Choosing the right sports shoes can have a huge impact on your athletic performance. The right footwear can improve your in-game performance, lessen the risk of injuries, and boost your swagger while playing your favorite sport.
In shopping for a sports gear, it’s important that you don’t buy into
the marketing of huge sports brands advertising fashion equates functionality. Although there are shoes that look good and perform well at the same time, knowing the basics, like performance, fit, and affordability, is all you need to find the perfect pair for you.
Know Your Activity
The first thing you need to ask yourself when buying shoes is, “Where will I use it?’ Although there are some key movements inherent in each sport, there are others specific to a certain sport. In basketball and football for example: in both sports, athletes run, cut, and pass. But, rebounding in basketball is a different jumping movement than the way linebackers jump to catch the football at the end zone.
So, if you’ve ever wondered why companies seem to manufacture shoes for each sport, it’s because they design them to incorporate the movements athletes make during the game. This allows for increased performance and lesser risk for injuries.
Thus, select a shoe based on your sports activity. If you plan on shooting hoops on-court, basketball shoes usually come with flat outsoles to provide better grip on hardwood surfaces. But, if you’re gunning to join a marathon, look for well-cushioned shoes. This allows for support and comfort during long periods of running.
Evaluate The Fit And Your Feet
Another important point to consider is the form of your feet. Believe it or not, not every foot is the same; it comes in varying shapes and sizes. Some people have wide feet, while others have narrower ones. Some are flat-footed, some have a neutral arch, and others have higher supination.
Knowing the form of your feet can help you find the right fit. A shoe that fits well provides better comfort, support, and better look overall.
Avoid shopping for shoes in the morning. Your feet swell and expand as you stand and walk throughout the day. Make sure to shop later in the day so that your feet will have expanded. You’d be more comfortable wearing shoes that fit your expanded feet than otherwise.
How do you know if a shoe fits perfectly or is too snug? It’s simple. As you try on the shoe, measure the distance between the farthest tip of your toe and the tip of the shoe with your thumb. The distance should not be more than the width of your thumb.
Know Your Budget
In shopping for athletic shoes, budget should also be a priority. In most cases, there is little to no difference at all between highly expensive and mid-range shoes. In fact, studies have shown that running shoes performed the same way regardless of its retail price and added features.
The price of performance shoes ranges from USD $20 to $200, depending on the brand and special features. Sometimes, they cost more in the after-market. Do note that the performance of a USD $20 shoe may not be at par with a more expensive pair. In fact, you’ll be better off investing on a pair in the USD $80 to $100 price range if you think about the health risk cheaper shoes might cause after a couple of uses.
As an athlete, you want to give every game your best performance because victory is on the line. Choosing the perfect pair can help improve your mobility, performance, and lessen your risk for injuries. Investing in a pair of shoes that does all that is definitely worth every penny.
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