Lower leg pain and injuries have long been a problem for runners, but research at Oregon State University-Cascades has shown that one type of running shoe may increase such risks for some runners.
Researchers in the Functional Orthopedic Research Center of Excellence (FORCE) Lab compared the biomechanics associated with "maximal" and "neutral" running shoes in tests with 15 female runners. The study concluded that runners experienced a higher impact peak and increased loading rate with the "maximal" shoes. Increases in both factors are associated with a greater likelihood of injury, such as plantar fasciitis and tibial stress fractures.
The study was published in The Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine and is believed to be the first rigorous analysis of impacts associated with maximal shoes.