Features Of The Best Running Shoes For Sprinters

Choosing the best footwear for your next run

Sprinters aim is to run as quickly as they can from one point to another with the least wind resistance, so they need to have less cumbersome and light shoes. Each runner has their own unique style and also individual needs, so one shoe will not fit another person.

Different Types of Sprinting Spikes. Image credit: Holabird Sports

There are three types of shoes that a sprinter can use, and this depends on what an individual feels as the most comfortable and can enhance his performance. These types are:

A sprinter spike

As the runner sprints, the balls of their feet receives much force hence sprint spikes promote this action. Under the forefront of the shoe, there is a stiff plastic or hard rubber that pushes the sprinter out on the ball of their feet. They also have a set of metal spikes or fine ceramics which are screwed in the forefront for aggressive traction. They are so light that it will feel as if you are running barefoot, have a great flexibility and it allows your toes to push forcefully into your next stride. This quality is what makes this type of shoe the most used shoes by sprinters. Sprinter spike shoes have less cushioning because most sprinters use their toes while running.

A racing flat

A bit heavier than sprint spikes and it is best for a runner who finds spikes to be too hard because there is minimal cushioning. A flat shoe has minimal cushioning compounds, and it is made of a super lightweight material which allows sprinters to maintain the need of a minimal, lightweight feel of the shoe while at the same time offering more cushioning, comfort and protection.

Lightweight training shoes

This is best for sprinters who are prone to injuries due to minimal cushioning in racing flat and sprint spike shoes. These shoes have extra cushioning but are light in weight so as to offer superior impact absorption hence help the sprinter perform better. The shoe needs to be of the correct form to provide individuals comfortability.

When choosing the best running shoes for sprinters consider the following:

  • The event or track surface matters when getting shoes because different spikes are meant for different surfaces. If you are running 2 miles get sprint spikes, but if running a mile get distance spike. If running on a hard track get smooth plastic spike plates, if sprinting while you are running on your toes, get plates with lifters and if sprinting on a softer rubber surface get shark teeth spikes.
  • Check on the spikes that they are of the correct length. The spikes come in different lengths in different brands, but make sure that you get shoes that don’t have too long pins. You may buy spike pins and a spike wrench that will help you replace the spike pins if need be.   Most spikes are similar in hardness, weight and spike distribution, hence they offer maximum comfort and make one feel good when they are sprinting.
  • The distance you are running will determine the types of spikes. There are spikes meant for short sprints, long sprints, middle distances, long distances, field events, steeplechase and cross country. The number of pins will depend on your running distance. For steeplechases, the shoes have holes to allow water to run through them.
  • Have the best fit where the shoe should fit like a glove, but a bit tighter than your training shoes. It should not have any excess room so that it doesn’t affect your performance. Try as many shoes and of different models so as to get the best shoe. Choose a pair of shoe that you feel fastest in if you have more than one option to choose from.

Bring the socks that you plan to compete in when trying on shoes. You can ask for testing of the shoes on different tracks or walk around the store on a carpeted surface. Whatever kind of shoe design that you find comfortable make sure you stick to it while training and sprinting.

Asics Gel Nimbus are super comfortable running shoes. Image credit: Asics

If you don’t know which shoe to get, ask your coach and they will give you guidance on the recommended type of shoe spike for you.

Most shoes are designed to provide optimum support for 300 to 500miles before they begin falling apart. Some of the most comfortable shoes you can buy are Asics running shoes, who are synonymous with making super-light, super-comfy footwear. After this, they may cause shin and arch pain because the cushioning has begun falling off and the seams split. It is worth investing your money in a shoe that will serve its purpose while keeping your feet safe and the best can be got from reputable running specialty stores.

How to build a window bench with MDF or plywood

Dress your windows with a beautiful DIY wood bench & enjoy the views!

Making good use of the space available is really important at home. If you do not, you are most likely going to end up with crammed furniture, along with many items cluttering your rooms. One of the best ways to make good use of space is to have window benches. Often the space beneath most windows is unused, probably only to accommodate a curtain. But what if you were to have a shorter curtain, and use the floor space for a window bench. Apart from having additional storage space you will also be incorporating another piece of furniture in the room, not to mention the fact that you can also sit there and enjoy the view outside. Building a window bench is really easy. Just follow the steps below and you will be able to do it in a day or two!

Start off by thinking about the window bench you will be building. Will it be as wide as the window, smaller, or bigger, and how deep will you make it? Will you be attaching it to the wall? Will you be placing cushioning or padding on top? Then, start to measure and decide on the dimensions so that you will be able to acquire the materials accordingly.

Simple DIY MDF Window Bench. Image credit: Dovetail Carpenters

What Do You Need?

Gather the materials you will require, namely sheets of plywood or pre-cut MDF boards, wood screws, wood glue, paint, wood putty, corner trims and 2x4s. You will obviously need some tools, including a circular saw, a mitre saw, a screw gun, a tape measure, a hammer, a finish nail gun and a spirit level.

How To Build It

Start by building the frame box. This will be the inside of the bench box. Then, move on to measuring and cutting the sides, so as to attach them to this frame. Obviously the height of the bench will depend on how big you are going to cut the sides. Screw the sides into the framing, fill the holes with putty and sand lightly for a smoother finish.

Next comes the top of the bench. Since you will be storing things within it, this is basically going to be like a lid to a box. As a bench it is recommended that you accommodate an overhang at both sides. About 2 inches should be enough. Screw the top into place, and fill the holes with wood putty. If you will be painting the top as well, sand it lightly. If you are going to place a cushion or padding over it there is no need to do this.

Finishing it off with trim is important for better results. You can use a baseboard, an edge trim, and a corner trim. A beadboard can also work out well in this case. Cut each piece to see that it fits vertically, from the bench’s base to underneath the overhang of the top. The glue it in place and nail it. Measure the baseboard’s length to cut it. While doing this make sure that the corners are going to be a corner tight joint. It is best to cut a bit longer, dry fit, and then trim as necessary. Then measure the two vertical corner trim pieces. Cut them to cover the front corners, right where the beadboard panels meet. A brad nail gun would render this part of the job easier.

Attaching a Piano Hinge. Image credit: DIY Network

Finally you will need to attach a piano hinge in the back so as to allow the top to be lifted for storage purposes. The deeper it is, the more you can store but make sure it is not too deep to make you bend way down to reach to the stuff you place within it. Many use window benches to store shoes, handbags, toys, or books, but the sky is your limit!

Finishing Up

Your window bench is basically done! All you have to do now are some finishing touches. You can paint or stain your window bench. Obviously take into account the color of the furniture in that room so as to try to complement them as much as possible. Give at least two coatings, and allow the previous coating to dry well before applying the next. Finally you can and add cushions or padding on the top for a nicer look. This would be really visually appealing if you use the same material of the curtain of the window, or else go for something contrasting. It can really have a nice, striking effect on the final look. As you can see it is really simple to build a window bench yourself. It is not going to cost you much either as MDF or plywood boards are really affordable.