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10 Tips on How and Why to Start Running Barefoot

By Billy K

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Jan 28, 2014 7:47:00 AM

This week I’m going to break from my usual routine of giving you my recommendations and share some recommendations from a really fascinating book, “Barefoot Running,” by Michael Sandler. Barefoot running is becoming more and more popular these days. One of our recent blog posts discussed two aspects of foot health that are critical to our foot strength – one is based on earthing and nourishing your feet, while the other is based on the biomechanics. Some studies and proponents of going barefoot have recently begun advocating for running barefoot as a source of great exercise and foot strengthening.

However, before you jump in and start running your 5K without shoes, take a look at these first few tips for making your barefoot transition even easier. Here are the Top Rules of the Road for a Healthy Transition to Barefoot Running from the book, “Barefoot Running.”

  1. Go slow – consider starting with 100 yards and add to that gradually.
  2. Let your skin be your guide – feel the ground and learn to run lightly.
  3. Build foot strength – between runs, do foot-strengthening exercises.
  4. Focus on form – transitioning demands greater focus on what your body is doing.
  5. Leave the iPod and ego behind – pay attention and start slowly.
  6. Get balanced – work on balance and symmetrical strength.
  7. Get loose – stretch!
  8. Get aligned – misalignment creates overuse injuries.
  9. Go bare – find a variety of surfaces and out of shoes.
  10. Learn to rest – barefoot running does not eliminate the need for recovery.


I highly recommend this book to anyone interest in learning about barefoot running. It really is a must read.

Post by Billy Kanter


Topics: Foot Health

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