Are My Sneakers Too Old?
Did you know it is recommended to change your sneakers that you wear on a consistent basis every 6 months or 300-500 miles. Over time, the sneaker’s cushioning breaks down from the constant pounding on the shoes and also from the elements. When the cushioning breaks down, more pressure is put on your joints (ankles, knees, hips). A lot of times, when you are experiencing joint pain, it is directly related to your shoes. When there is less support from your shoe, your body compensates for it, resulting in a rotation in your hip, which can then lead to knee or ankle pain. You shouldn’t wait for the bottom of your sneakers to be completely smooth or for your toe to poke out of the side to consider that it might be time for a new pair.
Regardless of if you are a runner, walker, cross fitter, etc, you should get a shoe analysis done to make sure you are fitted for the right shoe for you. Running stores like Boulder Running Company, Road Runner Sports, or Run Colorado provide this shoe analysis. They have you walk or run on a treadmill, while video taping you to check your gait and see if you pronate (ankles roll inwards) or supinate (ankles roll outwards). They also check the heat levels in your feet to determine if you put most of your weight while standing in your heels, toes, or if the weight is evenly distributed. If needed, they also fit you with insoles that you can wear in your shoes to help support your arch. Based on their analysis, they determine which type of shoe best fits your running/walking style to ensure your feet and joints are taken care of. In most of the running stores, they even offer a 30-90 day guarantee on the shoes. You can take them for a run, walk, hike, crossfit session so that you can see how your feet and body respond to the shoes. If you are not satisfied, they will allow you to return them, even if they are dirty!
One of the biggest things to remember is not to buy a pair of sneakers because you like the color or style or because they are on sale. You need sneakers that will help you perform and feel the best. After all, your joints are worth it!