The right footwear – what advice have we got:
Many trail runners use specially designed shoes that stand up to the rigours and specific needs of running on trails better than regular road running shoes.
Most trail shoes have aggressively knobby soles that are generally more rigid than road running shoes. The usually compound midsole often contains a lightweight, flexible nylon plastic layer to protect the feet from puncture wounds from sharp rocks or other objects. Since trail running takes place on softer surfaces (grass, dirt) than road races, cushioning is often not as important, so often the shoes are less ‘cushioned’ than their counterparts designed for tarmac.
However… as with road running, different shoe features will appeal to different people, whose individual biomechanics, foot shape, injury profile etc. will suit different shoes. Mostly it is about knowing how you run, what your biomechanic weaknesses are, and what shoe designs are suited to that.
For the best advice on which shoes are right for you, we recommend you go to a good running shop who can put you on a tread mill, look at your running style and see how your foot lands and make a recommendation based on what you need – not just what colours look good.
Other trail running equipment
For the Trail Running Series, there isn’t much more that you need in terms of specialist gear given the relatively short distances and the fact that although in beautiful environs, you’ll never actually be far from civilisation! But in general, trail runners may want to think about:
- Wicking clothing made from polyester, such as trail running tees and polyester fleece mid layer style tops, are best to keep you cool when it’s hot and warmer when it’s not.
- Compression/circulation garments: whether you believe they work or not, compression garments are great for comfort and protection.
- Some runners – especially when distances creep up over 10km – may want to think about carrying some water. You can carry it in bottles or in a hydration pack.