With the Melbourne marathon not too far away, I thought it would make a great opportunity to discuss footwear. When covering distances as long as half and full marathon’s it is vitally important to have the right footwear to prevent over training and impact injuries such as “shin splints”, stress fractures, plantar fasciitis.
In a basic assessment of a foot, an individual will fit into one of four categories:
- Mild over pronator-mildly flat arch causing ankle/foot to roll in
- Severe over pronator-no arch (flat feet) causing ankle/foot to roll in
- Supinator-usually high arches, little to no roll in of foot/ankle (under pronation)
*majority of the population are neutral to mild over pronators
It is important to identify what category you fit into and then find a shoe that fits your foot type. Examples of different types of shoes to fit foot types include:
ASICS Kayano-Neutral to Mild over pronator shoe
ASICS Gel Evolution 6-Severe over pronator
ASICS GEL Nimbus 13-Supinator (high arches)
It is also important to remember even though a shoe might look new on the outside, on the inside the materials which provide stability, structure and shock absorption are only designed to last a certain number of kilometers. For example the Kayano is designed to last about 500-600 km before they need to be replaced. So bare in mind that while you are training for a distance event it might just happen to be that you clock up 600-700 km in training before your race. Therefore it is always advisable to buy two pairs of shoes and either swap every few days or have a training pair and a race pair. My personal preference as a race pair of shoes for those competing for fun or at an amateur level are the ASICS DS Trainer 16.