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Oxygen Cost of Running Barefoot vs. Running Shod

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Oxygen Cost of Running Barefoot vs. Running Shod

N J Hanson et al. Int J Sports Med.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the oxygen cost of running barefoot vs. running shod on the treadmill as well as overground. 10 healthy recreational runners, 5 male and 5 female, whose mean age was 23.8±3.39 volunteered to participate in the study. Subjects participated in 4 experimental conditions: 1) barefoot on treadmill, 2) shod on treadmill, 3) barefoot overground, and 4) shod overground. For each condition, subjects ran for 6 min at 70% vVO (2)max pace while VO (2), heart rate (HR), and rating of perceived exertion (RPE) were assessed. A 2 × 2 (shoe condition x surface) repeated measures ANOVA revealed that running with shoes showed significantly higher VO (2) values on both the treadmill and the overground track (p<0.05). HR and RPE were significantly higher in the shod condition as well (p<0.02 and p<0.01, respectively). For the overground and treadmill conditions, recorded VO (2) while running shod was 5.7% and 2.0% higher than running barefoot. It was concluded that at 70% of vVO (2)max pace, barefoot running is more economical than running shod, both overground and on a treadmill.

Comment in

  • Is barefoot running more economical?
    Kram R, Franz JR. Kram R, et al. Int J Sports Med. 2012 Mar;33(3):249; author reply 250. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1301923. Epub 2012 Feb 29. Int J Sports Med. 2012. PMID: 22377836 No abstract available.

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