'What's up with those funky shoes that look like gloves for the feet?'
They're designed for barefoot running, a new movement that tries to replicate the unshod experience using barely-there shoes. This practice, which borrows from indigenous peoples who don't have the luxury of the latest Nikes, supposedly strengthens the foot muscles and allows the feet to move more naturally. But is it safe? "If you didn't grow up running in bare feet, it's extremely risky, resulting in everything from stress fractures to arthritis," warns John Brummer, a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Assoc. Feet not only need protection from hard, uneven surfaces but also require customized support for their unique structure.
And one more Real Simple running tidbit:
'How do I tell when I need new running shoes?'
Keep an eye on the shoe's midsole - the cushiony layer between the treads and the mesh upper. When you notice deep-set wrinkles there (like a squashed marshmallow), it's time to say good-bye.
Interesting. Don't you think? What are your thoughts on barefoot running? I'll keep my barefoot running to short, quick runs where I focus on my foot strike and my stride.