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The Barefoot Running Book: The Art and Science of Barefoot and Minimalist Shoe Running

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3.54  ·  Rating details ·  283 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Ditch those cushiony running shoes—they’re holding you back and hurting your feet!

You’ve heard about barefoot running and how it can reduce injury and allow for better form. Maybe you’ve even tried it and learned how shedding those heavy, overly- manufactured shoes can make running more enjoyable. Regardless of your expertise level, Jason Robillard—a leadi
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Paperback, 224 pages
Published August 28th 2012 by Plume (first published March 1st 2010)
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Average rating 3.54  · 
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 ·  283 ratings  ·  29 reviews


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Leviabowles
Nov 07, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Crap writing, crap stories, crap advice.

Mike's Hard Lemonade during an ultra? Really?

Hey Born to Run was popular, maybe I can make money by telling people to run without shoes, but by being boring about it.
Helen
Apr 01, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Things I liked about this book:

• “I believe the movement will pressure shoe manufacturers to examine the research and development of their current shoes more critically resulting in moving away from the supportive and cushioned technology so prevalent today.”
• Alternative sources (to Vibram) for minimalist shoes
• “There is no single right answer”
• “Listen to your body”
• Includes training plans that incorporate injury-free barefoot running into current running
...more
Amy
Jun 09, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports
I only read about half of this book, since only half of it applies to me right now (as a new-to-barefoot-running reader, as opposed to an intermediate or advanced barefoot runner).

Robillard offers some good tips for the novice barefoot (or minimalist shoe) runner, although I wish he'd give more specific instructions on how to do some of the suggested practice drills. A couple of the descriptions are a little vague. Admittedly, it's hard to describe a physical action in words, so the
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Michael Guilmette
Extremely Informative

This book is a highly informational guide to anyone interested in barefooting, running in minimalist shoes, or just working on your strength and form to prevent injury. It's extremely well-written and informative and gives training schedules, exercises, and advice for both barefooting and a little bit for ultrarunning. He is very open to other opinions and doesn't just preach the whole time, acknowledging the many different ideas of the various barefooting and minimalist runni
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CherylR
Pretty good

This book did not really go into as much depth as I would have liked. Has good references however. There are better starter books out there.
Olivierco
Aug 27, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-english, sports
After having read Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen, I was evidently curious about barefoot running.
This book is aimed at recreational runners and gives practical and detailed advices about the transition to barefoot running, about minimal shoes and many running tips. Some training plans and many references are also included.
I like the fact that Jason Robillard stayed very humble, quoting many other authors and didn't try to pretend
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Coryke
Aug 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: exercise
This is a very good book that strikes the right balance for me regarding "how-to" do this barefoot running thing and the flexibility necessary for individual differences. Robillard did a very good job of providing information, encouragement, and resources for the newbie. A strength of the book is that is provides a lot of guidance from the one just beginning all the way to one who has made the transition and is beginning to consider races or very long distances. As a reader, this can be frustrat ...more
Dan
Jul 11, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this book free with my first purchase of a pair of Vibram Five Fingers shoes. While I do think there were some important principles and "visualizations" to be gleaned within, I think the book undoubtedly contributed to a serious case of me "overthinking it" in my first season & a half of converting over to minimalist-style running. The ramp-up, the visualizations, the other assorted advice and asides - I'm not sure there's much you're going to find in this book that isn't available by ...more
Kellyann
May 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
I started this book months ago and had to stop mid-way because it was getting me too excited to transition to barefoot at a time when I couldn't (due to the need for mileage upkeep for an already planned race). but now i've begun and this book was a good practical guide to making the switch. Robillard is a strong advocate of straight up barefoot running, which is different (and better than, in his mind) minimalist shoe running, like vibrams, which is what i'm giving a go. regardless, i think all ...more
Dan Anders
Sep 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Got this book from the author's website for free.
Was a good add-on to help me start barefoot running, after I got super-fired-up (!) from reading Born to Run by Christopher McDougal.

This book lacked a bit of polish, but for being self-produced and offered at no-cost, I'm not complaining. I liked hearing BF running advice from multiple sources, and to have it organized into steps of progress/maturity levels was very helpful.

Now if only I would have listened to the pa
...more
Taueret
Full of information and tips for barefoot and minimalist-shoe runners (or wannabe, or the barefoot-curious). This guy is hardcore. He suggests kitty litter in your shoes during winter to keep your 'summer feet'! The same advice on form is covered in ChiRunning and The Pose Method, but lots of anecdotes as well as professional opinions supporting the use of more natural, minimalist footwear. A comprehensive set of drills to prepare one for the change to barefoot without injury.
Adan
Sep 24, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It has its moments. Way more thorough and cleanly written than his first crack at it, that's for sure. I admire that. In the end, though, my appreciation for the book and its offerings is so strongly colored by my lack of success as a runner that I just, well, I just don't know.

Date I finished it. Huh. That one's going to keep tripping me up, I predict.
Kristen MacGregor
Aug 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
It's a great informative read for those wishing to run barefoot. It doesn't really talk much about the science behind it or the benefits. It simply assumes anyone reading it has already read other barefoot running books and decided to give it a try. I don't think I will, but some of the exercises to improve form may come in handy.
Wendi Lau
Don't think had any pictures, or very few. But good nonetheless. I like reading about different barefooters experiences because they're not all the same, and that's very interesting. Jason Robillard seems very down to earth. He posts on a minimalist running blog. Worth a read. Also has training plans for various races.
Charlie
Sep 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like the idea of this. The book was a very interesting read. The author included letters and additional comments from many others giving thier perspectives on barefoot and minimalist running.
Glenn
Jun 16, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Some good information, but same could be gotten from more interesting books. Often felt like the author was trying to stretch his content out to get more pages (like I used to do in high school for term papers).
Nick Woodall
Jan 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: exercise, feet, running
I read this book after reading Born To Run to see what techniques and strategies barefoot runners use. I liked this book especially because it dealt with the nitty-gritty of barefoot running. I am now running barefoot in the gym, and using minimalist footwear outdoors.
Nancy
Sep 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After reading Born to Run, this seemed the next step...which I am still pondering and will probably do eventually. I liked that the instructions and advice are very clear. My husband embraced it immediately and says he now feels like a gazelle. That would be nice.
Yvette
Jun 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinting! I don't know if I'm ready to give up my shoes just yet, but I am seriously thinking about it!
Jenn
Sep 08, 2010 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Got re-shelved due to injury. I'll pick it back up later.
Patrik Karlsson
Helt ok om man vill börja spinga barfota. Många träningsförslag.
Ricky Bates
A decent book but nothing in here you couldn't find in some good blog posts.
Kevin Hughes
Mar 07, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: running
Short and to the point.
Suzy
May 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There are a lot of barefoot running books our there- some are legit, others are not. This one is.
Moni Smith
Dec 14, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Worth reading if you are interested in barefoot running.
Henrik
Jan 09, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked it. Again.
Heather Johnson
rated it it was amazing
Oct 22, 2017
Melinda
rated it really liked it
Jul 17, 2013
reed
rated it liked it
Dec 26, 2010
Johan
rated it really liked it
Aug 20, 2014
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Jason is a writer, podcaster, semi-retired ultrarunner, recreational pro MMA fighter, occasional teacher, and running coach living in the San Diego area. Jason's goal in life is to seek out interesting adventures, push boundaries, and help others do the same. Jason is a serial hobbyist with a wide range of interests.