Our Custom Fit Process
Foot Types Step-by-Step Process
At Louisiana Running Company, we offer running gait analysis from our New Orleans store to ensure that we provide you with the best possible shoe for your individual gait. Your gait is simply your pattern of walking or running, and is important to consider when choosing your gear. While it may be altered or refined to an extent, one’s gait is genetic, and everybody runs and walks a bit differently. This is why video running gait analysis is so useful at our New Orleans store, as it allows us to look closely at your unique gait and recommend the best possible product.
Your gait: your step pattern.
Your gait is determined by numerous factors, but the ones we primarily check for are the foot strike and, more importantly, pronation. Pronation refers to the motion of your foot when it strikes the ground, and is evaluated by checking for motion in the ankle. While pronation functions as the body’s natural shock absorbent, excessive motion in the foot may create mechanical imbalances in the leg capable of causing some problems over time. Our video analysis assists us in preventing any possible injury issues due to pronation, as it permits us to discover your foot type.
The three foot types, which are determined by the amount of pronation or inward/outward motion in the foot, are:
A neutral foot typically exhibits very little motion in the ankle, and typically corresponds with a midfoot or forefoot strike. The best type of shoe for a neutral runner or walker is simply a “neutral” or “cushioned” shoe that allows the foot to proceed naturally through its gait. Neutral runners usually have medium to high arches.
A foot that overpronates rolls to the inside and collapses on the arch, and is primarily seen in runners who strike with the heel or midfoot. The best type of shoe for an overpronator is a stability or motion control shoe, depending on the degree of overpronation. Stability and motion control shoes typically add stiff foams into the midsole cushioning in the heel and arch areas to act as a built in orthotic support. The added support prevents excessive collapsing on the arch by keeping the back of the foot more secure, affixing the overpronating foot into a more neutral position, maintaining mechanical alignment in the leg. At LRC, we carry low/mid stability shoes for mild overpronators, and high stability/motion control shoes for moderate to severe overpronators. Overpronators typically have medium to low arches.
A foot that supinates usually has a neutral gait, but strikes almost entirely on the outside of the foot. Many supinators run on the forefoot or on the toes, with the heel barely touching the ground, if at all. Supinators ought to wear neutral shoes with high flexibility and low heel–toe drops, as higher profile shoes typically add unnecessary weight and might influence the heel to strike unnaturally. Supinators often have higher arches.
That is a lot of information, but the good news is that we figure all of that out for you! Our staff is trained to know all of this and more, and we would love to help any who need it. Whether you are an experienced runner, a beginner, a walker, or somebody just looking for a comfortable pair of shoes, being in the right kind is important, and we hope you consider our New Orleans running gait analysis service when finding the right shoe for you!
Fit Process: The Steps
The following steps list our custom fit process:
- Let the employee who greets you know that you are looking to grab a pair of shoes, let us know what you will be using them for, and inform us of any injuries or nagging issues if you’re having any. Additionally, if you brought your current running shoes, we will examine the wear pattern. This will help us get to know your foot strike a little better and get some idea regarding your foot type and injury background. We will also explain the basics of foot mechanics to give you a better idea of what we are looking for in our fit process.
- Remove your shoes and socks for a preliminary “eye test,” in which one of our employees will briefly watch your feet as you walk down and back in a straight line. We do this to form an initial assessment of your foot type, looking specifically for any signs of overpronation. We will also explain the differences between types of shoes and why they are important to your foot type.
- If you’re up for it, we will ask if you can do a one-legged squat on each leg to put your foot in a position where it bears more weight, as it does while running. It gives us a much better assessment of your foot type before we have you try on your first pair of shoes.
- At this point we have determined your foot type and what type of shoe best fits your foot. We will address how much stability is required to keep you in a position in which your foot and leg mechanics will be properly aligned.
- We’ll measure your foot, which is pretty self-explanatory, but be prepared! You might find out your feet are different sizes, which is very common but important when sizing for running shoes, as we want to size up to the larger foot. Another shocker, you might find your shoe size is larger than what you expected, while ultimately is up to you (we aren’t going to force you into a size you are uncomfortable with), generally we leave at least a thumb nail’s width from the end of the shoe and your largest toe, this allows for the feet to swell while cutting back on annoying maladies such as “damaged” toenails or nerve issues later down the road.
- We will grab you a pair of shoes based upon all the information we gathered in the previous steps. We’ll double check to be sure they’re the right size (not every brand/model is exactly the same size across the board), and if they are you’ll head over to the treadmill.
- We perform our New Orleans video running gait analysis, where we film your foot and look more closely at your mechanics to show you exactly what is taking place with your gait from your foot strike to any pronation/rotation in the heel and ankle areas. If we see something we did not expect with your foot and we have you in the wrong type of shoe, we will put you in a more or less stable shoe to better address your mechanics.
- Now is the fun part—try on as many options in your stability level as you want! If we don’t have your size or color in a shoe you like, we can always special order a shoe for you. It usually takes about a week to arrive.
- Check out and get a free store T-shirt with your shoes!
This is lots of info, but the fit process is quick and usually only takes about 10-15 minutes from the time you walk in until you get off the treadmill. All are more than welcome to try out our New Orleans running gait analysis. We love to help anybody looking to be more comfortable, whatever the activity. Thanks to all of you who shop with and consider us! Hope to see you soon!
Run Groups & Store News
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