Whether you are a casual jogger or a marathon junkie, it is always important to listen to your body. There are so many times when we put ourselves second and we don’t nurture and resolve the aches and pains with exercise. One of the most common topics is treating common foot injuries for runners, and that starts with purchasing the right shoes.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Cunha, founder of Gotham Foot Care and a leading podiatrist in New York City. He provided me with great information on three things I should look for when purchasing a running shoe.
- Rigid Shank – In order to tell if the shoe is rigid enough, you want to take the shoe and bend it in half. You shouldn’t be able to, because the shank is the actual structure of the shoe and should be rigid to hold up and support the arch.
- Rigid Heel Counter – Squeeze the heel of the shoe to see how firm it is. There should be a good bit of padding called an ankle collar which is intended to protect cushion the ankle and the achilles tendon. You shouldn’t be able to compress it – so when you are running it supports the heel.
- Wide Forefoot – Most of the problems that occur with our feet – particular for woman, and often for runners – are because our shoes don’t have a wide enough forefoot. Bunions, hammer toes, neuromas, in grown toenails, etc. are all caused if you don’t have the wide forefoot.
In order to determine whether the forefront is wide enough, I suggest that you trace your foot onto a piece of paper at the end of the day when your feet are most swollen. Then place the shoe over the tracing of the foot. If the tracing of the foot is external to the periphery of the shoe then you know that your shoes are too narrow.
Personally, in my experience as a runner, it is crucial for my shoes to fit perfect. I try my best to avoid shin splints, ankle pain and any aches that can lead to my lower back. I think these are great suggestions from Dr. Cunha and I’m hoping to take this knowledge to my next shopping trip!
About Dr. Cunha:
Dr. Miguel Cunha, founder of Gotham Footcare and a leading podiatrist in Manhattan, is a highly trained and skilled foot and ankle surgeon with experience treating a wide array of foot and ankle conditions from minor problems to complex reconstructive foot and ankle surgery. Dr. Cunha takes pride in having a genuine interest in each and every one of his patients while providing them the utmost compassion and exceptional care.
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