Again, this is something that only exits in the minds of the anti-running shoe lobby. I have already shown how they have misused the research to scam us into believing that there is no decrease in the rate of injury from the alleged improvement in running shoes over the years. Some have even tried to claim there has been an increase. They are making this up as there is no data to support it.
Libermann et al in the first sentence to his paper on barefoot running says “Running can be most injurious at the moment the foot collides with the ground”. I notice that they supplied no citation to back this claim up. In that work of semi-fiction, ‘Born to Run’, Chris McDougall makes numerous unsupported claims about impact injuries. Robbins et al in their editorialization of what is otherwise good research, talk about the sensory illusion that soft running shoes can cause alterations in impact behaviours and this makes running shoes increase the risk for impact injuries in runners. I could go on and cite many more examples and claims that get made about impact causing injury in runners.
What do all these claims and the many more numerous ones have in common? They don’t even tell us what an impact injury is. They provide no evidence of impact even causing overuse injuries in runners. The reason is because there is no such thing as impact causing overuse injuries in runners! They are all making it up and perpetuating the myth! Why would they do that for?
There is not one study that has shown higher impacts cause an increased risk for injury! (Obviously I am not talking about the extreme high impacts that might cause an acute fracture).
What are the common injuries that runners get:
Patellofemoral pain syndrome/anterior knee pain (Runners Knee) – none of the studies done on this have linked it to impact.
Medial tibial stress syndrome (shin splints) – not one of the prospective risk factors studies done on this has linked it to impacts.
Plantar fasciitis (heel pain) – not one of the risk factor studies have linked this to impacts.
Stress fractures – none of the studies done on this have linked it to impact.
I should not need to cite any more examples, as these make up most of the overuse running injuries. If you do not believe me, do this: Pick any injury. Do a literature search on the studies that have looked at what increases the risk for that injury. Notice how none of them find impact as a problem?
In fact the opposite is the case. We need higher impacts from weight bearing activity to prevent osteoporosis and make the bones stronger! (The research evidence on this is unequivocal).
Where are all these people getting their information from about the myth of impacts causing overuse injuries in runners and it reaching epidemic proportions? Why are they perpetuating the myth? Why are they making this into a problem? Why are they making up this epidemic? Is it because they have an agenda to promote and the myth suits their purposes? High impacts being a problem in runners only exists in the minds of those with an agenda.