So, do you really need to rotate your running shoes?
The results of two studies, one published in British Journal of Sports Medicine and the other in Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, suggest that runners who train in more than one pair of shoes were indeed at a reduced risk for injury. The researchers suggest that the parallel use of more than one pair of running shoes varies the load applied to the musculoskeletal system, which can help protect runners from injury.
In another study presented in Monaco at the 2014 International Olympic Committee World Conference on Prevention of Injury & Illness in Sport, researchers found that runners who had greater variability in their foot strike—greater stride-to-stride differences in variables such as ground contact time and flight time—were less likely to be injured. While variability in your foot strike can be a characteristic of gait, it stands to reason that wearing different types of running shoes may also encourage it.
Research from the University of Cape Town revealed more. In the study, a group of uninjured male runners completed a number of time trials wearing four different running shoe models. Researchers gathered kinematic data using a six-camera motion analysis system and a force plate to examine ground reaction forces. From their findings, they concluded that “different running shoes affect running kinetics and kinematics at or before heel strike but not at mid-stance.”
What this means is that different shoes affect things like the dynamics of your knee and ankle, as well as the flexion of your foot. While this may sound insignificant, when you consider that you take around 1,000 steps each mile, it begins to make sense why some variation in foot strike may provide some benefit in lessening injury risk.
It’s important to keep in mind that while experienced runners may benefit from the practice of training in multiple pairs of shoes, beginners should tread carefully.
“Veteran runners have had a longer amount of time to strengthen pretibial muscles and foot intrinsics during their run training, so they are at less risk for injury when switching between different shoe types than their lesser trained counterparts,” Holland says.
Even for the most experienced runners, Hamilton emphasizes that runners should add in new types of running footwear with caution.
“Making a sudden switch from your usual shoes to something novel, you run the risk of placing excessive loads on a tissue that isn’t quite ready for it and this may result in injury,” says Hamilton.
As with most elements of training, use prudence in introducing anything new and always listen to your body’s feedback.
Fun Fact: Squats. Miami University of Ohio researchers found that gazing down while doing a squat causes your body to lean forward about five degrees, straining your lower back. By keeping your chest lifted, you can increase your reps and weights over time without risking low-back injuries.
Quote of the Day:
“It’s not about how far your legs can take you. It’s about how far your mind can take you.” -Anonymous
So I made these Soft Honey Cookies from the Comfort Food Diet Cookbook. Meh. My decision: If you’re going to bake, don’t be healthy about it. I was not impressed.
Soft Honey Cookies
– 1/4 cup sugar
– 2 tablespoons canola oil
– 1 egg
– 3 tablespoons honey
– 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 cup + 2 tablespoons AP flour
– 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
– 1/8 teaspoon salt
– In a small bowl, beat sugar and oil until blended. Beat in egg; beat in the honey and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt; gradually add to sugar mixture and mix well (dough will be stiff). Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours.
– Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto a greased baking sheet. Bake at 350* for 8-10 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Cool for 1 minute before removing from pan to a wire rack. Store cookies in an airtight container.
Courtesy of Taste of Home Comfort Food Diet Cookbook