Bare Foot Running – What is it All About?

Girl running on beach
Photo by Alex Gorin on Unsplash

Barefoot running or ‘natural running’ is a trend that swept the nation a few years ago, and the movement is still going strong. But what’s wrong with running shoes and what’s so great about the shoeless lifestyle? Let’s dive in!

What is Barefoot Running?

Barefoot running is basically what it says on the tin. Running without footwear or with specially designed ‘barefoot’ or minimalist shoes, which are very thin, flexible, and may have separate toe compartments.

What are the Benefits of Barefoot Running?

Proponents of barefoot running suggest that it may offer many benefits:

  • Barefoot running may encourage you to improve your running technique, reducing wear and tear on your joints.
  • Barefoot running could strengthen your foot muscles which is particularly beneficial for flat feet.
  • Barefoot running may reduce your risk of plantar fasciitis issues.
  • Barefoot running takes more effort than running with springy shoes on and can help you to burn more calories.

What are the Risks of Barefoot Running?

However, before you ditch your running shoes completely, there are several concerns associated with barefoot running to be aware of.

  • Barefoot running increases your risk of splinters, cuts, puncture wounds and infection. Be careful where you put your feet, and consider wearing barefoot shoes rather than going fully shoe-free!
  • Barefoot running might also increase your risk of foot stress fractures as your muscles adjust!