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running barefoot

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running barefoot

Postby Grampahawk » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:16 pm

I remember reading some interesting posts about the value of running barefoot vs wearing running shoes because they can damage the knees. Here's some interesting recent science. http://sportsmedupdates.blogspot.com/20 ... knees.html
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Postby ksolem » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:25 pm

Intersting article. The way I read it he is not so much recommending barefoot running as he is prodding shoe makers to design shoes which reduce ankle knee and hip stress to the same levels as a barefoot runner.

One question the article raises for me: the tests were done on a treadmill. Running on a treadmill is not the same as propelling ones self forward over the ground.
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Postby Ze » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:27 am

interesting. read the article...there is something fishy though. they report almost no differences in ankle plantar/dorsiflexion loading between the cases.

Image

from what i've read (and my experience) there should certainly be differences!
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Postby foweyman » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:57 pm

It is not a properly controlled experiment. People run with different form when they remove their shoes (didn't save the ref.), mostly to reduce the increase in impact that occurs without the cushion of shoes. This change in form could easily cause changes in the measured parameters that were attributed to the shoes. Before thay can ascribe the observed differences to the shoes, the experimenters would have to make sure that the subjects run with the same form when barefoot and shod.

I'm guessing that the best way to minimize impacts is to use barefoot form while wearing good shoes. It takes some kinesthetic awareness, but with practice and concentration it is reasonably obtainable.

There is also a good bit of variation in the cushioning ability of "typical running footwear". Without controlling and specifying the model(s) it is difficult to ascribe the effects to running shoes in general.

There is also no biomechanical reasoning provided for the conclusion that "These increases are likely caused in large part by an elevated heel and increased material under the medial arch, both characteristic of today's running shoes."
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Postby Ze » Thu Jan 07, 2010 3:58 am

foweyman wrote:It is not a properly controlled experiment. People run with different form when they remove their shoes (didn't save the ref.), mostly to reduce the increase in impact that occurs without the cushion of shoes. This change in form could easily cause changes in the measured parameters that were attributed to the shoes. Before thay can ascribe the observed differences to the shoes, the experimenters would have to make sure that the subjects run with the same form when barefoot and shod.

I'm guessing that the best way to minimize impacts is to use barefoot form while wearing good shoes. It takes some kinesthetic awareness, but with practice and concentration it is reasonably obtainable.

There is also a good bit of variation in the cushioning ability of "typical running footwear". Without controlling and specifying the model(s) it is difficult to ascribe the effects to running shoes in general.

There is also no biomechanical reasoning provided for the conclusion that "These increases are likely caused in large part by an elevated heel and increased material under the medial arch, both characteristic of today's running shoes."


I agree with what you are saying about change in form. But that does not make make the experiment flawed - they are trying to track those changes. The moment about a joint is dependent on both changes in kinematics and force.

However, given that the researchers stated they were collecting motion and force data, they should have been able to track these changes. And those changes should show up in the moment data. That is why I am surprised there is almost no difference in ankle dorsiflexion moment.
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Postby ksolem » Thu Jan 07, 2010 4:48 am

Since torque is by definition a rotational force, how does one define a "flexor" torque?

Flexion is a linear, not rotational movement.

What am I missing here?
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Postby Ze » Fri Jan 08, 2010 12:19 am

ksolem wrote:Since torque is by definition a rotational force, how does one define a "flexor" torque?

Flexion is a linear, not rotational movement.

What am I missing here?


Well flexion can be a rotational movement.

Those terms are based on movement in the anatomical planes of motion.

Flexion and extension rotational movements are prescribed in the sagittal plane. Abduction / adduction rotations in the coronal plane, and internal / external rotation in the transverse plane.
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Postby seanpeckham » Wed Jan 13, 2010 1:57 am

foweyman wrote:It is not a properly controlled experiment. People run with different form when they remove their shoes (didn't save the ref.), mostly to reduce the increase in impact that occurs without the cushion of shoes. This change in form could easily cause changes in the measured parameters that were attributed to the shoes. Before thay can ascribe the observed differences to the shoes, the experimenters would have to make sure that the subjects run with the same form when barefoot and shod.


I didn't get the idea they were trying to control form or were ignorant of form as a variable. Indeed the point seems to be that the way that shoes change your form increases the impact forces beyond what the shoes are able to absorb. What exactly would be the point of a study that is controlled in the way you suggest? To test the prediction that it would be superfluous (save perhaps for fashion) to run in shoes that interact with the feet in the exact same way that the ground does?

I'm guessing that the best way to minimize impacts is to use barefoot form while wearing good shoes. It takes some kinesthetic awareness, but with practice and concentration it is reasonably obtainable.

I basically agree. I for one experience a lot less knee impact running barefoot-style in my shoes than running the heel-striking way that the shoes are designed for. However, except up steep hills, it's impossible to run exactly the same way in running shoes as barefoot, because the heel is elevated too high by the shoes. You have to understride and/or increase your forward lean to compensate if you don't want to either strain your calves (the calves can't extend enough to get a stretch-induced elastic recoil, so you have to flex them to absorb the landing force) or significantly weight your heels, which is the main source of the knee impact, not to mention creating potentially excessive pronation compared with a ball-of-foot landing. If you have to subvert the design of your shoe, or if it needs features like pronation control to compensate for the effects of its other features like an elevated and padded heel, then there's something wrong with that design, even if you can subvert it successfully, because you shouldn't have to subvert it at all, especially when you pay so much for it. Though by "good shoes" maybe you are talking about a more minimalist style that more easily permits barefoot-style technique, unlike mine and those of most runners. The only reason I run in my shoes this way anymore is because (a) I already paid for my shoes before I knew the design is crap, so I use them when the weather is too cold for bare feet or Vibram Five Fingers (still looking for a more permanent solution to this), and (b) I'm still transitioning to barefoot/VFF running and (less and less frequently and/or only at increasingly longer distances) use the shoes to give my developing feet and calves a break.

There is also a good bit of variation in the cushioning ability of "typical running footwear". Without controlling and specifying the model(s) it is difficult to ascribe the effects to running shoes in general.

They <a href="http://www.pmrjournal.org/article/S1934-1482%2809%2901367-7/fulltext">did</a> specify the model:

"...the control shoe used in this study was the Brooks Adrenaline (Brooks, Bothell, WA), selected for its neutral classification and design characteristics typical of most running footwear."

There is also no biomechanical reasoning provided for the conclusion that "These increases are likely caused in large part by an elevated heel and increased material under the medial arch, both characteristic of today's running shoes."


You're critiquing a summary; you should probably read the real article. Yeah, they didn't get too much into the biomechanics, but they didn't completely ignore the angle either.
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Postby Smoove910 » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:37 am

use these shoes... lol, I still have yet to bite, but think they would offer a new experience...

http://www.vibramfivefingers.com/produc ... trek_m.cfm
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Postby EastcoastMike » Wed Jan 13, 2010 8:51 pm

Smoove910 wrote:use these shoes... lol, I still have yet to bite, but think they would offer a new experience...

http://www.vibramfivefingers.com/produc ... trek_m.cfm


I saw someone in DC running in those, he looked uncomfortable.
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Postby Chris » Wed Jan 13, 2010 9:50 pm

Smoove910 wrote:use these shoes... lol, I still have yet to bite, but think they would offer a new experience...

http://www.vibramfivefingers.com/produc ... trek_m.cfm


I run 5-10 miles of week in them. Totally cured my plantar fasciitis... and I tried everything else.
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Postby woodsxc » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:29 pm

Get Vibram Five Fingers.
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Postby ksolem » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:39 pm

Ze wrote:
ksolem wrote:Since torque is by definition a rotational force, how does one define a "flexor" torque?

Flexion is a linear, not rotational movement.

What am I missing here?


Well flexion can be a rotational movement.

Those terms are based on movement in the anatomical planes of motion.

Flexion and extension rotational movements are prescribed in the sagittal plane. Abduction / adduction rotations in the coronal plane, and internal / external rotation in the transverse plane.


Thanks. So the torque in knee flexion would occur and be measured in the saggital plane. Got it (somehow my brain was stuck in the transverse.) :oops:
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Postby foweyman » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:05 pm

seanpeckham wrote:I didn't get the idea they were trying to control form or were ignorant of form as a variable. Indeed the point seems to be that the way that shoes change your form increases the impact forces beyond what the shoes are able to absorb. What exactly would be the point of a study that is controlled in the way you suggest? To test the prediction that it would be superfluous (save perhaps for fashion) to run in shoes that interact with the feet in the exact same way that the ground does?


The reason for controlling this variable is that it would allow the determination of whether it is the shoes or changes in the running form that causes the observed differences. It would be important to know if the shoes caused the changes or if they only allowed or encouraged them.

(Thanks for the link to the original study) The authors did identify this as a weakness in the experimental design, but their rational that ensuring familarity and comfort negated it is illogical and unsupported: "It is also conceivable that the study subjects adopted a different contact style to minimize a potential increase in impact loading associated with barefoot running. However, every effort was made to ensure subject familiarity with running on the instrumented treadmill and each subject reported feeling comfortable with the barefoot condition. Consequently, the reported increases in lower extremity joint torques are indeed genuine effects of the shod condition."

The other uncontrolled aspect of the experiment is that it is a comparison of experienced shod runners with rather inexperienced shoeless runners. I'm guessing that experienced shoeless runners run with different form than novice shoeless runners.
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