How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners – The 7 Best Tips

Your running shoes become your best friends. Today, many technical terms are used when we hear about running shoes such as Torsion system, Flyknit, GEL, 8 mm drop, Everun or TPU? It can seem confusing and complicated when shoe manufacturers and experts mention and present all the properties and benefits of the shoes. In How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners – 7 Best Tips we make it simple along the way.

How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners - The 7 Best Tips

You don’t need to know the technical language to find the best running shoes for your purpose. Because it’s not all the technical features that get you through the running training, But they can help to make your running experience greater. Let’s take a look at the best tips for finding the right running shoes for you.

Find a Pair Of Your Old Running Shoes

Before you decide to go to a sports shop and buy new running shoes, you should find a pair of your old worn running shoes – the one that works best for you. Because the wear pattern under the shoe tells a lot about your running style and thus which shoe type you should choose. Bring them with you when you go to the store to buy new running shoes, and show them to the clerk.

He can then be more specific about your shoe choice, whether you’re a supination, neutral or overpronation runner. This is a good starting point in relation to what support you should have in the shoe to avoid injuries and get the best momentum.

Perform a Running Style Test

There are many different causes of running injuries. For example, it may be due to an increase in training before you are ready for it, a change of running surface or too worn running shoes, you can have worn out the cushioning or punctured many of the air pockets.

A lot of injuries occur due to incorrect choice of running shoes. Shoes that do not take into account whether you land neutrally on the foot, lean too much inwards (overpronate), lean too much outwards (supinate) or it can be your (over)weight.

Neutral running shoes are intended for runners who do not fall too much inwards on the foot. In recent years, however, neutral running shoes have become more stable through their construction, and the traditional shoe categories overlap each other more today.

Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe
Best Road Running shoe For Beginners: Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe – Click on the image for more info

Many over-pronation runners will therefore be able to run in shoes from the neutral category – and be able to enjoy a less controlling and more fun running shoe. The pronation running shoes – or correct running shoes against overpronation – have in recent years undergone a development towards more comfort.

How To Get The Right Shoe

Focus has been shifted from blocking the fall of the foot inward to slowing down the speed of landing and thereby slowly slowing down the overpronation. The classic stiff and very controlling running shoe is almost out of the market. It makes running more fun.

To be sure to get the right shoe for your preferences, it’s still a good idea to go for a running test in a store with a treadmill. Here you can get a video recording and an explanation of your running style, and thus also get the best conditions for the shoes you are going to buy. Today, there are many sports stores that offer such a test. Even an online running test on 6-7 min. is available today if you don’t have time to meet up!

Running Style Test in Practice

How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners - The 7 Best Tips running style test

Most often when you visit a sports- or a specialty store to buy running shoes, the instructions are usually based on a running style test. Before you start, you have a dialogue with the running specialist, where the starting point can be the wear pattern in your old running shoes, your needs and your wishes. Ie. a variety of elements in your training.

That includes both the equipment you use, your current running training, and your ambitions. After your initial conversation, they will test you on a treadmill. This is done by running for a short time on a treadmill. They film your landing and your footwork, to analyze your running style.

First of all, they look at, whether you fall inward (overpronation), or whether you run completely neutral (no overpronation). They also analyze where you land on your foot and how your movement pattern is when you run. Everything is a prerequisite for knowing what type of running shoes you should go for afterward.

After the analysis, you are presented with different types of shoes, which you are also allowed to test on the treadmill. Your own feeling and reactions to the running shoes become important, and you have the opportunity to ask them questions, so you can learn more about your new running shoes. In this phase, you talk about how it feels to wear the shoe and what you like and dislike about that running shoe.

Once you have found the right running shoes, a final dialogue follows. You talk about your training and what you need to do to get used to your new shoes. This is to ensure that you have all the necessary information for your training in the new running shoes.

Are You a Beginner or Have You Taken a Break From Running?

So, it’s always good to be on the cutting edge. Therefore, a running test is always good for either the beginner or for the runner who want to start running again after a long break. Whether you are the one or the other doesn’t matter so much in this situation, because both tend to overtrain, thereby also increasing the risk of an injury.

How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners - The 7 Best Tips ASICS Women's Gel Venture 7 Running Shoes
Great All Round running shoe: ASICS Women’s Gel-Venture 7 Running Shoes – Click on the image for more info

He or she who has run before often underestimates the effect of a too-fast start and thinks in their head that they can run as they once did. You will have to accept that the body needs to get back into gear and there will be a start-up phase.

This is where the running test will be able to go in and help you  – tell you how to best get back close to your previous running shape. For the beginner, it’s obvious that if you have never run before, the running test and the result of it will show you in which direction you should go.

You get a result for review in almost all running tests, and based on this result you will be able to optimize your training and your running volume right from the start.

Try Several Different Running Shoes

There will definitely be more brands and models that match your running style as well as your way of running and therefore be able to meet your needs. So, feel free to try several different models and brands that suit your running style and person. A good running shoe should feel comfortable to wear while you are in the store and should not undergo a ‘trial’ period when you use them afterward.

Two models of the same type, even from the same brand, don’t need to behave the same way on a treadmill, street or country road. Just like they don’t necessarily feel the same way on your feet either. Therefore, some sports stores give you – either as a member or in another way- the opportunity to test and exchange your running shoes within 30 days of your purchase, if they do not fall into your wishes.

How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners - The 7 Best Tips group of runners

Cushioning in Your Running Shoes

Running is a very monotonous form of training where you hit the ground with 3-4 times your own body weight. It strains your connective tissue like tendons and ligaments, especially when your preferred surface is tile and asphalt. This load can be minimized by choosing shock-absorbing shoes with a good midsole of foam helped on the way by GEL, other foam or air cushions in the sole.

How much cushioning you need is determined by, among other things, your running style, your weight and your amount of training. The heavier you are, the more you need to think about how much- and how your running shoes are cushioned. The heavier you are as a runner, the harder the midsole must be.

We can compare it with when your car is packed for a holiday with wife, roof box, dog and children. Then you need more air in the tires as a harder tire withstands the weight that needs, so you get comfortable transport.

The more “new” and untrained you are as a runner, the greater the need for relief from the shoes has to be for sparing your tendons and ligaments. Just remember that build-up your training is more important than having good shock absorption.

How To Buy Running Shoes For Beginners - The 7 Best Tips little girl running

The Most Expensive Running Shoe Is Not Always The Best

There can be a big difference in prices between shoes that are immediately similar to each other, and it’s not certain that the most expensive running shoes in the store are the best shoes for just you. It depends on the shoe’s fit, design, amount of training, kind of training and your way of running – the running style.

There is also not one brand that makes the best running shoes because then it would be very easy to put together an assortment in a running store – there should only be one brand on the wall. It’s not that simple. There are many good brands, but they are different in terms of shock absorption, fit, geometry, stability and running experience.

What is best for the individual runner depends on the runner’s preconditions such as running technique, biomechanics, Injury history, weight, amount of training, etc. and preferences for running shoes. That is why it’s important to try different brands when choosing new running shoes – also because the brands change from year to year.

I hope you get something out of this post. If you have any questions about the topic or want to leave your own Personal review, please leave a comment below.

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