Tag Archives: marathon

Did Abebe Bikila manage to run a marathon without using shoes?

Abebe Bikila was an Ethiopian athlete who got the gold medal at Rome Olympic games marathon on 10 September 1960 running barefoot. He was a eleventh hour addition to the marathon team and the coutries footwear provider, Adidas, did not have ample time to organize running footwear for him to use. Adidas just had two pairs of shoes still left, of which neither of them fitted him. He made a decision he'd then do the the marathon without shoes. At the subsequent Olympic games in Tokyo, Japan in 1964, he again got the gold medal in the marathon, but did it this time running in running shoes and ran it faster. He died in 1973 at the age of 41 due to issues after a motor vehicle accident. He is honored and adored in Ethiopia which has a arena named after him.

Abebe Bikila has a special place in the historical past of marathons, in particular with people who propose and publicize barefoot running since they hold Abebe up as proof that a marathon might be run without footwear. In that group Abebe Bikila is an icon with an virtually god like reputation. There has been a novelty a little while back for doing away with running footwear and running without running shoes. This was influenced by way of a lots of websites, discussion boards, books as well as social media comments as something that was beneficial and superior for runners. Numerous unsubstantiated claims was made for barefoot running, probably none of that stood up to succeeding analysis. This craze went on for a couple of years, probably peaking about 2013-14 with most likely around 25 % of runners trying it or having a go at it in one way or another. The novelty easily disappeared following almost all runners whom used it got an overuse injury or recognized that this didn't fulfill all the assertions that got devised for it. It has today ended up relegated towards the history books, with simply a handful of dedicated barefoot running aficionados still running that way.

There was a great deal of science done on barefoot running that runners who choose to promote and endorse barefoot running held these studies up as evidence that barefoot running is much better. Nevertheless, the research in no way really indicated that at all and was commonly misunderstood. All of the science showed was that barefoot running was different to running in running shoes and this was all it showed.

Did Abebe Bikala run a marathon without running shoes?

The marathon is a challenging distance to run; it is 26.2 miles of hard running. It can be hard on the body, particularly the feet which is why all marathon runners pay such a lot of consideration to what exactly is on their feet. Marathoners invest considerable time getting the best running shoes and a lot of money is associated with running shoes. Back at the 1960 Rome Olympics, the Ethiopian, Abebe Bikala turned up for the marathon and there were no running shoes remaining in the teams supplies that would fit him, so he ran the marathon without shoes and went on to win the gold medal. This is commonly hailed as a remarkable achievement. In recent years there's been a community of athletes who are implying the running footwear is not all they're believed to be and are advocating that running should be carried out barefoot, just like nature intended. After all, we were not born with footwear and historical humans simply had to run large distances barefoot to live as animals had to be hunted on foot over great distances. Athletic shoes are really only a quite recent creation.

Runners who advocate the barefoot approach to running love to point out the achievements of Abebe Bikala as even more validation that we have no need for running shoes. There are obviously many other arguments both for and against barefoot running, with little or no scientific data underpinning it. Whilst Abebe Bikala obtaining the gold medal at the 1960 Rome Olympics barefoot undoubtedly suggest that it can be done, what those who like to tout his successes as evidence often omit that he subsequently went on to get the gold medal and also set a world record in the marathon at the 1964 Tokyo Olympic games. Abebe Bikala managed to set the world record on this occasion wearing running shoes; in other words he could actually run faster when he was using running shoes. We may well have evolved to run without running shoes, but we also evolved in an surroundings prior to concrete and hard surfaces emerged. While the achievements of Bikala were extraordinary, making use of him as proof that it is better doesn't stack up to analysis.