March 27, 2011 at 7:28 pm in INFORUM
As a kid in elementary school, I can remember lining up in phys ed with my classmates playing games.
Simple running games like racing to be the first to the other side of the gymnasium.
Tags: columns, Running, Sports, Steve Wagner 4 Comments »
I will not run without my barefoot running shoes. My Nike Free’s are awesome! I no longer have shin splints and my ankles are stronger. Plus it is nice to slip into a new pair of shoes and not have to “break them in”
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Sorry, I have to take issue with Steve’s support for minimalist running shoes.
As a longtime runner and marathoner (25-plus years), I can say the knees and hips need all the cushion they can get. And I personally suffered because I tried minimally-cushioned shoes for years.
So for the benefit of young runners, I would hope you would either retract your endorsement or at least give the other side.
Running is great, but well-cushioned shoes are a must. Speed and great distance times clockings are great, but, for the long run and true oveally body health, young runners should understand the needs of the body for support and cushion.
Please give that “op-ed” advice too.
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I would have to agree with Steve on this one. Minimalist shoes promote a more natural way of running. This means striking more on the mid to fore foot rather than heal strikes. This allows your foot to naturally cushion your body (foot and legs) each time your foot lands rather than relying on heavy heal cushion.
Personally, I have switched to running all of my miles (40-70mpw) in either racing flats or Vibram Five Fingers. I have had great results with my running economy, form, and overall speed. It was a slow progression with the switch but since I have made it my body prefers less shoe.
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I understand your opposition to barefoot/minimalist running. If it has kept you healthy for 25 plus years of distance running, by all means stick with it. Just don’t throw around statements like “well-cushioned shoes are a must” for every runner.
Depending on ones goals from running, different approaches can be more successful than others. I understand that a track speedster would want to run with the current conventional technique, the results have been astronomical. But for an individual looking for lifelong vitality, I do not think it is conclusive that running with heavily cushioned shoes is the standalone answer.
Remember, well-cushioned heels are an extremely new technology in the running world, and different running forms have been utilized successfully throughout history, far different than today’s heel strike first approach.
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