How often to change running shoes?

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11/05/2013 at 22:11

Hello,

If one is running 5K 3-4 times a week, and there's nothing wrong with current footwear, is it advisable to change? I was told at a specialist running shop that with runnig 15-20K per week one should look to change their shoes every 6 months. It left me wondering whether this was so that the shop could make money from me or was it good and practical advice.

Your views appreciated.

Thanks xox

11/05/2013 at 22:27

Realistically you could probably get about 9-10 months out of them at that sort of distance but you will eventually get a feel for when you need new shoes.

Richie.

11/05/2013 at 22:50

I've had mine for at least 10 months. Will order a new pair online. Thanks

11/05/2013 at 23:50

Up to you...  but I think a running shoe is not something to be bought online. 

 

11/05/2013 at 23:57

I've had a pair of running shoes for at least 2years . Do some shorter sprints in them mind but stil going strong.

the general rule of thumb is 500 miles but can obviously differ from weight of person.

dont change just for change sake 

12/05/2013 at 00:45

RunWales - about 1-2 years ago, I got all serious and went to a specialist running shop, did a gait test, purchased some fancy Asics...and whoosh, bang, shin splint and out of action for some weeks. Thankfully the manager was kind enough to take them back at no cost and outside of the 28 day return period.

I went back to my Nike Air Max which have served me faithfully (I just order the same type) since 1999 in all cardio activity.

How did folk undertake distance running decades ago, before we got all techie with running shoes and the advent of specialist running shops...and then, those countries which are considered to be in poorer than us but who produce brilliant distance runners who possibly couldnt have had the technical running shoes we are sold in shops today when they started out.

 

12/05/2013 at 00:47

Kinda went onto my soap box there (unintentionally....!) lol.

12/05/2013 at 12:17

Okay, I'll take this one.  'Poor' countries produce great runners because it's an easy and cheap sport to get into.  You don't need any equipment, so it's an obvious choice.    And just because the world's best runners are Kenyan, doesn't mean all Kenyans are great runners.

Next point - people ran without technology, but not as many people did well at it.  Technology allows people with flat feet, fallen arches and severe gait problems to run, whereas in the past, they wouldn't have been able.  

You can dismiss 'technology' (plenty of people do), but don't forget, that these super-fast Kenyans are faster because they wear Adidas, have a dietician, measure the heart-rate and blood-oxygen, than they would be if they drank blood and milk and ran barefoot.

BTW, all Nike Air Max are fashion shoes - there are no serious sports models with 'max' air, so if you can use these without problems, consider yourself very blessed - most of us need the technology of expensive running shoes ito counteract our defective feet!

12/05/2013 at 13:44

The rule of thumb is that you should get 500-600 miles out of a pair of running shoes, but this is an oversimplification. 

If you are not noticing the difference, then it probably isn't worth replacing them. 

12/05/2013 at 14:15

Next point - people ran without technology, but not as many people did well at it.  Technology allows people with flat feet, fallen arches and severe gait problems to run, whereas in the past, they wouldn't have been able.  

 I'm pretty certain running shops don't sell 'technology' that can do this. I can't recollect seeing any research that backs this up iether. 

12/05/2013 at 18:18

Stone age man ran with bare feet, but he also only lived to his late 20s, and did not have to contend with large parts of his habitat being covered in tarmac. 

The running industry has achieved something tangible, in that more people are running further than ever before.  In the 1970s a person who had ran a marathon was regarded as a bit of an eccentric, and probably didn’t have a girlfriend. 

12/05/2013 at 18:18

Really Ian?  Flat feet would have got you out of the army during World War II - a time when there weren't many excuses and they needed every man they could get.  Now, shoes with medial posting have allowed many people to run with flat feet and fallen arches.  And there is plenty of evidence - there are tens of thousands of people who can run pain-free due to support shoes.  Including me.

13/05/2013 at 10:49

I've read quite a lot of argument on the barefoot / technical shoes debate over recent years.  But the 'flat-feet' getting you thrown out of the army is a simple, powerful argument that I've not heard before DiscountRunner (and your other arguments are well put)

Nice one.  Would be interested to see if anyone can, or cannot,  easily debunk it

 

Rafiki    pirate
13/05/2013 at 11:16

Alan Wells, the US mile record holder is flat footed and runs in minimalist shoes with no medial support. Does that debunk it?? He just uses lots of foot strengthening exercises.

There is also evidence to show that the number of running injuries has increased per capita since the introduction of the Air Pagasus in 1981 (the first 'modern' shoe).

13/05/2013 at 11:37

The number of running injuries per capita has increased since 1981, because the number of runners per capita has increased.  It should also be noted that running injuries as a whole, are not as severe as those that routinely occur in football or rugby. 

What the running industry can do for you, depends on how much of a problem you had to start with.  A person with good biomechanics is likely to do well whatever they run in.  On the other hand I met some customers when I worked for Sweatshop who thought that they would never be able to be runners, and I was able to make it possible for them.

Rafiki    pirate
13/05/2013 at 12:07

Sorry - to clarify, I meant per capita of runners i.e the percentage of runners reporting injuries has increased since 1981.

13/05/2013 at 12:24

Even on that basis the statistic dosn't really say very much, because the proportion of recreational runners competing in longer distance events such as marathons, has gone through the roof. 

How many organised marathons were there in 1981?

13/05/2013 at 12:36
Rafiki wrote (see)

Alan Wells, the US mile record holder is flat footed and runs in minimalist shoes with no medial support. Does that debunk it?? He just uses lots of foot strengthening exercises.

There is also evidence to show that the number of running injuries has increased per capita since the introduction of the Air Pagasus in 1981 (the first 'modern' shoe).

 

 

Grear for Alan Wells - I am really pleased for him.  But I am not him and I am not a record-breaking professional athlete - I am a normal man who is biomechanically inefficient and finds that support shoes allow him to do what minimalist/neutral/racing/lightweight/tennis shoes can not - run half-marathons.

If you think that the latest trend (for that is what these all are) is the only way for you, then grand.  But don't be one of those dreaded barefoot evangelists who tell others what's good for them.  They are as dull as vegans telling people meat is murder!  

13/05/2013 at 12:50

At a marathon the other weekend there were two different people running with FiveFingers or similar.  Both of them had tape all up their lower legs and were hobbling a long looking in a lot of pain.  I think some people buy them as the answer to all their running issues, but then just continue running as normal and don't ease themselves into training with them.

13/05/2013 at 12:51

Really Ian?  Flat feet would have got you out of the army during World War II - a time when there weren't many excuses and they needed every man they could get

Whereas now a variety of armed forces have done the actual research and found it makes no differrence to injury rate -


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16130646

http://epirev.oxfordjournals.org/content/24/2/228.full

And now the army will quite happilly accept people with flat feet - even though they don't need everyone they can get.

http://www.army.mod.uk/documents/general/BGN_9._Medical_Notes_for_Potential_Rects_RI_10.doc

 

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