In a post from last year, I shared that there aren’t any huge benefits to running barefoot:
Barefoot running reduces heel strike and the impact associated with it, but there is not one piece of evidence that links high impacts to injury. The most common running injuries—patellofemoral pain syndrome and fasciitis—have nothing to do with impact.
Nonetheless, barefoot running has developed a cult following – and I’ve been curious to see what all the fuss is about.
This past weekend, I decided to take a step in the direction of barefoot running by purchasing a pair of the newly re-designed Nike Free Run+ sneakers. Truth be told, I intended to purchase a
pair of Vibram FiveFingers, but my freakish toes didn’t fit properly in the glove-like shoe. So, I settled on the Nike Free Run+ as a close second.
Depending on your degree of comfort with barefoot running, there are two variations of the Free Run+ sneaker. I opted for the $100 beginner model, but was immediately surprised by the shoe’s flexibility and weight (or lack thereof). Though the sneaker provides some support and cushion, it feels like there’s nothing on your feet. It was love at first stride.
I’ve spent the last few days testing the Nike Free Run+ sneaker at the gym. I’ve completed a few distance runs and intervals. Through it all, the sneaker held up beautifully – and, though my stride did feel different and more natural, there was no resulting soreness.
My only complaint is that small rocks and pebbles easily get caught in the large grooves in the shoe’s sole. And that, because the sneakers are so comfortable, I never want to take them off.
Disclaimer: Davey Wavey was not compensated in any way, shape or form by Nike or its affiliates to write this product review.