Runner’s Gait Analysis and Shoe Fitting

After all this running I’ve been doing the past year or so, I must have finally started rubbing off on my husband because he seems to have been bitten by the bug too.  I convinced him to sign up for a half marathon in October and ever since, he’s been training hard (running up to 10 miles on his weekly long run).  He’s always been a Nike fan, but of course now that he’s running longer distances, has been having some slight pain.  I knew it was his crappy shoes (sorry not sorry Nike).  So, for his birthday present, he wanted to get his gait analyzed and get fitted for better running shoes.  I did this last year and went to see Tom Buck, one of the owners of Performace Footwear in Las Vegas.  The store is really small and a total mom & pop shop (they don’t even have a website, that link above is just to a Yelp page where you can read all the rave reviews). Tom really knows his stuff.  He’s been in the business for over 40 years and could talk to you for days about running footwear.  I love that every time I’ve been into his store, he is there and he gives you so much personalized attention, taking the time to go over everything with you, letting you try out as many shoes as you want, running in them, and showing you lots of little tips and tricks to making everything more comfortable.  So, of course I had to take Vince there.

When we got there, Tom first had him run without shoes on the treadmill, where he has a camera set up at foot level.

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He recorded Vince running and then played it back in slow motion, showing Vince how his feet land, pointing out that his right foot points away from his body and that one leg is definitely shorter than the other.

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He even pulled out a skeletal foot to go into further detail.

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Vince pronates, and combined with the fact that he tore his Achilles about 6 years ago, Tom recommended that he wear mid-high stability shoes.

Next it was time to size Vince’s feet.  Both his feet are the same size (unlike mine which are 1/2 size different).  After that, it was time to try on some shoes.  As Tom was trying shoes on Vince, he also showed him the runners knot and explained why it is better to tie your shoes that way to avoid pinching the main artery that runs down your leg into your foot which can cause numbness in your toes.  Tom put a different shoe on each foot and had Vince walk around and hop on the treadmill for a bit.

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Then it was just a process of elimination.  He would pick the better of the two, and that shoe would stay and Tom would put a different shoe on the other foot, and Vince would try those out to see which one felt better.  He tried on several brands and finally narrowed it down to a pair of Brooks and a pair of Asics.  He liked them both and really couldn’t tell much difference between the two, so at that point, Tom made mention that the Asics were $40 more than the Brooks and that was the deciding factor for the Brooks!  It’s actually kind of good that there are no price tags on anything, so you’re not initially biased based on cost, but purely on feel.

Vince is now the proud owner of a sparkling new pair of Brooks Adrenaline GTS 13s and has been enjoying running in them so much, he’s going to buy another pair.

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Overall, it was another great experience with Tom and we’ll definitely be back soon when I’m ready for new shoes (it was so hard to not walk out of there with like 4 new pairs for myself).  I highly recommend anyone who is getting into running to go have your gait analyzed and get fitted for shoes that work with your body.  And if you’re in the Las Vegas area, go see Tom and tell him I sent you.  He’ll throw in a 10% discount for mentioning my name!

Have you ever had your gait analyzed?  What’s your favorite brand of shoes?

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12 thoughts on “Runner’s Gait Analysis and Shoe Fitting

  1. Getting fitted at a specialty store makes such a big difference! I used to be an Asics fan, but I’ve recently switched to Altra Torins and I am in love with them! Thanks for linking up with us today!

  2. Drew got the bug too!! He also pronates and is the proud owner of Brooks Adrenaline as well. He will be running his first half marathon in November! woohoo!

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