Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Barefoot Running

Over the past year there has been an increasing trend of barefoot running among athletes. Research studies were released that had shown up to 38% increase in undesirable stress on knees and hips while wearing conventional athletic shoes. This study is one of many to bring this idea to the forefront. This author however may not advocate barefoot running, however, would like to use the information to construct a better running shoe.

Many “shoes” such as the “Vibram 5 finger” have been constructed to allow safe barefoot running which allow safety from debris while allowing intrinsic foot muscle activation. This however, brings us back a few weeks when we were discussing the Sketchers shape up shoes. All of the guidelines for changing footwear applies if you are considering barefoot running. You should not attempt a “normal” run that you would perform in normal shoes barefoot. The results would most likely be in an injury. Instead any new footwear around the house, on short walks, and start to wean the activity into your routine. Also it is important to consult a professional in order to discuss whiter barefoot running is right for you and the safest way to begin.

For more information on training programs for runners, or to schedule a consultation for physical therapy, feel free to contact us at 518-690-4406 or visit our website at or email us at

William R. Milhizer PT, DPT

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