Essential Guide to Children's Running

We've covered all the bases - from the best shoes to healthy limits

Posted: 25 May 2011
by Sam Murphy

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...Or innovative?

Not everyone believes that children's feet should be encased in trainers.

"Shoes that reduce sensory feedback from the feet should be avoided if parents want their kids to learn more biomechanically efficient movement patterns," says Lee Saxby, a biomechanics expert and consultant for barefoot shoe brand Vivobarefoot.

A review of 11 studies conducted by the University of Sydney in Australia found that wearing shoes was  found to slow down the swing phase of the gait cycle, encourage a rearfoot strike and reduce foot motion.

"This confirms the Vivobarefoot philosophy on kids' footwear," says Saxby. "A slow stride rate and heelstrike is associated with walking, not a natural running gait."

Vivobarefoot's first kids' running shoe, the Neo, has a thin, flexible, puncture-resistant sole and will be out in September in UK sizes infant 4.5 to adult 6.5 (£39,

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