Snow Chains For Your Running Shoes

  • By Aaron Hersh
  • Published Dec 14, 2012
  • Updated Dec 17, 2012 at 4:08 PM UTC

If you need a pair of dedicated mud and ice shoes that can stand up to any conditions, this technique will turn a discarded old pair of running shoes into your new favorite winter trainers.

You’ll need an old pair of running shoes, a bag of three-eighth-inch hex head screws, a Sharpie and a drill or screwdriver.

Put the shoes on and run a few strides while feeling for the regions of your forefoot that take most of the pressure during a stride. Pop the shoes off and mark three spots on the sole underneath those pressure points with the Sharpie. They will probably be along the ball of your foot. Make sure to center the screws on tall knobs of rubber to prevent the screws’ tips from wiggling through the sole.

If you are using a screwdriver, poke a thumbtack into the sole to create a small hole to set the screw. Jamming a screw into hard rubber can be frustrating without a power tool, so be patient. The screws should go in easily if you’re using a drill.

Once those three screws are in place, add one more at the front of the sole and two more at the rear of the forefoot, toward the medial side of the shoe. There is no need to add any screws under the heel because running on ice naturally forces runners up onto their toes.

Your haggard old running shoes are now the perfect pair of snow, ice and mud trainers. The only side effect of installing the screws is a clanking sound when running on pavement, but they still grip the road effectively. Just be careful around hardwood floors.

RELATED: Safe Snow Running

FILED UNDER: Gear & Tech / Run TAGS: / / / / /

Aaron Hersh

Aaron Hersh

Aaron Hersh is the Senior Tech Editor of Triathlete magazine. To submit a question, write Aaron at

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