The importance of shoe rotation

Two really is better than one.

Allison Land / Run Camp Series - Vol. 12

This far into your training, we’re hoping you’ve been fitted for a pair of running shoes specific to your needs, and you’ve been running in them pain-free and successfully for some time. Now, we’re going to recommend you consider adding another pair of shoes to your kit.

Research has proven that having at least two pairs of shoes reduces the rate of injury in runners. It also helps prolong the life of your shoes (which we know can be a big investment!) and can allow you to get the most out of certain types of workouts.

Different shoes affect your stride differently. Your foot will interact with the ground differently depending on what shoes you have on your foot. This can actually reduce the repeated stress on different joints, muscles and ligaments. By rotating between two different models of shoes, you’re changing your strike just enough to take some of the pressure off your body. This should aid in keeping you injury free during your training.

You can actually help extend the life of your running shoes

We also realize that high quality running shoes are not cheap - they’re an investment, one we think is well worth it. Thankfully, you can actually help extend the life of your shoes. By rotating between two different pairs on days that you run consecutively, you’re allowing the midsole of your first pair time to recover (just as you need to recover, so does your shoe). This means that the midsole of the shoe may last a little longer than if you’re running on them daily without any decompression time. By rotating between two pairs, you may be able to get more miles from your favorite kicks.

During training, you’ll be focused on running different types of workouts - long runs, track workouts, hills, tempo runs, etc. In order to get the most out of these workouts, be it a mental or physical gain, having the right type of shoe is beneficial. When you run on the track, don’t you want to feel light and fast? Same goes for tempo-type runs. For long runs, sometimes it’d be nice to have a little additional cushion. Even having a shoe specifically for racing can help give you a boost both mentally and physically - especially if it’s a shoe that doesn’t have many miles on it. By having multiple pairs of shoes for different purposes, you can help your training tremendously.

Rotating shoes definitely has its benefits and can be worth the investment. By having two or more pairs of shoes that you wear for different running activities, you can reap the benefits of shoe rotation.