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Why Are You Wearing Those Shoes?

This mornings first client is a keen amateur runner.

Over the weekend he went out to Amphibian King, he preferred running shoe supplier to buy himself some new kit.

The guys in the shop do a gait analysis to help decide which shoes you buy.

He’s always been told to buy shoes to prevent “over-pronation” He was wearing them on the day he went to get a new pair.


The guys in the shop were baffled as to why he ever thought he needed over-prontation shoes, as this gait analysis showed everything neutral.

They were even more baffled when he said this is where he always buys shoes and he’s always had the same gait test results.

Until now.

So what had changed?

Why had he gone from needing “motion control” to not needing “motion control” ?

And why do I feel the need to write “motion control” in inverted commas?

He initially came to me for training as his running had stalled and he was in pain. His knees were at him. His back hurt.

He wasn’t having any fun.

So we did our Anatomy in Motion assessment, which all private clients get, and built a training program around where his structure was there and then.

Based on our findings in the assessment, combined with constantly revising our assessment, we didn’t just add strength, build muscle mass and develop work capacity.

We could work on ironing out all the little movement anomalies that he carried with him.

Which included teaching his body to allow his feet to move freely into pronation and back out to supination.

And while the joints in his feet moved, we showed each joint in the chain above the feet what is expected of them during this motion.

This was combined with specific strength training for his weakest areas.

A major turning point was when his spine, which had always been scoliotic came straight.


This was such a huge change that I actually called his training partner and girlfriend over to confirm that his spine was in fact straight as I couldn’t believe the result!

Neither could she!

The change in this particular client, from my point of view has been astonishing.

If I’m honest, other than his pain symptoms dropping away and a slight bit of extra running speed, this client had always been a bit cynical of my unorthodox methods.

But since his most trusted running shoe supplier have shown him, independently of my influence, that it IS possible to change a persons gait cycle, to improve how they move and reset the body back towards it’s original settings, he’s a convert.

Strength training is a valuable tool in any athletes tool box.

But strength in the gym room does not always transfer across to the real world. The following is from Gary Winckler, one of the worlds top sprint and hurdles coaches:

“I have squatted some really good athletes in to mediocre athletes. Heavy squats have a place at some point in the program, although I am less of a believer now than I used to be . . . When you were teaching the exercises, you are also reinforcing all of the concepts you want on the track for reactive running. It helped a lot of athletes look at their strength training as having a direct positive influence on running performance.” – Gary Winckler

When it comes to training people for performance in any activity, at any level, everything must start from an assessment of where that person is right there and then.

And then reassessed.

And reassessed.

And each assessment should show gradual improvements in posture and movement, not just strength.

If it doesn’t, the program needs adjusted.


Dave Hedges

Hit this button to book yourself in for an assessment: AiM Postural Assessment & Correction

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