NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A new trend is emerging for runners, and apparently “less is more.” Runners are hitting the streets without an important piece of gear, their shoes.

Linda Hazen explained to CBS 2’s Maurice DuBois how barefoot running has become all the rage.

“There is a feeling of freedom, of feeling the ground underneath you for sure,” Hazen said.

Runner explain that going barefoot creates a more natural feeling than when striding it out in a pair of shoes.

“The idea behind it is it’s the way we were sort of born to run, and it’s a natural way of running,” said Jeff Dengate of Runner’s World magazine.

Medical experts caution that runners will need to alter their stride if they choose to go barefoot.

“You can’t be a heel striker, you have to load more on the mid-foot when you’re a barefoot runner, you have to take a shorter stride,” explained Dr. Paul Greenberg of St Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center.

Some in the medical community said they engage in barefoot running themselves.

“It’s a much more springy light run, so it’s less impact on the joints of the ankle, the knee, the hip, and the lower back,” Hazen said.

But medical professionals warn that barefoot running may cause runners to experience a host of new injuries.

“They’re coming in with stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, and we’ll explain that it’s probably due to barefoot running, but you can’t prove it,” Dr. Greenberg said.

Experts recommend a slow transition to shoeless running.

“The transition to running barefoot, or to running in minimalist shoes can take weeks, months, or even a year,” Dengate said.

Do you run barefoot? Let us know what you think about the new trend in our comments section below…

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