Trail Running shoes are very different these days. The older Trail Running Shoes were very heavy and inflexible. Today’s trail Running shoes are much lighter weight and much more flexible allowing the trail runner the same freedom they enjoyed on the roads. All of the big shoe companies including Saucony, Brooks, Asics, Mizuno and New Balance make Trail Running shoes. In fact Asics, Brooks and Saucony have taken their most popular road shoe and made a Trail Running version of it. Now if a runner is wearing the Asics 2140, brooks Adrenaline or Saucony Guide for their road marathons can enjoy the same level of running comfort in the trail version of these shoes.
The main difference between the Trail Running shoes and their road counterparts is in the level of support in the “Upper” portion of the shoe, the color and the sole. The differences are important because if you wear your road shoes on most trails you may be subject to sprained ankles due to less support, filthy, dirty shoes due to running thorough mud, dirt, creeks and other obstacles and the soles on the bottom of the shoes may come apart due to repetitive impacts with sharp rocks and stones typically found on trials and dry stream beds.
Proper fit of a trail Running shoe is slightly different than a road shoe. While running trails it is very important that a runner’s foot and ankle is secure. Most marathoners like their shoes to be 1/2-1 size larger than their actual foot size to account for some foot swelling. The additional size allows more room but also allows more movement and sliding within the shoe. So in addition to their ankle being less secure blisters may arise due to movement or friction inside the shoe. Because trail running typically involves more hills and therefore more sliding or movement within the shoe a runner will not want as much room in their trail shoe as they may in their road shoe. The trail shoe also provides more overlays in the upper portion of the shoe. This will result in a more secure and snug fit providing more support and stability to the trail Running shoe.
Trail Running shoes are made with denser rubber in the insole and more traction. This allows the shoe to stand up to the rigors of trail running compared to road running. The increase in traction will be beneficial for the trail runner causing less slippage and decreased falls when encountering wet rocks and slick surfaces which is common in trail running.
San Diego Running Institute carries a full line of trail shoes from Saucony, Brooks, Mizuno, Inov-8 and Montrail. To order a trail running shoe go to www.sdri.net/store and start enjoying the trails today!