Your form impacts your shoes, and your shoes impact your form. Incorrect footwear choices can exacerbate or cause lower extremity dysfunction, while ideal foot wear can decrease stress and improve function. Traditional beliefs about shoe selection utilize 3 different shoe categories. Each respective foot type correlates with a shoe category
Cushioned – Cavus (high arch)
Stability – neutral (normal arch)
Motion control – flat foot
These categories do not take the individual into account...just their foot.
Selecting a shoe for optimal gait should be more based on the indvidual
Midfoot drop with walking
Firm cushioning- a little goes a long way
Match to terrain/ and miles
Another common question I hear in the clinic is pertaining to minimal shoe wear or barefoot running. I do not recommend jumping into a minimal shoe. Most individuals need to gradually transition into a minimal shoe. If you plan on transitioning into a minimal shoe I recommend you obtain three different criteria before doing so
Adequate heel chord/ plantar fascia mobility
Normal single leg balance- no loss of balance for 30 seconds
Ability to isolate Flexor Hallucis Brevis in stance- toe extension.
Running with poor shoe wear places an increase in stress on your body. Our goal is to identify the extrinsic factors and your goals that will help you choose the right shoe for you.