Shopping for Shoes

You don't need shoes for a yoga-with-weights workout because balancing starts with your feet, and when your feet are bare, your muscles work more actively to help you balance. So, why do we discuss shoes in this chapter? Because in Chapter 6, we assert that taking a short walk is a necessary warm-up exercise before working out, and assuming you want to walk outdoors, you need good shoes. Here's some advice for getting the right pair of walking shoes:

1 Choose shoes with arch supports that are designed for exercising.

1 Buy a new pair of shoes when your soles start to wear down. Walking and running in worn-out shoes can cause your feet and ankles to collapse, which can strain muscles and tendons in your feet and calves. Worn-out shoes can also cause problems in your lower back, upper back, and shoulders. If you walk and run daily, you probably need a new pair of shoes every six months.

1 Make sure you have enough room inside your shoes for socks and for swelling. Your feet swell when you exercise.

How the heels of your shoes wear down can tell you a lot about your body alignment. If the slope of your shoe heel shows more wear on the outside of the heel, your outer pelvis muscles are weak. If the slope shows more wear on the inside of the heel, your inner-thigh muscles are weak. Any slope in the heels of your shoes means that you're straining your ankles.

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