If you want to make the switch to barefoot running, or simply to learn the technique but still run in a pair of shoes, here’s how to do it:
On your feet:
Nothing. “If you really want to learn good technique, don’t use any shoe, because you get all that feedback from your feet,” Harvard researcher Daniel Lieberman says.
“The best way to learn is to have somebody run barefoot on a smooth, hard surface. Not on a lawn, not on a beach,” Prof. Lieberman says. Try your street (if it’s paved) or a parking lot. “Because if it’s the beach or a lawn, it’s soft and you can do whatever you want. But if it’s pavement, you quickly learn good form, because you get the feedback.”
Stay straight at the hips. “Leaning is verboten,” he says. “And you should have a nice high cadence and land with short strides. Get up to 170, 180 steps a minute. Make sure you don’t over-stride.”
Whether you’re barefoot or in a minimal shoe, start by running no more than 1 km a week. From there, increase your distance by 10 per cent each week, says Prof. Ferber. “We really want people to reduce their mileage and build up very slowly,” he says.
Everyone is different, but give it time. “I don’t think I’ve ever heard of anybody who’s transitioned in less than three or four months,” Prof. Lieberman says. (http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~skeleton/danlhome.html)