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Can You Run In Converse? (and Should You?)

Are your everyday shoes are a pair of Converse sneakers?

If yes, then you may be curious if those Chuck Taylors are good for running.

Of course, we all know that Converse shoes are not running shoes.

Heck, they don’t even have the same design and support as a pair of running shoes.

So, can you use a pair of Converse shoes for running?

Yes, you can run in Converse, but it’s not the best idea.

Keep reading to learn more about using Converse sneakers for your running workouts.

Why Converse Aren’t Ideal For Running

If you’ve ever worn Converse shoes for any period of time, then you know that these shoes are flat.

As in zero arch support. And really not much cushioning or support period.

As someone who experienced arch pain whenever I wear shoes without proper support, I cannot imagine running in a pair of Converse on purpose.

Podiatrists mention that you need that extra support, which is not in a pair of Converse, for both running and walking.

You certainly don’t want to get an injury simply because you wanted to wear those cool Chuck Taylors instead of proper running shoes.

Now, if you are as old as I am, then you may remember a time when Converse sneaker were THE shoe for basketball players.

converse shoes

That’s because originally Converse shoes were made for both casual use and for court sports, like basketball.

Heck, there are probably still plenty of people who wear Converse to play court sports, but here’s the thing – back when Converse were used for playing basketball, we didn’t have awesome basketball shoes from Nike and such.

Here are a few more reasons why you should not wear Converse for running:

  • The flat heel of Converse is not as secure as running shoes, which are pretty snug in the heel area. This means your heel can slip out of the shoe while running.
  • Converse shoes are not breathable and have poor ventilation. In addition to giving you swampy feet, it can result in excessive sweating for your feet and we all know that leads to blisters.
  • Converse shoes are heavier than running shoes. That extra weight of the shoe has an effect on your gait/running form and that is bad news for runners.
  • The sole may be too slippery in wet conditions. If you run in the rain, or when the ground is wet with morning dew, then you may slip and fall when trying to run in a pair of Converse.

That being said, back in 2011 Runner’s World did a brief article where on of their writers did run in a pair of Chucks, just to see how it would be.

In case you don’t want to read the article, the writer said that it was fine and he ran almost 4 miles total in the shoes.

When Can You Wear Converse For Exercises?

While Converse may not be ideal running shoes, there are some exercises and workouts where these are actually a great option.

Any type of exercise where a flat shoe is ideal, such as Tai Chi, is when you can wear those Converse sneakers.

red converse all stars

Strength training is another instance when flat shoes are ideal.

This includes exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses.

According to Monara Dini, doctor of podiatric medicine and associate clinical professor at UC San Francisco, flat shoes are best when you’re lifting those heavier weights, but it is not as important for lightweight to medium weights.

Here another way to think about it –

Basically, any activity that you can do barefoot is one where you can use a flat shoe like Converse.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – what about barefoot running?

Yeah, that is a thing, but that still doesn’t mean that Converse is a good running shoe.

Final Word

So, while you can wear Converse sneakers for running, there are definitely better options for you out there.

Instead, keep the Converse on for your weight lifting and switch to a proper running shoes for your runs.

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