Topics in this article are discussed within the NESTA Biomechanics Specialist Certification Course.
Going barefoot strengthens the stabilizing muscles of the foot and ankle and makes them stronger. Shoes give a lot of stability and support and can make the foot and ankle lazy. Strengthening the small stabilizing muscles of the feet can improve our balance and overall sports performance.
Going Barefoot Improves Proprioception
Your feet are covered with proprioceptors—sensors that provide feedback about body position and alignment. Proprioception is our unconscious perception of space and our orientation and movement within the space around us. Going barefoot helps us to feel and connect us to our environment and this helps our balance and develops our natural movements.
Stronger Ankles and More Support
Nearly one-fourth of the body’s bones are in our feet. Joints in the feet are formed wherever two or more of these bones meet. Except for the big toe, each of the toes has three joints.
Our feet are the base of support for our whole body. Often knee and back pain stems from poor or improper foot mechanics. Artificial support from shoes can place unnatural pressure on the knees, spine and neck. Our foot mechanics affects our whole posture.
Going Barefoot Helps Energy Flow
Going barefoot can improve your Chi and strengthen your entire body. Your feet are often the only part of your body that touches the ground. They release all of the energy and force that we accumulate throughout our body. Going barefoot helps energy to flow smoothly through our body.
Prevent Hip Problems
Going barefoot increases flexibility and mobility of the foot and gives a much wider range of motion. If the stability and mobility of the feet deteriorate, this affects and changes the ankle, knee and hip positions and makes them all more prone to injuries.
If you have decided to give barefoot training a try remember to start slowly, do your research and talk to a professional about their recommendations.
Keep in mind that some people require more support than others and if you have never run or trained barefoot you are likely to experience some soreness at the beginning.
There is always something exciting about earning a new certification and applying that new knowledge of how you train your clients. This also helps you hit the reset button.
Our programs are open to anyone with a desire to learn and help others. There are no prerequisites.
Thanks for reading!