Magazine article USA TODAY

Making Athletic Shoes Fit Better

Magazine article USA TODAY

Making Athletic Shoes Fit Better

Article excerpt

A lot of women are discovering what their mothers never told them about lacing their sneakers. There are techniques that can help prevent foot problems later in life.

"Most women's athletic shoes are just scaled-down versions of men's shoes, resulting in a fit that is not proportional to most women's feet," notes Carol C. Frey, associate clinical professor of orthopedic surgery, University of Southern California. "Women have a different shape to their feet than men and when manufacturers do not properly adjust the shoe's last (the foot-shaped form over which the shoe is made), it means problems for women's feet."

One way to avoid difficulties with ill-fitting shoes is to learn certain lacing techniques. They should buy athletic shoes with a large number of eyelets. "The more eyelets on a shoe, the easier it is to adjust the laces for a custom fit."

Those with narrow feet can make their shoes fit better by using only the eyelets set farthest from the tongue of the shoe. "This technique brings up the side of the shoe tightly across the top of the foot." Women with wide feet should tie their shoes by using only the eyelets closest to the tongue of the shoe. …

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