Paul Jenkins, PT
During fall, Cross country season moves into full swing and concern for running injuries grows. Questions continue as to if different shoes can prevent these injuries. 40,000,000 athletes are reported to run regularly in the United States. With that impressive number, injury rates among runners are uncertain. Research is scattered with reports ranging from 7% to 79% of runners will be injured each year. Reasons for the wide range include: injuries that are recorded, level of severity, and different levels of runners—novice to ultra-marathoners. One study looked specifically at high school cross country runners. Impacting factors included age, gender, body mass and shoes. Debate rages over which type of shoes are best for avoiding injuries and improving performance. Current medical science does not make this any clearer.
|Traditional running shoe pictured on the left with example of a minimal type shoe on the right