We (Owen Performance) started indoor training and doing our rehab exercises in bare feet in the last couple of years.
At first, we didn’t really think much about the foot. The only training I knew was to put the foot into shoes with an added arch, or use custom made orthotics to “fix” a problem. I even had custom orthotics for a short time.
Now I understand that rigid shoes are helpful and so are custom orthotics but I can’t understand why they are a permanent solution.
Yes, I know there are a few situations where you need permanent orthotics. Leg length differences come to mind, the one where you need x-rays and measurements to confirm.
If you think about it, how often do you use your feet to move?
The foot is able to move a lot too. It is designed similarly to the hand. Lots of small bones, many layers of muscles (small muscles too). It doesn’t have the exact dexterity of the hand but it is surprising how much it is able to do.
Using rigid training shoes is like wearing hockey gloves. You can grip a stick and catch a puck but not very much else.
You wouldn’t do your daily tasks with hockey gloves all day, would you?
Our major goal with barefoot training is to make sure the feet are functioning as best as it can. We get those layers of muscles to start working again. After all, we’ve all been in those rigid shoes that don’t let the foot do what its meant to do.
Working on the rest of the body is more effective when we also work on the feet.
I’ll have a part 2 on barefoot training next week, where I give tips to start barefoot training.
If you’re interested in more information about barefoot training and how it could help you, feel free to contact us. We can explain how it can help your specific needs.