Shoe Strategies: Get the Most Out of Your Footwear
Getting properly fitted for footwear is a process that should not be taken lightly. It is also an investment of your time and money when purchasing them, so how can you make the most out of your investment?
I will go over some strategies to help you get the most out of your footwear before they have to be retired.
- Activity specific shoes
If you run on the road then use a road shoe. If you hike/walk on trails then use a trail runner or hiker. Each shoe is manufactured and designed to be used for specific activities and on specific surfaces. Using the wrong shoe could prematurely wear out the soles and the uppers of your shoe.
- Alternating footwear for training
If you run multiple days of the week or do cross training in between running days then using one pair of shoes for both isn’t advisable. It will not only compress and break down your shoes more rapidly but you will not get the most cushion and support from your shoe each time you use it. Allowing your shoe to have a 24-48 hour rest period will allow for the midsole of your shoe to decompress, making it a much better ride for your next time out.
- Alternating footwear for work
Similar concept to point number 2 above. Spending 5-8 hours per day on a single pair of shoes for 5 days a week will really take its toll on your shoes and your body.
- Plan ahead
If you use runners for work and then exercise immediately after work you run the risk of wearing out your shoe much sooner; bring an extra pair of runners with you to change into.
- Is it ok to store you shoes in the garage?
The temperature of the room where your shoes are kept may have effect the cushioning materials of the shoe. Try it out. Does your shoe feel less cushioned or bouncy after they have been in the garage on a cold night? How do they feel if they have been kept in a closet inside the home?
- Unlace your shoes!
You need to lace up your shoes each time you put them on to ensure proper support and comfort. If you can slip your shoes on and off without unlacing them then it won’t be supportive enough AND you will ruin the heel counter (the back part where your heel goes into). Your heel will crack/weaken the reinforced (supportive) area of the heel counter. It will misshapen the padding around the heel. It will also affect how your custom orthotics fits inside your shoe.
- What about slip on shoes?
Similar principles apply from all previous points but the main caution is that these shoes will lose its structure in the upper as it stretches and loosens up over time. When this happens the shoe may fit loose and sloppy and be less supportive and there is no ability to tighten them up. I would suggest if you wear slip on shoes to replace them twice as fast as you would a lace up shoe.
Kintec Port Moody Manager and Pedorthist