In tandem with its
first barefoot collection of shoes hitting market, Merrell launched a new
microsite,, the “go-to” resource on how to begin and train
for barefoot running and adventure. 

part of the launch, Merrell will introduce the Merrell Bareform Training
Technique that incorporates proper running form, body strengthening and a
flexibility regime for top condition training.  
Partnering with key barefoot and running ambassadors, such as Walt
Reynolds, a top trainer, coach and owner of NovaSport Athlete Development, and
Jason Robillard, barefoot ultra marathoner and founder of the Barefoot Running
University, the site will introduce barefoot adventure to fans through videos,
tips and news articles related to the growing barefoot movement. 

As we
looked at the fast-paced barefoot movement and listened to key influencers in
barefoot running and lifestyle, we realized there was no place consumers could
go to learn about the necessary training and education needed for barefoot
adventure,” said Craig Throne, vice president of global marketing manager at
Merrell. “As we introduce an entire collection of barefoot shoes with the goal
of getting more people outside having fun, we want to make sure there is a
resource so that runners and outdoor enthusiasts don't just jump into a pair of
barefoot or minimalist shoes without the proper background.”

“My primary decision to work with Merrell was based on their
dedication to education around barefoot,” said Jason Robillard, barefoot ultra
marathoner and founder of the Barefoot Running University. “To date, every
other manufacturer of minimalist shoes has done a poor job of educating people
about proper running gait when transitioning from traditional running shoes to
minimalist shoes or barefoot. Merrell is the first to fill this education void,
and I am more than happy to help them do so. 
My ultimate goal in the promotion of barefoot running has always been
education.  We can help fuel their
enthusiasm about barefoot running while providing solid information to prevent
them from injury.”

“I am a firm believer that everyone can 'move better' and
barefoot is the best way to do so,” said Walt Reynolds, long-time trainer,
coach and owner of NovaSport Athlete Development.  “I am thrilled to help Merrell develop an
educational program that supports their new barefoot line of shoes. The Merrell
Bareform Training program combines the benefits of proper running form with
total body conditioning, strength & mobility exercises that apply to hikers
and climbers as well.  This is a
whole-body program that will benefit every active person, no matter what
outdoor adventure they choose.”

March Merrell is planning to introduce a barefoot training iPhone application
designed to introduce runners and outdoor enthusiasts to the barefoot movement
and provide the education needed to begin to run and move.  There will be a mix of four training
intervals to instruct on the natural way to run, with a midfoot to forefoot
landing, and aids in developing ankle, knee and hip stability to promote good
movement. The application will also host a Merrell Barefoot iTunes mix that is
based on the 180 beat-per-minute cadence of a natural running stride.

Merrell Barefoot will be available at retail stores and on in February.