More on Barefoot vs Shoes
This is an ongoing blog posted discussion at PopSci about someone's new design for running shoes. I got a response from someone with the label meowmix4jo from Las Vegas, Nevada, who said:
"Ryan, if I understood right, you are basically saying that if they flattened All Stars more they would make better running shoes? "
I don't know if flattening All Stars would make them better running shoes. What I am saying is that its odd for a shoe maker to claim their shoes promote a "more natural" running style, yet they include so many un-natural characteristics in their design.
What is "natural?" I think bare feet are the most natural thing we have for running. It stands to reason that shoes that try to come close to natural should be true to bare feet -- no artificial curves, curls, arches, uneven surfaces, pinching, fat bulbous spots, and they should be lightweight with flexibility. I think simple aquasox might be better shoes for running in than the hyped up expensive versions we see.
In fact, I told a 65 yr old retired dentist about my barefoot running. He had to stop running because his knees were giving him too much pain. He tried wearing aquasox, practiced the barefoot running forms I taught him, and he was able to resume running again. In just a few weeks of practice, he could run from two to three miles per run, three times a week. He was ecstatic that a simple pair of aquasox did more to help him run successfully than the thousands of dollars he had spent on chiropractors, podiatrists, orthopedic doctors, massage therapists, and on the many various shoes and orthotics he had purchased.
Some of the best runners in the world are the Tuharamara Indians of the Mexican highlands. They run races that last up to three days and nights and cover 150 miles. Their choice of footwear are simple flat sandals they make themselves, called Huaraches.