How to Find a Specialty Running Store

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A running shop that offers many benefits for serious and casual runners. First and foremost, the experts at these stores can put the right running shoes on you to increase comfort, improve running performance, and prevent injury.

It’s not always easy to get to a working store in your local area, so you may have to travel a bit and you may pay a little more for superior customer service. But it is well worth your time, effort and expense.

What is a specialty store?

There are many different places to buy your running shoes and gear. Many people buy it online. Others visit a large sporting goods retailer. While these options are right for some people, they offer a different experience than visiting a specialty store.

Technical running stores are usually smaller stores that sell nearly all running equipment, possibly with a few other items intended for athletes or walkers. They are usually owned by serious runners and are in store frequently.

Owners (and the staff they hire) often have a long history of running and a strong dedication to the sport. They can be coaches or competitive athletes. When you visit their store, you gain the experience of learning from them and becoming part of the operating culture they promote.

Why visit a specialty store?

Shopping at a good local running store can be an uplifting experience if you’re into the sport at any level. There is much to learn and many benefits you gain from patronizing these stores.

Shoes that fit well

Wearing the right running shoes can affect or disrupt your running experience. With the right shoes, you can reduce your risk of injury, reduce your chances of blisters, feel safer on different types of terrain, increase your visibility when running in the dark, and even improve your performance. Improve your speed and endurance.

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How do running store experts determine the best shoes for you? Employees often attend seminars and lectures to learn about running mechanics, form fit, and how shoe technology can impact these factors.

They may also have relationships with developers from top running shoe companies. That means they can explain the pros and cons of different types of shoes and help you compare the different styles and features of each.

Most importantly, however, they are trained to analyze your gait and make recommendations for the best shoes. Many stores have treadmills on site so they can track you running. Some stores may also recommend that you wear old shoes so they can analyze the wear on the uppers.

Apparel and Equipment

Treadmill stores are often the best place to buy your other running gear, such as jackets, gels, socks, and other accessories. While any sporting goods store can sell these items, many times they are not specific to the sport.

For example, they may wear athletic socks, but not socks designed specifically for runners. Socks may be made of cotton instead of a hygroscopic material and may not prevent blisters when you wear them for long periods of time.

In addition, the staff can make recommendations on the type of clothing or accessories that work best for you. Since these stores are almost always staffed by seasoned runners, they can make recommendations based on their personal experience with equipment.

The group is running

Many stores have a team that runs training out of the store. Sometimes joining a team requires a fee, but a lot of times store owners see the value of having people running in their store and offering free service. Even if a store is running without a team, you can often get smart advice from staff on running questions or challenges.

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Find a specialty store

You may have driven past a working store in your town. Perhaps there is a working store in your local mall. But if not, there are other ways to find a store that meets your needs.

Search online

Do a search for “local running store” and see what comes up. Try to find stores that cater specifically to runners, not general sporting goods stores. They will often have the words, “runner” or “running” in the store’s name, like New York Running Co.

Call ahead and ask if they have a salesperson trained to analyze running gait. While sporting goods chains may have a wide selection of shoes, their staff may not have the expertise to determine your running form or detect any biomechanical issues that should be considered. to your running shoe selection.

You can also check out the Fleet Feet Sports website. They have locally owned specialty stores across the US, so you can see if they have a location near you. Runners World also offers a store finder page to help you locate specialty running stores in your area.

Ask other athletes

Someone who’s been running for a while will know where to find the nearest running specialty store. Ask for a place where you can perform gait analysis in the store. If they offer that service, they will usually have a treadmill in the store.

If you don’t know any other runners, consider contacting a coach at a local college or high school. These coaches may even work with a local thrift store to supply uniforms and other equipment to the teams.

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Running Clubs and Races

Check running club websites. They often have recommended partners listed. Likewise, local running shops often sponsor races. Email the event company to request a referral, or post on the event’s Facebook page to request a referral.

If you volunteer or participate in a local race or fun run, check out event t-shirts or runners’ t-shirts from other events. These shirts almost always feature the name and logo of an active store sponsor.

Health club or gym

Personal trainers and gym staff will most likely know specialty running stores in the area. If you don’t have a relationship with a coach, ask at the front desk for the name of an executive coach and email them if they’re not available while you’re there.

A very good word

Visiting a specialty store can be a valuable experience. However, in some cases it’s a more expensive experience than buying shoes online, where you can search for unbeatable prices.

If you’re on a tight budget, consider visiting your tech store when you need to switch shoe brands or styles. You can also visit these local facilities if you have a running problem that the right equipment can solve. Then for multiple purchases, save money by buying online.

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