Why You Should Consider Walking Barefoot: Healthy Feet and Grounding

walking barefoot photo

Michael Franti hasn’t worn shoes in 10 years. He’s been walking barefoot the entire time. At first, he was voicing his concerns about poverty and the children that were so poor they walked around barefoot. Then after a time his feet got used to the idea, and as result, so did he. 

It made me think about whether we humans were supposed to be barefoot. From grounding to healthy feet, here’s why I heart walking barefoot.

Grounding Down

For the majority of us, unlike Michael Franti, we don’t have the freedom to skip shoes all the time. Office jobs, department stores, and public restrooms seem to frown on it. But there are some benefits to walking barefoot from time to time.

When you’re not wearing shoes it helps to ground down into the Earth. For yogis especially, it’s this connection that helps one feel sane. That’s why when you’re doing a yoga practice you don’t wear shoes. It’s much harder to ground down when there’s the sole of a shoe between you and the ground beneath.

According to Anodea Judith, author of “Wheels of Life”, “Grounding is a process of dynamic contact with the Earth, with its edges, boundaries, and limitations. It allows us to become solidly real–present in the here and now–and dynamically alive with the vitality that comes from the Earth.”

Other Reasons To Consider Walking Barefoot

Beyond the concept of grounding down, let me remind you that we were born barefoot and there are a number of other reasons to enjoy barefoot bliss:

  • Wearing shoes in your home dirties the floors. It means you have to scrub your floors more often when it would be so much easier just to drop your shoes at the door.
  • If you go barefoot on the beach, it’s like a built-in pumice treatment, keeping your feet soft and beautiful.
  • It feels awesome to walk on grass, rugs, sand, and so many other pleasant surfaces.
  • It makes for healthy feet. Shoes can be claustrophobic and confining to your feet. They can cause blisters, joint problems, and even bacterial growth.
  • Shoes can make your feet smell.

I’m not saying go barefoot from here on out. For most of us, it’s unrealistic. But I spend a lot of time barefoot and have noticed all the fantastic benefits as a result.

Related on EcoSalon

Minimalist Living: Our Problematic Obsession

50 Quotes About Yoga and Meditation

4 Ways Ashram Living Changed My Life

Image: Alyssa Miller