Which Shoe Is Right For Me?
Selecting a new shoe can be an overwhelming and confusing experience. There are thousands of different brands, colours and styles to choose from, but which one is the best? While it’s tempting to base your decision solely on the way the shoe looks, it’s more important to think about your foot and personal pronation type.
WHAT IS PRONATION?
Pronation is the way the foot rolls inward when a person walks or runs. It’s a part of the natural movement that helps the lower leg deal with shock. This isn’t bad in itself, but it does affect the way you run and may increase the likelihood of injury. This is why it’s so important to choose a shoe that matches your pronation pattern.
THERE ARE THREE MAIN TYPES OF PRONATION:
- Neutral or Normal Pronation
The first and most common type of pronation among runners is neutral or normal pronation. Neutral runners feet turn very slightly inward when their foot hits the ground. This means shock is distributed in the centre of the foot, which generally reduces the risk of injury or pain in the muscles, tendons and bones used when running.
The second most common type is overpronation. Approximately 40% of runners experience overpronation. The foot of of an overpronators roll noticeably inward when their foot hits the ground. The cause of this can often be a low arch. In the long run, overpronation can cause tendinitis, especially in the Achilles tendons, as well as in the knees and hips.
The third and less common type is supination. When supinators run, their feet roll outwards when their foot hits the ground. This stride is associated with high arches and does not absorb the shock of hitting the ground well. As a result, the shock travels through the knees and hips to the back. This can lead to musculature injuries and stress fractures.