Rotating Running Shoes

Posted: January 24, 2013 in Uncategorized

Rotating running shoes should be a priority for every runner. Several runners have recently complained about experiencing pain after running in a new pair of shoes. It’s very common for runners to think that a new pair of shoes is the solution to all their aches and pains. However, in every instance the problems were not a result of the new shoes but because they stayed in their old shoes too long.

As the outsole and midsole of your running shoes wear, your legs go through a greater range of motion. Eventually, even someone with a normal range of pronation will place as much stress on their lower extremities as an over-pronator. This is a very subtle process that most runners won’t notice until they transition to a new pair of shoes. New shoes will restrict this excessive movement and actually place a greater degree of stress on tendons and ligaments simply because they’re being used differently.

So what is the solution? I recommend that you rotate multiple pairs of shoes to avoid becoming accustomed to the movement of just one pair. I realize this can be an expensive prospect but rotating multiple pairs of shoes is actually more cost-effective than running in just one pair. Let me explain…by only wearing one pair of running shoes you never allow your running shoes to fully recover. It’s similar to you having to work overtime for weeks without a weekend break. Your shoes need to recover just like you do. You place nearly 3-4 times your body weight of force on your shoes with every footstrike. Most midsoles are composed of EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) or air blown rubber comprise of tiny air bubbles that act as shock absorbers against this incredible force of running. They need at least 24 hours to fully expand back to their full level of resiliency, otherwise they compress and break down prematurely.

Rotating your shoes provides the necessary rest to ensure full recovery. So rotating several pairs of running shoes, while expensive in the beginning, is ultimately less expensive because two pairs of rotated shoes will outlast 3-4 pairs of running shoes worn individually.

Running in different shoes is also beneficial because your legs don’t become accustomed to just the movement of one pair of shoes. Incorporating variety into your running is extremely beneficial. You should be varying your distance, speed, and terrain.

You should also be rotating your shoes!

  1. Love your blog – was introduced to it by Erin Gallo.
    By running in different shoes do you mean multiple pairs of the same style of shoe or mixing it up and having many different types/brands etc?

    • Thank you for following my blog. If you have neutral or normal biomechanics, you have a green light to more through the various genres of running shoes. If you require stability for a flexible foot or cushioning for a rigid foot, you should stay within that genre and can run in multiple pairs of the same style and model. You can also rotate shoes within that specific category among various manufacturers.

      I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have additional questions.


  2. I’ve got you beat – I have 5 pairs! Two are about to be retired. But still, my dh jokes that I’m the only girl in the world that has more running shoes than regular ones!

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