The single most important piece of equipment in virtually any kind of exercise programme is the right pair of shoes. You need to choose the right type of shoe for the kind of workout you’ll be doing. A good pair of shoes can make or break your workout. And it’s easy to go wrong.
Feet come in a variety of shapes and knowing your foot’s particular quirks is key to selecting the right pair of shoes. Most major brands now offer a model to suit every foot type.
One way to determine your foot’s shape is to wet your foot, step on a piece of brown paper and trace your footprint. Or just look at where your last pair of shoes shows the most wear.
- If your footprint shows the entire sole of your foot with little to no curve on the inside, or if your shoes show the most wear on the inside edge, it means you’ve got low arches or flat feet and your feet roll inward. This can create extra wear on the outside heel and inside forefoot. You’ll want a shoe with a motion-control feature and maximum support.
- If the footprint shows only a portion of your forefoot and heel with a narrow connection between the two, or if your shoes wear out mostly on the outside edge, you have high arches and your feet roll outward. This causes wear on the outer edge of the heel and the little toe. Look for a cushioned shoe with a soft midsole.
- You have a neutral arch if your footprint has a distinct curve along the inside and your shoes wear out uniformly. Look for a “stability” shoe, which has the right mix of cushioning and support.