A Natural Case For Minimalist Running

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Kristen Coppens, columnist for A Healthier Michiganhas published an article that highlights some of the benefits to minimalist running.

We talk about this topic quite a bit here, and have covered the pros and cons of minimalist running, but I like how Kristen talks about the natural benefits that unfold as a result of minimalist running.

Now, a lot of people refer something called barefoot running.

Which is, obviously, running with out any shoes on whatsoever.  But the reality is that the majority of people who are active in what’s called barefoot running are actually running with minimalist running shoes.

These are the shoes that are ultra light, ultra thin, and give you the sensation of actually running barefoot – without actually being barefoot.

Some of the benefits that occur naturally for minimalist runners, as Kristen so eloquently points out, are that nerve endings are at a heightened level which causes you to run with much better posture and sloppily (love that word).

And because you are running with virtually no cushion under your feet, as you experience with traditional running shoes, you are apt to land more gently and lightly on your feet.  This results in less abuse incurred by your joints, knees, and bones.

Ultimately, what we may be seeing here with minimalist running is not just a new fad, but a regression back to a more natural state of running.  One where runners are improving their posture while building their running strength and stamina.

What do you think?  Is minimalist running just a fad, or is there clearly a natural case for the movement?