So, you watch my episode on how to choose a running shoe and you're wondering, what's a stability shoe? Is it right for me? How do I know that I'm getting a stability shoe and what are the differences between the stability shoes? Well, I'm Jesse Funk and on today's episode of Runner's High, I'm going to tell you a little bit about stability shoes, the two different kinds and how to figure out if they're right for you.
So, if you watched my episode on how to choose a running shoe, there are a lot of things to go over. But one of the most important things in figuring out what kind of shoe is appropriate for you is knowing your gait. That is, which way does your foot roll when you're running or walking.
Now, a stability shoe comes into types, and therefore people whose feet overpronate, meaning they roll too much on the inside or collapse to the inside. Or somebody who supernates, which is turning to the outside or having more pressure on the outside, when they run or walk. You can tell this in part by watching a video or having somebody look at you while you're running or walking, but you can also look on the bottom side of a shoe.
Again, here is my running shoe, my well worn running shoe. It doesn't have quite as much wear and tear as I wish it did for me to show you. I change them a little bit too often. But what you want to look at on the bottom of your shoes for an indication that you might need a stability shoe is, so here's the inside of my shoe, if I was going to need an over-pronation shoe, then I might have lots and lots of extra wear on this inside; both from the heel section and then up into the forefoot, there's going to be more aware there.
And you can see on this particular shoe, right here in the center, because I’m midfoot strike and I'm wearing a neutral shoe, I don't need those extra things, I have more were in the center of the shoe, which is normal for a person with a neutral gait.
Now, if you need a stability shoe for supernation, then the opposite will often happen, where on the outside of the shoe, you're going to have much more wear and tear. And you'll be able to see down past the out-sole the - sole here, which is this bottom part where it wears down into the colors and you'll see that in motion there.
So, those are a couple of ways to figure out do I need a stability shoe. But again, those are the two basic kinds; the over-pronation and the supernation shoe. The difference in those between neutral shoe which again, I've shown you, there's not anything going on here, you can't see anything.
With a donation shoe, you're going to see some kind of posting, which is a physical change either the foam or a physical post, put in right here in the back. And it’ll often go right here.
Most often with a mild over-pronation shoe, you'll see a gray section here. For whatever reason, manufacturers love to color them gray, it'll be this nice grade block and it's a stiffer amount of foam. The idea is that because your foot collapses so easily to the inside, they want to give a stiffer amount of foam to give resistance against that.
Now, it will not prevent you from over-pronating, and that's a common misconception. Stability shoes do not prevent the over-pronating. It's only there to support your foot in its natural movement. If you want to prevent it or try to correct it, then you actually have to look at some kind of arc support, which I won't get into in this video because that's a whole other ball of wax.
Now, for supernation shoes, you may see some kind of posting here on the inside of the shoe. But you will also and more importantly, see some kind of posting on the outside part of the shoe. And that's because that's the direction that your foot goes and needs to be supported.
When your foot falls too hard to the outside, then the manufacturers put in some kind of stability there. Supernation is going to be the, I'll say rarest of the three gaits, you don't see it quite as often as somebody who fits shoes. But there are shoes available for you.
As always, just like I said in my how to choose a running shoe video, rely on your local running store. They have in depth knowledge of each shoe and can kind of guide you where to go. Will they be able to pick out the perfect shoe for you? Probably not. But they'll be able to narrow down the selection from an overwhelming hundreds or sometimes even thousands of shoes that are available at any given time down to a few where you can try them on. Try them out and figure out okay, this is the one that feels most comfortable for me.
So, as always, if you want to know more about running, how to be the best runner, subscribe to the channel and stay tuned for more episodes of Runner’s High.