Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Supplier of the Month: Mizuno- By Athletes, For Athletes


At Mizuno, we are athletes. Dreamers. Designers and inventors. Everything we do comes back to a simple mission: to let nothing stand in our way of putting the world’s best sporting equipment in the hands of athletes. From our R&D teams to product designers, we are always pushing ourselves to create products that work in harmony with the human body. And with every shot, every run, every dig, every swing and every catch, we are helping athletes get the most out of their game.

Boutique Courir received the 2012 IRRC “Store of the Year Award”.


Montreal, Quebec (December 20, 2012). – At the Running Event# held in Austin, Texas in early December, Boutique Courir was awarded the Independent Running Retailers of Canada “Store of the Year Award”.

A consolidation of about forty independent running retailers in Canada, the IRRC recognizes each year, within its members, the store which stands out the most in historical background, customer service, staff expertise, community-based commitment, notoriety and sales volume per square foot. This award demonstrates specialized stores can do well in a field where the competition of big boxes is fierce.

With a marketing plan promoting quality and excellence, Boutique Courir has built a reputation that has crossed Quebec’s borders. Based in Longueuil for the last 31 years and Montreal for 24 years, Boutique Courir is well known in the business for its leadership and avant-gardism. The management and staff of the 2 outlets took great pride in receiving this honour.





Cheap and slinky: Hey, look! I’m working out!

It’s just so tawdry: all those cheap-looking women in their slinky tops and their short, shorts. And the men too! It shouldn’t be allowed.

After all, who wants to see a bunch of disgusting tramps and vulgar guys sweating?

But that’s exactly what’s going on at the Canada Games Centre in Halifax – and, in its infinite wisdom, managers at that facility have decided to crack down on the visual obscenities corrupting innocent individuals.

Yes, the clothing police have arrived at your local gym.

CBC News reported this week that the centre is “enforcing a dress code for its members that includes a ban on tight shorts and slinky tops.”

Read On

Barefoot Running Can Cause Injuries, Too

by Gretchen Reynolds

Jodi Hilton for The New York Times

When Dr. Douglas Brown, a radiologist in Orem, Utah, noticed an uptick recently in the number of barefoot runners he was seeing with heel and foot problems, he wondered if there might be a connection between their unshod training and their sore feet. But he couldn’t find any scientific studies that had examined the issue.

So he approached Sarah Ridge, a professor of exercise science at Brigham Young University in Provo who studies impact injuries in sports, and suggested she undertake one.

The resulting study, published last month in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, will probably add fuel to the continuing debate about the benefits of running barefoot or wearing minimalist “barefoot” shoes. Does the barefoot style reduce a runner’s risk of pain and injury (as enthusiasts believe)? Or does barefoot running simply contribute to the development of a different set of injuries in some runners?

To find out, Dr. Ridge began by recruiting 36 experienced runners, men and women, who, until then, had run between 15 and 30 miles a week while wearing normal running shoes. She sent them to Dr. Brown for baseline M.R.I. scans of their feet and lower legs to check for any injuries or problems.

Those who believe in barefoot running often point out that humans ran and walked without shoes for millenniums before footwear was invented. They argue that being unshod is normal for humans and should reverse past injuries related to modern running shoes and prevent future ones.

But anecdotal evidence, including from physicians who treat runners, indicates that some people who take up barefoot running develop entirely new aches and injuries.

Dr. Ridge’s volunteers all started the study with normal feet and lower legs, according to their M.R.I. scans, which were read by multiple radiologists.

Half of the group members were randomly assigned to continue running as they had: same mileage, same shoes.

The other runners were given a pair of Vibram Five Fingers barefoot-style shoes and asked to begin incorporating some barefoot-like mileage into their runs, but gradually. They were told to wear the minimalist shoes for one mile during the first week of the study, two miles the second, three the third, and then as much as they liked, which is what the Vibram Web site recommended at the time of the 2011 study.

After 10 weeks, both groups of runners received a follow-up M.R.I. There was no evidence of injuries to or changes in the tissues of the lower leg, like the Achilles’ tendon, in any of the runners. But more than half of the runners wearing the minimalist shoes now showed early signs of bone injuries in their feet.

Specifically, most had developed bone marrow edema, an accumulation of fluid, similar to what happens during bruising, in their foot bones. The radiologists graded the edema on a scale of 0 to 4, with 0 representing no edema and 1 the slight bone damage caused by simply moving around on and loading the foot. This amount of edema is considered healthy, a sign that the bone is responding to training and growing stronger.

Most of the runners in the control group, who were wearing their normal shoes, had edema levels of 1 throughout their feet.

But a majority of the runners in the minimalist-shoe group had developed at least a level 2 edema, “which indicates early bone injury,” Dr. Ridge said, and three had signs of more-extensive level 3 bone edema, “which constitutes an actual injury.”

Two even had full stress fractures or level 4 edema, one in her heel bone and one in his metatarsal, one of the long foot bones.

Almost all of the runners in the minimalist shoe group were spontaneously running fewer miles at the end of the 10 weeks than they had been at the start, “probably,” Dr. Ridge said, “because their feet hurt.”

Why some of the barefoot-style runners developed serious foot problems and others did not is not yet clear, but Dr. Ridge is now analyzing additional data about the volunteers, which includes information about each runner’s mileage, running form, body weight and other variables.

“What we hope to see is whether there are some runners who, because of their biomechanics or other factors” seem to be particularly predisposed to foot injuries during the transition to barefoot-style running and “perhaps shouldn’t” make the switch at all from normal running shoes, she said.

She hopes to have findings ready to publish by this summer.

The results don’t mean that everyone who chooses to switch to minimal or no footwear will court foot injury, Dr. Ridge said. “But I would tell anyone who wants to try” kicking off their normal shoes, “to be extremely cautious during the transition period.” In her study, substituting a mere mile per week of normal running at the start with one in minimal shoes “was probably too much,” she says. So go slow.

Barefoot-style running may have been natural for our ancestors, Dr. Ridge points out, but it’s a new experience for most of our feet.


Asics – March Supplier of the Month

The iconic GEL-Kayano® is an award-winning, high-end performance running shoe series that offers the best technical advances, while consistently delivering its legendary ride. For Spring 2013, the 19th version takes a “stop at never” approach by continuing to take the shoe to the next level. Receiving a heel-to-toe makeover, the GEL-Kayano 19 focuses on two key elements: significant weight reduction and improved upper fit.
Dropping over a half ounce, it becomes the lightest GEL-Kayano ever, weighing in at 10.9 ounces for the men’s version and 8.9 ounces for the women’s. New lightweight upper materials and seamless overlay construction contribute to both the impressive weight savings and improved upper fit. The new support-specific Guidance Trusstic System® has also been introduced in the GEL-Kayano 19. Working with Guidance Line® technology to enhance gait repeatability, this feature comes with the added benefit of weight reduction.

The GEL-Kayano 19 has a redesigned upper with upgrades to create a more personalized fit and improved comfort. The Biomorphic Fit® Upper is constructed entirely of breathable four-way stretch mesh that wraps both sides of the foot, creating a softer and more accommodating fit. The Personal Heel Fit (P.H.F.™) has been reengineered with two layers of memory foam that hold the athlete’s heel more secure and reduces the potential for friction.

“GEL-Kayano is an established shoe for serious runners, and we are continually striving to deliver compelling enhancements,” says Brice Newton, Running Footwear Product Manager. “The newest GEL-Kayano 19 is no exception, displaying the latest innovations to enhance the fit and feel for runners.”

The Shoe Update by Phil Moore

The Shoe Update has been a resource for the medical and sport community for over 25 years in Vancouver !

It is the product of Phil Moore, a Queen’s University graduate who for 30 years has specialized in fitting difficult feet.

He has lectured on this subject to numerous professional associations and Universities in Canada as well as the United States and Germany while sitting on advisory boards for New Balance .

The Shoe Update has become a valuable resource for medical personnel including Podiatrists, Physiotherapists, Ocupational Therapists, Physicians, Pedorthists, Chiropractors etc.

It includes articles, definitions , comparisons and orthopaedic applications for every day shoes as it relates to common foot related pathologies.

The Shoe Update – Spring 2013

Phil can be reached at

Shop Local

At one point in time or another, we can each admit to ordering online or taking a trip to the U.S. to
purchase products, knowing we’ll save a few dollars. When you choose not to purchase within Canada,
local retailers are the first to feel the negative effects which causes disruption in our economy and
eventually comes back to hurt our community and us, the consumer. The concern is growing and our
retailers struggle to compete in an area in which they are disadvantaged.

The significant price gap between the U.S. and Canada is caused by Canadian duties and government
regulations, such as tariffs, bilingual policies, etc. These are imposed on wholesalers and manufacturers,
which, in turn, affect the retailer. Duties were originally put in place to protect Canadian manufacturers.
In the case of athletic shoe wear, there are no longer any manufacturers in Canada so the duties are not
necessary. A government report addressing this issue is currently being commissioned. We want these
unnecessary duties reduced or completely removed so that retailers stop losing out to cross border

Recent articles published in the Vancouver Sun and the Globe and Mail newspapers have addressed
issues of cross border shopping and the effects it has on our Canadian economy. Doug Porter, chief
deputy economist, of the Bank of Montreal stated “cross border shopping may be costing the Canadian
economy as much as $20 billion a year” and he predicted that “the new duty-free limits would make
the problem even worse”. If we continue to aid in the disruption of our economy by supporting
other international economies, this will create a problem for our government sectors which rely on
small businesses for a large portion of tax. Removing $20 billion every year and injecting it into other
countries will eventually affect what we now take for granted, including health care and education.

We can all do our part to help our economy by consciously making decisions on how and where we
spend our money. We may save a few dollars here and there with an online purchase or trip to the U.S.,
but we’ll end up costing Canada millions of dollars and eventually produce a negative effect on our
standard of living. Combat this economic issue by keeping money within Canada and supporting local,
independent retailers who support our communities, kid’s sports teams and local charities.

Team Joshua

What does it mean to be confined for your lifetime to a wheelchair? I have no concept of this of any sort.  In some way it is just IN-conceiveable. But, that is what Joshua is faced with. It turns out though, that just like the rest of us, Joshua loves to run!  Whoa!  What? Joshua loves to ‘run’ with his Mom, Michelle, and having heard her talk about this, you just KNOW she loves running with Joshua.

Post Run Fun at Team Joshua 5K

Post Run Fun at Team Joshua 5K

On Sunday, September 23, at UBC Campus there is a fund raising 5K that will let us join in the vision that sees Michelle and Joshua preparing for the goal that so many of us chase – running the Boston Marathon!  That’s right, Joshua wants to do Boston.  His Mom has already qualified on her own, but apparently it is necessary to qualify as a team. This run and the things that will follow are all about the equipment and training and other costs of the doing and going. For details on how you can participate, check the link.

For now, I just want to say that I personally took part in this event and it was fabulous to see the families participating and to see both Joshua and Michelle in person.  More than 250 people got out and run the out and back course with none of the ‘race pressure’ we usually feel.  One of the more amazing things was that five independent retailer (Forerunners, Lady Sport, The Runners Den, Run Inn and The Right Shoe) and five prominent running gear suppliers (Adidas, Asics, Mizuno, New Balance and Saucony) collaborated to make it a fun day for everyone. Every participant got a special goody bag, even separated by whether you were a kid or an adult! And some great draw prizes too. And the food? Wow, Mahoney and Sons Public House looked after the post race hungries in fine style!

Oh, the big object in the photo is a Fire Truck (ladder truck to be precise).  Should have seen those kids having fun with that.  Some even got to sit in the driver’s seat and that siren got sounded more than a couple of times!
Thanks to all!


Team Joshua

Foreruners Wins 2011 IRRC Store of The Year Award

Forerunners winner of 2011 – Forerunners founded by Peter and Karen Butler in 1986 and now managed by Todd Jangula received the 2011 Independent Running Retailers of Canada Store of The Year Award. The Award was presented to peter and Todd at The Running Events 50 best Store Awards Banquet in Austin Texas. This was the second year in a row that Forerunners won this award and Shad Ali, IRRC Executive Director noted that while the combination of talent and hard work applied consistently and on a sustained basis over their 25 year history that contributed to this store’s success, it is likely more to do with their constant focus on Customer needs and meeting those needs that sets Forerunners apart. The IRRC Store of The Year Award recognizes a Canadian independent running retailer for excellence in the areas of: Sales, Service, Community Involvement, Employee engagement and all around business success.





Forerunners winner of 2010 – At Forerunners you are assured a friendly welcome with professional advice from a fellow runner. Our focus is on ensuring that no matter your age or skill level, running or walking plays an enjoyable and rewarding part of your lifestyle.

With an amazing range of sizes and widths in stock (probably the largest in Vancouver), we make sure that the shoes you run in are the ones that suit you… not what looks good on our walls. If you’re looking for information on upcoming races, some advice on what to wear as the weather changes, or training tips on how to reach your goals we’re always happy to help.




Balega 2011 Ubuntu Award Presented to Luke MacDonald of Aerobics First


The Ubuntu Award is an award presented by Balega International. Ubuntu is a South African word that loosely translates to a sense of humanity or community, said Chris Bevin, general manager of Balega International as he presented the 2011 Ubuntu Award to Luke MacDonald of Aerobics First, a Halifax, Nova Scotia Based Running Specialty store and member of the Independent Running Retailers of Canada.


This year’s award celebrates Luke’s history of accomplishment in establishing partnerships locally, nationally and globally that benefits many communities and builds lasting legacies. Luke’s work on getting local young people active through running, his work in connecting and advancing the Run For Life project and expanding a shoe fitting program and exchange in Gambia are all exemplary of good citizenship engagement. Luke’s unselfish dedication to these endeavours has put many programs and people on a path to success and prosperity through active living.