Thursday, 5 November 2009


I have been a barefooter all my life - I'm 60 now.
My mother, now 86 was also one and her mother and brother too. I can tell you that my mama has always been exquisitely elegant in Paris type clothes, perfect make up - and gorgeous toe rings and ankle chains.

The family tradition continues with my huge 18yrs son who has never worn shoes for more than a couple of hours very occasionally for a high formal event like a funeral.

Sigh. We got the constant stupid ignorant question "Can't you afford shoes?" This goes back to the snobbery of the early 20thC when only the well off could afford shoes every day.

Barefooting is not unhealthy, dirty or unsafe.

Read about it and make up your own mind.

Barefooting is not unhealthy, dirty or unsafe.

In fact it's far healthier than wearing shoes which cramp and distort feet creating all kinds of health problems including bad backs.

My son was always far better balanced, better at climbing, and even calmer than other kids in shoes. Shoes HURT when you're not used to them which applies to all small kids.
I watched my son climb Cheddar Gorge around 60ft up - at 8yrs. Perfectly safe, he was like a tough little ape. It's also stood him well for martial arts where he's a demon fighter mostly due to strong sure balance.

Barefooting not dirty. Skin does not make dirt stick like dead skin (leather) or plastics do. The dirt drops off much quicker as you walk into a building so when oters are still tracking it in, you're not.

Bare feet don't get put on tables! or anywhere offensive any more than shoes are.
As for the common question on stepping in muck well you don't. Within weeks you learn to scan without being aware you're doing it. You step in it far less than shoe wearers who tend to be careless where they put their feet.

Bare feet don't SMELL! Sweat doesn't build up, soak into sock or shoe and go stale. It instantly ventilates and the foot stays dry. (This is an important issue for teenage males.)

Barefooting is safe. The skin on the sole rapidly toughens - it takes around 4 - 6 weeks. In fact it becomes tougher than many shoes. In summer when I barefoot more I don't even think about glass, splinters. I can just walk on 'em! and they drop away.
I did wash my son's feet when small in salt water every few nights just in case of tiny cuts but I was probably being overprotective.

Regarding chemicals etc there is very little protection from flip flops either. Liquid splashes in between the sole of sandal and sole of foot.
So most bio- or mineral-hazards are fenced off places, if serious, and only closed in shoes or boots are adequate. same as a building site or science lab.

There ARE a few hazards. Don't walk barefoot at night in the park because of rusty metal sharps, and dirty needles, for which ditto city centres. Don't walk barefoot in tropical countries because of parasites that lie in the earth there.

Otherwise FREE THE FEET!
While getting used to it, do it for longer and longer periods, like breaking in new shoes. Wash in salt water till the skin hardens. Expect to take around 4 - 6 weeks to learn to automatically scan the ground for yuck without noticing you're doing it.

Enjoy the massive sensuality of it. Ground textures are amazingly varied. The strength in bare feet travels up the spine so it's good for posture. Release those poor battered toes from potential bunions and corns, ingrown toenails. Gain a beautiful sense of balance as you move about.

If nothing else do give up shoes indoors. It saves your carpets or flooring because it's so much cleaner than tracking dirt in on shoes: and you get a lot of the benefits from part of each day barefooting.

Shoe manufacturers make a FORTUNE out of the damage you're doing your feet.

Free the feet - or choose not to barefoot.
But at least now you know a bit about it so you won't say (or think) incredibly stupid ignorant things about it.

Link - stunning pic of girl barefooting in snow!

Link Society for Barefoot Living


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