That’s right. I’m a testbunny. A lab-rat. Everything I always hated, I have now become!
Well, I didn’t hate the rats or the bunnies, and I rather have scientists test stuff on people that volunteer for it than on animals, like the guys from Top Gear for example! ->
Anyway, all kidding aside: A friend of mine told me his friend at the University of Ghent was doing a study on the effect of minimal running shoes on the stride of runners. All I had to do was pick up a pair of shoes, go run with them a few times and then go back for a one hour test, after which I get to keep the shoes :-).
It’s a win-win-win kind of thing I guess, so I decided to just go and pick up a pair, and today, I had my first run with them.
I tried running slow and fast, an I must say they’re pretty cool. It’s not so much that they are lighter than my Kinvaras (only by 20g anyway, so hardly noticeable), but the fact that the heel is a bit rounded and doesn’t give any support at all makes you run differently. The fact that you don’t feel your heel touch the ground while walking with them makes you feel like you can’t rely on it, and thus you automatically run differently.
Unlike those ridiculous shoes with rounded soles that are supposed to make you burn more calories while walking (a study showed they did, but only as much as doing one flight of stairs at the end of the day. So stay away from then and do some stairs instead of looking like a fool all day long), I do see the use here though. Quite a lot of studies show that heel-strikers get more injuries because all of the shock that isn’t absorbed goes through their entire body, while mid-foot landers absorve the shock with the muscles in their feet and legs, saving their joints from being punched by a 78kg (in my case, that is) hammer at every step.
I’ll keep you updated on this, but so far, I’m really excited about the new shoes. Although I must say it was still nice to switch to my trusted Kinvaras after that 2.5km and do another 18k :-).