Time for new shoes or time for better running form?

Common shoe wear patterns and the problems associated with them

When you run, the part of your shoe that hits the ground first will wear down faster causing a pattern. By analyzing the bottom of your running shoes after you have really worn them in, you can see if you have a faulty gait pattern that can possibly cause injuries. Here is a list of common wear patterns and the proper fixes for them.

1. Wear on the inside of the heel and big toe

Meaning: overpronation of foot

Causes: ankle instability, weak arches

Prevention: arch support, ankle stability exercises, ankle and pelvic adjustments,

Kinesiotaping, avoid wearing high heels

Possible future injuries if not managed: plantar fasciitis, runner’s knee, achilles                 

tendonitis, bunions, stress fractures

2. Wear on outside of heel

Meaning: underpronation/ over supination of foot

Causes: high arches, tight achilles

Prevention: stretching for the calves, hamstrings, quads, and iliotibial band; adjustments

for the ankle, hips, and pelvis; foam rolling lower body

Possible future injuries if not managed: plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, IT band syndrome

3. Wear on one shoe much worse than other

Meaning: much more weight and pressure is going to one side of the body

Causes: rotation of the pelvis or leg length deficiency

Prevention: clam shell exercise; foam rolling lower body; adjustments for the ankle,   hips, and pelvis

Possible future injuries if not managed: IT band syndrome, SI injury, one sided

neck/shoulder pain, early arthritis with possible need for knee or hip replacement if severe

If you have improper wear on your shoes and you try to fix the problem without buying new shoes, you are fighting an uphill battle because your shoes are supporting your old form. It is worth it to get a new pair that will support your specific needs.