If you're just beginning any sort of exercise or running program, you'll need to choose the proper shoes for your journey. Sneakers, which are the best choice for working out and running, are difficult to choose since each have a snazzy outer shell. Bright colors or cool options are not what is important, though. You may want your shoes to look good, but the most important aspect is that they fit your feet properly and offer you the most support.
Each shoe has a certain amount of support, but some shoes will offer you more support if you know the type of foot you have. If you're not sure of your gait characteristics or foot type, there are several tests that can help you with this.
The wet Foot test
The wet foot test is easy, fun and can be done in your own home. With a wet foot, place your foot on dry flooring or on a dark piece of paper. It will reveal if you have a normal or flat foot or a foot with a high arch.
A normal foot will show a regular arch, with a forefoot and heel connected by a thick band, while a flat foot will reveal an entire sole. Unlike a normal foot, someone with a high arch will have a very thin band, or none at all.
Although this is a good indicator of your foot type and what shoe you may need, this is not always completely accurate. You should not rely on the wet foot test alone to decide on the shoes you purchase.
Old shoe test
The old shoe test may not be accurate enough to decide on a shoe, but there are some interesting findings by looking at a shoe that has been worn.
Place your shoes on a level table or counter top, facing away from you. Look at your shoes at the heel and you may be surprised to find they lean inward or outward. Leaning in means you have a tendency to overpronate, while shoes that lean outward are usually caused by decreases in pronation. Though your gait makes a difference in the way your shoe leans, your weight and impact will also affect the shoes.
Biomechanics foot testing
The old shoe test and wet foot test is fairly accurate, but anyone who is planning to exercise or run on a regular basis should have their feet tested at an experienced running store or with a biomechanics expert. You'll learn your natural gait and whether you strike with your heel or forefoot through an expert or advanced testing. This information will help you determine the best shoe for you and can reduce injuries to your legs and hips.
Lisa M. White
Copyright ©2011 CPT Lisa M. White™. All rights reserved.