The Major Difference Between Running and Walking Shoes, And Why It Matters

Any walker knows that, when your walking shoes are used up, and it is time to replace them, you will need to bear several things in mind. Walking shoes are an extremely specific breed, as they are purpose-designed for people who spend a lot of time on their feet, and who need specific support across their arches and ankles to support the activity. When you do a lot of walking, your stability point tends to be under the arches and at the back of the foot, so it’s going to take a bit more thinking than just going for the first, best pair of Nike shoes for sale.

Don’t worry about what it looks like

While everyone likes to wear a pair of shoes that is cute, or cool, or whatever your descriptive adjective of choice is, unfortunately aesthetics is very much at the back of the queue when it comes to picking shoes. Ensuring that your shoes fit correctly and are designed for how you intend to use them, will help you to avoid a range if problems, from joint and back pain to chafing and swollen feet. 

The ideal walking shoe should take on the shape of the wearer’s foot, and be soft enough to provide cushioning, while remaining snugly fit, in order to provide optimal support to the arches. If you are lucky, of course it is possible to buy a pair that looks good too, but your primary decision-making factor when looking for a pair of shoes for sale, is function. 

Running
Photo by Josh Gordon on Unsplash

What makes the difference?

What is the difference then between running and walking shoes? The two activities are related, after all – or are they? Running shoes are, as a rule, a lot lighter than walking shoes, in order to facilitate speed. They should also be able to take more impact, as the heel absorbs a huge amount of impact while running, and the resultant shock to the joints should be absorbed to protect the wearer. 

If you’ve ever had a pair of running shoes professionally fitted, the chances are good that you will have encountered the term, pronation. This refers to whether your foot rolls inwards or outwards in its natural state and will guide what type of shoes you would need to buy to correct this. Overpronation can be easily remedied by a pair of shoes with a bit of extra cushioning, to help take weight and pressure off the toes. If you under pronate, you will notice that most of the wear and tear on your shoes happens on the outside edge. This is also easily fixed by wearing the right shoes to correct this. 

In closing

Here is one of the handiest tips I’ve ever learnt, and that is to buy your shoes at the end of the day. Far from putting you through the hassle of shopping after a long day, the reasoning here is that, if you buy your shoes at a time when your feet are at their biggest, you will be guaranteed a great fit, and the expansion that your feet undergo during a day will already have been catered for!

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