Injury Prevention; Choosing the Right Running Shoes

Person Wearing Shoes
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Many people don’t know the importance of the right running shoes for running. You just pick any shoes and get going, this is bad as it leads to potential injuries later on.

Choosing the right running shoes for yourself is like you are choosing the right tires for your car.

Furthermore, an inappropriate running shoes increase your risk of injuries just like an inappropriate tires can be a safety hazard on the road.

Running shoes are just a pair of shoes, why even bother about it? Running shoes aren’t just any pair of shoes, they are designed to be used for running.

choosing right running shoes

Have a look at the running shoes above, and compare it with the shoes below. So in your opinion, which is more suited for running and why? Leave a comment below!

choosing right running shoes

Both of these are great and beautiful looking shoes but only 1 of them are suited for running. A good pair of running shoes is important to reduce the risk of injuries; injuries may occur at the ankle, knee or hips.

Things to know before choosing the right running shoes:

  1. You need to understand why the right running shoes are so important.
  2. How does just a pair of shoes can cause so much injuries if not chosen properly.
  3. Don’t compensate quality running shoes for cheap and mediocre running shoes.
  4. It is a good idea to choose a running shoes for running and other shoes for your other needs.

Why do I need to bother about it?

A good pair of running shoes isn’t always the best choice, in fact what does good pair of running shoes mean? Good pair of running shoes doesn’t mean the right running shoes!

choosing right running shoes

Right running shoes isn’t a ‘one-size fits all’ as everyone is different and it should be the right one for you!

What’s right for you, doesn’t mean is right for other people. An improper and inappropriate running shoes may cause pain and injuries.

Signs of wearing the wrong running shoes

  • Foot pain.
  • Ankle pain.
  • Knee pain.
  • Arch pain.
  • Toe or foot blisters.
  • Blacked toenail.

What factors to consider?

  • Proper fitting and sizing – It should be a snug fit, with at least a pinky-finger space at the back. It should also fit comfortably throughout your foot.
  • Sufficient heel cushion (but not too much or too little!) – You need to test the shoes in the shop to find a good balance between comfort and practicality.
  • Heel to toe cushion thickness – The heel should be a thicker cushion and it gets thinner towards the toe area.
nike downshifter running shoes
  • Weight of the shoes – A lighter shoes are meant for speed/track workout; Typical-everyday-kind-of-shoes are the best choice for most people and recreational runners. A solid and heavy built shoes are meant for off-road running (trail running).
  • Foot arch – Normal arch can get any shoes based on the these factors; Low arch get insoles and a wider mid-sole shoes; High arch get a thicker heel cushion shoes.
  • Neutral or stability shoes – Neutral shoes are most of the shoes in the market and is for everyone. However, stability shoes are meant to correct excessive foot pronation.

How does shoes prevent injuries?

The right running shoes are able to prevent some common running knee injuries as shoes are able to absorb some shock with each running stride (try to run in a shoes with much thinner heel cushion and you will feel the difference almost immediately).

A proper ankle support to prevent the ankle from moving side-by-side and remained aligned with your foot.

choosing right running shoes

What injuries you may face with an improper running shoes?

  1. Runner’s knee (Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome).*
  2. Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBs).*
  3. Shin splints.*
  4. Peroneal tendonitis.
  5. Plantar fasciitis.
    *You can read my previous blog post regarding the first 3 injuries.
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Peroneal Tendonitis

Peroneal tendonitis happens when there is and excessive overloading and overuse of the tendons which causes the tendons to rub against the bone.

It has a sharp pain at the side of ankle and outside the ankle depending on the severity. It usually happens after running with an improper shoes.

How it happened?

Risk Factors:

  • Improper running shoes.
  • People with high foot arch.
  • Calf muscle tightness.


  • Overtraining! – Too much too soon. Always start your workout with the easiest intensity and progress not more than 10% per week. Excessive overloading of the tendon leads to to friction and rubbing of the outer ankle.
  • Weak muscle control around the ankle.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia (a thick ligament that connects your heel to your foot).

Excessive loading, stress and pressure causes the plantar fascia to be damaged or torn. Pain is usually felt at the heel or bottom of foot.

How it happened?

Risk Factors:

  • Improper running shoes.
  • High foot arch.
  • Calf muscle tightness.


  • Overtraining! – Too much too soon. Always start your workout with the easiest intensity and progress not more than 10% per week. Excessive stress and pressure of the plantar fascia leads to damaged or torn fascia.
  • Tightness of the plantar fascia.

Bottom Line..

You may not have thought of the importance of choosing the right running shoes before running. A proper shoes are more than just a good looking shoes, it can do so much for you.

Imagine you want to lose weight and you try running, but after your run, you feel pain and discomfort in your leg. Not a good experience eh?

Investing in buying the right running shoes is worth it than to compensate it with injuries you may face in the future.

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