Daniel Lieberman, PhD, a professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University, studies and periodically practices barefoot running. His academic work focuses in part on how early man survived by evolving the ability to lope for long distances after prey, well before the advent of Nike shoes. There “is good evidence that humans have been running long distances for millions of years,” he says, “and most of that was probably done barefoot.” For his own part, “I run a lot,” he says, “and at least once a week, I run about three to five miles on the streets of Cambridge, completely barefoot. I can attest to the fact that it’s a lot of fun.

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