Running Tips

I’ve Been Tying My Sneakers Wrong for My Whole Life, and You Probably Are, Too

Photo: Stocksy/Lumina
Tying my sneakers is the last thing I do before heading out the door for my run. It's my final moment to tell myself, "We're doing this! Let's go!" But Nike Running Global Head Coach Chris Bennett recently gave me reason to believe that my shoe-tying style could use an upgrade. Apparently, there's an ideal method for lacing your sneakers—and doing it the right way will give you an edge for the miles to come.

According to Coach Bennett's #runtok account, there are two ways to set yourself up for running shoe success. First, make sure your shoes aren't too loose or too tight (think Goldilocks, okay?). To achieve the optimal tightness, he recommends slipping your shoes on and tightening the laces from the bottom rung first. Then you can slowly make your way up the shoe, tightening as you go.

Double board-certified podiatrist Chanel J. Perkins, DPM, totally agrees. "It’s important to note that injury can occur from too tightly laced  shoes as well as too loosely laced shoes," she says. So this little shoe-tying checkup is a great way to look after the long-term health of your feet.

Coach Bennett's next piece of advice comes when you're actually tying your bow. He recommends dorsiflexing your foot, or flexing your foot toward your face for the perfect fit. This will help you keep that snug-yet-not-too-snug sizing intact.

@coachbennett How to tie your shoes before a run so it’s not too tight… and not too loose. #everyrunhasapurpose #thisisaboutrunning #thisisnotaboutrunning #running #runner #coachbennett #inspiration #motivation #nike #NikeRunClub #nikerunning ♬ Breath - Pearl Jam

Hanging in there? I promise that we're almost done, but Dr. Perkins says a few final finishing touches are in order. Before you head out the door, make sure you've made use of all the little holes running up and down your sneakers. "I recommend using all the eyelets when lacing, and then tying just [in front of] the ankle joint," she says.

You should also always, always double-knot your sneakers—especially if you prefer to log your miles on the treadmill (safety first, everyone). Once you've taken a final moment to check that your sock hasn't slipped into the back of your shoe, you're ready to run.

Try out your new sneaker-tying technique with this fun run:

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