I am all about saving money and buying stuff online, but buying running shoes is something I take very seriously and for the most part purchase at an actual running store- especially when buying them for my kiddos. As a 20 plus year runner and coach, all too many times have I purchased a pair of shoes online and been disappointed in the quality, fit, or feel, but not once has this happened when I actually go to a store and speak with one of the experts on staff about what is right for me at the time. Here’s a few reasons to skip the internet and get into an actual specialty store when shopping for new kicks for yourself or your family.
- Talk to the staff. Running shoe brands and styles are continuously changing and updating. This means that the shoe that you are wearing right now may be slightly different in future generations. Make sure that you are asking questions about your gait, needs, and planned activities. This will help the staff lead you in the right direction of what shoe you should purchase.
- Try on a few sizes. Not all shoes are created equal. I find myself ranging in size from 7 1/2 to 8 1/2 depending on brand, style, and function.
- Try something new. A specialty store will have a bunch of options, so it is a good place to check out a brand or style that you might not have considered before.
- Support local businesses! Most running stores are staffed by professionals that are not necessarily there to sell you the most expensive shoe, but they want to make sure that you are getting the right item. And, of course, it’s always a great idea to support small businesses in your community!