Trainers are becoming a usual kind of footwear, not only to make sport but also for everyday’s life, as for some people feel them more comfortable than shoes for walking. It’s a good thing to use the footwear that be the most comfortable for us to walk. According to the World Health Organization, nowadays one of the most worrying problems for the public health is to be sedentary, together with diet. Let us choose comfortable and quality footwear (maybe trainers?) and… let us move.

Feet endure the weight of all the body; they make up the most complex mechanical system we have. Trainers have to protect your feet and maintain their flexibility, stability, breathability and sensitiveness. When we try on trainers, pay attention to check they fit us well.

How can we go about it:

  • The bridge of the foot has to rest on the sole and it should not squeeze either our tip or our heels, mainly if we buy them in winter (in summer feet may swell a little because of heat) or if they are made of cotton (because when washing them they will shrink).
  • If the trainers have shoe lace, feet will always be well attached, even with the passage of time.

Sport footwear is one of the sectors where fashion has more influence to lead to consumerism. Most known brands are spending real fortunes in advertising and marketing. Let us avoid over consuming trainers and let us choose durable ones.

How can we go about it:

  • Let us buy trainers when we really need them.
  • The attachments between the different parts of trainers are more durable if they are sewn up than if they are just glued.
  • Let us buy suitable trainers for very specific uses only if we are going to use them that specific way, and for a long time.

Cotton and leather ones have maximum breathability, flexibility and durability, but they are not waterproof. There are synthetic materials that seem to equal the qualities of the natural ones and are waterproof. It should be clear to us which type of material we choose.

How can we go about it:

  • All trainers should be labelled with the indication of what material has been used on the external part, the inner part and the sole.
  • We can recognize leather just smelling it.
  • If we have to wear them in places where they will get wet, we should choose some synthetic waterproof material.

Natural materials always come from renewable resources but they are not always exploited in a sustainable way. Synthetic ones come from oil and are not biodegradable; one of those most problematic is PVC. The nowadays high production of trainers is possible by sure, thanks to synthetic materials. On the other hand, the way most used for tanning leather generates highly polluter waste (mainly chrome). Let us look for the least problematic issues.

How can we go about it:

  • If we do not need them just to make sport, we can choose to wear shoes, there are “natural” production shoes which skin is tanned by a vegetal treatment and the most polluting dyes are avoided.

The great multinationals of sport footwear do not manufacture trainers at all, they only design and market them. Manufacture is subcontracted to countries with cheap labour cost (generally with very precarious conditions) because to manufacture trainers much labour is needed. There are still some enterprises manufacturing the whole or most part of the trainers. Let us search them.

How can we go about it:

  • Looking at the trainers where they are made in and it has to indicate the last country where the ultimate transformation has been made.
  • If we want a more human economic scale, let us give priority to the small and specialized shops in front of big chains or stores owned by big brands.
  • We can participate in campaigns as Clean Clothes to fight for improving the labour conditions of the countries of cheap labour costs.

The better we take care of our trainers, the longer they will last. Let us look after them.

How can we go about it:

  • Trainers have to be put on and taken out untying laces so that they do not get deformed by pulling.
  • Don’t shoot hard objects if the trainers are not meant for that.
  • Let us air them so that they get dry after using them, mainly if they are little breathable.
  • Don’t put a lot those of leather at the washer, because the skin gets cracked or peeled. Let us use some shoe polish (the shoe seller or the cobbler may advise us) hydrating cream or cleaning lotion to clean or to preserve their skin.
  • Wash fabric trainers with soap and cold water (either hand washing them or using the washer), after having left them soaking for one day, if we find it necessary. Let us dry them without sunshine, in order that they do not get faded.
  • If they get unstitched or unglued, let us see if a cobbler can fix them.
  • If they are no longer suitable for us, but they are in a good state, we can give them to family or friends.