Sunday, August 21, 2011

Shoe Review: New Balance Minimus

It seems like every shoe company is jumping on board with their own version of the new Minimus type athletic shoe. A few months ago I picked up my first pair - going with New Balance Minimus - and I have been pleasantly surprised. This particular shoe is for trail running. My goal when I purchased them - at Marathon Sports in Norwell, MA - was to build up the strength of my foot before ever even trying to run. Once I started to run; it was for very short distances. Keep in mind we have been wearing running shoes etc. for years and your foot strike then compared to how your foot is striking the ground now with a Minimus type shoe is quite different and this is where many people end up getting injured. With a regular running shoe your striking the ground heal-to-toe (unless your a track athlete) and now with a Minimus type shoe it's more from the mid-to-front part of the foot. What I will say is that my feet feel much stronger. I had experienced some heel pain and plantar fasciitis in the past that required some basic physical therapy and now my feet feel fine! Quite honestly, this is one of the best shoes I have worn - the key I believe is slowly building up your volume (or time spent in shoe) with walking only and give the foot time to get stronger and adapt. Once this happens you can start to try some very small runs and once again start to slowly build up your volume as you did with the walking. Another area that you need to watch out for is in regard to body weight. If your 25 lbs. over your ideal body weight you should limit the running until your at a healthy weight and then go out and enjoy the new found foot freedom.

Ankle and Foot Anatomy

-The ankle and foot contain 26 bones (one quarter of the bones in your body are in your feet)
-There are 33 different joints
-There are more than 100 different muscles, ligaments and tendons
-The human foot has two longitudinal arches and a transverse arch

Here is a fantastic blog post on barefoot running from the very knowledgeable guys at
The Science of Sport.

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