SENSIBLE question on minimal shoes - NO TROLLS PLEASE!

I have been running for about 2 years now (background is fairly competitive cycling) and so far (fingers-crossed) no injuries, pains, etc.  Until last month, it was unstructured - just going out when I felt like it, making up my route, distance, speed as I felt.

I have seen some New Balance 101 minimal trail shoes for £20 and thought that they are cheap enough to 'have a go'.  So, I don't 'need' to fix any problems - I just thought it's a cheap introduction.

QUESTION: Am i going to benefit from this at all?  Is there any other advantage to minimal shoes other than injury-prevention?  Is it more fun, or faster, or better for the environment?

And please don't turn this into another thread like the last one. image  Thanks!


  • Er, yes.  Why?


  • It is reduced from £50-60 in a sale.

    It' this one (but not from there).

    Do you like chicken?

  • As KK says, it's not strictly 'barefoot', but it may have less cushioning than what you're runnning in now, so take it easy before you get used to it. 

    I personally like minimalist(ish) shoes, with low profile and low heel-forefoot drop, and I think they can help if you want to move to more midfoot/forefoot striking. However, neither shoes, nor midfoot/forefoot striking though are the only acceptable way of running and certainly no recipe for injury free runnng -  there is more to right technique than how the foot lands. 

  • Thanks, goji.  By moving to a more mid/forefoot strike, can you go faster?  I know that when I sprint, I am up at the front of my foot, but the longer I go, the further back that gets.  Is there an advantage to running say, 1/2 marathons in skinny shoes/on the front of your feet?


  • I live in Copenhagen and I never see anyone running barefoot!  The Nike shoes with the wobbly soles are really popular in the gyms (mainly cross-fit types), but the outside runners wear more traditional shoes.  But it's been in the minus figures for the last 3-4 months, so frostbite would be a serious issue if you ran for a couple of hours.

    No idea in the UK - I imagine playing fields and other short-cut grass?

  • It's lovely - expensive, but higher salaries help offset the taxes. Still pricy for a visit, but worth it.  Very egalitarian.   Design capital of the world (even the chairs in the public libraries are Arne Jacobsen!)  55% of all journeys made by bike (I am in love!) - people go to work, shops, cinemas, night-clubs by bike.  It's chilly at the moment, but the summers are nice - we are on an island with forests and fjords and not so many people.  For a capital, it's quiet and relaxed.  A very nice change from London!

  • Good!  I've only been here for 5 months, but have visited a lot of times before.  Everyone speaks English, they love quality food and cosy cafe-culture.  Hard to describe 'hygge' but it's cosiness - think candles, blankets, cushions and soft-lighting.  And that's just the seats outside the cafes!

    If you ever want to visit, let me know - I'll see if I can help!


  • I have a pair of sketchers 'go running' shoes - I wear either these, or my newtons or fully fletched asics nimbus and I switch between the 3.  I am a chi-running devotee - not really barefoot running.

    But - the sketchers are addicitve - I can't bear to run on a treadmill in anthing else now - the feel so fabby and light - I feel like my heels can float up in them like nobodies business.

  • Will have to look-up chi-running - I haven't heard of this.

  • oooooo it's brill


    I tell everyone about it - I am a chi-bore image

  • The minimalist shoes do seem to be expensive - especially as it is the the shoe companies who have for years flooded the market with their technical shoes and sold us the idea of pronation etc - perhaps instead of looking at the so called bare foot shoes, a pair of racing flats would do the job just as well - (having read the Jim Peters biography Plimsolls on Eyeballs out - I am seriously tempted to buy a traditional pair of plimsolls)

  • I've recently change to a lighter shoe, mizunu wave mush4. It feels nice running in it as it weighs less! But it puts a lot more strain on my feet, calves and knees. I've had to cut back a little.

    As for running bare foot I run up and down the street late at night so not too many people think I'm completely nuts. I also try to run on the roughest surface, not smooth tarmac as this will stop me doing too much as it hurts. Hopefully this will improve my running form and strenghen my feet, if not I quite enjoy imagining it does so will continue.

  • I can't see dog shit in the dark, can you?

  • Mizunu, a good shoe, Asics and New balance... so long as you replce sooner.

  • Nose NowtNose Nowt ✭✭✭
    DiscountRunner image wrote (see)

    QUESTION: Am i going to benefit from this at all?  Is there any other advantage to minimal shoes other than injury-prevention?  Is it more fun, or faster, or better for the environment?

    And please don't turn this into another thread like the last one. image  Thanks!

    By slipping in a statemetn that minimalist shoes are good for injury prevention, it looks like the troll on the other thread actually succeeded with spreading propaganda.

    Or was this not such an innocent question after all? image

  • Chi running +1

  • Run Wales, you are unbelievably cynical! image  The propganda on that other thread didn't work (mainly because he was being an ass!) and I don't know if they are actually any good for injury prevention, it's just that I have never heard anyone give any other benefits/reasons to go this route.  I don't have injuries, so is there any reason for me to try this, other than curiosity of the latest thing?

    I am an innocent, honest!

  • I am not sure why you would say -injury prevention - as a reason for going to minimalist shoes.  Surely it is the change in running form that helps with injury prevention and the minimalist shoes are just because they help you to feel your foot landing better.


    I do chi running in a whole host of shoes - technique is the same - it's just easier to feel what you are doing in minimal shoes.

  • Okay, you are right - it's the running style change we are talking about.  I just wonder about the "if it aint broke..." philosophy - am I looking for a change I don't need.  I will def look into this chi-running.


  • Avoid chi running.

    Before you know it you'll be brainwashed and working 7 days a week in Run & Become.
  • Nose NowtNose Nowt ✭✭✭

    Sorry DiscountRunner...  couldn't resist!

    I honestly think (from reading only) that some are very susceptible to injury with minimalist running.  Probably a majority. But for some people, minimalist does reduce their injuries. 

    On top of the injury prevention for those people, I think a lot of people like the lightweight feel of them.

  • As for the dog mess and glass I walk up the street in day light regularly and it's pretty clean. And it has street lights which the city council haven't got round to turning offf yet.

    On the subject of injury prevention my comment suggested the opposite with regards to lighter shoes causing strains in feet calves and knees, this would be more so if I ran the same distance in thin rubber toe shoes. In the book I have on barefoot running it says some shops want people to sign disclaimers when buying these 'shoes'.

    My bare foot running consists of 10 mins at the most of slow running with a little walking.

    I've decided to buy some thicker soled shoes so I can continue preparing for a marathon in may. I'll still run in the mizunu once a week to start and do a couple of barefoot 10min jogs a week. 

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