Thursday, August 19, 2010

Barefoot running

My younger brother has thing thing about weird attire. The last time I was home we had a really long talk about barefoot running, and these running sandles he'd just purchased that were made out of tires with leather straps to hold them on. Now I'm all for minamilistic shoes and thought they looked rather neat, but I couldn't imagine how they would stay on your feet well enough to actually RUN in them (not to mention they had absolutely no stub your toe protection)

Anyway today I was taking a break and found an article discussing barefoot running and these trendy, almost not there, running shoes called Vibrams. I'm thinking they look funky enough he'd like them, and I always did have a thing for muppet socks... they even come in pink!! If they didn't cost 80 bucks I'd even buy myself a pair.


C said...

There was an article in the Arizona Daily Sun about barefoot running, and they said the proponents love it because it does not strain your feet and ankles the way running shoes do (apparently it's the stiffness of the cushioning in running shoes that holds the feet in such a position that it harms the feet and ankles). Furthermore, they argue that people in olden times and in poor countries don't wear shoes and they have healthy feet.

The flip side was voiced by an older guy who had done barefoot running quite a lot when younger, and he said that the benefit to feet and ankles is offset by damage to knees and hips caused by the lack of cushioning. He added that people in olden times and in poor countries didn't/don't need cushioning because they are running around on dirt and turf, whereas people in the USA mostly have hard paved surfaces wherever they go.

So I guess it's like most of life: extremes are bad, moderation is good. Don't go for heavily cushioned inflexible running shoes, but don't go to the opposite end of the spectrum and wear no cushion at all on your feet.

Gwyneth said...

the joints part would have been my concern and I'm glad to hear it is a "real" one. I guess the happy medium is key, and to buy an actual light running shoe for running (vs a cross trainer).


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