We take fitting shoes seriously
At Running Science, we’ve been fitting shoes for many years. You may have noticed that we don’t sell shoes online and the reason is simple: we believe you can only get a properly fitted shoe if you try them on in-person.
Brands change their designs, materials, fit and even sizing every season. Even the same model and brand of shoe this year will fit differently to the one you bought last year. Lifestyle changes and stages of life can also affect your foot shape and size. We understand that there are as many shapes and sizes of feet as there are people!
It’s helpful if you bring in previous shoes you’ve run in so we can assess tread, wear and shoe type.
What happens in a shoeFit appointment?
Our shoe fit appointment happens in three distinct stages.
The first is where we gather information about you.
- If you’re an existing customer, we’ll research your records on our systems. We look at the shoes you were fitted in before and whether you are a patient from our clinic. This is done so we can determine certain trends in fit, function and size.
- We’ll assess your worn-out shoes, which gives us insight into your gait patterns and many other important data points
- We’ll then assess the shoeFIT form you filled out, containing up-to-date biometric information about you (height, weight, injury history to name a few)
- We’ll also get to know you and find out other relevant information that may not be captured on any of our systems
- We’ll measure your feet and perform some initial biomechanical assessments to ascertain any other data points for achieving the best outcome.
- We’ll then develop a hypothesis of which shoe will perform best or may refer you to our clinicians for further assessment if injuries warrant
The second stage is selecting appropriate footwear options.
1. We use many inputs to select certain footwear options for you
- What we believe has been working or not
- What your injury propensities are
- Your biometrics like height,weight, body type, age, sex, foot shape and many more
- What we describe as your current and past lifestyles, exercise history, attitude to change, experiences with and without footwear
- Your ethnic background is often important (eg. we often see Asian or Islander feet very low through the arch, or wide through the midfoot)
The third and final stage is the FIT. This is a two-way process.
Trying on shoes is an extremely sensory process. With over 7,000 nerve endings in each foot, there are very complex neurological communications occurring when we try new shoes. We ensure the process is as uncomplicated, enjoyable and free of as much risk as possible for you.
How much does it cost?
Our shoeFIT service costs $45, which is credited to your account. If you purchase a pair of shoes on the day, the $45 service fee will be absorbed in the price of the shoe. If you decide to wait, the credit will be in your account for when you’re ready to buy.
What if I have a preferred brand?
- Allow yourself to feel the shoes without pre-judgement
- Familiarity with a brand or even a lifetime love of certain favourite shoe can alter your perception of new feelings
- We are there to improve your movement experiences and maximise the chance of long term healthy movement
- Having multiple types of footwear and being in bare feet at times is healthy for you – There is reems of evidence to support this
How do I know the shoes are right for me?
- We will explain differences between shoes and how they may affect your body position and injury risk
- We will speak from our own experience and our customers experience where relevant about how the shoes are wearing and how they have been performing
- We will encourage you to participate in our recommendations as what you feel is critical to compliment a good recommendation
- We will try to not allow the prices of shoes influence your decision making as this can interrupt the flow of the process
What’s your range of shoes?
We stock many models of running shoes, from global names such as Adidas and Brooks to newer brands such as On and Vibram Fivefingers. As we’re not affiliated with any brand, our knowledge is backed by science and experience, rather than the latest trends. We’ll only recommend shoes that we believe are suitable for you.
We select our shoes based on suitability for our customers. Our head clinician Phil is heavily involved in the selection process along with Fletch and the wider team. We research different elements of footwear based on requirements of the human bodies we fit. We are constantly interested in all different types of feedback from our customers so we can constantly learn more about how to improve our services.
The elements associated with our suitability are as follows:
Geometries: Heel to toe offset which means the angle between the heel and the ball of the foot. See more info on ‘drop’ here
Stiffness : This is related to stiffness in different parts of the shoe – mid section, toe area, heel section and indeed the whole shoe length also.
Colours: We usually stick to one or two colours of any model. There are some instances where we can order things in but we do prefer to keep things running smoothly once we have finished the fitting process.
Sizes: We stock up to size 15 4E mens and down as low as 5 womens. We aim to keep all sizes in stock to minimise disruption to the flow of our service. If you do have a particularly large, small, narrow or wide foot, please get in touch for clarification.
Sizing is complicated, which is one of the main reasons we do NOT sell shoes online. Shoes of the same brand, colour, size and season can on occasion fit very differently. This is due to the fact that shoe manufacturing still relies on human beings, many touch points, different factories making different batches and many other factors. To add the human foot changes shape as we age and many other anomalies can affect how shoes fit and feel.
Further to this, feet shape and size vary considerably and more than any shoe company can ever match. At Running Science, we understand these things intimately. Shoe prescription and fitting is an art as well as a science due in part to this inherent complexity of human bodies and how they adapt. We must be creative and understanding of everything about our customers and their uniqueness and fit – a job we take extremely seriously at Running Science.