Mizuno’s “Run With Us” Mobile Lab

Chris over at Gibtown Runner recently posted about how he needed to get new running shoes to help alleviate knee pain he’s been experiencing. When he showed up at his local Fleet Feet store he was surprised to find the Mizuno “Run With Us” campaign was on site with their “Precision Fit” mobile lab.

The “Precision Fit” lab goes through a whole computerized process to analyze a runner’s foot and gait, a complete look at the whole biomechanical process of running. Plus, people that go through their analysis process on this tour get a free technical tee. TECHNICAL! It’s so frustrating how many running promos give out cotton tees that you can’t actually use for running (at least, not if you cover long distances, live where it’s hot or want to avoid chafing). Unfortunately their schedule seems to be limited to the Southeast states and isn’t making its way here to Nevada.

I got a great fitting at my local Fleet Feet store, but I still wonder if I’m as “corrected” as I could be. Apparently I do a weird motion that my chiropractor friend calls “digging and planting” while I run.

While I’m not entirely sure what the motion is, I think it’s something to do with my heel turning, maybe like I was trying to squash a bug? (An exaggerated explanation, but on those lines.) I’m completely unaware of the motion and can’t even tell if I’m fixing it when I try to focus once it’s been pointed out. This past weekend when I was walking up the canyon trail with my husband and mom on Sunday evening, they both noticed the movement too. I wasn’t in my running shoes at this time, just regular everyday shoes, so maybe the motion is better controlled in my running shoes. But it seems to be omnipresent in my running and walking.

Why do I do this?
What’s the cause?
Can I stop it?
Is focusing on it too much going to cause other problems?
Do I run the risk of injury if I do too much tweaking and adjusting to try fixing a problem that I can’t feel?


Update on 08/31/09: The Mizuno Lab came to Las Vegas so I got the chance to check it out first hand! Read about my experience.


  1. Thanks for the plug, Jill! There has got to be a specialty store that you could visit to find out. I think the problem, like you stated, is that it is so subjective. BTW, the Lab had stopped by at another location in OKC and we went by there tonight so the wifey could get her foot done. She was always told she should wear a support show. WRONG. She is neutral too! Of course, the lab could be wrong too, but I certainly trust it more since they have the whole computer set up.

    Spend a day going to like 5 different places and then compare the advice you get. Couldn’t hurt, right?
    Anyway, I hope you get it figured out.

    Oh, and the wifey and I talked about the technical vs cotton T thing today as well. Even the races you go to only give out cotton’s (beefy t’s no less). I understand the small local ones not having the money for technicals, but certainly the big races should. Shoot, the Bay to Breakers cotton T was one of the worst ones I had seen yet!

  2. I went to our local running store to get measured and was originally told “stability.” I went about a year later, after the marathon and was told, “nope, you need neutral.” I bought some neutral shoes (ironically, Mizunos) and I didn’t like them. I took them back and bought another pair of my stability adrenalines, since I made it through a marathon with minimal injury in them. My rambling point is that the running stores’ assessments are rather subjective (as Chris pointed out)

    As far as your gait issue… I think you should see someone about some orthodics. I don’t know if that someone is a podiatrist or just a “Good Feet” store. I think some sports medicine practices do a biomechanics assessment. They could definitely tell you what is going on, whether it will cause injury and how you can prevent it or work with it.

    Good luck!

  3. Honestly I think there are way too many opinions on this subject as to what is right and wrong. Running store shoe analyzers really aren’t experts. I had a kid that looked like he was younger than 18 telling me to “lean forward” to a great extent while I’m running. Fortunately, I read up enough on running to realize he was giving me bad advice. I think that the best people to analyze your gait would be a sports doc or sports physical therapist. However, they probably won’t want you to change anything because it will cause further problems. My doctor said that I walk by only swinging one arm. But it’s not something he wanted to change because it will further cause problems down the line.

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