Many runners believe that if they over-pronate they must wear a stability shoe or a motion-control shoe, and that if they do not, they risk injury. Many also believe that so-called minimalist shoes prevent injury (or the opposite, that maximalist shoes are better). A recent infographic from La Trobe University, a public research university in Australia, reports that there is no clear research to support any of these positions.

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The authors go on to assert that the most important considerations when buying running shoes is that they fit correctly and are comfortable. Beyond that, avoid making sudden changes in the style of shoe you’re wearing (or take some time to get accustomed to them). Rotating your shoe choices may provide some protection against injury. And if you’re trying to get faster, consider a lighter shoe.

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The most important considerations in preventing injury are not the type of shoes you wear, but that you avoid increasing your training load by more than 10 per cent per week. Also consider implementing gym workouts two to three times a week to strengthen the muscles you use in running, and make sure your’e getting enough sleep.

The infographic doesn’t address this, but running outside in winter conditions may increase your chance of injury due to slips and falls. You may prefer a trail shoe even for road running on snow and ice. Or you may decide to run indoors in winter to minimize your chance of injury.

There is some evidence that coaching may help runners reduce their proneness to injury, but more research is necessary to confirm this.

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