For a run out on a rugged trail you need the right kind of footwear. Likewise, for a fast, smooth run on the streets you need shoes for the occasion. Trail shoes and street running shoes are made specifically for their intended purposes and will give you an optimal experience when used on the correct surfaces.
Road running shoes have very lightweight uppers with copious sections of mesh to keep feet cool and dry. Trail running shoes are more rugged. They are designed to keep rocks and dirt out more than to aerate the feet.
Lacing options for road running shoes look to increase comfort and flexibility of the upper with options like asymmetrical lacing, elastic laces and varied lacing options. Trail running shoes often have durable lacing systems similar to hiking boots with thick laces and metal grommets.
Road-running shoes feature cushioned mid-soles that vary according to the structural needs of the runner's feet; these act like orthotics. Trail running shoes typically are less cushioned, lower to the ground and do not have orthotics or built-up mid-soles. They're not as necessary as on the varying terrain of trails.
The out-soles of trail running shoes are very rugged and feature extensive lug patterns. They grip the earth and keep rocks from poking the bottoms of your feet. Road running shoe out-soles are less aggressively lugged and are more flexible. They are better for gripping concrete and asphalt.
Article Written By Tanya Wyr
Tanya Wyr has 12 years experience as a professional writer and editor both in print and online. She has written for major retailers such as Wal-Mart, Macy’s and Mervyns. Wyr has also edited college-level textbooks. Wyr earned a B.A. in political science from the University of Minnesota in 1991.