Hi there! I'm new here... 35 year old chica (it still feels weird calling myself woman. Sounds too old maybe?)
I was another orthotic wearer. Had my first pair in Europe when I was 3! I am now wearing minimal shoes or am barefoot to walk in 5 miles every day. I feel comfortable walking in minimal footwear and have no pain.
I used to run with a heavy heel strike (used to do so when I walk, too)and I have bad genetics on my dad's side of the family. Everyone on that side has had knee replacements, arthritis, etc. I never ran more than ten miles a week, but I really messed up my knee.
I had my knee scoped 5 years ago and I had a bone spur and grade 4 (worse kind, bone on bone) osteoarthritis. This is not meniscal cartilage, which is mostly pain-free after surgery. It is articular cartilage and I can still feel pain in it if I overdo things. Physical therapy does not help.
I have been practicing running in minimal shoes and was ok for a few weeks, but I overdid it yesterday and my knee is in major pain. I think I need to wait a bit and then try running really barefoot, practice perfect form.
So, I'm wondering if anyone with advanced osteoarthritis of the knees (articular cartilage, not mensical)is able to run barefoot because of minimal impact.
I could keep walking instead, but I really like the feeling of running!! :0)