How do they fit? New Balance is the only manufacturer to offer a majority of shoe models in multiple widths, from narrow 2A to extra-extra-wide 6E. Just like people, feet come in all shapes. New Balance knows that proper fit means multiple widths, not just multiple sizes.
There is an 1/2″ difference between a B and D width and 3/8″ difference between a 4E and 6E. It is important to note that this is the maximum difference in width. This occurs across the ball of the foot. There is less of a difference towards the tip of the shoe and towards the heel.
What is a last? A “Last” is a wood, plastic or metal model of the foot on which shoes are constructed. The shape of the last affects the width, length and fit of the shoe. Each New Balance Last is engineered to provide a unique fit and size profile to fit a unique foot shape. The most popular lasts are “SL-1” and “SL-2”, a standard straight last and one with a higher instep and deeper toe box.
|Last Construction Types|
|SL-1 Fit: A Last with a typical forefoot and toe box design which provides a conventional fit through the shank and instep for normal to low arch foot types.
PL-1 Fit: A Last which reduced volume and height in the toebox, a higher fitting arch, and elevated and anatomical heel fit for better ride and fit.
|SL-2 Fit: A Last with a deeper toebox width, a wider forefoot width, and a slightly narrower heel. We typically recommend this fit for those with lower arches/flat feet, heavier runners, and those who need extra room in the forefoot area for either comfort of medical purposes.|
What Is Pronation?
It’s the natural rolling of the foot when walking at any pace faster than mall walking. (When mall walking, one walks heel to toe at a very slow pace.) The way one actually walks is by hitting the outside of the heel and gently rolling in, pushing off your big toe on the inside. That natural roll is called pronating.
Overpronation vs. Underpronation. If you step on the outside, curl right in and wind up on the inside of your foot – that’s over-pronating. New Balance builds up the arch on specific models to force your foot out so as not to let your whole arch collapse too soon. Other people hit on the outside of their heel and stay on the outside of their foot as they walk – like a duck almost – that’s called under-pronating or supinating.
How do you know what you are? You can look at old shoes and see where the front of the shoe is worn.
- If the front of the shoe is worn on the outside then you’re not rolling in.
- If the front of the shoe is all worn off on the inside then you’re rolling in, too far too fast, and you are over-pronating and walking on your arch.
- If you are hitting on the outside rolling in and the middle of the shoe is worn, then you’re walking properly which means you would choose a neutral shoe that wouldn’t push you in and wouldn’t push you out.
For more information on recommended shoes for pronation, please click here
- With respect to feel, your heel should fit snug with no slipping; the midfoot of the shoe under your arch and over the top of your foot should be snug but not tight; and you should have enough room in the toe box to wiggle your toes.
- People are more than twice as likely to buy a shoe that is too small than too big. Clues that your shoes are too small or narrow include – foot cramping or “falling asleep” while running or just after running or the formation of blisters and calluses between or on your toes.