Unleashing your Inner Hippie – The Benefits of going Barefoot
There are a lot of proponents of living completely without footwear; there are entire groups who preach the benefits of health and comfort. The Society for Barefoot Living has a webpage devoted to providing all sorts of interesting facts about living your life in a shoeless fashion. For some of us, going entirely without footwear simply isn’t an option because of school, work or other endeavors where going barefoot may be prohibited, but is there really something to the drastic health benefits that all of the proponents of barefoot living preach – or is it all just an excuse for people to throw off the shackles of convention and live like a child again?
My journey into barefootedness began a few years ago when a nasty case of sunburn on the tops of my feet kept me from wearing shoes for a few days. Prior to this I had always worn some type of footwear in the gym for protective purposes, the last thing I wanted was to have to put off training for a few days due to a broken toe caused by a dropped dumbbell – but I had no choice with the sunburn, I would either be skipping some workouts or doing them with naked feet.
At the beginning I was a bit cautious, not wanting to get hurt – but after really getting into workout mode, I noticed that lifting without footwear was actually a pleasurable experience. After the sunburn had gone I continued on with my barefoot workouts; traditional weight training, kettlebell work, skipping rope and treadmill runs were all performed sans shoes. I began doing more research on the benefits of going shoeless and found some very interesting info through a variety of websites – I had no idea how widespread the word of going barefoot was.
Of course much of my barefooting was relegated to training and lounging around the house, I hadn’t (and probably never will) completely abandon shoes unless I become independently wealthy and don’t ever have to subject myself to the laws of society or convention.
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About Jeff Wilson Jeff Wilson has been involved in some form of sports and athletic training for more than two decades: as an athlete, a trainer and a writer.