Barefoot Runners

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Wear Pattern Discovery (Read 483 times)

    During the first 5 years of my short running career I always wore cushioned, neutral running shoes - "the more cushioning, the better" for me.  All of these shoes eventually showed uneven but significant wear patterns on the sole of each shoe.  Generally, the pattern was most worn around the outside left heel, and a little less noticeable outside the right heel.  Wear on the forefoot areas seemed to be irregular - maybe more worn on my "plant" foot.

     

    Well, I always thought this uneven wear distribution was due to the fact that my feet were so different from each other:  one low or flat arch and one very high arch, hammer toes on one foot (corrected only partly by surgery), and a foot length discrepancy of more than one inch.  Plus, my running progress has been delayed or stopped in the past 3 years by chronic runner's injuries (shin splints/compartment syndrome & PF).

     

    Fast forward to a few months ago, when I completed a transition from wearing normal running shoes, to running  barefoot or wearing minimalist shoes - even at work, around the house, and running errands.  I did wear a pair of dress shoes to a funeral in Feb., and will again to a wedding in May, but that's it.  But anyway, my injuries have disappeared almost 100%.  So the other day, I was checking out a pair of water shoes that I have almost worn out to see how much outsole was left, and observed that the wear on each sole was distributed very evenly across most of the entire surface of each shoe, which surprised me, since I still have the same feet as before.  My other minimal shoes don't have much mileage on them, but they also seem to have even wear - no differences noted.

     

    So I'm wondering exactly what this means.  Does it mean that regular running shoes only mirrored my physical shortcomings and prevented me from being able to properly compensate, thereby actually NOT helping to prevent or even lessen injury?  OTOH, not walking/running with cushioning or support apparently has allowed me to use a much more "natural" means of locomotion which has provided compensation or tolerance for physical imbalances.  I still have the same deficiencies as before, but it's like it really doesn't matter now.

     

    Does anyone else have similar experience, a different take, or a comment on this?  Sorry this was a little long - and thanks for any responses!    

     

    I can do 440 in 220      Half Fanatic #846      90% of running is half mental     I ran half of my last race on my left foot!

     

      I would say that your form has changed.


      Sorry for the short response.

       

        I would say that your form has changed.


         Actually, I didn't think of that possibility!

         

         

        Sorry for the short response.

         That's OK - it mitigates my long post...

        I can do 440 in 220      Half Fanatic #846      90% of running is half mental     I ran half of my last race on my left foot!