We are changing the uniform rules regarding sports shoes. The emphasis is that the correct shoe is purchased that supports and protects children correctly during their activities. Guidelines for correct shoes are below. As the age of the white sports shoe is dwindling into memories of last cerntury, coloured shoes may be purchased. Parents are asked to exercise discretion and buy shoes that are sensible rather than reflecting fads (e.g. if glow in the dark, LCD illuminated, Karaoke sports shoes become next years must have item.... please resist).
WHAT MAKES A GOOD SCHOOL SPORTS SHOE?
As children’s feet are developing up until the age of 16 it is vital that they wear a good supporting shoe for school sports. A running shoe is not suitable as it is designed for running only, with forward motion of the foot.
It is recommended that a cross trainer be worn as this supports the foot during multidirectional movement. They also have non marking soles whereas running shoes often have a carbonised rubber sole which can leave black marks on the floor of the gym or classroom.
If a running shoe is worn for sport it will also fall apart very quickly, the sole will start to peel off and the sides will tear.
WHAT SHOULD I LOOK FOR IN A CROSS TRAINER?
- Firm heel counter. Press the back of the shoe with your thumb, it should not move.
- Stitched upper. Check that the upper is stitched, not glued, to the midsole.
- Flexion. Try to flex the shoe, it should only bend at the ball of the foot area, as the foot would.
- Torsion. Try to twist the shoe. It should be very hard to move.
- Midsole. The midsole is important for shock absorption and durability. Avoid shoes with a honeycomb effect plastic grid in place of a midsole. If the innersole is glued in the shoe that could be a sign of no midsole. Look at the thickness of the sole.
- Heel raise. Look at the shoe sideways at eye level. The midsole at the heel should be 10 degrees higher than at the toe. This reduces stress on the Achilles tendon.
- Outer sole. In a running shoe this is flat and glued on. In a cross trainer it should wrap around the upper and be stitched on.