09 December 2014

Choosing Athletic Shoes

Let's talk about shoes! Specifically sport and athletic shoes! I'm certainly not an expert when it comes to shoes, and we will all have different preferences, but since getting back into exercising almost a year ago, I have discovered that not every athletic shoe works for every type of exercise.

I started out running, but didn't have a good running shoe, so I bought a really nice pair. But then I shifted into dance fitness, and then became a certified group fitness instructor. I quickly realized that my running shoes were not supportive with this type of exercise.  My feet and my knees were feeling fatigued and achy. So I did some research, and some trail & error and have discovered that the shoes you choose to wear during your workout, is an extremely important decision. Seems pretty obvious, but actually, a lot of people don't realize this!! I see it all the time as group fitness instructor.

*I was provided this pair of shoes for the purpose of this post, all opinions are my own.


There are things to think when you're buying athletic shoe, you should consider what sport or activity you will be wearing them for. These tips won't be a cure-all, because every person (and every foot) is different. But here are some examples:

  • Walking shoes should be lightweight, and have extra shock absorption in the heel of the shoe, but especially under the ball of the foot. Also look for a shoe with a slightly rounded sole to help to smooth the shift weight from the heel to the toes. 
  • If you're a runner, you'll want to find a shoe that has good cushioning to absorb some shock. You'll also want flexibility, and traction.
  • If you're buying a shoe for a court sport, such as tennis or volleyball, you will want to have a shoe that supports the foot during side-to-side motion and shift in weight. 
  • If you're doing aerobic activities, you'll want something light weight so your feet don't experience fatigue. You'll also want to find something that has a little extra shock absorption beneath the ball of the foot, since that is where most of the stress occurs in most aerobic activities. 

For me personally, since most of my exercise comes from high cardio dance fitness, I have chosen to wear Cross Trainers for most of my workouts. They are a great all-around shoe, because they combine several of the features I mentioned above. Cross Trainers have flexibility in the forefoot for when I want to run, but also the lateral control I need for dance fitness. The shoe featured in this post is the Nike Dual Fusion TR2 from Rack Room Shoes! These have been amazing so far! They are flexible, breathable, and super supportive. I highly recommend these cross trainers if you're looking for some :)
Okay back to the subject at hand.

Make Sure Your Shoes Fit Properly!
Another important thing to consider when choosing athletic shoes, is to make sure that they fit properly! When they do, it will enhance your performance, and most importantly, proper fitting shoes will prevent injury. 

Here are some ways to ensure you are fitting your feet correctly when purchasing a new pair of sports/athletic shoes:
  • If possible, try on your athletic shoes either directly following a workout, or at the end of the day when your feet are at their largest. 
  • When you are trying on shoes, be sure to wear the same type of socks you will be wearing during your workout. 
  • Proper fitting shoes really shouldn't need to be broken in. They should be comfortable from the first day you wear them.
  • You should be able to wiggle all 5 toes when you're wearing your athletic shoes.
  • The shoe should fit fairly snuggly on your heel. Your heel shouldn't slip out of the shoe when you are walking, running, or doing any other type of exercise. 
  • Re-lace the shoe you are trying on, applying even pressure from top to bottom.
  • If you are participating in the same type of sport several times a week, you should purchase a sport specific shoe.
Hope this helps in your shoe selection process!! 

Happy Shopping loves!! 


25 comments:

Catheryn Cervantes said...

Great tips, many of us are guilty of buying athletic shoes for the looks and not their purpose.

Cara W said...

Awesome tips! So interesting that for any kind of athletic activity you do there is always the particular type of shoe to help your foot's pronation!

Chelsea Olivia said...

I am definitely guilty of buying for looks and not for how good the shoe actually is! These are great tips.

Heather // Rhinos to Rugrats said...

Great tips! I ALWAYS have issues finding the right workout shoes...and almost always regret my purchases once I think I've found great ones! :/

Brendy Beauty said...

I totally have bought cute running shoes that hurt my feet! Thanks for sharing your tips!

Alexis Scarlett said...

Very helpful post! I have a pair of running shoes that are a little bulky and ugly but probably save my feet and body… Sometimes I just want to buy the cute workout shoe for looks rather than function though!

Jenna Brussee said...

I wish I had these tips a few weeks ago when I bought another pair. It was so hard for me to choose a pair! They were uncomfortable for awhile, so I thought they had to be broken in. I didn't know that you aren't supposed to have to break them in. At least they feel more comfortable now.

Michelle Martinka said...

Such a great post! I am a runner and so many people ask me about shoes and I tell them how important it is to have the right ones! I'll pass this info along to my friends so they can learn more, too!

April Lynn | Our Little Loves said...

It really is serious business. I went to a running store and ended up leaving with a nice pair. They watched me walk/run and I tried on like 10 pairs. Thing is - I don't even run. haha

Marie Luciano said...

great tips Mandy wouldn't of even known half of them if you didn't post this!

Michelle said...

Great post. I always have the hardest time picking running shoes! I have way too many now because of it!

Melissa Ariganello said...

Great tips! Perfect timing too, I'm thinking of getting new Nike shoes. Thanks for sharing :)

All That Glitters said...

There is nothing worse than shoes that are too small! I always make sure I go up a size or so!

Miranda Myrabev said...

I saw buy mostly for the looks but now will think twice

Ashley Taylor said...

Great tip. I have such a hard time choosing shoes and especially athletic.

Sarah Halstead said...

These are great tips. I will have to pin this for the next time I go to buy new shoes.

Katie said...

This is really useful. I have literally had the same pair of trainers for the last 5/8 years (?!) I really should buy some more soon!

Katie <3

ahealthier fitterme said...

It took me ages to find the proper shoe! Great post!

Chronicallysickmanicmother said...

This was such a timely thing to find in bloglovin today. I have been walking for weeks now with shoes that I thought were just worn out. Turns out my feet have decided to shrink and they are actually a half size too big. I plan on getting new shoes today! Some great things to keep in mind and things I forget when I am shopping for shoes!

Ayana Pitterson said...

Awesome post. I just bought a new pair of running shoes this week due to all of the xmas sales. I actually have on the ones in the picture and LOVEEEEEEEEEEE them.

Thrifting Diva
www.thriftingdiva.com

lauriel said...

Great points, it's so important to have well-fitting and well-supporting shoes when moving your weight around quickly, these are all valuable things to keep in mind. I go through (and wear) a good range of dress shoes, but athletic shoes are a long-term relationship and investment... I wear a perfect pair forever, and I never want to get rid of them! :D

xo,
lauriel
EyeForElegance.com

spiffykerms said...

Mizuno's and Nike's work so well with my feet - I tend to stick to those brands :)

Jenn @ hellorigby! said...

These are such great tips - I never thought to try on new athletic shoes after a work out! Definitely will do that next time :)

Cam said...

I need to invest in some new workout shoes. Timely post!

Karissa Ancell said...

Really cute shoes, I like athletic shoes but I'm not very athletic in them.