see in running shoes will be the price range, which many of them can go into the hundreds.

There are many types of specialty shoes these days and the most popular today is the Shape-up type of shoe. These types of shoes create a definite curvature at the bottom of the shoe which allows the stress of each step to work out the hamstrings and calf region of the person's legs. Many people see this as a plus so they wear them in their daily activities which can give them a good work out.

Cross training shoes are a cross between running shoes and a good durable walking shoe. One of the biggest differences in these types of shoes is how it maintains its rigid structure. It will be useful when weightlifting, running, and general fitness. Most people often choose these types of shoes due to the fact they offer great comfort and are not as pricey as the top of the line running shoe.

The bottom line is that you should find a store that hires people who use the types of shoes they sell. For example, a Kansas City favorite Garry Gribbles' Running Sports (now in Lawrence and Topeka!) only hires runners. Although we don't endorse one store over another...we do try to keep it local. Members of TRR have had great experiences with the staff at Gribbles'. They evaluate your stride, let you take them for a test-run, and don't try to sell you the most expensive shoe on the rack! Best of all, they are always willing to share advice about running. 

PS - TRR is a registered team with Gribbles, so we're eligible for a discount day... coming in the Spring!

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