8 Reasons Why Running Shoes Are Important


When I first started running, I never understood why running shoes are important. I used to believe that any athletic shoe is fine, after all, running is a simple exercise. Or so I thought.

Fast forward to today, after experiencing body aches, blisters, and poor running performance. And then experiencing the benefits of a good running shoe, I finally understood its importance.

Running shoes are important because they help provide stability, reduce the risk of injuries, as well as provide comfort and proper cushioning to your foot.

What Are Running Shoes?

Most running shoes have a breathable upper that helps cool your feet, therefore, lowering your heart rate. It has a generous amount of cushioning to help you absorb impact around 3 times your body weight. They generally have a snug fit to help reduce movement inside the shoe that causes blisters.

There are different types of running shoes used for different running activities.

There are running shoes for the trail which usually have deeper lugs to help provide traction on any surface. Racing shoes that are light and somewhat firm are fast and responsive. Even running shoes are used for daily training which is usually comfortable and provides a more generous cushioning.

When Should You Buy A Pair of Running Shoes?

I highly recommend buying a good pair of running shoes as soon as you’ve decided to start running. There’s a lot of running shoes that any beginner will love but one of the more popular ones is the Brooks Ghost 13 and ASICS Gel Nimbus 23 (Links to where you can buy them).

Delaying will only cause blisters and discomfort.

Why Are Running Shoes Important for Running?

Running shoes are important because they help provide stability, reduce the risk of injuries and provide comfort and cushioning to your foot.

According to a study published in 2015, researchers concluded that prescribing proper footgear is related to fewer running injuries. Therefore, it is important for your longevity in the sport.

Are Running Shoes Necessary?

You can run in any pair of shoes but prepare for the knee pains, blisters, and dead toenails that come with it. If you’re serious about running, having a good pair of running shoes is necessary.

8 Reasons Why Running Shoes Are Important

  1. It Helps Reduce The Risks for Injury

Though running might seem a very safe sport, it’s often associated with a lot of overuse injuries due to repetitive motion and constant pounding on your joints.

A good pair of running shoes have cushioning specifically designed to reduce the impact that your knees and other lower extremity joints receive upon ground contact. This will result in a decreased risk of injuries and ensure longevity in the sport.

This is true whether you’re a recreational runner or a competitor. You should find a good pair of daily trainers to accompany you in your day-to-day training routine.

1. It Makes You Comfortable When Running

Sure, you can run in any type of shoe. Perhaps, even leather shoes. But I am certain that you won’t feel comfortable running in them after just a kilometer.

Running shoes have different levels of comfort, but the majority of them feel comfortable and soft around and under your foot. As a matter of fact, my favorite cushioned shoe feels so soft that I feel like I can for 10km and consider it a recovery day.

Running shoes are designed to prevent any unnecessary pains, hotspots, and heel lifts that you might get from running with a non-running shoe.

2. It Helps Improve Your Running Performance

Though there are shoes specifically designed to help improve your performance during races like the Brooks Hyperion Elite 2 and the ASICS METARACER, running shoes in general help improve your overall running performance if you compare it to a non-running shoe.

At one point in my life, I thought I could get away with training my runs using my Reebok Nanos, a CrossFit shoe. But then, as the runs got harder and harder, my feet got more and more blisters and my knees hurt more.

(Related: Can Running Shoes Be Used In The Gym? I Tried)

When I finally decided to switch to a real running shoe, boy I got blown away by the comfort it provides. I even asked myself why did I ever have to go through that pain and discomfort when I could’ve just used a running shoe for running and skip it.

3. It Helps Delay Fatigue

Some running shoes are designed to help you save energy during your running sessions. They work by reducing the need for the over-exertion of your lower extremity muscles to propel you forward.

They do that by using a bouncy midsole like the Brooks Levitate 4 or by using the rolling mechanism like the ASICS GlideRide 2.

However, most running shoes are designed with just the right responsiveness and cushioning that will help delay your overall fatigue as compared to running in a casual shoe.

4. Some Running Shoes Correct Your Running Gait

Ideally, your foot has to have just enough pronation in order to evenly distribute the impact your body receives to your lower extremities as well as provide the best foot position for propulsion.

Unfortunately, some runners overpronate because of a variety of reasons including lack of practice or even a flat foot causing potential damage to the knees and decrease running performance.

But thanks to the innovation of running shoe companies, some running shoes are now equipped with technologies that prevent the overpronation of your foot and help guide it in a neutral position.

Some examples of these types of shoes are the ASICS Gel-Kayano 27 and the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21.

By the way, I am flat-footed and an overpronator myself. I noticed a huge improvement in my running gait immediately after I switched to Brooks Adrenaline GTS. It decreased the overall discomfort that I feel when running. Because of this, I immediately understood why running shoes are important.

If you’re still looking for a pair of stability shoes, I highly recommend the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21. I’ve been using them for quite some time and they feel really good on the feet. Plus, they’re relatively light for a stability shoe. You can buy them on Amazon.

5. It Makes You More Efficient at Running

Because running shoes have the right amount of cushioning and midsole technology specifically designed for you to run with, running shoes will make you more efficient overall compared to any other shoe when it comes to running.

And, as mentioned earlier, there are some running shoes equipped with technology that uses the rolling mechanism or a bouncy midsole to decrease the need for your muscles to exert extra effort.

So, if you’re ever interested in running more with less fatigue, get a running shoe.

6. It Prevents Blisters and Dead Toe-Nails

Blisters and dead toenails are usually caused by the friction that happens inside the foot due to a poor fit or lockdown.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had blisters and dead toenails because of running in an inappropriate shoe. I used to run with CrossFit shoes, walking shoes, and casual shoes which got me multiple blisters and dead toenails on multiple occasions before I even considered the possibility of buying a running shoe.

Here’s a photo of my dead toenail back when I wasn’t fond of running with proper running shoes.

A picture of my dead toenail when I used to run with an inappropriate shoe

Bottom line: running shoes are designed to fit your foot properly and prevent friction, therefore, reducing the risk for blisters and dead toenails.

(Related article: Why Your Running Shoes Hurt Your Feet and What to Do About It)

7. Running Shoes Are Designed According to Their Intended Use

If you’re new to running, you may be surprised by the fact that there are different types of running shoes for different running activities. I actually made a list of them in another article.

There are lightweight shoes used for tempo days and races, there are energized shoes for long-distance running, cushioned shoes for daily training as well as trail shoes that provide traction on any type of terrain.

Sometimes, running shoes combine these features and become entirely different shoes with a unique running experience.

8. It Will Help You Lose More Weight (Indirectly)

Though buying a pair of running shoes will not shave a single pound from your weight, it may help you do more and therefore, burn more calories.

Think about it, because you feel comfortable, you will be able to run more. And because of that, you’ll burn more calories over time. Plus, it will reduce knee pain and blisters that may prevent you from training on the next day.

Conclusion

Whether you’re a professional runner, recreational runner, or even a weekend warrior, having a good pair of running shoes is important for your safety and overall running experience. It is therefore ideal to invest in a good pair of running shoes.

Nicho Mauricio

Running wasn't always my favorite sport. I was a CrossFit athlete and I loved every bit of it. But since the pandemic began, I was forced to stay away from the gym and train at home instead. Things got boring. That's when I decided to trail run with my friends. I instantly got hooked. So I started training and researching all things running. As a beginner, I want to buy only the best running gear and do only the best practices. This blog is where I share what I've learned in my journey and my experiences as a runner.

Recent Posts