06 Feb Going Barefoot in Leesburg?
Is Barefoot Best?
If the thought of walking barefoot conjures up memories of carefree childhood days or a favorite beach vacation, that’s a good thing, but there are many other benefits of barefoot walking, including healthier feet and the immunity-boosting benefits of grounding, so make the barefoot life a regular part of your foot care regimen.
At Shuman Podiatry and Sports Medicine, we know that walking barefoot isn’t ideal for a busy city street or your workplace, but we encourage you to try it when you’re on a lawn or in your house. Here are five good reasons to go shoeless more often.
Health Benefits of Barefoot Walking
1 – Improve Sports Performance
- You’ll develop stronger foot muscles, which will help your arches lift and reduce your chance of developing injuries like plantar fasciitis.
- More muscle engagement means better tone in your feet and legs.
- Improve blood circulation to your feet, which will regulate body temperature and boost overall health.
- Your feet will breathe, preventing conditions like fungus and athlete’s foot that can develop when your feet are enclosed in warm, damp shoes or socks.
2 – It’s Better for Children
- Walking barefoot forces you to engage your core muscles and land on the balls of your feet rather than the heels.
- It can improve your posture and balance.
- Because it stretches your tendons, walking barefoot can help lessen the pain of conditions like plantar fasciitis, bunions and hammertoe.
3 – Get Grounded
- Walking barefoot allows children’s feet to grow naturally and to breathe.
- Most shoes made for children don’t allow for their feet’s natural development.
- Walking barefoot will prevent many gait problems when they learn to walk.
4 – Feel More Free
- Grounding, or “earthing,” refers to the theory that walking barefoot increases the amount of electrons your skin absorbs from the earth.
- A high amount of electrons leads to a stronger immune system, increased antioxidants, and lower levels of inflammation.
- Walking barefoot in a park or garden is an excellent way to connect with nature and increase your emotional well-being.
Are there Disadvantages to Walking Barefoot?
- Taking off your shoes induces a feeling of relaxation.
- Letting your feet breathe will reduce foot odors and lessen your chances of contracting athlete’s foot or a fungal infection.
- Going shoeless at home will keep your floors and furniture cleaner and that’s a great way to feel less stressed.
Foot Care for Bare Feet
- Frequently walking barefoot outdoors will lead to a thick callus buildup.
- They’ll get dirty, so wash them when you come indoors.
- You could be exposed to insect bites, bacteria or sharp objects.
- If you have diabetes, don’t risk injuring your feet by walking outdoors without shoes.
Healthy Feet are Happy Feet
- If you’re not used to being barefoot, start slowly on soft surfaces like grass and sand.
- For safety reasons, limit your outdoor exposure but go barefoot in your house as often as possible.
- Be alert to biting or stinging insects and sharp objects if you walk outside.
- If you have a condition such as diabetes, be very cautious about avoiding puncture injuries to your feet.
- Get regular podiatric checkups to keep your feet in tip-top shape whether they’re in shoes or out of them.
At Shuman Podiatry we are all about keeping your feet as healthy as they can be. If you’ve decided that you want to try the barefoot lifestyle, start gradually and only do as much you’re comfortable with. We’ll make sure your new barefoot choice is a good one for your feet.
We can also help if you prefer to keep your shoes on, from selecting the right ones to diagnosing foot problems and fitting you for custom orthotics to make your shoes work better. Call Shuman Podiatry and Sports Medicine today and let us keep you walking comfortably wherever you roam.
About: Dr Shuman provides podiatry services in Potomac Falls, Sterling, Ashburn, Lansdowne and Leesburg Va. Shuman Podiatry offers: custom orthotics, diabetic foot care, heel pain and spurs, wart removal and more. Contact Dr Shuman today for all your foot care needs.