It can be overwhelming when selecting a shoe for sport, and it is becoming increasingly difficult with the huge variety of labels and designs on offer. One can often be bombarded with labels such as ‘anti-pronation’, ‘motion-control’, ‘shock absorbing’, ‘carbon fibre plated’ and 'are-foot’, making it an extremely difficult task finding a shoe compatible with your foot type and activity.
Finding the right shoe is important for not only performance but keeping the risk of injury low. Research has shown that comfortable running shoes are associated with lower frequency of injuries than uncomfortable shoes. When selecting a shoe, having a good understanding of foot type and load capacity will assist in the selection process.
More than a quarter of the bones in your body are found in the feet, along with multiple tendons, ligaments and muscles. That is a lot of structures that need support and protection! The mechanism of the foot is to pronate; allowing for absorption of forces and stabilisation on uneven terrain, then re-supinate; creating a rigid lever for propulsion. Some people tend to pronate more than others, conversely other individuals tend to have more rigid foot types and will pronate less.
Given the large variety of factors that can influence shoe selection such as, gait pattern, flexibility, strength, stride length and load capacity, an analysis by an accredited Podiatrist or Physiotherapist is recommended for optimal selection.
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