28 January 2010

Running barefoot is gaining ground

Running barefoot is gaining ground@Philly

Barefoot runners tend to land on the balls of their feet, rather than smacking the ground heel-first, generating an impact that may be less harmful to the body, a team of researchers is reporting today in the journal Nature.

Last month another study found that runners wearing shoes experienced greater torque in the knee and hip. While neither study looked at rates of injury, the authors of the Nature paper say the forefoot-first style may reduce tibial stress fractures and a painful condition called plantar fasciitis.

Still, the authors of the Nature paper cautioned that if people want to run forefeet-first - whether they are barefoot or wearing minimal shoes - they should proceed gradually.

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