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Spring Cleaning… are you forgetting anything?

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Tis’ the season for “Spring Cleaning”; out with the old, in with the new. In efforts to rid your closet of un-necessary items, look no further then your athletic shoes. Are they ideal for your feet, or should you be chucking them to the curb and/or donating them to a greater cause? The best spring cleaning care tip for your feet is to invest in a good pair of running or walking shoes. Read the tips below to decide whether your shoes are acceptable for your feet:

 Are you…

  1. Flat-footed –your feet have low arches. They tend to roll inward as you run or walk. If this is you, you should look for a shoe that offers more stability.
  2. High arches- your feet roll outward when walking. If this describes you, you should look for a cushioned shoe with greater flexibility to help absorb shock. Insoles inserted inside your shoes can also help to support your heels and arches. Inserts can be bought separately by shoe size.
  3. “Normal”- your arches don’t fit into either extreme. If this is you, you have no worries. Most shoes are made to fit “normal” types.

 

In addition to evaluating your arches, when choosing running or walking shoes, be mindful of pronation. Pronation is the way your foot moves after striking the ground. Read below for definitions on the three types of pronation:

 

  1. Overpronation occurs when the foot rolls excessively inward, which can lead to muscle strains in both your legs and feet. Overpronators also tend to have low arches. Is this is you? If so, you should look for “stability” or “motion control” shoes, which are less flexible, have a thicker heel and help decrease excessive pronation.
  2. Underpronation (supination) describes feet that roll outward when running or walking. Underpronators tend to have high arches or “pigeon-toes.” Is this is you? If so, you should look for shoes with extra “cushioning” to help absorb the added impact on your foot strikes.
  3. Normal pronation is most common. Normal is when the foot pronates normally but not excessively. Is this is you? If so, you should look for stability shoes, which are more flexible than motion control shoes but still have good support.

Want more tips on when to buy new running shoes and the actual shopping process, check out last year’s Spring Cleaning post by Cheney Maddox. Happy Cleaning!

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