Like many products there have been positives and negatives and when you think about it, it really is a personal choice and trying to satisfy an individual’s needs can almost be next to impossible with consideration to a person’s foot structure, body weight, lifestyle not to mention producing to the needs of the growing population of the world.
For me coming from a little country town where there wasn’t as many feet as the numbers above and growing up in a culture that was highly sports orientated was fantastic as I got to travel places I otherwise would never had seen, make new friends and experience the changes in the shoes as time went on.
In old school days and where I grew up we wore the same sneaker and they were the basic rubber sole, canvas, lace up shoe so no matter what you played, whether it was tennis, baseball, netball, cross country, shot put, high jump, running relay races, skipping competitions this was the shoe we wore and they certainly weren’t built for comfort let alone what you put them through come to think of it I think my mum spent more on polish than on the shoe itself and because we were only allowed one pair of sports shoes a year we had to make it last.
This was pretty much the type of sports shoe I wore until my late teens when I left home and was able to choose and buy my own pair of shoes and being a young fashion critic most of my sports shoes were based on the style and colour, yeah typical female little did I know this was going to change for when I started having a family, my sports participation reduced to taking the kids around to their sports games, my body mass changed as well and with this comfort from a shoe became a top priority.
Anyways let’s come forward quite a few years and many gym/exercise classes later, no longer is there only one particular brand of shoe you have to choose from but the choice can now be overwhelming so it’s fantastic to see sports stores now offering tests to help you choose the right shoe for you, not so much from a brand name but from how your foot responds to the physical exertions you undertake.
If you don’t know already these tests will tell you whether you have a high arch or are flat footed, if you have wide feet or narrow feet, if your feet overpronate (roll inward while you are running or exercising) how your foot lands and takes off and the pain you may be experiencing such as plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendon pressure or even shin splint, this is a big task for a shoe to fill.
And to fill this task Asics have been improving their shoes over years by introducing plenty of technological changes such as gel for extra impact absorption, adding an extra 3mm in height to the women’s shoe to help with Achilles tendon pressure, material that help your feet breathe thereby lessening foot odour and irritation increasing the comfort of a dry foot environment and certain models have a mesh that is much tighter than usual to really support your foot when you are running on areas that are uneven or rocky.