Sometimes it’s the smallest things in life that make the biggest difference and one little tweak in your daily life could make a major impact on your body and mind. With that said, let’s talk about sneakers and why they are more important than we give them credit for. Here are a few tips for choosing a sneaker that will give you optimal results and assist your body as it moves in the proper ways.
1. Narrow it down. Before anything else, you need to decide what you will be wearing your sneakers for. Do you need a comfortable shoe to wear while you chase the grandkids and go for brisk walks around the park, or are you planning on a hiking adventure? Think of it this way…the sneaker is one of the fundamentals that will keep you moving safely while participating in a healthy lifestyle, so it’s best to find a fit that is geared toward your most common activities. Manufactures of shoes are successful for a reason and they take pride in designing shoes for specific activities, hoping to reduce the chance of injury no matter what the sport. If you don’t plan on getting down on the court, then simply avoid the basketball section of the store. The same is true for tennis, running, and hiking. If you want a shoe that will be supportive of your everyday life, a cross-trainer may be your best bet, just be sure not to wear them while playing volleyball as they don’t have the design that accommodates the fast-paced side-to-side movements on the court.
2. Be aware of your budget. Athletic shoes can get pricey, so if you want to avoid an unnecessary credit card bill, give yourself a limit and try on the shoes that are only in that price range. With that said, you also need to keep in mind that you get what you pay for, so a shoe that costs $20, won’t have the support characteristics that a $60 shoe would have. This doesn’t mean that you need to buy a $200 pair of shoes. Simply be on the lookout for the support that you need within your price range. A reasonable place to start is between $50 and $100.
3. Timing is everything. Like everything else in life, sneakers have a certain amount of time to be considered in their prime. Over time, shoes wear down, and the interior cushioning that once felt very supportive, is now thinned down. While your shoes may look like they are still in good condition, the broken-down insides will cause your body to suffer in a variety of ways. Back pain, shin splints, and hip pain are some of the common indicators that it’s time for a new pair of shoes. According to the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, the decision to replace your shoes can be based on the following guidelines:
-Upon noticing that the shoes appear uneven when they are placed on the floor
-After roughly 300 to 500 miles of running or walking
-After one year of use
Even if they haven’t been worn a ton, environmental factors can take a toll on the shoes after a while and they start to break down.
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