Barefoot Running - Expert Advice


I'm currently writing what will hopefully be a university-level dissertation on the potential advantages and drawbacks of barefoot running and running with minimalistic shoes (such as Vibram Fivefingers). Specifically, I am researching into the efficiency and safety (injury-prevention) of barefoot running.

So, I would love some of your opinions or any resources/websites you may think may be useful to me.

I hate to sound elitist, but at the moment I really only need information from anyone who works in the running, health or science industries. It's not that I don't value others' opinions - when I want to find the opinions of normal athletes I will look through the other threads on barefoot running. (Having said this, if you have researched the science behind barefoot running and feel you could help me (but do not work in one of the above industry), I would love to hear from you.)

And I apologise to anyone if they have already posted on other threads, but there are thousands of them and I thought this may be an quicker way for me to gather information, if you wouldn't mind posting them again.

Many thanks

Thomas Claessens


  • Hi Thomas,

    Sounds interesting! I've looked in to this a lot recently since reading 'Born to Run' and suffering ongoing achilles injuries. I've just (this week!) got a pair of Newtons to try and am looking forward to seeing how I get on with them.

    Good luck with the studies – keep us updated with your findings! image

  • This is a great website and the guys book is really good.

    Also look up the guys at Terra Plana I am sure they can help you out and put you in touch with there experts.
  • The problem with using sources such as Terra Plana, Virtbram and Newton is that you will not get impartial information as their business model depends upon people trying shoes that promote a more natural way of running.
    Im a big fan of newtons myself and own a few pairs as well as five fingers though as such am very interested in this.

    The question I always have though when reading research  is that the term always mentioned is 'natural running form' -- This may be ideal on 'natural running surfaces' such as grass however the reality is that many runners run on man made surfaces such as concrete or tarmac. I do not believe the question has been answered regarding how these surfaces impact the natural unprotected foot over long period.

  • Thanks very much everyone - this is great.
  • Hay James Joy - great website, thanks!
    this made me laugh though...

    Disclaimer- Don’t run barefoot in the winter. Doing so may result in injury. The following is merely a documentation of the lessons I learned through my own stupidity.
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