So I had a great question pop up in the comments a few days ago, and I thought that you guys could benefit from the answer!
I’m a borderline overpronator with flat-ish feet. I’m not a runner, but I go for Zumba classes 3-5 days a week. I’m looking for new shoes to avoid the knee pain I seem to have after classes these days.
Would you recommend the transcend for Zumba I wonder? Or does it have too much traction for dance?
Thanks a ton!
First off, this is a great question, and I definitely encourage all of you guys, if you have questions for me, about anything, to ask. If I DON’T know the answer, lord knows I will try and do my best to find an answer for you!
And if you’re at all wondering what my qualifications are to even answer this kind of question, I have taught group fitness for almost 6 years now (eek), since January of 2010 officially with NC State, and I have worked for Fleet Feet Raleigh for a long time, where we are trained to assess and prescribe, so to speak, the best shoe for your most comfortable run.
Now, before you go and buy a new show for whatever activity you are doing, figure out what you will be doing with the shoe. If you are a runner, you should be running in a running shoe. If you are a tennis player, a tennis shoe. Same for playing basketball.
But what do you wear if you find yourself teaching or taking a ton of classes in studios, like a Zumba, Cardio Dance, Step, or Kickboxing class? A lot of folks tend to assume that you can just wear a running shoe for something like that, but that can be really tricky for two reasons.
- Running shoes are designed to go front and back, not side-to-side, or laterally. There is a guidance line built right down the center of a running shoe that keeps that shoe wanting to move front to back. So for a salsa, mambo, or any other move that you find yourself doing in a lot of studio classes that are NOT a bootcamp, the shoe is literally fighting you every step.
- Running shoes are designed to grip, and that gripping motion will tear up your knees and joints when you fight the traction and hit pivots, or movements similar to this one.
So what’s a studio queen to do?
There are actually shoes designed for this specific thing.
Both of these are available online – the first is a Reebok dance shoe, and the second a Ryka shoe. I would link you to it buy Reebok and Ryka ain’t offered to pay me for it so I’m trusting you all to be able to find this without too much trouble. But Reebok, Ryka, and sometimes Nike are the places I tend to head when searching for a good studio shoe. The main difference between this shoe and a running shoe is that these are less grippy, hug your foot, and often feature a pivot point, a point right on the ball of the shoe that allows you to effectively pivot, cha-cha, mambo, or anything else.
Put any other shoe questions you may have in the comments!