Think about how often your feet hit the ground when you go out for a run. Athletic shoes designed specifically for running are the best way to make sure this repeated shock doesn’t harm your body. And even if you purchase the best running shoes out there, they will need to be replaced eventually.
I definitely don’t recommend waltzing into your nearest clearance center and grabbing the first pair of athletic shoes that fit. Since you are purchasing shoes specifically for running, you need to be sure you get the right type of shoes for you. Getting the right shoes will maximize your effort and help prevent injuries.
Wear & Tear From the Inside Out
Experts recommend replacing running shoes every 300 to 500 miles. If you are running indoors versus outdoors on the hard pavement, you may be able to get some extra miles out of your running shoes. The trick is looking for wear and tear in the right places, because the tread’s condition is not always a good indicator of use.
Oftentimes, shoes break down on the inside cushion before they start to look worn on the outside, so you may unknowingly be wearing them too long. If you are starting to experience soreness or shin splints, it might be time to trade in your running shoes for a new pair. It may be helpful to keep track of the miles you run on your calendar, so you have a better idea of when to get a new pair.
Switching shoes every other day gives the padding a chance to re-expand between wears, which keeps feet more supported and extends the life of the shoes. Shop smart and buy more than one pair at a time if you can. This allows you to rotate shoes to get the most for your money.
Keep Kids in the Game
Just as it’s important to replace your own running shoes, kids’ feet also need to be looked after (especially if they play sports.) Whether they participate in basketball, football, soccer, or simply love running, invest in quality shoes that provide the best support for their activities.
Surprisingly, non-supportive shoes can cause more serious injuries in children than in adults. Because kids’ feet are still growing and their bones are softer, they are at higher risk for foot fractures and damage. It seems next to impossible to keep up with the rate of growth we see in our children, but staying ahead of the game will help prevent bone damage and other potentially harmful injuries from ill-fitting or worn shoes.
To make sure your child is wearing the right shoe size, it’s a good idea to have his or her feet measured by a professional regularly. But remember that sizes and fit are all a little bit different. A size 12 from one brand may be quite different than a size 12 from another.
Your child should have plenty of wiggle room in the toes of the shoes, but the fit of the heel should be snug. Some experts even suggest trying shoes on at the end of the day to get the most accurate fit (because feet tend to swell throughout the day) and making sure to stand in them to really give feet a chance to spread out.
It takes a bit of effort to make sure your feet are supported during exercise, but the results are well worth the trouble.