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Winter running made less slippery with Yaktrax

yaktrax for runners
Yaktrax on your running shoes (Photo: Will Run for Beer)

Encountering a patch of ice while out on a run is the one serious buzzkill for an otherwise pretty fearless winter runner. Sadly, no running shoe has much of a grip on ice.

I guess that’s why I’m seeing a reemergence of YakTrax (it launched in 2005) in my running community lately.

You strap these bungee-like steel spirals to the bottom of your New Balance or Saucony, and, voila, snow chains for your running shoes.

This go-to gear for snow hikers provides instant traction when the steel coils embed themselves in snow or ice upon impact, meaning you can run on wintry park paths and sidewalks without fear of slipping or falling.

By allowing you to run as if on a dry surface, YakTrax can probably save you from any subtle, more long-term injuries that might arise from altering your form to compensate for treacherous conditions.

Because they can be a little hard to actually strap onto your shoes, you may want to leave your YakTrax on an older pair and save them for snowy days. They also seem to work better on snow than on large patches of ice, so start out with a test run to get your bearings. —Nina Pearlman

YakTrax Pro is recommended for active outdoor use and costs $30,