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The footwear debate concludes- should you be wearing Supportive Shoes?

By 22/09/2015Footwear

Is a supportive style shoe necessary for you?

Podiatrist Jason Bruce provides his final discussion point on the footwear of today. The main question asked- what is more important?- Support VS Comfort debate.

This is the third and final part of the Footwear Series- Part 3 of 3.ASICS-GT-2000-Running-Shoe-II

Research has shown us the many pros and cons of the previously discussed toe and minimal style shoe. Abebe’s gold medal barefoot marathon run set the world on the minimalistic shoe trend. Many people, including athletes, researchers and health professionals saw the benefits of the style of shoe. However, did they think of the consequences of the amount of force put through the body and its effects on the joints, muscles and ligaments? Research has both “proved and disproved” the effectiveness of these shoes. If a minimalistic shoe isn’t correct for you, then what style of shoe is best?

One of Asics top selling shoes – the Gel Nimbus, has many components and each of these components play a certain role. Lets discuss some of its design features-

  • The GEL-Nimbus 17 is a comfortable and extremely well cushioned shoe for neutral runners and those with rigid foot types.
  • The heel counter. This refers to a piece of plastic that sits behind the heel which has the role to hold and stabilise the heel and prevent the person wearing the shoe, rolling their ankle. No such support is found in minimalist shoes.
  • The Shank. The shank stiffens the shoe under the arch which limits torsion and flexion. It provides a stable base for the shoe and assists in the important steps of gait, such as allowing the foot to bend at the toes rather then the arch.
  • The Midsole. This is designed to allow guidence of the foot in motion whilst limiting excessive motion. This shoe has been built on an improved Fluid Ride V2 midsole for unprecedented bounce back and cushioning.
  • Could we keep discussing the technical components of the Gel – Nimbus? Certainly- but the technical part is extremely technical- and often stumps even the Podiatrists. This is one of the reasons that we work alongside technical fitting Shoe Stores such as Shoe Clinic and Shoe Science. They offer their expertise during the fitting process and we can’t recommend them enough.

Although the wearing of  Nike Free, Sketchers Go Walk or toe style shoe can feel amazing, they may not be the right shoe for you. There is a never ending debate on the pros and cons of each style of shoe. However, if you are recovering from foot or leg pain, have a current injury, want to prevent an injury or have an unusual foot type – a more supportive shoe may be necessary.

Come in and have a chat today about the right shoe for you!