I've been transitioning into minamalist running shoes after developing PF. I tend to run in them twice a week, both easy and shortish runs (max four miles so far).
Last weeks total mileage was 47 miles, so the PF isn't holding me back; it tends to burn my heel to begin with, but once I'm warmed up, it's fine. When I sit at a desk - like now - it sometimes burns too.
Does the barefoot running help? I don't know. Sorry. I've done some extensive interweb based research on PF (I know I know) and it seems there's nothing definate. Mrs Easy is a quality standard club runner and she developed PF after about 10 years of running, she didn't do much to treat it, though she did reduce her mileage and eventually after some months it cleared up of it's own accord.
Had she had/used steroid injections/orthotics/golf ball massage/frozen bottle massage/spints in bed, etc, I bet she'd swear those things worked; but she did none of it.
It's tough to find a sure fire cure for PF, but if you run properly in barefoot trainers, transitioning carefully, I doubt we'll cause further damage; very little impact happens on the heel with a forefoot landing; the heel just kinda touches the ground.
I'm a Geordie and no expert; don't trust what I say.
I'm trying Hoka One One Stinsons at the mo to see of they help resolve/reduce my PF. there are quite a few success stories using these for PF recovery so might as well give them a go! in some ways they're counter intuitive to the barefoot approach as they are deeply padded (superb for odd road seemingly) and the design "rolls" you into a midfoot strike so they do take some getting used to.
so far they seem to be doing a good job and post-run PF pain is less/non-existent at times. the downside is that I have picked up a calf pull which is curtailing my running at the mo - not sure if that is connected with adapting to the Hokas or not - so I've not run for 10 days. back to it later this week
Can you use orthotics with the Hoka's?
I don't know if you can, but I guess you could try - the shoes come up as a tight fit anyway so you might find the orthotics making less room available. I had orthotics in my Nimbus but haven't taken them over into the Hokas and not felt any problems.
had a run in them this morning - about 5k - more to test of the calf was OK. result - calf OK, PF OK. so maybe the light is appearing on the horizon!
This is purely anecdotal, I know, but a guy at Mrs Easy's running club - a runner with decades and decades of experience - and who is also big into barefoot running (real barefoot running; not just minamalist training shoes; he goes around a track regularly barefoot) is not running because of PF.
It makes me think that 'weak feet' aren't a cause of PF. There doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason when it comes to this injury.
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