Barefoot Runners


Orthotics or Barefoot? (Read 283 times)

Eustace Tierney


    My orthotics are due to arrive in a week or so but I have just done a couple of runs barefoot on grass in the last few days and I loved it. I obviously have some mechanical problems which may be coming from my feet. Ive been suffering with different injuries since last November and have gone from 50mpw to 4 or 5. I barely manage one run a week. My first barefoot run was 1.5miles and it felt great. No injuries until I put my shoes back on and ran the 1.5miles home. Then my calf muscle decided to play up (one of my recurring injuries). I took the next day off and then tried another barefoot run. Although I only managed another 1.5 miles before the calf muscle played up I felt great. I really did enjoy this. My dilema is, that if I have some real foot issues, should i forget about barefoot running or should I use the orthotics? Im going to take 2weeks off now to let this calf muscle recover but I dont know whether or not I shoul then start with the orthotics or start running barefoot. Has anyone got any similar experience or advice?

    "The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare." Goals: Keep on running!

      Dr. Maffetone has writen an exellent article about running shoes. You can read the whole story from (requires a free registration for a membership, worth it). Check article "Athletic Shoes and Supports: Facts & Myths" "During my 30 professional years, I may have prescribed less than a dozen pair of orthotics. However, I probably removed and discarded hundreds of pairs of orthotics from athlete’s, and other, shoes during that same time. One potential problem with orthotics is that the need for other therapies is often overlooked and not obtained. Consider orthotics almost like surgery — it’s one of the last resorts after other more conservative therapies have not found or corrected the problem. (Muscle biofeedback may be the best therapy for these types of foot‐muscle problems.)" Most probably you feet muscles are weak and out of balance with other leg muscles. This cause serious stress to different muscle groups. Orthotics can worsen the case. Please, read the article and even contact our Doctor. He is really good in replying. Good luck!