Tuesday, 05 July 2022 00:00

Understanding Footwear Jargon When Researching Running Shoes

If you are researching running shoes online you may have encountered some confusing footwear terminology. The basic components of a running shoe include the upper, the midsole, the outsole, the tongue, the heel counter, the toe box, and the last. Let’s start with the LAST, first. The LAST is the 3D model which forms the shape of the shoe. It can be straight, curved, or semi-curved. The UPPER covers the foot and holds the shoe together. The TONGUE is part of the UPPER and is a strip of material that sits under the laces. It helps put on and remove the shoe. The HEEL COUNTER is a sturdy form at the back of the shoe which surrounds and secures the heel. The TOE BOX provides the space where the toes reside and is the widest part of the shoe. The OUTSOLE is the bottom part of the shoe. It makes contact with the ground while providing traction and durability. The MIDSOLE sits on top of the outsole and provides cushioning and shock absorption. The INNERSOLE is above that and makes contact with the feet and attaches to the upper. Consult with your podiatrist for advice on the best type of running shoe and features for your particular feet and running stride.


Finding a properly-fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot and Ankle Clinics, PA. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in proper fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improper fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, properly-fitting shoes are vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Woodbury, West St. Paul, and Edina, MN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Proper Shoe Fitting

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