Set aside your running shoes and let your feet be free. A study published in American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation reports that average running shoes mess up your hips, knees and ankles. "People who don't wear shoes when they run have an astonishingly different stride," said Daniel Lieberman, Harvard University researcher, in a statement. "By landing on the middle or front of the foot, barefoot runners have almost no impact collision, much less than most shod runners generate when they heel-strike."
The scientists report: "Increased joint torques at the hip, knee, and ankle were observed with running shoes compared with running barefoot. Disproportionately large increases were observed in the hip internal rotation torque and in the knee flexion and knee varus torques."
- An average 54 percent increase in the hip internal rotation torque
- A 36 percent increase in knee flexion torque
- A 38 percent increase in knee varus torque were measured when running in running shoes compared with barefoot
Barefoot running can be beneficial while heavily cushioned running shoes may be leaving the foot prone to injury, according to a US sports medicine expert.