Barefoot Runners Take to NYC Marathon
More are going shoeless, though not all podiatrists like the trend
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 3, 2010 2:25 PM CDT
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(Newser) – More runners are expected to complete in the New York City marathon barefoot this year than ever before, as the trend in shoeless distance running continues to gain in popularity, the New York Times reports. (They'll still make up a "tiny number" of the total 43,000 participants.) Some studies have suggested that barefoot running is more efficient and reduces injury—though the Times talks to podiatrists who aren't quite sold. Beyond the technicalities of the trend, the editor of Runner's World says going shoeless meshes with the larger cultural movement toward "simplicity" in tough times.

While some marathoners take to barefoot running like their cave-dwelling ancestors, others have injured themselves. One runner says she tried a pair of "minimalist" thin-soled sneakers, used them for three weeks on a treadmill, then fractured a bone in her foot the first time she ran outside. “You get caught up in a craze,” she says. “Everybody gets excited by this idea and they forget to insert common sense.”