Thursday, 19 August 2010

Barefoot Running?

Bit of a gap between post's. What with holiday season and my inability to run at the moment....Still injured.

Barefoot Running...It seems to be gaining a bit of momentum at the moment. It's starting to creep into mainstream running press. So in five years time will we all be coverted back to where we started?

Like many my first introduction to Barefoot running came when I read 'Born to Run' and my first reaction was no way, but since reading more about the subject...well I'm kinda sitting on the fence.

The reason we wear trainers is because basically our feet have got lazy over time. I for instance overpronate but if I was to gradually build up my barefoot running, the argument is my feet would actually correct themselves. Injuries would be a thing of the past?

Unlike 15000 BC there was not tarmac roads, broken glass and all manner of things that physically stop you from running barefoot. Even if you built yourself up with Barefoot training, and could run 50 miles, where could you run for that distance without incountering some sort of obstacle that otherwise would be easily overcome with trainers. I mean even the Tarahumara tribe wear a form of shoe albeit a basic one.

But we can now wear footwear such as the Vibram five finger footwear. Again proof that the argument for barefoot running is now mainstream, I mean we would not even have heard of such a product ten years ago.

I guess i'm still happy in my trainers especially on those cold wet days, but since I've been out injured for so long the thought has crossed my mind....Injury free? Barefoot running?

Like I said earlier the jury is out on this one. I'm not pro Barefoot running far from it, but I add this post to put the subject out there for argument.

Please let me know your thoughts on a growing subject.


  1. I am sticking to my cushioned shoes. I can't think of a situation when I would go out and run barefoot around our town. Apart from the fear of treading on glass or worse still a used needle there is dog mess too. In summer there are hot pavements and in winter I would love to know if anyone really runs barefoot in the snow?

    I did run with my son barefoot on a beach in Britany but this ended badly when he stood on glass.

    Perhaps this colours my opinion but the more minalimist vibram shoes are surely still running shoes but just cleverly marketed

  2. I agree with the Vibram post. I started running barefoot several months ago. The transition was not pleasant but hey I wanted to join see what the hype was all about. I started by running around the house on bare feet then bought a pair of VFF's and went on a 2 mile walk and slowly increased the distance. Now, I'm just enjoying the freedom of running with a pair of barefoot running shoes and even on bare feet.

    In fact, I'm in the market now for a new pair of shoes. Saw the new Vibram Bikila at and I'm thinking how cool it would look on me. But I heard it's super hard to find one of these nowadays."

  3. Thanks BuryBlue and Billy for taking time out to comment. You both make great points from both sides of the topic.

  4. Interesting thing about the body. It comes pre equipped with hazard avoidance systems. Your *eyes*

    See the thing is about BF'ing it, is that once you do it a mental synaptic SNAP engages with your eyes/feet/legs as you begin to scan the few meters in front of you. Your mind maps out your next few steps automatically and the dance begins.

    I say dance because you will surprise yourself as you nimbly avoid this pebble or that. Something you could never do in nerve numbing shoes.

    Try it for a 400 meter run and you'll see what I'm talking about.

    I only run BF a few miles per week. The rest of all of my runs are in racing flats. The BF miles however are like sharpening a knifes edge.

  5. I am injured as well and like you have often thought about barefoot running. Its something that I am definitely going to have to try as soon as I am fixed!

    Bad luck with your injury. Keep up the swimming!

  6. Nicely put AF Ted, I think I may give the 'dancing' a go.

    Run The Line - It's definitely food for thought isn't it? Good Luck with your injury too.

  7. I agree on this; "But we can now wear footwear such as the Vibram five finger footwear. Again proof that the argument for barefoot running is now mainstream, I mean we would not even have heard of such a product ten years ago."

  8. I think the science behind barefoot running makes sense... but its critical that you start slow. Personally, I use it as a training tool like hills and intervals as opposed to a permanent shoe replacement. Always good to build up foot strength and flexibility.

  9. I heard a lot about this barefoot running, though I haven't experience it yet. Thanks for sharing this..