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5 alternative ways to tie your shoes

Try these lacing methods to make your shoes more comfortable

When we’re kids, we’re taught the basics of how to tie our shoes, and most of us stick with that technique in every type of shoe we wear for the rest of our lives. You may not realize that there are a variety of ways you can tie your laces, depending on your running style and your feet, which could potentially make your trainers, flats or spikes work better for you with just a few small tweaks. If the traditional method isn’t working for you, try these alternative ways to lace up your shoes.

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Loop at the top

If you find your heel is often sliding around in the back of your shoe or your ankle is wobbling from side to side, this is the method for you. Before tying your shoes up, string your laces through the top eyelet on the same side, creating two loops at the top of your shoe. Run each lace through the loop on the opposite side, then tie your shoe as you normally would.

Loop in the middle

This method is for people who find their shoes are often too loose around the middle of their foot. At an eyelet midway up the lacing, double back through the same eyelet on each side, creating small loops. Thread the opposite lace through that loop as if it were an eyelet itself. This will allow you to tighten the midfoot more than the rest of the lacing.

Diagonal lacing

Give your toes a bit more space and lift the toe box of your shoe to follow the natural movement of your foot by running one side of your laces diagonally from the bottom inner eyelet straight to the top outer eyelet. Thread the other side through the eyelets as you normally would.

Skip a few

If you find your foot often chafes or rubs at your midfoot or forefoot (or if you have a high arch/instep), try skipping a few eyelets along the laces. This allows you to still tie the shoes tight at the ankle while sparing your sensitive arches. It may take a bit of trial and error to figure out exactly which eyelets to skip for maximum comfort, so do some experimenting to see what works for you.

Every other eyelet

For runners with wide feet, lace your shoes in a criss-cross pattern as you normally would, but only thread the laces through every other eyelet. This will loosen the entire shoe and give your foot more space.

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