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DYK? New Barefoot/Minimalist Shoe Movement

As you know, I’ve had fantastic success building muscle by working out. One of my trainers turned me on to the barefoot shoe movement, and I’m hooked!

Wearing barefoot or minimalist shoes for walking, hiking, running, lifting, and even simply for comfort improves your foot strength, corrects foot pain for many, and unfurls your toes so you can walk more stably.

Many people worldwide have ditched the cushioning shoe in favor of a minimalist barefoot approach. 

BAREFOOT SHOE

Harvard’s Dr. Daniel Lieberman has conducted research discovering how barefoot runners put less force through their joints. This helped start the barefoot running revolution many years ago.

Recent research from Dr. Lieberman also considers “toe spring.” 

Toe spring is the upward curve in a shoe, from the ball of the foot to the tip, built into athletic shoes and even many dress shoes. Shoe designers add a toe spring to accommodate the sole, preventing your toes from bending towards your knee as your foot is about to push off the ground. 

However, researchers discovered that by limiting the amount of movement in the foot, the foot gets weaker. 

“It stands to reason that if the foot muscles have to do less work, then they’re probably going to have less endurance given that many thousands of times a day you push off on your toes,” said Lieberman, the Edwin M. Lerner II Professor of Biological Science and senior author on the paper. The work on toe-springs is described in Scientific Reports. 

The researchers say this potential weakness could make people more susceptible to medical conditions like plantar fasciitis — a standard, hard to repair, and painful inflammation of the thick, web-like band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes.

To remedy toe spring problems and other foot injuries, here’s what many people are recommending. 

I have a pair of these and especially LOVE to wear them when I’m deadlifting because I can feel the ground.

If you have foot issues, check these out, and don’t miss the sale page.

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⇐ 40% Off On The Women’s HFS, Ashland, and Xcursion Fusion. PLUS — FIVE $100 XeroShoes.com Gift Certificates

FEEL THE EARTH 

Barefoot running also has benefits when it comes to burning more calories, relieving foot pain, improving overall balance, increasing joint involvement to absorb running impact, and more. 

Other benefits include strengthening your gait, forcing you to correct your walking technique, improving balance and proprioception (awareness of your body’s movements and position), and giving you more connection to the earth/ground you’re covering. 

You’ll feel like you’re walking “on top of your feet” rather than behind them. 

And this makes you stronger, whether you’re going for a stroll or carrying a 50-pound pack on a trail (which, by the way, will be easier because your engaged glutes and hamstrings support your lower back). 

When you think about staying on top of your feet and using your glutes and hamstrings, you’ll naturally discover easy and efficient ways to walk in any situation. You’ll understand it from the inside out, from your own experience, not from some guidebook about how many inches behind your knee you should have your ankle when you’re walking up a 10-degree incline in 50-degree weather on a Thursday. 

Combine this with feeling the world because you’re barefoot or in some genuinely minimalist footwear (be warned, most major shoe companies claim their product is “barefoot” when it’s about as close to barefoot as a pair of stilts). I guarantee that your next walk or hike will be a revelation and a lot of fun.

Members Only Content
Please login or register for a Free Membership to view this content.
⇐ 40% Off On The Women’s HFS, Ashland, and Xcursion Fusion. PLUS — FIVE $100 XeroShoes.com Gift Certificates

barefoot shoe

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