What is Barefoot Running?

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  • Written By: Luke Arthur
  • Edited By: C. Wilborn
  • Last Modified Date: 06 November 2019
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Barefoot running is a type of exercise that involves running without shoes on or running with very thin footwear. Many individuals turn to barefoot running because it can be more efficient than running with running shoes. Some people wear moccasins or other thin footwear in order to protect the skin, but it can still be considered to be barefoot running. One of the primary reasons that people engage in barefoot running is to eliminate serious injuries that are sometimes associated with running.

The barefoot running movement has grown in popularity in recent years. Many people who engage in this type of running prefer to run on hard surfaces, such as concrete or asphalt, while others prefer to run on softer surfaces such as sand or grass. As with other types of running, each surface can provide different benefits.

The idea behind barefoot running is that it is more efficient than running with shoes on. Supporters of this method argue that the human body was designed to run perfectly and putting padding under the feet changes the way that the body handles the pressure of running. Some shoes can lead to serious problems because of a lack of support in the proper areas. The body is designed to run by putting weight on the ball of the foot instead of on the heel. With shoes on, many people put their weight on the heel, which can lead to problems.


Even though it is referred to as barefoot running, some people still cover their feet with something. In most cases, these individuals will purchase moccasins and use them for running. These moccasins do not necessarily provide any support for the feet, but they do provide protection from sharp objects underfoot. Sometimes, running barefoot on the pavement can get very hot, and these moccasins help to protect the skin from getting burned. Even though this is not technically barefoot, it is still generally considered acceptable in the barefoot running community.

One of the advantages of this type of running is that it is designed to prevent serious injuries. Many people who run with shoes on experience ankle and knee problems at some point. By taking off the shoes, these individuals may get a more natural movement, and the body may be able to absorb the shock like it was designed to. After an individual gets used to this style of running, he or she may be able to avoid serious injuries in the future.



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