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Running Barefoot vs. with Shoes? Which is Best?

by | Dec 11, 2018 | General Info

Today I wanted to bring a a topic to you a talking about barefoot running versus shod running or
running with with shoes and the reasoning for doing this.  A lot of people will will want to run barefoot as opposed to shoes and because of that, some people have decreased amount of injuries running in one form for them in another. This is a common topic that I work through patient’s with at our clinic Odom Health and Wellness.

One study was done where they compared similar amount of mileage and volume with between people who ran barefoot and people who ran with shoes and they measured the amount of injuries that both of these two groups had and what they found with this with this research study was that the amongst the shoe runners or runners who wear running shoes, they had a injury distribution through common running injuries that we would see: knee pain, hip pain, and foot pain.
Amongst the barefoot running group they had a substantial base of injuries to what’s called the plantar surface of the foot. So what’s interesting is, the barefoot population had less overall injuries but even more interestingly it was more specific to where we’re contacting the ground.
One main concept to remember is that barefoot running tends to will force your body in a natural way to respond and react to the ground than most shoes that have a significant amount of cushioning that is separating our feet from the ground.
The overall practical take-home point here is that: if we transition to a minimalist shoe, we can kind of harvest those benefits from a barefoot running style form and technique with also providing some sort of a cushion to avoid some of the plantar surface injuries that we see so often.
Now let’s say you have pain with running which can complicate things a little bit. That’s when you recommend you kind of get it looked at by your trusted physical therapist so we can pick apart the source of pain and what type of runner
you are. If you haven’t worked with a physical therapist on your running or you would be interested in learning more feel free to learn more here.
We also have a free running group that focuses on injury prevention routinely covers relevant running topics much like this one that our minnesota runners have been enjoying!