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Replacing Athletic Shoes Recommended Even If No Signs of Excessive Wear

Replacement schedule depends on sport


Because the mid-sole material of an athletic shoe takes a pounding and eventually loses its ability to provide your child's foot with adequate support or cushioning, experts, such as Dr. Michael Lowe, past President of the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, and long time team podiatrist of the NBA's Utah Jazz, recommend periodically replacing athletic shoes, even if the bottom sole shows no sign of excessive wear.

Blue running shoesConsider replacing your child's shoes according to the following schedule:

  • Running shoes: Every 350-500 miles of running.
  • Shoes for other aerobic sports: Around 300 hours
  • Court (tennis, basketball, volleyball) shoes: Every month (for those playing 5-6 times per week) or every 3 to 4 months (for those playing 2-3 times per week)

Wearing shoes longer, says Dr. Lowe, greatly increases stress to the foot, leg and related soft tissue and bone structures. In time, the stress will create a fatigue pveruse injury (such as shin splints or stress fracture) that then renders the player unable to participate in his or her sport. The incidence of overuse injuries can be greatly decreased simply by replacing shoes frequently.  Buying new shoes are thus a relatively cheap investment in preventative medicine.


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