Do you run? Do you run barefoot? Do you coach/train athletes that run barefoot? Then take a look at this timely summary article from the British Journal of Sports Medicine (Oct 2013). (institutional access required). http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24108403
It’s seems obvious to say that people have been running barefoot for centuries…to spare their lives from a saber-tooth tiger, or to deliver the word of Persian defeat ( Pheidippides, a Greek messenger)…but in modern times, barefoot running has become a new passion for many, a fad for some, and a hot topic in the world of running, coaching and rehabilitation.
There exists multiple camps, separated by research and results. Some say it exposes athletes to unnecessary trauma while inducing soft tissue and structural damage to the runner. Others feel that it actually helps prevent injuries by changing the stride length of the runner, while swapping out a heavy heel-strike to a softer, modulated fore-foot strike.
The research…the evidence…is still mounting. But the jury is still out. At least there are some very smart clinicians, researchers and coaches out there to sift through the details and help get us timely information to make healthy decisions.
Take a look at the above-mentioned article, and help yourself in making the right choice for your running style, goals and physical needs!
And keep on running!