So, what DOES cause a change in strike pattern with barefoot running?

We kinda thought so...

"CONCLUSION: Superficial cutaneous sensory receptors are not primarily responsible for the gait changes associated with barefoot running."

So what is? Most likely they play a part, but the joint and muscle mechanoreceptors that we had been talking about here on The Gait Guys for the last several years most likely play a larger role. The cutaneous receptors appear to play a role in general sensation, balance and coordination as well as coordination of upper extremity movements.

Thompson MA, Hoffman KM.Superficial plantar cutaneous sensation does not trigger barefoot running adaptations.Gait Posture. 2017 Jun 27;57:305-309. doi: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2017.06.269. [Epub ahead of print]