First things first, what is pronation?
Pronation is the movement of your ankle and foot rolling inwards (towards your arch) when you walk and run. It is a part of natural movement that helps absorb shock in the lower body. Supination is the opposite of pronation (the ankle and foot rolling away from your arch), and also occurs with every step.
So why is pronation bad?
Pronation has developed a bad reputation. Why? I am not really sure. However, I would argue that the emphasis needs to move away from pronation and towards ankle and foot strength and stability. And you can’t find that in a running shoe… you have to build it.
So then what running shoes should I choose?
Despite all of the arguments of minimalist runners vs. pronation vs. padding, it turns out that research is suggesting one simple thing. You should choose the runners that are comfortable for you!
Here is an awesome video that discusses the importance of shoe comfort, pronation, and ankle strength and stability. It also discusses where rehab and injury management for running injuries are heading. The video was produced by The University of Calgary’s, Human Performance Lab.
As a UofC grad I may be a little bit biased, but, but I think this video is one of the best (and concise) I have seen on the topic.
Check it out.. it is worth the 3 minutes!
Take home messages:
- Keep it simple! Buy running shoes based on their comfort. There is research that suggests that comfortable shoes help to reduce injuries.
- Pronation is normal. We need to pronate in order to walk, run, hop, etc. There are excessive or over-pronators, but the vast majority of people are pronating just fine.
- Exercise and strength through your ankles and feet can help to provide stability and prevent injury.
For any questions, concerns or help to start your own foot and ankle stability program please feel free to contact us at anytime! Click here
Dr. Rylee Stephens is a chiropractor at Garibaldi Active Wellness. Rylee has a background in Kinesiology and a Masters of Sports Science. She is trained in ART, SFMA, FMS, Graston and has extensive experience treating running related injuries.