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NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Posted by Carole C in NOLA on 6/07/02 at 14:31 (086679)

I have been purposely not buying shoes in an effort to cut back on my shoe budget now that I am nearly recovered. After all, before PF I never had more than 1-2 pairs of shoes and kept them for years and years. When I got PF, I bought 11 very expensive pairs of shoes in 5-6 months, including five pairs of Birkenstocks, SAS, and New Balance 879's.

The NB 879 is a neutral cushioned running shoe, and for the past few months it has been my main shoe when I leave the house. They have been 'about right', but not completely. My feet were doing a nasty little pronating wiggle just in one short part of my stride when I walk with them. I have been experiencing knee pain and hip pain, which are nothing new to me since I am very obese, but I did not experience any of that pain when I was wearing my custom orthotics. In the back of my mind, I've thought of trying some NB cushioned running shoes suitable for a mild pronator, to see if that might help my knees.

Today I went shopping, usually no big deal for me any more. But not only did my knees hurt, and my hip cramped up to the point I had to stop, but also my heels felt bruised as though I didn't have any cushioning. The latter is not usual any more, and was the last straw! I tried on some NB 991 running shoes at Just for Feet.

The NB 991 is listed as a supportive cushioning shoe, for mild to moderate pronators. Now maybe it's the 'new shoe' comfort... or maybe the cushioning on the 879's had broken down... but in these 991's my feet are in heaven. They don't feel bruised any more. The 991's are the right shape for my feet, to begin with. They have the SL1 last instead of that blasted SL2 last, so they actually FIT. They have the extra 1/4' in the toe length that my toes need, and the heel cradles my heel! I don't need to use the runner's loop and spend forever adjusting them when I put them on. I think I walk more correctly with them, although the jury's out on that one since I've only had them a half hour.

Basically, I haven't had them long enough to find any disadvantages yet, but they do not appear to have any of the same disadvantages as the 879. This will give me a cushioned tie-up shoe that I can switch to, at the very least. Or maybe they will replace the 879's as my main shoe.

I feel so guilty spending that kind of money on shoes, when my PF is nearly gone. I didn't even want to let them out of my hands long enough to come home and order them online. (sigh) You should have seen me in that store, clutching the box and fumbling for my credit card. I'm a victim of Madison Avenue. Imelda strikes again. At this rate, I'll be 95 before I can afford to retire. :)

BUT... right now my feet feel like they are encased in comfy, protective little grey clouds. (grin) Aaaah!

Carole C

Re: Encap heel wedge stops my heel from tipping inwards

Carole C in NOLA on 6/07/02 at 20:12 (086728)

OK, I have been reading (dangerous! LOL).

Previously, wearing the neutral cushioned running shoe NB 879, I noticed that at just one point in my stride, my feet pronate briefly, almost like a little wiggle. The pronation wiggle that I had noticed was not what would seem to me like completely PRONATING, with my whole foot. Instead, it was sort of like the forward part of my heel would tip medially (inwards) at one point in my stride. Then that would lead the rest of my foot a little bit, but I think the whole motion was in the 'mild' category. My hypothesis (which might be completely off base and remains to be seen) is that this little wiggle combined with my obesity contributes to the knee pain and hip pain I've been having lately. It hasn't been bothering my PF, as far as I know since I'm doing pretty well, but then the wiggle not very extreme.

The NB 991 seem to be fixing that. I think I know what feature in the NB 991 is responsible for straightening out the wiggle. The 991 is listed by NB as a supportive cushioning shoe for mild to medium pronators, so it doesn't have all the motion control stuff for medium to severe pronators like a rollbar or TPU post. What it does have is variously described as 'Encap midsole in the heel' or 'Encap heel wedge'. That is the one thing that the NB 991 has, that the NB 879 doesn't have.

I guess the Encap thingie helps keep the heel from tipping inwards at that one point in my stride, and so it keeps that wiggle from happening.

So far, so good. I only wore them a couple of hours, which is my custom with new shoes. I'll keep y'all updated.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Andrue on 6/08/02 at 02:18 (086751)

Well I'm on the shoe trail today. From looking at various sites I think I'll be trying for neutral shoes and will give NB another chance. My last NB shoes were motion control and I don't think I need that. I'm wondering if some of my arch strain came from my feet fighting the shoe's rigidity.

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/08/02 at 07:02 (086756)

NB doesn't make many neutral shoes, it seems to me. The NB 879 is neutral and really it's not a bad shoe. It's been my favorite for a few months. I'm just hoping that the NB 991 which is not completely neutral, might turn out to be a better shoe for me.

You may be right about your PF being caused by your last NB shoes. NB motion control shoes have been mentioned as causing PF in some people who don't need motion control shoes. I think most NB shoes are fairly rigid. From what I am hearing on this message board, motion control shoes are better left to those who pronate moderately to severely. I don't, but the neutral NB 879 isn't quite right for me either, though I love the cushioning. Some people never do find a shoe made by NB that works for them.

My suggestion is to read about any model you're considering at both http://www.newbalance.com and http://www.roadrunnersports.com before you spend any money on new NB shoes. Find out everything you can before buying them and don't choose a style based just on looks. There's a lot of information available about each style at various sites, and even a 'feedback' section for people who have the shoe to tell you what they think, at Roadrunner. For those of us with PF, these shoes can be great but some people hate them.

Good luck on your quest for a better shoe! Let us know what you select and how it works out. And if you have any questions about a particular shoe that you are considering, be sure to post them and maybe someone will be able to tell you the answer.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Andrue on 6/09/02 at 05:57 (086822)

Well I did some research but went to the shoe store they didn't stock NB (they had a lot of others though). In the end I went with the 'what does it feel like factor'. I picked up one pair and they just felt so snug and right for me. I like to have a raised arch area across the entire width (arch support I guess) and NB never seem to do this. NB have a raise on the instep but that's all - the basic foot bed is flat.

The new shoes are cross trainers - very well padded all round and flexible at the forefoot.

Anyway you might cringe at the maker:Nike. Even more weird is the name 'Pinch'. So I'm apparently happy in a Nike Pinch. Erm?

At present I'm being kind to my feet again. I had a session on my bike using cycling shoes and pedalling with my toes and it set me back quite a bit. The reaction was so strong that I've vowed never to use an exercise bike again. The worst of the pain was in my arches rather than at the insertion point.

Re: Nikes and exercise bike

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 08:18 (086826)

Good luck with your Nikes. You are right that I might cringe hearing that you bought Nikes, and here's why.

I bought Nike Air Vintage shoes when I first got PF, thinking that they would have the most cushioned heel possible and might work for me. These are cross trainers also. However, the Vintage style of Nike cross trainer (which is not the same style of cross trainer as yours) holds my foot in a way so that my arch is stretched too much... even though they have a little arch support, it's as though the bottom of the shoe curves upwards at the heel and toe, and so it stretches my arch and keeps it from healing. So, I found they made my PF worse.

At first it made me feel angry that people on heelspurs.com said my Nike's weren't a good choice. But after a few days I quietly stopped wearing them and I'm glad I did. After I had mostly healed from PF, I tried on my Nike's again. I found that I can wear them now (though I couldn't before). However, my NB's are more comfortable, and have a more cushioned heel too, so I don't.

I'd suggest that you check at the New Balance website, at http://www.newbalance.com , to see what stores near you carry New Balance. You might want to get some later, even if you are wearing your Nikes now. Most stores that carry running shoes carry New Balance. I got one pair of New Balance at a small locally owned running shoe store (which I'd recommend). The other pair of New Balance I got Friday at Just for Feet, which is a chain store that might be in your area. The help at Just for Feet was as awful as ever, but I knew what I wanted so it didn't matter.

You will be able to use an exercise bike again, although I'd suggest letting your feet heal a bit more first, until your PF is mostly healed. Then, when you first start, you must ease into it. Set the tension on zero, wear good supportive shoes, and do a lot of gentle stretching before and after. Just ride a couple of minutes, at first. Leave it at that for the first week, and then very gradually increase the time with the tension at zero. Patience pays off.

It doesn't sound like now is a good time for you to begin with the exercise bike, at all, but I just wanted to mention this in case you were thinking of selling it. I am able to ride mine now.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

BrianG on 6/09/02 at 14:41 (086849)

Hi Carole,

These 991's look like a good choice. Can you tell me the difference between SL1 and Sl2? Also, did you have to pay the retail price, $114? Ouch!

Thanks for the info
BrianG

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 16:35 (086865)

Yes, I paid full price although I could have got them cheaper if I'd just been sensible, put them back, and ordered them online and waited. OUCH!!! is right!!!

On the other hand, I've been wearing them longer (all day today, so far) and my knees are not hurting so much! It's too soon to draw a conclusion, because I haven't walked very far in them yet, but I think maybe, just MAYBE, my hypothesis might be right and these shoes might help the pain in my knees.

The SL1 and the SL2 lasts are shaped differently. The last is the model of the foot around which they make the shoe. The SL1 is the traditional last and the SL2 is their updated new last.

Here's what I've got to say about them:

First, the SL2 last is at least 1/4' shorter than the SL1 last, because the SL2's are almost too short (they are uncomfortable if it's time for me to clip my toenails) and the SL1's are just a little longer.

Second, the SL2 width is more like a figure 8. What I mean, is that the end of the toe box is very wide, even if the shoe fits. I can almost cross my toes while wearing them tied tightly, and that's pitiful. The heel area is too wide also, but I can't wear a wide because the middle fits. This is as opposed to an SL1, which actually fits me from heel to toe. People complain that the SL1 is narrow, but it's not. I wear a medium or wide width in most shoes.

The SL2 last is supposed to be better for people with high arches, but although I have fairly high arches I prefer the SL1. In the SL2, my foot feels like it's sliding around at least a little bit, no matter how tightly the shoe is tied. I think the SL2 last is supposed to be curved more than the SL-1 last, also.

Here is what the New Balance website says about them.

Heel width - - - SL1: standard; but SL2: narrow.
Instep height- - SL1: standard; but SL2: high.
Toebox depth - - SL1: standard; but SL2: deep.
Forefoot width - SL1: standard; but SL2: wide.

I'd agree with the last two. The SL2 toebox is without doubt too deep, as well as too wide, for me. But as for the first two, I disagree, as follows:

The SL2 definitely feels wider in the heel than the SL-1, and I had to use a special 'runners loop' method with my laces to tighten up the heel with the my 879's which have an SL2 last. Right now, as I type I am wearing the 991 with the SL-1 last on one foot, and the 879 with the SL-2 last on the other. There is no doubt. The heel is wider in the SL2.

The instep in the SL2 feels about the same height as the SL1. It may be a little higher, but because of the poor fit I'm unable to even perceive the difference, much less benefit from that.

Since NB running shoes come with either the SL1 or the SL2 last, anyone who is considering buying them should try on at least one shoe with each last, to see if it makes a big difference. I greatly prefer the SL1 last.

Carole C

Re: Here's a link showing the difference between SL-1 and SL-2 lasts

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 16:45 (086866)

http://www.aperfectdealer.com/cgi-bin/SoftCart.exe/scstore/sitepages/f_tek.html?L+scstore+asly6078+1023677633

That's just what they feel like, too, except I don't feel any difference in the arch support of the SL-2. You can see from the 'top down' view how the SL-2 is more curved than the SL-1.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Suzanne D on 6/09/02 at 20:11 (086880)

Dear Carole,

You have certainly done your homework in the matter of shoes, and I hope these turn out to be the 'perfect' shoe for you! How nice that you were able to get them in time for your trip next week. I want you to enjoy that trip and want your feet to be at their best so that nothing keeps you from having a good time!

As you have said before, just think of the money as a medical expense, and don't feel guilty about it. That is a good attitude for the buying of shoes when one has foot problems!

Take care,
Suzanne :-)

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 21:44 (086892)

You're right, it IS a medical expense. And thank you for reminding me of that. I keep thinking that since I'm almost healed, I shouldn't be spending money like that any more. But 'almost' isn't quite the same as 'completely'.

So far, I have noticed a big decrease in my knee pain. YAY! But, I haven't been doing a lot in them yet. I wore them all day today, until dinner time, but I didn't do a lot of walking, especially. Still, if I had been wearing my other NB's, my knees would hurt. I hope this is a real improvement, and not just the temporary improvement of wearing new shoes. But, I will take what I can get! I bought them a week before my trip so that I'll have a week to break them in and get used to them.

Since I'll be driving to Florida instead of flying, I can take both pairs of NB, and any other shoes I might need. Walking through various real estate will be a good test for these 991's and if they start to hurt I can change to my other NB's.

Carole C

Re: Here's a link showing the difference between SL-1 and SL-2 lasts

BrianG on 6/10/02 at 22:46 (087047)

Thanks, I had never seen that page before. Quite interesting!

BrianG

Re: Re:How do you decide which lasts is correct for your feet?

Shirley W on 6/11/02 at 18:47 (087182)

I found the web listing for the NB very informative, but how do you decide which type of last is best for your feet? I have been to a POD, but never given info as far as pronator?? or supinator?? sorry--- dont know the correct wording--

Re: Re:How do you decide which lasts is correct for your feet?

Carole C in NOLA on 6/11/02 at 20:02 (087194)

I was never told either, Shirley. And, apparently among those here whose Pod's told them they were overpronators or supinators, some didn't get identified correctly.

If you know a good, small, athletic shoe store that supplies runners and has expert help, you could try them. You could try a C.Ped., and see what he or she thinks. Or you could try your Pod.

I don't have a Pod, and to make a long story short, I decided to take the bull by the horns and figure this out myself. I don't recommend this to everyone. It's just what I am trying to do and isn't necessarily the wisest course of action. Here's what I have done.

First I talked about my overpronation/supination dilemma on this message board with people for several weeks, and posted photos of my feet as requested by some of them. Some of the very kind and quite expert foot professionals and other folk here bent over backwards trying to help me to figure it out even though they were working 'blind' because they could not see me walk. For that I thank you all!!!!! for your input. You know who you are.

We had a lot of discussions on the fine points of what was going on with my feet, but one thing stood out as I read and re-read the responses. Basically, nobody said 'OMG, I have never SEEN such terrible overpronation' or 'OMG, I have never SEEN such terrible supination'. I came to believe that my overpronation or supination was probably not too severe. You can find the discussion in the archives.

After two hours I had problems with the NB 854, which is for moderate to severe pronators. The problem was that basically I walked with my feet pointed laterally instead of straight forward, and I was afraid this would cause me problems later on. I exchanged them for the NB 879 which is a neutral cushioning shoe, for someone that does not either overpronate or supinate. Starting with a neutral shoe was a good move for me. I've worn them since around the first of March, and they've been wonderful except I was having more knee pain.

I couldn't watch myself walk from all angles, but I tried to pay attention to anything odd that they might be doing while I walked. I also tried to figure out if I was overpronating or supinating at all. It took me a couple of months before I detected it, but in those shoes my heels were doing a sort of swiveling-pronating movement just at one point in my stride.

The 'supportive cushioning' shoes are mostly for mild to moderate overpronators, and I liked the cushioning. So, I went for the NB 991 which NB lists as a supportive cushioning shoe. The stability/motion control shoes are listed as being for moderate to severe overpronators, and so I didn't want to go to a shoe listed that way.

Again, I don't recommend my trial and error approach, but in my case I have never felt that I had serious biomechanical problems and I am a stubborn independent sort and wanted to take some time and figure out my own feet.

As far as what last is best for your feet, that doesn't depend on your degree of pronation or supination. I'd suggest trying on some NB shoes that are similar except for the last, and see what feels best. There are shoes for every degree of pronation or supination that have either the SL1 or SL2 last. The last just refers to the shape of foot that the shoe fits the best.

I can say that I will stick with SL-1 lasts from now on, in NB. I am not yet sure if I will stick with their supportive cushioning shoe, because it will take longer before I am sure of how this shoe is affecting me. So far, it seems to be doing good things, but time will tell.

Carole C

Re: Nikes and exercise bike

Rich on 6/30/02 at 01:43 (088795)

I could go off on how Nike makes the most ridiculous shoes on the market, but that's beside the point. When I wore Nike shoes back in the early '80s I found them to be good shoes. Something happened. My wife developed a serious case of PF in only 2 weeks of wearing Nikes (that appeared to have decent arch support). She dropped them in favor of Reebocks and has stayed with them ever since with only occasional pain.

My case is a bit more serious, and due to my job will be difficult to treat. Regardless, I have a pair of Nike deck shoes (they look like the old Converse All-Stars but in low-top), as my buddy is fanatical about 'no black soles on the boat', and of course, I won't wear a 'good' pair of shoes where they will get soaked.
One day in these shoes and my heel feels like I've been pounding on it with a hammer. My Sperry Top Siders, also completely lacking in arch support, are slightly better.

Good luck, and try some Addidas.

Re: Encap heel wedge stops my heel from tipping inwards

Carole C in NOLA on 6/07/02 at 20:12 (086728)

OK, I have been reading (dangerous! LOL).

Previously, wearing the neutral cushioned running shoe NB 879, I noticed that at just one point in my stride, my feet pronate briefly, almost like a little wiggle. The pronation wiggle that I had noticed was not what would seem to me like completely PRONATING, with my whole foot. Instead, it was sort of like the forward part of my heel would tip medially (inwards) at one point in my stride. Then that would lead the rest of my foot a little bit, but I think the whole motion was in the 'mild' category. My hypothesis (which might be completely off base and remains to be seen) is that this little wiggle combined with my obesity contributes to the knee pain and hip pain I've been having lately. It hasn't been bothering my PF, as far as I know since I'm doing pretty well, but then the wiggle not very extreme.

The NB 991 seem to be fixing that. I think I know what feature in the NB 991 is responsible for straightening out the wiggle. The 991 is listed by NB as a supportive cushioning shoe for mild to medium pronators, so it doesn't have all the motion control stuff for medium to severe pronators like a rollbar or TPU post. What it does have is variously described as 'Encap midsole in the heel' or 'Encap heel wedge'. That is the one thing that the NB 991 has, that the NB 879 doesn't have.

I guess the Encap thingie helps keep the heel from tipping inwards at that one point in my stride, and so it keeps that wiggle from happening.

So far, so good. I only wore them a couple of hours, which is my custom with new shoes. I'll keep y'all updated.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Andrue on 6/08/02 at 02:18 (086751)

Well I'm on the shoe trail today. From looking at various sites I think I'll be trying for neutral shoes and will give NB another chance. My last NB shoes were motion control and I don't think I need that. I'm wondering if some of my arch strain came from my feet fighting the shoe's rigidity.

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/08/02 at 07:02 (086756)

NB doesn't make many neutral shoes, it seems to me. The NB 879 is neutral and really it's not a bad shoe. It's been my favorite for a few months. I'm just hoping that the NB 991 which is not completely neutral, might turn out to be a better shoe for me.

You may be right about your PF being caused by your last NB shoes. NB motion control shoes have been mentioned as causing PF in some people who don't need motion control shoes. I think most NB shoes are fairly rigid. From what I am hearing on this message board, motion control shoes are better left to those who pronate moderately to severely. I don't, but the neutral NB 879 isn't quite right for me either, though I love the cushioning. Some people never do find a shoe made by NB that works for them.

My suggestion is to read about any model you're considering at both http://www.newbalance.com and http://www.roadrunnersports.com before you spend any money on new NB shoes. Find out everything you can before buying them and don't choose a style based just on looks. There's a lot of information available about each style at various sites, and even a 'feedback' section for people who have the shoe to tell you what they think, at Roadrunner. For those of us with PF, these shoes can be great but some people hate them.

Good luck on your quest for a better shoe! Let us know what you select and how it works out. And if you have any questions about a particular shoe that you are considering, be sure to post them and maybe someone will be able to tell you the answer.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Andrue on 6/09/02 at 05:57 (086822)

Well I did some research but went to the shoe store they didn't stock NB (they had a lot of others though). In the end I went with the 'what does it feel like factor'. I picked up one pair and they just felt so snug and right for me. I like to have a raised arch area across the entire width (arch support I guess) and NB never seem to do this. NB have a raise on the instep but that's all - the basic foot bed is flat.

The new shoes are cross trainers - very well padded all round and flexible at the forefoot.

Anyway you might cringe at the maker:Nike. Even more weird is the name 'Pinch'. So I'm apparently happy in a Nike Pinch. Erm?

At present I'm being kind to my feet again. I had a session on my bike using cycling shoes and pedalling with my toes and it set me back quite a bit. The reaction was so strong that I've vowed never to use an exercise bike again. The worst of the pain was in my arches rather than at the insertion point.

Re: Nikes and exercise bike

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 08:18 (086826)

Good luck with your Nikes. You are right that I might cringe hearing that you bought Nikes, and here's why.

I bought Nike Air Vintage shoes when I first got PF, thinking that they would have the most cushioned heel possible and might work for me. These are cross trainers also. However, the Vintage style of Nike cross trainer (which is not the same style of cross trainer as yours) holds my foot in a way so that my arch is stretched too much... even though they have a little arch support, it's as though the bottom of the shoe curves upwards at the heel and toe, and so it stretches my arch and keeps it from healing. So, I found they made my PF worse.

At first it made me feel angry that people on heelspurs.com said my Nike's weren't a good choice. But after a few days I quietly stopped wearing them and I'm glad I did. After I had mostly healed from PF, I tried on my Nike's again. I found that I can wear them now (though I couldn't before). However, my NB's are more comfortable, and have a more cushioned heel too, so I don't.

I'd suggest that you check at the New Balance website, at http://www.newbalance.com , to see what stores near you carry New Balance. You might want to get some later, even if you are wearing your Nikes now. Most stores that carry running shoes carry New Balance. I got one pair of New Balance at a small locally owned running shoe store (which I'd recommend). The other pair of New Balance I got Friday at Just for Feet, which is a chain store that might be in your area. The help at Just for Feet was as awful as ever, but I knew what I wanted so it didn't matter.

You will be able to use an exercise bike again, although I'd suggest letting your feet heal a bit more first, until your PF is mostly healed. Then, when you first start, you must ease into it. Set the tension on zero, wear good supportive shoes, and do a lot of gentle stretching before and after. Just ride a couple of minutes, at first. Leave it at that for the first week, and then very gradually increase the time with the tension at zero. Patience pays off.

It doesn't sound like now is a good time for you to begin with the exercise bike, at all, but I just wanted to mention this in case you were thinking of selling it. I am able to ride mine now.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

BrianG on 6/09/02 at 14:41 (086849)

Hi Carole,

These 991's look like a good choice. Can you tell me the difference between SL1 and Sl2? Also, did you have to pay the retail price, $114? Ouch!

Thanks for the info
BrianG

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 16:35 (086865)

Yes, I paid full price although I could have got them cheaper if I'd just been sensible, put them back, and ordered them online and waited. OUCH!!! is right!!!

On the other hand, I've been wearing them longer (all day today, so far) and my knees are not hurting so much! It's too soon to draw a conclusion, because I haven't walked very far in them yet, but I think maybe, just MAYBE, my hypothesis might be right and these shoes might help the pain in my knees.

The SL1 and the SL2 lasts are shaped differently. The last is the model of the foot around which they make the shoe. The SL1 is the traditional last and the SL2 is their updated new last.

Here's what I've got to say about them:

First, the SL2 last is at least 1/4' shorter than the SL1 last, because the SL2's are almost too short (they are uncomfortable if it's time for me to clip my toenails) and the SL1's are just a little longer.

Second, the SL2 width is more like a figure 8. What I mean, is that the end of the toe box is very wide, even if the shoe fits. I can almost cross my toes while wearing them tied tightly, and that's pitiful. The heel area is too wide also, but I can't wear a wide because the middle fits. This is as opposed to an SL1, which actually fits me from heel to toe. People complain that the SL1 is narrow, but it's not. I wear a medium or wide width in most shoes.

The SL2 last is supposed to be better for people with high arches, but although I have fairly high arches I prefer the SL1. In the SL2, my foot feels like it's sliding around at least a little bit, no matter how tightly the shoe is tied. I think the SL2 last is supposed to be curved more than the SL-1 last, also.

Here is what the New Balance website says about them.

Heel width - - - SL1: standard; but SL2: narrow.
Instep height- - SL1: standard; but SL2: high.
Toebox depth - - SL1: standard; but SL2: deep.
Forefoot width - SL1: standard; but SL2: wide.

I'd agree with the last two. The SL2 toebox is without doubt too deep, as well as too wide, for me. But as for the first two, I disagree, as follows:

The SL2 definitely feels wider in the heel than the SL-1, and I had to use a special 'runners loop' method with my laces to tighten up the heel with the my 879's which have an SL2 last. Right now, as I type I am wearing the 991 with the SL-1 last on one foot, and the 879 with the SL-2 last on the other. There is no doubt. The heel is wider in the SL2.

The instep in the SL2 feels about the same height as the SL1. It may be a little higher, but because of the poor fit I'm unable to even perceive the difference, much less benefit from that.

Since NB running shoes come with either the SL1 or the SL2 last, anyone who is considering buying them should try on at least one shoe with each last, to see if it makes a big difference. I greatly prefer the SL1 last.

Carole C

Re: Here's a link showing the difference between SL-1 and SL-2 lasts

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 16:45 (086866)

http://www.aperfectdealer.com/cgi-bin/SoftCart.exe/scstore/sitepages/f_tek.html?L+scstore+asly6078+1023677633

That's just what they feel like, too, except I don't feel any difference in the arch support of the SL-2. You can see from the 'top down' view how the SL-2 is more curved than the SL-1.

Carole C

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Suzanne D on 6/09/02 at 20:11 (086880)

Dear Carole,

You have certainly done your homework in the matter of shoes, and I hope these turn out to be the 'perfect' shoe for you! How nice that you were able to get them in time for your trip next week. I want you to enjoy that trip and want your feet to be at their best so that nothing keeps you from having a good time!

As you have said before, just think of the money as a medical expense, and don't feel guilty about it. That is a good attitude for the buying of shoes when one has foot problems!

Take care,
Suzanne :-)

Re: NB 991's ("Imelda strikes again")

Carole C in NOLA on 6/09/02 at 21:44 (086892)

You're right, it IS a medical expense. And thank you for reminding me of that. I keep thinking that since I'm almost healed, I shouldn't be spending money like that any more. But 'almost' isn't quite the same as 'completely'.

So far, I have noticed a big decrease in my knee pain. YAY! But, I haven't been doing a lot in them yet. I wore them all day today, until dinner time, but I didn't do a lot of walking, especially. Still, if I had been wearing my other NB's, my knees would hurt. I hope this is a real improvement, and not just the temporary improvement of wearing new shoes. But, I will take what I can get! I bought them a week before my trip so that I'll have a week to break them in and get used to them.

Since I'll be driving to Florida instead of flying, I can take both pairs of NB, and any other shoes I might need. Walking through various real estate will be a good test for these 991's and if they start to hurt I can change to my other NB's.

Carole C

Re: Here's a link showing the difference between SL-1 and SL-2 lasts

BrianG on 6/10/02 at 22:46 (087047)

Thanks, I had never seen that page before. Quite interesting!

BrianG

Re: Re:How do you decide which lasts is correct for your feet?

Shirley W on 6/11/02 at 18:47 (087182)

I found the web listing for the NB very informative, but how do you decide which type of last is best for your feet? I have been to a POD, but never given info as far as pronator?? or supinator?? sorry--- dont know the correct wording--

Re: Re:How do you decide which lasts is correct for your feet?

Carole C in NOLA on 6/11/02 at 20:02 (087194)

I was never told either, Shirley. And, apparently among those here whose Pod's told them they were overpronators or supinators, some didn't get identified correctly.

If you know a good, small, athletic shoe store that supplies runners and has expert help, you could try them. You could try a C.Ped., and see what he or she thinks. Or you could try your Pod.

I don't have a Pod, and to make a long story short, I decided to take the bull by the horns and figure this out myself. I don't recommend this to everyone. It's just what I am trying to do and isn't necessarily the wisest course of action. Here's what I have done.

First I talked about my overpronation/supination dilemma on this message board with people for several weeks, and posted photos of my feet as requested by some of them. Some of the very kind and quite expert foot professionals and other folk here bent over backwards trying to help me to figure it out even though they were working 'blind' because they could not see me walk. For that I thank you all!!!!! for your input. You know who you are.

We had a lot of discussions on the fine points of what was going on with my feet, but one thing stood out as I read and re-read the responses. Basically, nobody said 'OMG, I have never SEEN such terrible overpronation' or 'OMG, I have never SEEN such terrible supination'. I came to believe that my overpronation or supination was probably not too severe. You can find the discussion in the archives.

After two hours I had problems with the NB 854, which is for moderate to severe pronators. The problem was that basically I walked with my feet pointed laterally instead of straight forward, and I was afraid this would cause me problems later on. I exchanged them for the NB 879 which is a neutral cushioning shoe, for someone that does not either overpronate or supinate. Starting with a neutral shoe was a good move for me. I've worn them since around the first of March, and they've been wonderful except I was having more knee pain.

I couldn't watch myself walk from all angles, but I tried to pay attention to anything odd that they might be doing while I walked. I also tried to figure out if I was overpronating or supinating at all. It took me a couple of months before I detected it, but in those shoes my heels were doing a sort of swiveling-pronating movement just at one point in my stride.

The 'supportive cushioning' shoes are mostly for mild to moderate overpronators, and I liked the cushioning. So, I went for the NB 991 which NB lists as a supportive cushioning shoe. The stability/motion control shoes are listed as being for moderate to severe overpronators, and so I didn't want to go to a shoe listed that way.

Again, I don't recommend my trial and error approach, but in my case I have never felt that I had serious biomechanical problems and I am a stubborn independent sort and wanted to take some time and figure out my own feet.

As far as what last is best for your feet, that doesn't depend on your degree of pronation or supination. I'd suggest trying on some NB shoes that are similar except for the last, and see what feels best. There are shoes for every degree of pronation or supination that have either the SL1 or SL2 last. The last just refers to the shape of foot that the shoe fits the best.

I can say that I will stick with SL-1 lasts from now on, in NB. I am not yet sure if I will stick with their supportive cushioning shoe, because it will take longer before I am sure of how this shoe is affecting me. So far, it seems to be doing good things, but time will tell.

Carole C

Re: Nikes and exercise bike

Rich on 6/30/02 at 01:43 (088795)

I could go off on how Nike makes the most ridiculous shoes on the market, but that's beside the point. When I wore Nike shoes back in the early '80s I found them to be good shoes. Something happened. My wife developed a serious case of PF in only 2 weeks of wearing Nikes (that appeared to have decent arch support). She dropped them in favor of Reebocks and has stayed with them ever since with only occasional pain.

My case is a bit more serious, and due to my job will be difficult to treat. Regardless, I have a pair of Nike deck shoes (they look like the old Converse All-Stars but in low-top), as my buddy is fanatical about 'no black soles on the boat', and of course, I won't wear a 'good' pair of shoes where they will get soaked.
One day in these shoes and my heel feels like I've been pounding on it with a hammer. My Sperry Top Siders, also completely lacking in arch support, are slightly better.

Good luck, and try some Addidas.