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Choosing the Perfect Running Shoe: Matching Foot Type to Footwear

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

As a podiatrist, I've had the privilege of helping countless runners find the ideal footwear to support their unique foot types. The right running shoe can make all the difference in comfort, performance, and injury prevention. Today, I'll guide you through selecting the best running shoe for your specific foot type.

What is your Foot Type? Before we dive into the details of shoe selection, it's essential to identify your foot type. Generally, there are three common categories:

  1. Pronated Feet (Flat Feet): If your feet roll inward excessively or you have a flat foot type during the running gait, you have pronated feet. Look for stability or motion control shoes designed to correct overpronation.

  2. Supinated (High Arched Feet): If your feet roll outward too much during the running gait, you have supinated feet. Cushioned and neutral shoes are best for you as they provide shock absorption and support.

  3. Neutral Feet: If your feet maintain a natural,balanced gait with little to no pronation or supination, you are in the neutral category. Neutral shoes with moderate cushioning will be your best choice.

Choosing the Right Shoe for Your Foot Type Now that you've identified your foot type, let's explore the ideal running shoe options for each:

1. Pronated Feet: (Flat Feet) Recommended Shoe Type: Stability or Motion Control

Features to Look For:

  • A firm, supportive midsole to prevent overpronation.

- Typically these shoes will have a wider midsole than others, The inside of the shoe will appear straight compared to less supportive shoe gear. The shoe should only bend at the ball of the foot.

  • A reinforced heel counter for added stability.

  • Arch support to maintain proper alignment.

- Consider adding an over the counter or custom insole to provide better support.

  • A dual-density or post design to correct excessive inward rolling.

2. Supinated Feet: (High Arched Feet)Recommended Shoe Type: Cushioned or Neutral

Features to Look For:

  • Extra cushioning to absorb shock and reduce impact on joints.

  • Flexible and lightweight design to encourage a more natural gait.

  • Minimal arch support to prevent pushing the feet outward.

  • Neutral or slightly curved last for better stability.

3. Neutral Feet: Recommended Shoe Type: Neutral

Features to Look For:

  • Balanced cushioning for comfort and support.

  • A well-cushioned midsole to provide shock absorption.

  • A flexible design that allows natural movement.

  • Moderate arch support, neither too high nor too flat.

Getting the Perfect Fit Once you've selected the shoe type that suits your foot type, it's vital to ensure the right fit:

  • Come to to see us! We provide evaluation of your foot type and can provide specific shoe recommendations for your needs.

  • Go to a specialized running store: Visit a store with knowledgeable staff who can analyze your gait and provide expert guidance.

  • Measure your feet: Have both feet measured to account for any variations. Choose a size that allows a thumb's width of space between your longest toe and the end of the shoe. Also be sure to make sure the toe box of the shoe provides enough vertical space for the front of your foot. Some manufacturers provide a tighter toe box than others.

  • Try them on and test them: Take the time to jog around the store and check for comfort, proper fit, and minimal slippage.

Remember that running shoe preferences can be highly personal, so don't hesitate to try different models and brands within your chosen category. Investing in the right pair of running shoes is crucial to ensure a comfortable, injury-free, and enjoyable running experience. Your feet will thank you for it!

Give us a call for a running shoe evaluation!


Perrysburg Toledo

1021 Sandusky St Suite A 3106 Tremainsville Rd.

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