I'm not saying that if someone gets a stress fracture its most likely because they wore vibrams, rather someone who is switching to minimalism is more likely to develop a stress fracture if they aren't careful. Of course you can get the same injuries in normal running shoes, but they still protect the foot more than minimalist shoes.Tapeworm said:I agree mostly with what you say but one cannot attribute stress fractures to "barefoot" running in isolation. There are plenty of like injuries by people in "normal" running shoes. Both often often stem from similar causes:- too much volume, poor form, lack of proper recovery etc.
Those that are accustomed to large volumes have always used quite "minimalist" shoes, though I recall them being called "race flats."
so what was the footwear of choice? not banana peels i hope?durianrider said:I won the Adelaide Xmas Fanatics Half marathon a few days ago. No way would I have won it in my Vibrams.
Walk around the house barefoot and train and race in proper footwear.
Vibram USA, the company that makes FiveFingers running shoes, has agreed to settle a lawsuit that alleged the company made false and unsubstantiated claims about the health benefits of its glove-like footwear. According to the court filings, Vibram settled to put the matter to rest and avoid any additional legal expenses. “Vibram expressly denied and continues to deny any wrongdoing alleged in the Actions, and neither admits nor concedes any actual or potential fault, wrongdoing or liability,” read the court brief.
Valerie Bezdek brought the class action suit against Vibram in March 2012. She filed her complaint in Massachusetts, the state where Vibram’s U.S. headquarters are located. Bezdek alleged that Vibram deceived consumers by advertising that the footwear could reduce foot injuries and strengthen foot muscles, without basing those assertions on any scientific merit. “The gist of her claim is that Vibram illegally obtained an economic windfall from her because it was only by making false health claims that Vibram induced consumers to buy FiveFingers shoes, and to pay more for them than they would have otherwise,”
WTF. I'm only just seeing this now.Beech Mtn said:
Vibrams are, anecdotally, the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn. I'm just putting it out there. But, to answer your question more seriously, how would anybody make money if people didn't buy shoes? There is no product to sell if they promote barefoot running.Grew up barefoot running - simply because that was the rule at school when we did phys-ed and because there really weren't that many proper running shoes available (unless you were a member of a track team that is). And what shoes were available weren't anything special - stuff that I think the poms call "plimsoles". I did wear shoes a few times at high school for running - but they were no help really.
I remember getting back into running at uni - and buying "modern running shoes". Along with that came a raft of problems - tight calves, twisted ankles, plantar fascia problems, knee pains. I stuck with those shoes and just ran less and less - which was sweet as I biked more and more ...
I got into orienteering and was surprised to find that my orienteering shoes - which make the things we wore at high school look positively padded - gave me none of the problems that my normal running shoes did. It took me a couple of years to really put two and two together and change my normal road and off-road shoes to minimalist, low profile shoes. With that change I found that all of my problems that I'd had with the normal type of running shoes (be they pronation control or just cushioning) disappeared.
I'll also say that in NZ its common place when you buy running shoes that the store will put you on a treadmills and film your foot fall while you run. Last time I bought a pair of off-road shoes we did that and tried both minimalist/low profile shoes and normal shoes. The difference was amazing - much straighter and better footfall with the minimalist shoes, while I kept collapsing in with the "normal" shoes. (My partner, who's a massage therapist and personal trainer, even commented on the stress that the normal shoes were putting on my legs.)
All that being a long way to say that, while I don't see myself going back to barefoot running in the near future, I can understand why it is taking hold. As my story shows, my personal experience is that less shoe is definitely the better way to go for me.
(Also recommend checking out Arthur Lydiard's bollocking of Phil Knight from Nike when Knight developed the cushioned shoe - and basically taught a generation of runners how to run wrong ...)