Date of Award


Degree Type

Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review

Degree Name

Master of Science in Health Sciences - Physician Assistant


Physician Assistant Studies

Department Chair

John Cavenagh, MBA, PhD, PA-C


Objective: The objective of this systemic review is to determine whether or not running in minimalist running shoes causes injury to runners?

Study Design: Review of a cohort study completed in 2015, randomized control trial in 2013, and prospective randomized trial in 2014.

Data Sources: Three controlled trials published in English on Pub Med. Outcome(s) Measured: The outcomes measured in these articles consisted of Limb and Joint stiffness, injury vs non injury, and number of injury events.

Results: Sinclair, et al, limb and knee stiffness were greater in the minimalist runners compared to the conventional runners. Ridge et al. increase in bone marrow edema was seen in the runners transitioning to minimalist running. Ryan et al. increase in calf/shin pain, plantar fasciitis, and stress fractures occurred in the runners with minimalist running shoes.

Conclusion: All studies agreed the use of minimalist running shoe will cause injury. If a runner does choose to use a minimalist shoe, a slow transition is needed. Further studies need to look into the long term affects the minimalist shoes have on runners.