Barefoot running certainly has its devoted followers swearing by it but detractors will also say that it’s no good for the body. Should you try a barefoot running technique? Read on to find out.
Barefoot running is natural
According to many, barefoot running is natural and since the days of the cavemen, people have been doing this type of running. Before the invention of shoes, people have been running around barefoot without thinking about injuries or the problems that going barefoot may cause.
Also, elite Kenyan runners who can do a marathon in two hours plus, have run thousands of miles barefoot as children, before even investing in their first pair of running shoes.
So barefoot or minimalist running may be the way to go.
Barefoot running is a good shock absorber
Some people who used to be prone to chronic running injuries have switched to barefoot running and they swear by it. According to them, the lower legs and feet are supposed to be good at absorbing the shock as your feet lands on the ground. As well, barefoot running is meant to enhance the natural motion and springing ability of the foot as it moves.
Wearing cushioned shoes will cause the feet to land unnaturally as the heels will strike the ground first (rather than the forefoot), thereby increasing your chances of getting running-related injuries.
So going barefoot when you are running may have its benefits.
Barefoot runners cover less mileage
Barefoot runners tend to have more pressure placed on their joints compared to runners who wear thickly padded shoes to run. As a result, barefoot runners tend to cover less mileage (compared to those wearing padded shoes), to protect their joints from serious injury, as well as wear and tear.
So if you enjoy running long distances, it may mean that barefoot running is not the best choice for you.
Barefoot running may cause injuries
With barefoot running, your feet aren’t being protected by anything. So you might step on both natural and man-made obstacles in your path, such as rocks, pebbles and broken glass. As a result, if you are not careful, you will be at risk of getting painful cuts and abrasions on your feet that will almost certainly result in a lay-off time from running.
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