Barefoot running has been getting a lot of attention as an alternative to the use of running shoes. It’s not with its controversy, mostly due to the misuse of the science by the barefoot running community and how the media has interpreted the barefoot running research, which has led to a number of debates on barefoot running. For example, the barefoot running community claim that running shoes are bad and are the cause of running injuries and that barefoot runners get less injuries. Not only is there no evidence to back that up, there appears to be a lot of injuries in barefoot runners, such as top of foot pain and stress fractures caused by the Vibram Five Fingers running shoes. There is even a anti-running barefoot website that analyses the claims made for it. It may sound like an oxymoron, but there are even barefoot running shoes.
Barefoot running probably has a lot going for it at increasing muscles strength and proprioception and probably used be used in moderation by most runners as part of a balanced running program. A different running technique or gait is used to run barefoot and for some runners this will be beneficial and for others it may be harmful. Proper advice is needed to be followed to transition from running shoes to barefoot running. A popular book on this topic is Born to Run.
Products that may help barefoot runners:
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