Choosing the proper shoe for exercise may appear to many of us to be as simple as selecting the shoe that feels the most comfortable. However, as many of us are aware, there is a lot more to choosing a pair that looks and feels nice. With so many options available, it can be tough to know which shoes are best for different forms of exercise, so we’ll give you a quick rundown of what to look for to ensure you get the shoes that best match your needs. But first, a brief suggestion that applies to all shoe shopping: try on new shoes later in the day, after you’ve already walked around. This is due to the fact that our feet grow over the day, and buying shoes first thing in the morning can result in them feeling more tighter than you expect. With that in mind, here are some things to look for when purchasing sports shoes.
If you enjoy recreational running, shock absorption is the most significant feature of your shoe. Because running puts a lot of abrupt, repeated pressure on your feet, you should select shoes that absorb as much of the impact as possible to avoid getting sore or injured feet. Cushioning is vital, but shock absorption is the most critical feature for people who run at fast speeds. If you’re a jogger, the opposite is true: cushioning is your top priority, with shock absorption following in a close second. It is also vital to understand that jogging or running causes your feet to swell much more than usual. You want to be able to wriggle your toes, but you also don’t want the shoes to be too loose on your feet. The front of the shoe should be very flexible as well, as it will be bent a lot. In terms of grip, you’ll need shoes with a single directional grip. Examine the soles to ensure that the grip is primarily horizontal.
If walking is your preferred form of exercise, look for a lightweight shoe with plenty of cushioning and rounded edges. Shock absorption is not as important for walkers as it is for runners or joggers, but swelling is since walkers go for longer periods of time than runners or joggers. If you’re a hiker, you’ll want thick, sturdy shoes with plenty of cushioning. Hiking requires multidirectional grip, so search for soles with features pointing in various directions. These typically have diamond or squiggle patterns, as well as rubber that extends further than the ordinary shoe.
If you do yoga or pilates, you’ll want a shoe that’s lightweight, flexible, and provides a lot of shock absorption. This may appear unusual given that these are normally extremely relaxing and leisurely types of exercise, but different poses exert a lot of stress on different sections of the foot, therefore shock-absorbing shoes can prevent a lot of pressure being placed directly on your feet.
For most sports, such as rugby or football, you’ll want to get a robust shoe that will protect your feet as you kick. If you plan on playing on hard terrain, you should choose shoes with replaceable studs. This is due to the fact that these are frequently made of rubber and will assist absorb some of the extra shock that comes with playing on a hard surface. If you’re going to be playing on soft ground, such as a field, check for moulded or built-in studs. These provide more traction and grip. The number of studs you use is determined by your position: fewer studs provide less grip but allow you to move faster. More studs will slow you down but improve your grip.
Light, flexible shoes with multidimensional grip are ideal for racquet sports. These sports require a lot more side-to-side movement than usual, so keep that in mind when choosing your footwear.
You need multidirectional grip, shock absorption, flexibility, and cushioning for basketball or netball. These are all key criteria for these types of shoes, so make sure you pick ones that check all of the boxes.
The most vital aspect of hockey, camogie, and hurling is to protect your feet from the ball. This implies you should choose a shoe that is sturdy on the outside to protect yourself from injury if you are hit. Again, the type of grip necessary will be determined by the surface on which you play and the position you are in.