Many people think that you can simply slap on any ol’ pair of sneakers and start running - but if you’ve tested this theory out, then you know it’s not the case! Running is just like any sport that requires specialized equipment, and running shoes are made very differently than footwear designed for more casual purposes. So if you are new to running, or are picking it up again after a long hiatus, how do you choose the right pair of running shoes from the plethora of options out there? That’s what our BlackToe Running experts are here to help you with today!
Let’s take a quick look into what makes running shoes unique, and why it’s important to get a pair of running-specific shoes before you start your journey. Running shoes are made with specialized materials that are designed to provide support, cushion and durability during high-impact events, such as running.
Running shoe manufacturers spend a great deal of time researching and testing the impacts of running on the body, and create shoes that offer solutions for all different types of runners. This can include wide ranges of support, stability, cushioning, toe box shape, drop (the height difference between the heel and toe of a shoe), flexibility and so much more. Not all sneakers are meant to log long miles, and investing in a shoe that’s specifically designed for running will start you off on the right foot!
To start, we always recommend booking a running shoe assessment with one of our BlackToe Running experts! We’ll talk about your running goals and any previous injuries, and look at things like the shape of your foot, alignment and stride to give you a clear idea of which type of shoe will best suit your needs. Once we narrow down which shoes will work best for you as a runner, we’ll get to work finding the right model in terms of comfort, fit, style and price.
Are you just looking to test the waters and learn about running shoes? No problem! We’re always happy to perform an assessment - they’re free! - and provide some general guidelines to help you choose the right pair of shoes in the future, such as:
We get asked this a lot, and our answer is always the same: there is no single “best” shoe; only the best shoe for a specific runner. Everyone’s needs are too different to ever determine one shoe as being superior to all others. Sure, there are plenty of favourites out there - but they don’t work for everyone! Letting go of expectations about buying the “best” shoe, and being open to the possibilities of how the “best shoe for you” can impact your running experience will give you a far bigger boost in performance than following the trends. We carry dozens of models from all of the most popular shoe brands in the biz, including Nike, Asics, New Balance, Saucony, Hoka, ON, Adidas, Mizuno and more, so we truly have something for every runner.
We can’t wait to help you! You can book a personalized virtual running shoe assessment online, or stop by our Toronto location for an in-person assessment. Whether you’re using our state-of-the-art assessment tools in-store (you won’t find this equipment anywhere else in the GTA!) or prefer to take advantage of our staff’s experience and knowledge during a virtual assessment, we’ll help you find the right shoes for your needs. Don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our BlackToe Running team members to learn more about picking the best running shoes for you!