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Replacing Your Running Shoes

Replacing Your Running Shoes
Replacing Your Running Shoes

How Often Should You Be Replacing Your Running Shoes?

Obviously running shoes have a finite life and generally it is recommended that a pair of running shoes is replaced after approximately 700-1100 kms (or around 350-550 miles). The exact amount of running a shoe can take depends on a few factors including your running style, body weight, the surface on which you run as well as the shoe materials etc.
As a general rule of thumb lighter runners can get a bit more mileage out of a shoe than the heavier runner who is a little harder on their footwear and will typically need to be replacing your running shoes more frequently.

Don’t Wait Till You Are In Pain Before Replacing Your Running Shoes

Most runners will not be aware that their shoes are in need of replacing and frequently the first sign that they get may be their body crying out telling them then need to go buy some new shoes. Waiting till you start getting aches or pains can put you at risk of injury. I would suggest that you keep track of the mileage you do in your shoes and as well as this assess your shoe periodically for signs of wear and tear.

What Does The Research Suggest?

The evidence is clear that shoes do change significantly as they accumulate more mileage. Meaning shoes do break down over time the more running you do in them, however this doesn’t necessarily mean that your running bio-mechanics change because of it. Your body will try to adjust and adapt to the changing surface underneath be it shoe change as a result of wear and tear of the shoe or the actual running surface itself. This demand for your body to adapt as the shoe ages and changes in the support and cushioning it offers your body may impact the stress on your body and explain why injuries can occur due to “worn out” thinner and stiffer shoes.

How Does This Apply To Replacing Your Running Shoes?

Research suggests that over time the cushioning of your running shoe deteriorates and the shoe will become stiffer and thinner as a result. Your body adapts to the wearing out of your running shoes and the changes that occur to the shoe as the mileage you do in them increases by altering muscle activation.
Your body is ultimately compensating for what the shoe is no longer offering your body and if your body isn’t capable of either making or maintaining these compensatory measures aches, pains and injuries may well be the result. Meaning it is best to preempt the need for your body to make such changes and swap up your shoes before they get too tired and worn.

Disclaimer: Sydney Physio Clinic does not endorse any treatments, procedures, products mentioned. This information is provided as an educational service and is not intended to serve as medical advice. Anyone seeking specific advice or assistance on Replacing Your Running Shoes should consult his or her general practitioner, podiatrist, physiotherapist or otherwise appropriately skilled practitioner.

Hayden Latimer is the founder of and principle physiotherapist at Sydney Physio Clinic. Since graduating from Otago University, Dunedin, New Zealand he’s gained wide experience practicing across the globe for over 15 years and is now extremely knowledgeable in helping people reduce discomfort and restore function and mobility.


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