Choosing comfortable athletic shoes with the correct support can make or break your workout. The right shoe will help to give you the best experience possible and can prevent pain and injury. Testing your gait and determining what type of foot you have will help you decide what kind of shoe to purchase; choose a shoe that can help your feet and ankles support your body.
Motion Control shoes are the right fit for people with flat or low-arched feet and ankles that roll slightly inward while walking. These shoes will keep your foot from rolling inward too much and give your ankles the most support possible. For men, shoes such as New Balance M587 which retails for about $100, or the Asics Gel-Evolution, approximately $120, provide rigid support and maximum comfort. A supportive selection for women are the New Balance WR1123 for about $140, or the Brooks Addiction which retails for $90.
For high arches and ankles that tend to roll outward, choose a cushioned shoe. These provide sole support to allow your feet to roll inward slightly instead, taking pressure off the outer part of your ankle. The cushioning also absorbs shock from impact in the heel and ankle. Shoes for men include the Asics Gel-Kanbarra for about $60 and the Brooks Glycerin for $130. Cushioned shoes for women include the K-Swiss Tubesa for $75 and Mizuno Wave Rider for $100.
If you have normal arches and a relatively straight ankle, consider a stability shoe. These have good support, cushion, and don't control foot motion as rigidly. Men's Asics GT-2150 and women's Reebok Premier Road Supreme run at about $100, while men's New Balance MR993 and New Balance WR993 for women will cost around $130.
If you are unsure of your foot type and gait, most specialized athletic stores can measure you and guide you to an appropriate shoe for your foot type. When you have your feet tested it is important to wear the socks you plan to wear during your workout, and bring along your orthotics if you need them. You can show the salesperson your old shoes; the wear and tear your current shoes have may help in deciding what new shoes to purchase. Consider going to try on shoes later in the day, since your feet may swell as the day goes on.
- Photo Credit empty shoes image by Mitchell Knapton from Fotolia.com
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