Claudia Dreyfus interviews Daniel Lieberman (who shared the 2009 Ig Nobel Prize in physics, for or analytically determining why pregnant women don’t tip over) about his research on barefoot running and other things. It’s in the New York Times. Here’s a snippet:
Among his academic peers, Daniel Lieberman, 47, is known as a “hoof and mouth” man…. That’s because Dr. Lieberman, an evolutionary biology professor at Harvard, spends his time studying how the human head and foot have evolved over the millenniums. In January, Harvard University Press published his treatise, “The Evolution of the Human Head.”…
About a year after the Nature paper came out, I gave a public lecture where this bearded guy, with only socks and duct tape on his feet, came up to me and said, “I don’t like to wear shoes when I run — how come?” He’d become a barefoot runner because his feet hurt in shoes. The man was “Barefoot Jeffrey,” a Harvard grad who owned a bicycle shop in Jamaica Plains. What a great question!
Obviously, people had run barefoot for millions of years before shoes, socks, Nikes. I’d sometimes wondered if some of the sports injuries that runners get are related to an issue connected to how people run in shoes — the heel strike, it’s called….