More Barefoot Running: Modern technology and human biology
[caption id="attachment_279" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="The MTS 858 Mini Bionix II at New Balance "][/caption]
Do running shoes cause running injuries? That's the question posed by Popular Mechanics in this look at technology in the running shoe industry and recent advances in the study of human motion.
One study of 753 runners (videotaped in two races) showed that 80% of runners ran with a heel strike motion and the balance with a mid-foot strike. Interestingly, for the faster runners (those running faster than a 5:18 pace per mile) only 45% had a heel strike, while the majority (55%) of the fast runners used a mid-foot strike.
That's a suggestive piece of data.
PM looks at how modern technology is being used to analyze running gaits, how modern running shoes are designed and how some labs are trying to create shoes that mimic the barefoot running motion.
For more reading on barefoot running and the evolution of running capability in humans:
Do short toes make humans better runners?
The Evolution of Running: Why do you run?
(h/t to the Instapundit)