Dare to go bare (foot); and choos­ing the right phys­io­ther­a­pist for you

We’ve found the best ex­cuse to set your feet free this sum­mer

Runner's World (UK) - - In This Issue -

IF YOU NEED a rea­son to throw off your shoes and run bare­foot on freshly cut grass or silky sand now that sum­mer’s here, re­searchers from Brazil1 have dis­cov­ered a good one: a less in­jury-prone run­ning style. A group of run­ners had their gait an­a­lysed be­fore and af­ter a 16-week pro­gres­sive bare­footrun­ning pro­gramme. The train­ing re­sulted in lower im­pact forces and im­proved shock at­ten­u­a­tion, as well as re­duced ac­ti­va­tion in four lower-leg mus­cles (high lev­els of mus­cle ac­ti­va­tion are as­so­ci­ated with greater in­jury risk). These ben­e­fits were demon­stra­ble whether the run­ners were bare­foot or shod when tested, sug­gest­ing that go­ing shoe­less now and again has value even if you have no in­ten­tion of be­com­ing a full-time bare­footer.

ON YOUR FEET! Take off your shoes and run on a soft sur­face: it can lower your risk of in­jury and it feels great.

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