Barefoot and minimalist running is getting attention again, and APTA now offers resources for runners who want to get the latest information on the benefits and risks of this trend.
The debate over minimalist running shoes was rekindled earlier this month when shoe maker Vibram announced that it had reached a $3.75 million settlement in a class action suit that claimed the company made false scientific claims about the advantages of its "FiveFingers" glove-like running shoe popular with minimalist runners. The company will put the money into an escrow account for consumer refunds, and has agreed to stop making claims that the shoe is effective in strengthening muscles or reducing injury, unless these benefits are proven by new scientific evidence.
Runners interested in the current evidence on the practice can visit APTA's new resource called "Barefoot and Minimalist Running: What Do We Know?" on MoveForwardPT.com, the association's official consumer information website. The webpage includes information on injury prevention, faster running, and foot muscle strengthening.
APTA provides additional resources for runners in its Health Center for Runners webpage that includes symptom and condition guides, podcasts, videos, and more.
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