How to choose running shoes for beginners? The choice is overwhelming, so how to choose the best running shoe for you?
With all the excellent marketing out there, it’s easy to get lost. If we’re easily led, we’ll end up with pair upon pair of brand new runners. A pair of running shoes for the road, one for the trail, another for races, etc.
As a general rule, there are four main criteria to help you choose running shoes as a beginner: make sure they’re comfortable, a good fit, suitable for your stride, and designed for your intended running surface. Comfort and fit are by far the most important when buying a new pair of runners.
What is certain that your new shoes will become your best buddy, so let’s choose wisely with the help of the tips below:
Table of Contents
- 1 How to choose running shoes for beginners? 4 Criteria
- 2 Is there a better running shoe?
- 3 How to choose running shoes for beginners? Conclusion
How to choose running shoes for beginners? 4 Criteria
When you start running, choosing a running shoe is easy (you buy one pair).
It gives us a season and when it is worn out we buy the same one again. Isn’t that the way to do it?
When you run more than 3 times a week and therefore run several days in a row, alternate pairs to let them “rest” a little.
It’s not essential, but you’ll prolong the lifespan of your runners for a longer time.
In this article you’ll find everything you need to know about choosing the right running shoe for you.
We’ll take you through size guides, stride type, amount of cushioning and comfort, etc.
We’ll also give you our take on the most interesting models, keeping comfort at the forefront.
Make sure the running shoes are comfortable
When you ask how to choose a running shoe there’s only one answer: a comfortable shoe!
We are not necessarily talking about the amount of cushioning in the shoe, its drop, or any other technical point.
No, we’re talking about the fit.
When we put them on, we must immediately feel comfortable and that our foot will adapt well to the shoe.
Not so easy of course. But if you feel discomfort, this will only get worse with time.
If you have any doubts when you try it on, don’t buy!
And if you bought online, no problem you usually have plenty of time to send it back.
It’s better to waste a little time choosing your runners well than running with an uncomfortable shoe.
Ensure the runners fit you and provide enough support
A light and dynamic shoe will be very suitable for a light profile until you decide to run a marathon.
For a heavier profile, you would consider short competitions like the 5 or 10 miles.
If you’re a heavy person looking to get into running, check our other article for inspiration: How to start running and enjoy it while being corpulent?
Note that morphology alone is not enough. You must also take into account the type of stride.
With a frequency stride, where the foot touches the ground over 180 steps per minute (under the body and not in front of it), go for a shoe with less cushioning.
Working on your stride is more effective in the long run than choosing a running shoe with a ton of cushioning to compensate.
Take your stride into account when choosing running shoes
There are three types of strides to characterize the runner:
- 50% of runners have what is called a universal stride
- 40% of runners have a pronated stride (inner part of the sole gets most of the ground contact)
- 10% of runners have a supinator stride (outer part of the sole gets most of the ground contact)
To find out what type of stride you have, you can look at the wear on your old shoes if you have any (only running shoes).
You can easily define your stride type by finding the areas that are more worn than average.
But is it a real criterion for choosing a shoe? Not really.
Scientific studies show that the correction of pronation by footwear does not really reduce injuries.
Therefore, it is recommended to use a universal shoe and work on improving your stride.
Choose runners suitable for the intended terrain
Again, this is a very personal point because it depends on where you live.
Ideally, we would like to avoid running on asphalt as much as possible because it is traumatic for the body.
A softer floor is much more suitable and causes less injuries.
The advantage is that if you can run mostly on paths, you can have a shoe with less cushioning.
The floor will absorb much of the impact and protect from injury.
For city dwellers who aren’t so lucky, jogging and long runs with a shoe that has a reasonable amount of cushioning is a good idea.
Is there a better running shoe?
Let’s get one thing straight when choosing a running shoe.
We don’t think there are any brands that basically make a better running shoe than another.
As a general rule, the best running shoe is the one that fits best and is most comfortable for one’s foot. The runner’s stride and preferred terrain can also help to determine which running shoe would be better suited for a particular runner.
Running shoe technologies have been proven for ages now.
The feel of a running shoe depends greatly on the shape of your foot and your stride.
So there are some models/brands that you just can’t run in.
However, it is certainly not that the brand in question makes bad shoes. Just that they don’t fit your foot.
In short, if you’re running in a pair of running shoes that you’re really comfortable in today, don’t change.
Do a search for the same model and see the end of series or wait for sales to stock up!
How to choose running shoes for beginners? Conclusion
Your priority is comfort, above everything else.
As we said before, most running shoes are the same nowadays! There really is no one best running shoe.
Basically check the category or use of the shoe on the site that sells it.
Don’t mistakenly go for a very aggressive competition shoe, a minimalist or a crossfit shoe that will not be suitable for running.
The purpose is always clearly indicated, so you can’t really make a mistake if you read the description correctly.
If you’re not sure what to get, go to a specialized store to get professional advice.
But remember to always choose with the comfort of your foot as the number one criteria.
To enjoy running, you have to feel good in your shoes. Once you know what feels right to you, you’re ready to choose a running shoe efficiently.
Related post: What helps your body recover after running? 10 Post-run tips