Track coaches have been using this tactic for ages so it’s interesting to see this appear in formal research in the year 2023…
Basically here in a 6 week program for plantar fasciitis sufferers in which runners had to run 15 minutes twice per week barefoot on grass at an RPE 11/20, 19 of the 20 runners experienced improvements in pain at 6 and 12 weeks
Going into the study, the sample of runners had experienced symptoms lasting anywhere from 3 to 48 months, with 18 of 20 reporting significant pain and/or having to stop running at some point
“Barefoot running on grass improved pain associated with plantar fasciitis at the 6-week and 12-week follow up points. This type of barefoot running has the ability to improve symptoms whilst allowing patients to continue running, the intervention may also address some impairments of the foot associated with plantar fasciitis.”
MacGabhann S, Kearney D, Perrem N, Francis P. Barefoot Running on Grass as a Potential Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis: A Prospective Case Series. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022 Nov 22;19(23):15466. doi: 10.3390/ijerph192315466. PMID: 36497540; PMCID: PMC9741467.
Allan Phillips, PT, DPT is owner of Ventana Physiotherapy