Finding Your Sole Mate

Get off on the right foot with your running shoes using these tips on choosing the perfect pair, based on your feet type and purpose.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Sports technology has surged in the past few years, which means brands have been able to produce different types of running shoes for all feet types.

Unfortunately, this also means that deciding on a pair can be complicated. The wrong pair of shoes can cause long-term injuries to your back and knees, so it’s important to get it right.
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IF YOU UNDER-PRONATE: Adizero Prime Ltd Shoes by Adidas, $300

Under-pronation occurs when the outside of your foot absorbs the most impact as it strikes the ground. Some under-pronation is normal during exercise, but when excessive, it could cause severe pain. For a smooth run, look for shoes that are lighter and offer more arch-support, like this pair by Adidas.
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IF YOU OVER-PRONATE: Gel-Kayano 25 by Asics, $259

If your feet roll inward when you run, then you likely have over-pronation. In terms of form, the experts at Runner’s World say this  is a problem because “the foot and ankle will have problems stabilising the body, and shock isn’t absorbed as efficiently” when your feet hit the ground. Slip into the newest Gel-Kayano’s by Asics if you’re prone to this — they are great for runners with flat feet or low arches.
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IF YOU HAVE A NORMAL GAIT: Cloudsurfer by On, $229

Neutral pronation is the ideal way your foot should hit the ground, so if this is you, congratulations! This means your weight is distributed evenly when you push off  from the front of your foot and you can wear a variety of shoes. The Cloudsurfer’s sock-like fit  and cushy padding deliver a smooth and stable run, while its patented outsole provides optimal traction for running on roads and uneven terrain.
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FOR THE TRAILBLAZER: Trailtalon 290 by Inov-8, $189

Not all running routes are built equally – trails and paved roads require different levels of stability and cushioning. Some lightweight shoes are strictly meant for running on treadmills and pavements, whereas those meant for exploring the outdoors will offer more protection and traction for uneven ground. This pair offers superb grip all around, especially at the heel.
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FOR THE FIT-OBSESSED: Ghost 10 by Brooks Running, $199

The Ghost adapts to your every move and 3D Fit Print technology keeps the shoe’s structure intact even as it moulds to fit your feet. To get the most accurate fit, wear the same type of socks you would typically wear during a workout when you try on new shoes. The  disposable socks that stores keep out for customers to borrow tend to be much thinner than those you would normally wear.
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FOR THE SNEAKERHEAD: Nike Epic React Flyknit by Nike, $229

If style is your priority, you won’t go wrong with the shoes in Nike’s Flyknit series. Made of flexible knit material, they provide adequate support, are light as a feather, and are all around just aesthetically pleasing perfect for doubling up as your go-to sneakers.