Dom and Geoff
Whatever your sporting pursuit, it’s worth making sure your footwear is fit for purpose
‘If your sports footwear doesn’t fit – even slightly too narrow or too small or not enough arch support or cushioning – then it will likely cause issues or injuries,’ explains Dom Stead. ‘That’s where we come in: we have the experience and expertise to customise the shoe or boot and ensure the best fit.’
I’ve just watched Dom, who co-owns Sporting Feet in Putney with Geoff Ross, measuring the feet of an amateur runner and, to her surprise, she wasn’t the size she had thought. Customers travel to the specialist shop in Lacy Road from around West London – many popping over the bridge from Fulham – for a good reason: there’s nothing that Dom and Geoff don’t know about sports shoes and how to fit them.
‘Firstly, we like to scan feet,’ adds Geoff. ‘It’s a quick process. Our digital scanner measures size, width, arch and pressure and that is complemented by gait analysis tests – sometimes we ask customers to run outside. Armed with that information, we can then tailor the fit so that the feet are bio-mechanically balanced and work better.
‘We apply the same fitting principles for running, football, hockey, tennis, netball, cricket, rugby or fitness training. That means pinpointing the size and width – we have extra-width options – and, if necessary, providing an insole that mirrors the arch type and reduces pressure points. We work with all the top brands, we’re independent and we never sell someone the wrong shoe.’
Sporting Feet also stock good quality running wear and the Ascent range of children’s school shoes. ‘They are hard-wearing and, because they incorporate sports technology, they’re ideal for running around,’ says Dom. ‘Kids just love them.’ Dom and Geoff are happy to give basic advice on injury prevention and treatments, have strong links with sports health practitioners and the shop has become an information hub for classes, teams and clubs.
‘Whether you are running or playing a sport, your feet are crucial,’ says Geoff. ‘It’s worth looking after them and our job is to give practical guidance and provide effective footwear solutions.’