Lecture Video and Power Point Notes for ‘Walk and Run For Life! Through Lever Mechanisms Or Spring Mechanisms?’ Melbourne, Australia, August 19, 2012



Australia Melbourne A5M

Lecture Video and Power Point Notes for
Walk and Run For Life! Through Lever Mechanisms Or Spring Mechanisms?
Melbourne, Australia, August 19, 2012 at
The 6th Annual A5M Conference In Anti-Aging & Aesthetic Medicine

Running, as decades of studies have shown, is one of the best ways for your patients to put distance between themselves and the aging process. The medical quandary, though, has been determining for mature patients when the physical demands of running – the wear and tear on bone and joints — outweigh the enormous anti-aging benefits. Many physicians err on the side of caution, supportive footwear, orthotics and even prematurely advising patients to stop running.

It’s been a pleasure to be here in Australia. Many of you know the “Blue Wiggle” Anthony Field, and it’s interesting that you’re coming to a medical conference and you’re hearing a doctor talk about anti-aging medicine and the application of bare-foot running and that was certainly the exact same thing that the client said, when I recommended barefoot running and barefoot training to him back in 2004.

What happened was this individual had chronic pain, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, which obviously was misdiagnosed, and he had clinical depression.

To learn more about Dr. Stoxen’s other Lecture he gave entitled, ‘The Inflammation-Depression Connection at The 6th Annual A5M Conference In Anti-Aging & Aesthetic Medicine, click here

I’m talking about the ‘Wiggles’ by the way and they were only in Chicago for approximately 48 hours, and we had a limited amount of time to try to fix this chronic condition that Anthony had for 25 years.

What I did was what he called “the pain exorcism” which was a 15-hour-straight treatment broken up between, shows. Basically this was a grueling release of the human spring mechanism, and the flushing of the inflammatory chemicals with various therapies that was, extremely aggressive.


You may have seen all the media on ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, FOX, The Today Show, and many others about how Wiggle front man, Anthony Field, one of many celebrities with depression, that was handicapped by chronic pain, chronic fatigue, misdiagnosed fibromyalgia and clinical depression during his 20 years on the road.

I told Anthony that he needed to have his entire spring mechanism restored.  I proceeded to do the deep tissue work which is the first stage of releasing the spring mechanism of the human body, removing the preload tension of the muscle spasms that are developed as a result of the abnormal walking patterns.

Your body normally walks with a spring to the step, to a suspension system that’s in the foot that transcends up through the body. Your walk goes from walking with a spring to using lever systems, and lever systems are a lot more labor-intensive, you’re using muscles rather than tendons.

I started to do the release of the spring mechanism from the foot into the calves and into the thighs, and then somebody came and said, “Anthony, it’s show time.” And then he got up and he looked at me kinda funny like, “You know that was a really great, four hours, you know, I learned a lot, but next time will you give me an adjustment of my back?” And then he started wiggling around felt a lot better.  And I said, “Yes, didn’t I tell you I was going to release your spring mechanism and it would recalibrate the entire body all the way up? And then your back pain would eventually decrease because it’s a compressive force that transcends the entire body, it’s just that you’re not linking the back pain to the foundation of the foot or the abnormal mechanics.”

What we are going to do is use this kind of ‘Walk and Run For Life! Through Lever Mechanisms Or Spring Mechanisms?’ lecture to ease our way into this anti-aging treatment approach that we used with him, and by the way, his pain did not return after that 4-hour treatment – of course I treated him more after that, approximately total of 15 hours.


Watch Below as Dr. Stoxen gives his lecture presentation’Walk and Run For Life! Through Lever Mechanisms Or Spring Mechanisms?’ Melbourne, Australia, August 19, 2012 at 6th Annual A5M Conference In Anti-Aging & Aesthetic Medicine

Below is the lecture and power point notes used for Dr. Stoxen’s lecture,                                                                                   Walk and Run For Life! Through Lever Mechanisms Or Spring Mechanisms?


Bedridden to Barefoot Reclaim Your Youth

  • Bedridden – Bed
  • Wheel Chair – 4 Wheels
  • 4-Prong Walker – 10 Supports 
  • Cane – 7 Supports 
  • Orthopedic Shoes and Orthotics – 6 Supports
  • Orthotics – 6 Supports
  • Motion Control – 4 Supports 
  • Footwear – 4 Supports 
  • Barefoot – No Supports



“This is what I call Barefoot to Bedridden. The standard of care.

We start off barefoot as children, and we run about and have a merry life. Then mom tells us to put our shoes on. Kids dont like shoes and that is why we see them kick them off as babies. Even as adults we get home at night and the first thing we want to do is take off our shoes, because they’re just uncomfortable. Even the best shoes, they cramp our feet”.

“The body supports itself through these elastic recoil and spring mechanisms that are built into it. The more we challenge it to support itself the stronger it gets through adaptation. Use it or lose it!.

We lose it when we substitute an artificial support for the one we are born with starting with footwear. Footwear offers 4 supports from both sides, through the counter supports…

We essentially bind the foot taking away the natural spring we are born when we immobilize the foot with “motion control” shoes. Then we make up for the natural spring we lost by adding an artificial spring to make up for the natural spring that was taken away.

Old fashioned engineering principles tell us the more links we can spread impact forces the less stress on each link. The design of the human foot allows these impacts to be spread across the 33 joints of the foot.”

“No wonder why we have so many impact injuries like shin splints, plantar fasciitis and the like.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Orthopedic Shoes

Orthopedic Support vs No Support

Orthopedic Support vs No Support

“Moving on to orthopedic shoes, ‘Oh they’re so ugly’, and what if your told you have to wear orthotics for the rest of your life? You might wonder how you would wear them when your at the beach?  Well you have to take them out I don’t know really what you would do with that.”

“Orthotics in my opinion?  I just don’t understand., Think about it this way. If you don’t have good abdominal muscles are you going to put a girdle on and then are you going to wear that girdle for the rest of your life? We decided that wasn’t a good idea. We decided exercise was a better idea. You know, exercise – what a novel concept to develop abdominal muscles from all six different directions.”

“Isn’t it interesting that when we go to the health club we exercise everything, All of our muscles that look good above the ankle but then we completely leave the area which is of most importance. We leave our feet, out of the exercise.”


Dr. James Stoxen DC


 Abebe Bikila

Abebe Bikila

Abebe Bikila

Pictured above is Abebe Bikila from Ethiopia that won the Olympic games in 1960.  Adidas, the shoe sponsor at the 1960 Summer Olympics, had few shoes left when Bikila went to try out shoes and he ended up with a pair that didn’t fit comfortably, so he couldn’t use them. A couple of hours before the race, Bikila decided to run barefoot, the way he’d trained for the race.  He ran the entire course barefoot, on the cobblestones in Rome, and actually broke the world record by 8 minutes.

 Zola Budd Barefoot Runner


“So in reality what you think is really happening, athletes’ increased human performance, is the same human performance in daily life as it is for sports.  In the video above is Zola Budd barefoot running. This is the 3000 meter world record – this is Zola Budd crushing the competition.”

“It’s amazing how at that time, if you calculate Newton’s law, which is mass, or the force of the impacts of her foot on the ground, times – the force of the impacts is equal to the mass, or body weight – all those girls are about the same size – times the speed, so she was the fastest runner in the world, then she had the most impact on any human being of any sport and she was barefoot.”

“Certainly human beings haven’t changed that much except maybe we got a little lazier and a little heavier”.

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Kinesthetic learning via Kinesthetic Senses

  • Strength, efficiency and safety of all movement is determined by neuromuscular factors, in particular the sense of kinaesthesis and the underlying proprioceptive mechanisms which inform us about where all the components of our musculoskeletal system are and what they are doing relative to one another in space and time
  • The integration of information enables us to execute a given movement in the most appropriate way in terms of pattern, velocity, acceleration and timing.
  • One way of improving proprioceptive efficiency is to diminish or block input from other sensory systems.


“Basically what we’re talking  about is removing the footwear so we can get an idea of how it feels to touch the ground and interact with the earth. It’s interesting to me to do a Gait Analysis, and see the toes peeling off of the earth, and the people looking as if the earth is some scary thing that they’re afraid to interact with. Well who wouldn’t feel that way with all these commercials saying that you have to have some kind of a cushion to protect yourself from impacts or that this cushion will help you absorb impacts.”

“The shoe companies that obviously invest millions of dollars into shoes that are healthy for us are in fact  just a lie. We don’t need a special cushion support to absorb the impacts, I’m 51 years old running barefoot on solid concrete, and I’ve improved my health. So these are untruths that we’re led to believe that we need and require these impact absorbing cushions to absorb these impacts, while all we’re doing is getting weaker in the process.”

” According to science it says that if we’re on a soft environment, that the ankle becomes unstable, we need to have a harder environment, because this allows for better stability, but also we have to engage more muscles to control our limbs on softer surfaces, which means that we use more energy, and also, if we use more energy, then we’re not really using the body as a spring mechanism, we’re using it as a lever system, and muscles are engaging rather than springs springing us. The most efficient walking style for you ladies that wanna go shopping and buy a lot of things is the one where you’re using the maximum spring, how’s that for excitement? That’ll get you going.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Roman R. (1986) Trenirovka Tyazheloatleta (Training of the Weightlifter) Fizkura I Sport Moscow

Creep (a word used in physics)

  •  Collagenous tissue increases significantly in strength and stiffness with increased rate of loading.
  •  There by emphasizing the intelligent use of training with high acceleration methods.
  • One study found an increase of almost 50% in load of knee ligaments to failure when the voting rate was increased for four fold  


“This study is about what I just talked about, called “creep”, it’s something to do with physics, and that’s what my whole talk is about, comparing the human body to an object that interacts with the earth, which is another object, and they collide with each other millions of times.”

“As a matter of fact on average, the human body collides with the earth 10,000 times a day, through walking and jumping and taking steps and things we do normally in our active daily life. However if you multiply that out that’s 3.6 million steps, and for some people it’s 4 to 5 million if you have a more active life style or job such as a mailman, and some of us are less active, but still it’s in the millions. So when you look at it it’s almost 100 million collisions with the earth by our 30th birthday.  That’s 100 million times.”

“In the textbooks they say that the body is a lever system and it ambulates as a lever system. The human body does move with levers, however if you think about it, if I’m standing on two feet, and I go up and down like this using my body as a lever, we’re talking about maybe 50 kilos or more – I’m just throwing some numbers out – 50 kilos times 100 repetitions and I’m tired already. That’s only 5000 kilograms of work. When you’re running a 10k, same person,  you’re looking at 50 kilos times 6,200 impacts with the earth that you have to launch your body off the ground with 150 kilos of force with each impact. Because it’s 3 times the body weight. When you’re walking it’s 1.25 times your body weight as the impact force.”

“we know that for force plays the analysis. It’s 3 times the body weight with running. So it’s 3 times 6,200 – 1.8 million or almost 2 million kilos of work that’s performed during a 10k. Now you got 5,000 pounds of work where you’re tired out, and 2 million – even if it’s one million, where’s the difference?”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Kennedy et al 1976 J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1976 Apr;58(3):350-5.

“The difference is that running and walking is not ambulating with lever systems. So if you’re evaluated as a lever system – wait a minute, what did I just say? The human body is NOT a lever system, we just proved it just now. So if we go to the doctor and the doctor says, “Now sit down on the table and I’m gonna evaluate your levers, one of your levers is this way, that way, this way, that way, and I see you have a herniated disk and I’m prescribing an MRI scan, and I’ll see you in about 3 days for the results.” And I say, “Wait a minute, I just told you the body is a spring mechanism.” So what Dr Stoxen says is that we’re gonna do a Gait study with your bare-feet, watch how you interact with the earth. And on the inside of the involvement we’re gonna see how the spring mechanism – if it’s intact or not, because the disk is a compression spring that is built into a spinal spring that has a certain ability to take in impacts and so does the foot with its suspension system, and so does the rest of the body, it’s all an integrated spring mechanism.”

“So why do we think that with that integrated spring mechanism that has a compressive spring that doesn’t decompress? – that’s why it’s not healing – it’s gonna heal up and that’s how we should examine it. What I’m saying is that the entire approach to evaluating patients in an orthopedic setting has to be completely revamped and looked at as a spring mechanism, not as a lever system. The results will be much better, you’ll see. This “creep” (slide above) says that almost 50% of the load of the knee and ligaments due to failure when the loading rate is slower, which  you say, “well you need these cushions to slow their loading rate, and what?” The scientist in Russia said that the loading rate or the contact time on earth has to be faster to engage the spring mechanism so that we have increased performance – completely opposite!”

“The longer you stand still on the earth, the sooner and more likely your body goes into plastic deformity. How can your body snap back from standing still over long periods of time? Elastic deformity, we’re gonna go over it, it’s very important that you understand it. We were never standing around back in the earlier days all the time because somebody wanted to eat us, it was the survival of the fittest, when you’re standing around a lion snuck up behind you and ate you for lunch. Or else we have to find something to eat. That’s how we survived.”

Biomechanical And Physiological Comparison Of Barefoot And Two Shod Conditions In Experienced Barefoot Runners.

  • 8 subjects analyzed using instrumented treadmill analysis
  • Compared to the standard shod condition when running barefoot the athletes landed in more plantar flexion at the ankle. 
  • Bare foot running caused reduced impact forces and changes in stride kinematics.

 “8 subjects are analyzed here, using instrumental treadmill analysis, shod when running, and barefoot athletes landed, more plantar flex. In other words what you see, is you see people running more like they have a pirate’s peg, a foot that actually has flexibility, and the ability to absorb impacts, they land like this, rather than like this – relaxed and loose. So the people who are shod, they didn’t care how the impact were because if you wear footwear that protects you from the impacts, and actually, ‘Why would you wear shoes when you run? Because I don’t like to wear braces on my feet. I want to run normally. “Oh geez I didn’t think of that!” Well that’s what you have to think about because that’s what it is.  So Takes the braces off and it will let the foot have more flex, and more ability to absorb the force of the impacts.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Squadrone R, Gallozzi C., J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2009 Mar;49(1):6-13.

 Can Barefoot Activity Alleviate Knee Pain and Arthritis

  • They looked at the external knee adduction moment (EKAM) when we are wearing shoes and when we are barefoot. EKAM represents knee load distribution from the inside to the outside of the knee joint. 
  • The higher the EKAM is, the greater and faster the progressions of deterioration (osteoarthritis) of the knee joint.
  • These researchers found that sneakers and running shoes increased EKAM when compared to barefoot walking and barefoot running

 “EKAM is the external knee adduction movement. What we’re saying is that when wearing shoes that EKAM was actually increased and causing faster progression for degeneration of the medial compartment of the knee, or osteoarthritis – This is one of the most famous research that started the whole thing. I want you to know that Dr Robert Goldman gave me permission to give a lecture in Chicago that was entitled “Elastic Recoil Mechanism, “Spring Mechanism”, How Footwear Accelerates the Aging Arocess.” That was in 2007, thank you very much Dr Goldman.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Radzimski AO, et al, Effect of footwear on the external knee adduction moment – A systemic review, Knee (2011), doi:10, 1016/j.knee. 2011.05.013

Foot Strike Patterns And Collision Forces In Habitually Barefoot Versus Shod Runners

  • habitually barefoot endurance runners often land on the fore-foot
  • habitually shod runners mostly rear-foot strike, facilitated by the elevated and cushioned heel of the modern running shoe
  • Kinematic and kinetic analyses show that even on hard surfaces, barefoot runners who fore-foot strike generate smaller collision forces than shod rear-foot strikers. 
  • This difference results primarily from a more plantar flexed foot at landing and more ankle compliance during impact, decreasing the effective mass of the body that collides with the ground.


“In 2010 this research came out at Harvard University by Daniel Lieberman, which turned the running industry upside-down. It explained that that runners that were habitually barefoot  and they studied the difference between the impacts of those who had shoes on. What they found was that those who habitually ran barefoot landed more on the forefoot.  that’s because it’s the more natural way to run. The spring is in the forefoot and not in the heel. The heel goes from the calcaneus, to the talus, to the ankle mortise – bone to bone to bone.”

“They say pendulum walk is right, I say it’s wrong, bone to bone to bone. Who said it? Well I don’t know, somebody told me and then he told them and then it went down the line, and nobody really knows why the first person told that one what it was, the pendulum walk where you land on your heel. Well the bottom line is that you can’t get really good shock absorption when your leg is stiff like that cause it just bangs into the earth.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC



Nature 2010 Jan 28;463(7280):531-5. Lieberman DE, Venkadesan M, Werbel WA, Daoud Al, D’Andre S, Davis IS, Mang’eni RO, Pitsiladis Y.

Effects Of Footwear And Strike Type On Running Economy

  • Runners were 2.41% more economical in the minimal-shoe condition when forefoot striking 
  • 3.32% more economical in the minimal-shoe condition when rearfoot striking
  • Arch strain was not measured in the shod condition but was significantly greater during forefoot than rearfoot striking when barefoot. 
  • Plantar flexor force output was significantly higher in forefoot than in rearfoot striking and in barefoot than in shod running. 
  • Achilles tendon-triceps surae strain and knee flexion were also lower in barefoot than in standard-shoe running shoe
  • Minimally shod runners are modestly but significantly more economical than traditionally shod runners regardless of strike type, after controlling for shoe mass and stride frequency. The likely cause of this difference is more elastic energy storage and release in the lower extremity during minimal-shoe running.

American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Vol. 1, 1058-1063, December 2009

The Normal Orientation Of The Human Hallux And The Effect Of Footwear

  • The orientation of each hallux was determined in thirty-eight radiographs by measuring the angle
  • The wearing of anatomically designed shoes would often allow the hallux to straighten, provided the abductor hallucis muscle functioned adequately.

 “The wearing of footwork actually straightens out the hallux, causing inadequate functions of the hallucis muscle, which means that you might be talking about a bunion. Now a bunion is really a plastic deformity in physics, it’s a deformity from abnormal movement patterns.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

C. H. BARNETT, J. Anat., Lond. (1962), 96, 4, pp. 489-494

Shod Versus Unshod: The Emergence Of Forefoot Pathology In Modern Humans?

  • They investigated the frequency of metatarsal bone pathologies in contemporary and habitually unshod vs shod
  • The metatarsal elements from four human groups were examined for pathological variation. Three were from recent rural and urban shod populations (Sotho, Zulu and European) and one from habitually unshod pre-pastoral Holocene people.
  • The pathological lesions found in the metatarsals of the three shod human groups generally appeared to be more severe than those found in the unshod group.
  • This result may support the hypothesis that pathological variation in the metatarsus was affected by wearing of footwear and exposure to modern substrates.

B. Zipfel, L.R. Berger, Journal of Clinical Foot Sciences, 17 (2007) 205–213

Shock Attenuation in Barefoot Running

  • 8 subjects were instrumented with piezoelectric uniaxial accelerometers to measure shock attenuation which were attached to the distal aspect of the right tibia on the medial side and to the front of the head.
  • Differences in the kinetics and kinematics of running was observed when comparing barefoot and shod running
  • Although the impact at the leg is greater at contact BF, the body is capable of attenuating the impact before it reaches the head.
  • Future research is required

“Although the impact at the leg is greater at contact with barefoot running, the body is capable of attenuating the impact before it reaches the head. So you have a natural spring mechanism built into your body to allow you to accept these shocks.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Julia A. Freedman, Janet S. Dufek, John A. Mercer

 A Case for Bare Feet

A high concentration of flat foot among six-year-old children who wore shoes as compared with those who did not, implies that the critical age for development of the arch is before six years.

Furthermore, optimum foot development occurs in the barefoot environment, and, therefore, children should be encouraged to partake in barefoot activity.

“This study says, optimum foot development for children occurs in the first six years, so why are we telling kids to put their shoes on?” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Paul J. Lucas* , Michael M. Berrow, Richard K. Frazine, and Robert A. Neinast

  Levels of Inflammation

Painful-Silent Inflammation Chart


“This is a chart I developed 20 years ago. The red area indicates high levels of inflammation, or where what I call frank inflammation because it hurts. The yellow area is where it’s still high levels of inflammation but you don’t know it’s there in which it’s called silent inflammation.”

“I knew that silent inflammation existed 20 years ago because the patient’s elbow didn’t hurt, but when I pressed on it they screamed. That’s silent inflammation. Now all of a sudden we’ve decided it’s important. Part of the anti-aging process is to get the body clear of silent inflammation, and you’re certainly not gonna be able to do it with fish oil and these other natural anti-inflammatories. It might sound promising but there are other approaches.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC



“If you have someone who has an abnormal gait, and they’ve had it for twenty years, and they’re banging and twisting it into the ground, there is inflammation produced with every step.  There’s no way – and I’m telling you because  I work on these patients. With this gentleman in particular it took 15 hours of grueling hands-on therapy that we finally got all the inflammation out of his body.”

“There’s no way that these pills, or other natural remedies can get all of the inflammation out of the body – I have patients walking and taking 20 anti-inflammatories and a dozen aspirins – don’t tell me I didn’t tell them to take them – and some neurontin and some other pills. And if I put my thumb into their neck area they might scream still. How do you think you’re going to be able to reduce the level of inflammation with anti-inflammatories, when the musculoskeletal inflammation is absolutely soaking those tissues? It’s not possible. You have to employ these therapies to get in and it has to be according to the spring mechanism.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

What Is Human Spring

Human Spring Dr. James Stoxen

 Bob Beamon Has Spring!

 “This is the world record jump by Bob Beamon. He was one of the greatest athletes that ever lived. This is the long jump and it’s spectacular to watch. Everybody watches the long jump but I watch something different.  I watch this take off and watch how he flies through the air, and it’s just an amazing feat. But what i’m talking about is not when he leave but watch how he runs away, watch his legs, how they bounce off the ground on the forefoot. Just watch that.  He has Amazing Spring. And that’s what you’re looking for, that’s what we call spring, and notice those shoes, they don’t have cushions.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


  1. The human spring stores mechanical potential energy therefore it is an efficiency mechanism.
  2. The human spring absorbs forces of landings therefore it is a protective mechanism.
  3. The human spring allows the foot to land on uneven surfaces adjusting the body mechanics to the terrain.
  4. The human spring is integrated into the biomechanics therefore it is essential for stress/strain free motion

Weakness or locking of the spring can lead to fatigue, increased risk for acute injury, inability to heal and accelerated aging of the body’s systems.

Elastic or Spring Energy

  • In the elastic-like bounce of the body at each running step the muscle-tendon units are stretched after landing and recoil before take-off.
  • Evidence has been provided suggesting that muscle is kept quasi-isometric with the consequence that the length change of the muscle–tendon unit is mostly sustained by tendons.
  • It has been found that much of the muscle activity in running is associated with tensioning of the tendons, which thereby store energy for successful cycles of movement.
  • Isometric conntractions are considerably less expensive than dynamic contractions.

“Evidence has been provided that the actual spring doesn’t occur in the muscles. We ambulate and we say, “Oh we must contract the muscle and push the body through space.” That’s not correct. What we found out was that the muscle went to a quasi-isometric state, and the tendons lengthened, while the muscles stabilize the limb, and the tendons lengthen and that’s how we ambulate. “

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Eccentric vs Concentric Training

  • An eccentric contraction refers to muscle action winch the muscle force succumbs to the imposed load and the muscle complex lengthens. Not only is it metabolically much more efficient than concentric contraction, but it’s also capable of generating higher forces
  • In addition this difference between concentric and eccentric contractions has been found to depend on the velocity of contraction (Komi 1973)
  • As the velocity of contraction increases, so do those maximums eccentric force increase whereas the maximum concentric force decreases even though the corresponding EMG for the given muscle group remains reasonably constant.


“Eccentric means the loading, and concentric means unloading or push. What they say is concentric or the eccentric component, the landing, is where we can store the maximum amount of energy. And that’s why they developed plyometrics, which is the way athletes train for the Olympics and for sports. Even in grade school, jumping jacks is a form of plyometrics, and running is somewhat similar to plyometrics.”

“Why do they have resistance training named resistance training, and then we have plyometrics? Because they use different systems. They’re completely different. They’re completely different but nobody really picked up on it. Plyometrics and running or even walking is using spring mechanics, and the other is using lever mechanics.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


 (Kaneko 1984)  (Komi 1973)  (Rodgers And Berger 1974) 

What Surfaces are Best For Barefoot Running?

  • On the stiffest surfaces, the legs compressed in early stance and then extended in late stance in the pattern that is typical for normal bouncing gaits.
  • On the softest surfaces, however, subjects reversed this pattern so that the legs extended up to 8 cm in early stance and then compressed by a similar distance in late stance.
  • Consequently, the center of mass moved downward during stance by 5-7 cm less than the surface compressed and by a similar distance as on the stiffest surfaces.
  • This unique leg action probably reduced extensor muscle pre-stretch because the joints first extended and then flexed during stance. This interpretation is supported by the observation that hoppers increased muscle activation by 50% on the softest surface despite similar joint moments and mechanical leg work as on the stiffest surface.
  • Thus, the extreme adjustment to leg mechanics for very soft surfaces helps maintain normal center of mass dynamics but requires high muscle activation levels due to the loss of the normal extensor muscle stretch-shorten cycle.

“What surfaces are better for barefoot running? You say, “Well the beach?” And the doctor may, seem puzzled that you run on solid surfaces. But this study explains that on harder surfaces, the legs compressed in early stance phase – and then extended in the late stance phase, which means that’s what they’re supposed to do.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

 “On the soft surface the legs extended up to 8 cm in early stance and then compressed by a similar distance in late stance. They extended on the landing, and they compressed on the opposite. This is what the spring mechanism does, this is what the foot does on landing. See the tendons above that are sticking out? You can see the Tibalis Posterior muscle above.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

The tibalis posterior muscle is the key muscle and tendon for stabilization, the tibialis posterior also contracts to produce inversion and assists in the plantar flexion of the foot at the ankle. The tibialis posterior has a major role in supporting the medial arch of the foot.”


Natural Spring Down Motion

 “The spring suspension system loads energy into the tendons, and it recoils the energy back to allow you to be able to ambulate with maximum efficiency.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Hookes Law

 “This is the law of physics called Hooke’s Law – it’s been around since the 1700s, and it still stands. It says the deeper you can compress the spring, the more energy it will return. Also the deeper we can compress this spring, the faster we can run without injury, how about that? Isn’t that interesting? Because we know that the faster we run, the greater the force of the impact as we run faster, so if you have athletes who say why can I walk but I can’t run, that means that the spring is breaking down at various different impact speeds. Which means you have to strengthen the spring mechanism to allow them to absorb the impacts more efficiently.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Running Injuries

Most important is the ability of the spring suspension system to handle the force of the landings.

 “Running injuries, the majority of them, are in the inability to take the landings. However athletes are always working on building the muscles for the take-off,  Often times they completely forget about the fact that the plane is going 600 miles per hour, when it only was going 400 before. Now we have to land the plane at a faster speed, so we need a stronger landing gear, otherwise you’re gonna have a crash landing. “Oh gee I never thought of that!” Maybe that’s why you’re having all these injuries, because you never work on the landing gear.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

What To Consider When Evaluating Injuries

The development of strength–endurance is a an inherent characteristic and the fundamental principle of training for developing general endurance. Training for strength–endurance is determined predominantly by:

  • The magnitude of the load
  • The rest interval between training sessions
  • The length of the training period
  • Additional levels of strength–endurance of the athlete
  • The kinesiological structure of the movement
  • Relative involvement of static and dynamic strength–endurance

Mel Siff, Yuri Verhkoshansky, Supertraining, Supertraining International Denver USA 1999


  • This type of deformation is reversible. Once the forces are no longer applied, the object returns to its original shape.
  • The ability of the spring to deform, store energy, reform to its exact original shape, releasing energy.
  • This is the key principle behind aging


“Elastic recoil, or elastic deformity – this is the key to reducing aging. This right here is the no.1 thing you have to take from what I’m giving you today. What it says is that elastic deformity in physics – you can look it up – is the ability of the spring to deform its physical shape.”

“Then it stores energy during the deformation process. Then it returns back to its exact original shape. The word “exact” is vitally important. Why? Because if it doesn’t return to its exact original shape, it deforms permanently. If it returns back to its exact original shape, it snaps back to its exact original shape. Then you can take up millions of impacts without permanent deformity. That’s why you can walk and run well into your 70s ,80s and I believe into your 90s, because it snaps back with each impact after millions and millions of impacts.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Journal of Applied Physics, M. Mooney, September 1940, Volume: 11 Issue 9 Page (s) 582 – 592


  • In physics and materials science, plasticity describes the deformation of a material undergoing non-reversable changes of the shape in response to applied forces.
  • The human spring deforms, stores energy, does not return to its exact original shape, releases less energy.

“The opposite of elastic deformity is called plastic deformity. I didn’t invent it, it’s in the physics books; it says that it deforms its physical shape but does not return to its exact original shape. They call that a bunion where I come from. It’s normal when you impact it billions of times, you didn’t impact exactly according to the way the spring was designed, and it deformed its physical shape permanently. Now the problem is that it’s not as good of a spring anymore, it can’t take up the impact as well as before, and it can’t recycle energy as well. So you have more chronic pain, and you have less natural energy: that’s called aging. It’s a breakdown in the spring mechanism.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

J. Lubliner, 2008, Plasticity theory, Dover, ISBN 0-486-46290-0, ISBN 978-0-486-46290-5.





  • Beyond the elastic limit, permanent deformation will occur. 
  • The lowest stress at which permanent deformation can be measured.

“There’s a breaking point where it goes from elastic to plastic. That’s called the yield strength point. We had all this figured out in sports medicine a long time ago. Actually the coaches figured it out. Beyond the elastic limit, permanent deformation occurs. That means that there’s a point where you can go so far in your training that will allow you to build muscle, build tendon strength and bone strength, and if you go any further, you  could cause damage to the body. Simple enough.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

G. Dieter, Mechanical Metallurgy, McGraw-Hill, 1986                                                                                                                                                                               Flinn, Richard A.; Trojan, Paul K. (1975). Engineering Materials and their Applications. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. p. 61. ISBN 0-395-18916-0.

Internal and External Forces and Conditions

Internal and External Forces and Conditions

 “Pictured above is a graphic of the human body when the spring mechanism is locked,. The right foot is straight and you’ll see the second toe is pointing towards the target when you’re walking normally. If you see a patient walk in your office, and his foot is turned out (left foot above) what that usually means is that the spring comes through the metatarsal cuneiform joints in the mid arch area, so it’s suspended from above by this spring suspension system. When your suspension system gets tired, drops and locks, what I find is a locking of the second and third metatarsal cuneiform joints, mid arch, so it locks in the mid arch. If the spring mechanism is locked then it’s now moving like a piece of frozen steak, it has to spin around to roll around the locked mechanism, that’s where over-pronation comes from, as well as the weakness of the spring.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Compressive Forces

“Compressive forces happen as a result of muscle spasms that go from one point to another. What i’m talking about is abnormal movement patterns which cause muscle spasms.  The brain doesn’t know how to fix it; it just makes the body tighten up. What happens is the cartilage actually touch when you impact, and it squeezes the water or fluid out of the cartilage into the synovial fluid area, and it sucks them back in. That’s the nutrient transfer. So the problem is if you have a compressive force, preload force on this spring mechanism.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Preventive Medicine is Not Working


“This is called degenerative joint disease. Over 400,000 people are having knees or hips replaced in America, because somebody didn’t do what they were supposed to do when they were in their 30s.”

 Gait Analysis

“This is a Gait Study, now if I could stop it you can see the right foot lands on an angle, the heel, and the left foot is straight. Why, because the foot can’t roll, and flex into those 33 joints, and it’s locked in the middle. And that’s what happened with this poor girl. And what we did was we just adjusted the metatarsal cuneiform joints, see how it’s on an angle here, you could do this in your office, you don’t even need a treadmill.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC



 “Just get  a flip camera for $140 and connect it to your Mac, have the patient walk towards you and then walk away repeat with the patient walking very fast towards you, then very fast walk away, less than 30 seconds, plug it into the Mac, and as you can see in the video above you can go back and forth then pretty soon you’re like an expert. It’s not that difficult to figure this stuff out. You know when the foot’s not landing right.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Compensation Motion 

compensating motion overpronation

 “It’s obvious, especially if you’re looking at this above. Okay if you’ve got pain on the right side, well gee I think that maybe that foot has a lot to do with it. Absolutely, that’s what you’re going to see on every single patient. This is not hard to do, it’s very simple, my patients say, “Wow, why didn’t my doctor point this out to me before when I got that MRI scan?” I say, “I don’t know, but it certainly has a lot to do with the way your foot is pronated when you walk” – well of course it does! You don’t have to be a doctor to see that.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC


 “With a Spring Suspenstion system in tact,  we spring off the ground.  If you stop this you could watch how the forefoot actually goes beyond the heel. You can’t do this with shoes on.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC




Suspension System Muscles•Pain and accelerated ageing
•Silent inflammation
•Wear and tear
•Stress and strain
•Compensating abnormal movement
•Drop and lock of the spring mechanism
•Weakness in spring suspension system


“This is how it works, you’ve got a weakness in the suspension system, these muscles, tibialis posterior, tibialis anterior, peroneal muscles. It drops and it locks. You have a compensating abnormal motion during walking, stress and strain, wear and tear, the release of inflammation and pain, and accelerated aging.”
“I was on channel 24 News yesterday morning, and they said, “Doctor how do you equate this walking to depression?” I said, “Well, excessive wear and tear, it’s called silent inflammation if you look it up on PubMed there are over 2,000 articles, how inflammation is linked to depression and accelerated aging.” What happens is that as we age, the distance of each step when running, decreases and the amount of time they spent on the ground decreases, so they take shorter steps. But barefoot runners take shorter steps, they take more of them, because they don’t over-extend.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC



The long tendons of the spring suspension system medial and lateral

The long tendons of the spring suspension system medial and lateral

 “Here’s are the spring suspension system muscles.  Above you see the lateral and medial view. A lot of my doctor friends went right through this in school. They needed to know this for the test, and then they forgot that was so important.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Connective Tissue Strength vs Muscle Strength

  • More over, muscle tissue adapts to increase loading within several days.
  • Connective tissue such as tendons ligaments and joints and bones or systems which contain a high proportion of connective tissue such as bone and cartilage only display significant adaptation and hypertrophy after several weeks or months of progressive loading.
  • It is vital that the prescription of training takes into account the different rates of adaptation of all systems involved and avoids overtraining systems with the lowest rates of adaptation.
  • Gradual increase in training load and avoidance of impulse or explosive methods is essential for minimizing the occurrence of connective tissue soreness and injury

“This is very important, the muscle will actually get stronger in 2 to 3 weeks, but the tendons take about 20 weeks. So when you’re trying to help a person that’s trying to run, since they use mostly tendons for running, they won’t really feel the improvement for about 3 or 4 months. So when you’re working with athletes that are runners, instead of athletes that are pushing weight, then you’re going to have to be a little bit more patience and let them know that it’s normal to take a little time.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

McDonagh and Davis 1984

 Free Stored Elastic Energy

The ability to use stored elastic energy depends on the

•The velocity of stretching
•the magnitude of the stretch
•the duration of the transition between the termination of the eccentric and initiation of the concentric phase of the movement.
This delay between the two phases should be minimal or the stored elastic energy will be rapidly dissipated.

Because a more prolonged delay will allow fewer cross bridges to remain attached after the stretch (Edman Et Al 1976)

The greater the velocity of stretching is during the eccentric contraction, the greater the storage of elastic energy (Rack & Westbury 1974)

 “Free elastic stored energy, which is what allows you to have more natural energy, the research states that the velocity of the stretching, which means how quickly the body took up the impact, that means how quickly the body loaded the landing, and the magnitude of the stretch of the suspension system. And the duration of the transition between the termination of the first jump and the second jump and the concentric – so the quicker you get off the ground, the more you will benefit from it.  Shoe companies will tell you that this helps you to reduce the amount of –  the shock down.” When in reality science tells us the opposite.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

supportive cuff muscles

supportive cuff muscles

 “Pictured above is how the spring suspension system muscles attach on the bottom of the foot, look at the peroneus longus, how it supports the arch from below, and has an attachment on the 1st metatarsal, and look at the tibialis posterior that actually crosses to the lateral side, and suspends the foot in a suspension system. It is not a lever.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Unsafe and Safe Range

Over Pronation and Supination of the foot safe range by Dr James Stoxen DC

The Foot Safe Range

 “This is a chart that explains the safe and unsafe range. This is where the right foot starts on the outside and rolls to the inside, the body attenuates the shock by rolling across the foot, and loading it in, some doctors say it becomes a rigid lever. How is it possible that something that’s rolling and loading at the same time with 33 articulations ever becomes a rigid lever? It’s impossible. So whatever you read in  a book about this, you have to question whether or not it’s correct. It’s not. It can’t be. Any time that you stop action with the human body it can cause damage to the joints.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC



Causes of weakness in the Human Spring Suspension System:


Shoe Causing us weakness

 “Footwear is one of the causes of weakness in the suspension system. Sciences have said that any time we bind our bodies, then our bodies become weaker.” This is not what an athlete should wear. As you can see this shoe is poorly designed, with a big toe lift, to reverse your arch mechanism. It’s got a split sole, which means it sinks down when the weight hits, and the backend comes up and is not even touching the ground.  Could you imagine if you have a patient with shin splints and foot pain, and you say, “let me look at your shoes.” And you put the shoe on the counter and you say, “Oh there’s your problem. Look at these shoes.” And they’re like, “Wow you really are a smart doctor!” You know, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that that’s not a good shoe. These orthotics are inhibiting the natural spring mechanism.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Safe and Unsafe Zone

Safe and Unsafe Zone

 “We were not meant to stand on our feet for a long period of time but some of us have certain jobs that require us to stand on our feet for long period of time. The suspension system muscle will fatigue, the arch mechanism will drop and lock. So if you know you’re gonna be on your feet for a long time standing still, it is best to have a counter support shoe that is made out of a stiffer leather to maintain the foot within the safe range, at least until you can get home, and start moving around. It is better than leaving the body banging and twisting with the actual ankle buckling into pronation, because that causes the inflammatory reaction.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Steps to Increasing Impact Protection and Energy Recycling

  • Release The Abnormal Internal Compressive Force On The Human Spring
  • Increase Depth Of Loading Of Forces Into The Human Spring
  • Strengthen The Spring Suspension System via Lever Strengthening
  • Strengthen The Spring Suspension System via Spring Strengthening
  • Maintain

 “The first step is to release the internal compressive forces on the spring that’s done by hand and also with vibratory therapy. Increase the depth of loading of the spring, strengthen the spring muscles with lever system exercises, or strength training, and strengthen it with spring training exercises with plyometrics.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Vibration Therapy 

Vibrational Massage from the feet to the head  

 “In my practice there is great results with this treatment. It involves a vibrational massage to the entire body focusing on the areas with the most inflammation for at least 30 minutes before treatment. 
This stimulates circulation, increases the levels of oxygen, nutrients, hormones which then leads to the decrease of inflammation and flushes the chemicals out of the body.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Deep Tissue

Removes painful and silent inflammation muscle spasms

 “I apply deep tissue treatment on the patient to remove every single painful and silently inflamed muscle spasm according to the pattern and distribution of these compressive forces that lead to inflammation.” 
“This can take between 10 and 30 hours of aggressive treatment hours to rid the body of painful inflammation.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Release The Abnormal Internal Compressive Force On The Human Spring 

 “This is an adjustment – you may find this a bit startling, but if I had the volume on the video turned up, you could really hear these bones releasing. This is a releasing of the talus. In the ankle mortise.  Now you have to have a certain skill level to do this; you don’t just yank on someone’s foot. Do you realize that those bones are locked up and when you land it doesn’t give independent movement to each linkage and then you end up twisting and twerking the limb until the point where it’s full of inflammation. Of course it’s terrible, you feel like your leg is a piece of frozen chicken, it hurts!”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

 Relax Preload Muscle Tension to Maximize Depth of Safe Loading Elastic Spring Elements to do the Work

  • The ability to relax muscle is very important for rapid movements especially in cyclical actions, which involve recent assists of ATP during the phases between muscle contractions.
  • The adequate retrieval of elastic energy stored in the muscle complex, together with the stretch–shortening potential of force output, or valuable prerequisites for efficient high velocity cyclic and acyclic movement.
  • Verhkoshanski 1996  reports that economical sprinting activity can result in the recovery of about 60% of total mechanical energy expended in the movement cycle, with the remaining 40% being
  • He had set a high correlation between the muscular capacity to store potential elastic energy and the performance of distance runners, with an increase in the contribution from non-metabolic energy sources taking place with increased in running velocity.

“Dynamic plyometric loading which is stretch shortening action not intended to increase range of motion, but a specific stretching phenomena called plyometrics, using stored elastic energy; that’s what athletes do.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Current Standard of Care

The Lever Model has no physics for understanding Impact Protection or How To Increase Impact Resistance or Improve Energy Recycling.


“Above you see a video of myself and USA Taekwondo national champion Christian Medina barefoot running in Chicago. That’s because some gangster took our shoes. Just Kidding. But this is called zig zag running and that is how you develop the spring mechanism because those muscles as you can see are on the sides.”

“Is it okay that if we go to the gym and we only do bench presses? No,you know that isn’t right, because it doesn’t develop a balance in your shoulders, and you have to work your shoulders from the back,  doing pull downs, or other exercises to develop all the muscles. Well why do you think that running’s okay if you just run down the road straight? It’s ridiculous to think that that’s going to develop a strong balance in the spring mechanism. It’s completely impossible. Basically what we’re talking about is using adaptation exercises to strengthen the spring suspension mechanism.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Relax to Maximize Depth of Safe Loading
 Elastic Spring Elements to do the Work

•The ability to relax muscle is very important for rapid movements especially in cyclical actions, which involve recent assists of ATP during the phases between muscle contractions.
•The adequate retrieval of elastic energy stored in the muscle complex, together with the stretch–shortening potential of force output, or valuable prerequisites for efficient high velocity cyclic and acyclic movement.
Verhkoshanski 1996  reports that economical sprinting activity can result in the recovery of about 60% of total mechanical energy expended in the movement cycle, with the remaining 40% being
•He had set a high correlation between the muscular capacity to store potential elastic energy and the performance of distance runners, with an increase in the contribution from non-metabolic energy sources taking place with increased in running velocity

Verkhoshansky YV (1996) Quickness and velocity in sports movements IAAF Quarterly New Studies in Athletics 11 (2-3); 29-37

“I studied under Verkoshansky when I was 28 years old in Moscow – this study reports that economic sprinting activity can result in the recovery of 60% of the mechanical energy expended on the movement cycle, with the remaining 40%.” 

Dr. James Stoxen DC


 Move The Foot In Various Directions

movement training

 “Develop the foot in all of ranges of motion, because this is the only way to  actually develop the spring mechanism. It’s important to develop the foot in different movement patterns other than just walking straight.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC


Deceleration Landing

 “As you can see if you land with the heel, you’re going to see on these gait evaluations that your calf will shake upon landing. It will shake, you can see it, mostly on the full speed evaluation, when you slow it down you can’t see it as well. But you can see as to why, it’s touches bone to bone to bone. All the spring is here. You can see what i’m trying to explain by the picture above.”

Dr. James Stoxen DC

Bang and Twist Walking VS Spring Roll Walking

Bang and Twist Walking VS Spring Roll Walking

Neutral Landing

This is the attachment of the mid foot of all these suspension system muscles

Old men running: mechanical work and elastic bounce

  • The results support the working hypothesis that the impaired muscle function in the old subjects results in a smaller amplitude of the vertical oscillation of the centre of mass, with a lower upward acceleration and a reduced duration of the aerial phase.
  • These in turn imply:
    • (i) less elastic energy stored
    • (ii) a higher step frequency
    • (iii) a lower external work to maintain the motion of the centre of mass of the body relative to the surroundings, and
    • (iv) a greater internal work to accelerate the limbs relative to the centre of mass.

So what happens is that anytime you have tension on the muscles, when the body is not perpendicular to the earth, that’s when your going to have problems: reading in bed, watching TV in bed, leaning back in the car… that kind of thing, in sustained position or positions where you’re not perpendicular to the earth for long periods of time. So that’s why a lot of patients have osteoarthritis syndromes, neck problems that won’t heal, back problems that won’t heal is because of that.

Proc Biol Sci. 2008 February 22; 275(1633): 411–418. GA Cavagna M.A. Legramandi LA Peyre-Tartaruga




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