Have you ever heard about barefoot running? Can barefoot running or minimalistic running shoes be your best option? Does this running method guarantee your feet to stay on their natural shape while on the other hand protecting them?
The reason why shoes are invented is to protect our feet from the outside elements and rough terrain despite the temperatures and other environmental components. Protecting the feet means you’re securing a stable support for the whole body.
Have you asked yourself why the need of running shoes? Is this invention really necessary? How can many populations are still standing barefoot and most importantly, practice persistent hunting on daily basis? We all know animal hunting is an activity that requires high endurance level and strength in order to be fully performed. Well, maybe, since we’re designed to do so, running shoes might not even be necessary…
There are many famous runners that have gone barefoot through many years and have proved that going natural might actually the real secret to success. Abebe Bikila, the greatest Olympic marathoner of all times from Ethiopia, was one of the first athletes to ever prove that barefoot running hides great potentials.
Main proved benefits of barefoot running
Barefoot running has shown to increase muscle and tendon’s strength and also, allow them to develop more naturally. By letting your running shoes at home, your feet won’t be lifted. They will be more stretched and make the Achilles tendon stronger.
By running barefoot, you will gradually learn to run on your forefoot rather than your heel. Due to the excessive and repetitive padding of your running shoes on your heels, you experience the development of heel strike. When running on your heel, you might even experience several feet injuries that can even make you unable to further progress on your athletic level. Most efficient and old athletes have gradually learned to run on their mid-foot. By doing this, they keep their strides fluid and also smooth.
Barefoot running can potentially improve your balance. This type of running can activate all small muscles in your feet, legs and ankles. Especially the ones responsible for better balance and coordination. You will be able to fully support all your running moves and allow your feet to self-adjust with the environment.
Main side effects of barefoot running
The first, main side effect athletes that go barefoot can experience is a shock to their foot. Going barefoot requires its adaption phase. Many athletes see no need on going barefoot since they feel already pleased and confident enough with their running shoes. The most common question asked when deciding whether to go barefoot or not, is the existence of any pain or injury. If haven’t experienced any bone of muscle injury on your feet, then, going barefoot might not be necessary after all…
Many studies indicate that professional running shoes offer more advanced protection from different ground debris. They do also offer temperature protection during cold or hot days.
Runners that decide to go barefoot or wearing minimalistic shoes, should also know that this transition phase won’t be easy at all. Your feet will feel overworked and you may experience moderate injuries such as Achilles tendonitis and calf strain.