How Much Barefoot Running Training Should You Do For Forefoot Running?

According to Alberto Salazar, barefoot running training should be done 2-3 times a week for 1-3 miles, this is enough to help you sustain strong feet and good forefoot running mechanics for when you run in shoes.

Regularly reintroducing yourself to barefoot running  allocates different tactile sensations, enabling the body to move more efficiently.

How Much Barefoot Running Training Should You Do for Forefoot Running

How Much Barefoot Running Training Should You Do For Forefoot Running?

One of the consequences of forefoot running in shoes without barefoot training is that it goes against our perceptual awareness of foot strike, which in turn may force us to think harder about our landing strategy, suggesting that there may be a small cognitive cost to running in shoes vs running barefoot.

Although running barefoot or in barefoot-like running shoes share mechanical similarities, barefoot running has been found to improve cadence and ground contact time which may reduce the likelihood of stress fracture by 3% to 6% as compared with minimalist shoes (Edwards et al. 2009).

The take home message is that you run the risk of misjudging your forefoot strike because your perceptions do not conform with reality when running in shoes. By routinely running barefoot, you’ll, without doubt, develop better forefoot navigation that minimizes costs, such as danger.
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Edwards WB, Taylor D, Rudolphi TJ, Gillette JC, Derrick TR. Effects of stride length and running mileage on a probabilistic stress fracture model. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2009;41:2177-2184.

Bretta Riches

"I believe the forefoot strike is the engine of endurance running..."

BSc Neurobiology; MSc Biomechanics candidate, ultra minimalist runner & founder of RunForefoot. I was a heel striker, always injured. I was inspired by the great Tirunesh Dibaba to try forefoot running. Now, I'm injury free. This is why I launched Run Forefoot, to advocate the health & performance benefits of forefoot running and to raise awareness on the dangers of heel striking, because the world needs to know.
Bretta Riches

P.S. Don't forget to check out the Run Forefoot Facebook Page, it's a terrific place to ask questions about forefoot running, barefoot running and injury. I'm always happy to help!

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