The Benefits of Being Barefoot

By Vibram FiveFingers:

We have all been born barefoot.  A long time ago, people have lived and survived without using protective footwear.  But, today, because of technology and the many changes it brought, wearing shoes became an essential part of life.  But beyond all the protection and the style shoes provide, we seem to have forgotten the significant benefits and sense of freedom being barefoot brings.

Shoes were first invented thousands of years ago—way back when people used to live in caves.  Back then, they used animal hides and leather laces to protect their feet from the rough terrain.  Millennia passed and the concept of shoes evolved in countless ways from its design, material, and even its uses.  It became a necessity to shod oneself.  However, no matter how things change, most people still prefer to do a lot of things barefoot.  It is all because being barefoot is very comfortable.  But, aside from the unrivaled relaxation being barefoot brings, it also has a considerable number of benefits, not just to the feet, but the body as a whole.

Doing activities barefoot brings a lot of advantages to the body’s flexibility and mobility.  It allows people to exercise, stretch, relax, and strengthen muscles they normally don’t get to use when wearing shoes.  Barefoot running also corrects the way people run—making them land on the balls of their feet—as compared to wearing rubber shoes which gives the tendency to land on the heels first.  Landing on the heels of the feet releases more pressure and shock to legs and knees.  Doing things barefoot also improves range of motion in ankles, feet, and toes because of movements that are more natural and free.  It also heightens body awareness since the body has the sense of being freer than being shod.  Balance and motion agility are also developed because doing things barefoot further stimulates the neurons and nerves that are essential to lower body movement.  And because there are no heels to torture the foot heel and the ankle, it enhances natural posture and the alignment of the spine.  And, most especially, it is much easier to relax and stretch after a workout if someone is barefoot.

Countless health benefits have been associated with being barefoot.  That is why athletes, to attain better health and movement, prefer to do their sports without any footwear on.  It is because when barefoot, movements become the movements of a child—playful and sensitive, yet purposeful and confident.  A person experiences the unbound joy of stepping, hopping, and running across any surface on earth, simply to get from here to there.  This is the reason why a lot of sports enthusiasts prefer to deal with their activities barefoot.

Numerous runners have been hitting the tracks without any shoes on because the benefits of running barefoot have long been supported by scientific research, coaches, and athletes who’ve offered ample evidence that training without shoes allows you to run faster and further with fewer injuries.  Motion studies demonstrate that when running barefoot, one naturally lands on the forefoot, directly below the center of gravity.  This results in optimum balance, increased stability, less impact, and greater propulsion.

Indeed, undertaking activities barefoot has a lot of benefits and advantages for the body.  However, the feet—most especially those of the more active people—need to be protected from the many possibilities of injury.  That is why some footwear are developed to mimic the feel and freedom of being barefoot.  A good example would be the Vibram Five Fingers which is a proof that many people prefer to do things barefoot.  With a slot for each of the toes, it actually gives all the freedom and feel of wearing no shoes on.

Many other innovations in footwear have been introduced into the market to make our feet as comfortable and relaxed as if barefoot.  It is because it takes no genius to agree that—aside from the benefits of going barefoot—the feet has taken the humans a long, long way and they deserve a break and the freedom.

The Vibram Five Fingers store is located at Level R1 Bridgeway in PowerPlant Mall, Rockwell.  For inquiries, call (02) 513-1449 or e-mail marketing@barefootwearinc.com.  You could also visit the official website at www.barefootwearinc.com.

7 Responses to “The Benefits of Being Barefoot”

  1. 2010-09-07 at 12:03 PM

    Well said. We barefoot it as much as possible.

  2. 2010-09-17 at 8:05 PM

    pwede kaya sakin ito?

  3. 2010-09-25 at 12:13 AM

    Have you ran your VFF sprint already? 🙂

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