Shoes are something of a necessity these days. Yet for all their usefulness, many of us breathe a sigh of relief when we can finally take them off when we get home. After all, being barefoot is simply not an option. Wouldn’t it be great if wearing shoes felt like being barefoot?
I’ve got good news: Minimalist shoes do just that. by working in harmony with your body. featuring lightweight designs, wider toe boxes, minimal cushioning, and no heel elevation, leaving your foot is free to move the way nature intended.
Think about hard it is to do anything wearing gloves. The padding robs us of sensation, rending us we unable to accomplish even the simplest of tasks. Shoes are guilty of the same crime, and they deprive us of any sense of discomfort- causing us to Subject our joints to all sorts of trauma without realising it.
This issue is largely ignored, stemming from an assumption that this is normal and that our primitive ancestors died very young and never lived past their 30’s or 40’s, and as such our knees wearing out is simply because we were never meant to live this long. Yet every time we encounter an uncontacted tribe- they seem to almost universally be exceptionally long lived and healthy. Clearly, this kind of degradation simply isn’t normal.
So, what exactly is it about conventional shoes that creates these problems? Raised heels, overly narrow toe boxes, and arch support. We all know that high heels are unhealthy- but almost every shoe in existence has a raised heel. While they once had a function in the days of horse-riding, now they are only a hindrance. Hardly any of us step into the stirrups anymore. Having a raised heel forces the our spine to compensate for the tilt, sending it out of alignment. In addition to this, it also robs the front of our feet of their load bearing function.
Yet the tapered toeboxes that so many shoes feature hinder their ability to perform this function as well. Our feet were meant to be free, not coddled and suffocated.
If you are curious about the science, there is no shortage of studies on the subject. Do be mindful that while some options look rather outlandish, the vast majority nobody of them nobody would even be able to tell the difference. If you want to make the change, be aware that it must be done gradually or you’ll injure yourself. After a few weeks of awkwardness you should start to adjust, and it feels great! You’ll never want to go back. If you’re interested in making the switch, there are quite a few options at your disposal.
There are a few ultra modern styles of minimalist shoes such as the offerings of vivobarefoot or Lems. Then you have more traditional moccasins and sandals from earth runners and soft star shoes.
And lastly: toe socks go wonderfully with minimalist shoes. Conventional socks encase our toes in one big sack, denying us the full range of circulation and mobility they could afford us otherwise.
So, what are you waiting for? Make the switch today. Your body will thank you.
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